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Hybrid Redux? Not for Most Owners

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Beth Stackpole
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Hybrid redux is critical to success
Beth Stackpole   4/18/2012 7:09:37 AM
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I think the fact that hybrid owners aren't ponying up when they're back in the car market for another hybrid vehicle has to speak volumes. Unless the data shows they're ponying up for another type of alternative vehicle like a pure EV, I don't know how you can interpret the findings any other way but to say the technology is losing ground. We all know it's much easier to sell something to someone who has already purchased it once or bought into the overall value proposition. I find these findings pretty disheartening.

Mydesign
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Performance in Hybrid car
Mydesign   4/18/2012 8:31:09 AM
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Charles, you are right, those who have hybrid cars, won't prefer it again. The initial cost for hybrid cars are more when compare with stand alone fuel vehicles. I had a hybrid car and I feel that, when am switching out of gasoline, the engine power and pulling are comes down. I mean the engine is not outputting 100% of its performance. This is a disappointing factor for those who love crazy driving.

GlennA
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Re: Performance in Hybrid car
GlennA   4/18/2012 8:51:02 AM
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I have had my hybrid for just over a year, and when the time comes, I may not buy another.  But it's not because I am not happy with it.  The Chrysler Aspen Two Mode Hemi Hybrid was only produced for about 1/2 of the 2009 model year.  When it comes time to replace it, I don't know if I will be able to find another hybrid rated to tow - the Aspen is rated to tow 6000 lbs.  I looked at the Ford Escape and Toyota Highlander hybrids and their spec's were lacklustre when compared to the Aspen.  When (if ?) the SUV and truck market opens up to the idea of hybrids, there might be another Chrysler Aspen.  I think Dodge has a truck package that is similar to a hybrid, but I think the selling point was the truck with a generator package for remote construction sites.

naperlou
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Re: Hybrid redux is critical to success
naperlou   4/18/2012 10:02:40 AM
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Beth, another disturbing statistic is the market penetration rate.  It is declining.  It is also very small. 

I looked at hybrids recently.  One of the ones I saw had a break even period of at least 2 years.  That seemed fairly good since I would keep a car for much longer than that.  On the other hand, I think that was optomistic.  So,  considering the points made in the article, it seems that gasoline vehicles will catch up to hybrids in total cost of ownership (TCO) before long.  In many technology businesses TCO is an important selling point.  In the consumer field this is becoming important as well.

Rob Spiegel
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Re: Hybrid redux is critical to success
Rob Spiegel   4/18/2012 2:01:08 PM
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Interesting statistics in this article, Chuck. I guess the big question is whether the hybrid owners who chose not to continue with a hybrid went on to buy an EV. It could be that those devoted enough to get a hybrid would be even more interested in an EV now that there are more choices in the EV world.

Ollie
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Really?
Ollie   4/18/2012 3:14:22 PM
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This goes against what many of us assume.  But I think some might be jumping to conclusions a bit early.

 

If you look at the numbers by quarter you see a huge drop off in Q2 of 2011. Loyality went from 40% to 26%.  And that would be the lowest for any quarter since 2008 when this study begins.  

 

It's probably reasonable to assume that the Japanese earthquake and Tsunami had some affect on supply.  When those Prius owners can't get a new one some have to buy something else.

 

And so by the end of Q4 you see loayalty back at 40%.  

 

https://www.polk.com/company/news/only_35_percent_of_hybrid_owners_buying_hybrids_again_says_polk

Charles Murray
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Re: Hybrid redux is critical to success
Charles Murray   4/18/2012 6:31:48 PM
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A very small percentage of hybrid buyers went on to purchase an EV, Rob. The majority of former-hybrid customers opted for a Honda Civic or Toyota Camry.

Charles Murray
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Re: Really?
Charles Murray   4/18/2012 6:36:39 PM
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You are correct about the effect of the earthquake, Ollie. Both Polk and Edmunds surmised that the earthquake had some effect on availability.

Greg M. Jung
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Hybrid Loyalty
Greg M. Jung   4/18/2012 8:53:17 PM
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Good article which brought out some relevent points on hybrid perception vs. reality.  I was mildly surprised that the data didn't show a stronger loyalty from those who claim to be very concerned with the environment.  Also, I was expecting gas prices to impact hybrid segment loyalty more.  I supposed there will be a critical threshold that gasoline prices reach where this trend will start to reverse itself.

3drob
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Re: Really?
3drob   4/19/2012 9:23:49 AM
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The question I have after reading the article (and maybe I just didn't see it) is whether the Hybrid owners are in the market to REPLACE their hybrid, or to get a second car.  It's a bit soon in the non-Prius Hybrid market to talk about replacements, so I'd have to assume not.

If I'm replacing my Hybrid (a 2010) I'd probably buy another.  My Hybrid mid-size get's better mileage and performance (yes, I want both) than the compact cars I test drove at the time of my original purchase. 

If I'm replacing my 25 year old Jeep (which needs to haul and tow), I'd look at the Hybrid SUV's and trucks, but chances are I wouldn't get a Hybrid.

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