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PA12DRVR

Back in God's Country

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Posted: 10/01/19 07:31pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Not sure if it's on point... but if "hybrid" means electric plus gas:

- I had a 2005 (purchased in 2005) Prius in the Ewe-stun Texas area;
- Did not use it as a Towed...not sure if it was "towable"
- Owned it until 2018; it was sold at that point and the second owner put circa 25,000 more miles on it until the propulsion batter started showing significant signs of decay at (IIRC) circa 150k miles, a year after her purchase. It was traded on a small ICE vehicle.
- The Prius was the most reliable vehicle I've owned. Period. Full stop. I never had a problem with the electric propulsion system or the gas engine or the running gear. The starting battery died (as in wore out, wouldn't hold a charge) and had to be replaced: very inconvenient as I had to take a cab to/from the auto shop to get a replacement, but in the big picture, nothing too serious.
- The readout (FWIW) showed mileage (i.e. the combined electric / gas mileage) consistently in the high 40's at purchase decaying to the mid-30's while I owned it.
- Due to tax credits, I got something like a $4000 credit at the time of purchase.

Perfect vehicle for Ewe-stun (even in the 1-2" of snow that happened twice in the time I owned it) and for running around and for my then 18 mile one-way commute. Wouldn't want one in snow or even if I had to drive it through hurricane-flooded underpasses..but I didn't like to take my F350 through that either.

If I lived where there was no snow and had regular need for a run-about, I'd look into a hybrid again.


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rjstractor

Maple Valley, WA

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Posted: 10/01/19 08:40pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

A while back I owned a 2006 Ford Escape Hybrid. Not the most thrilling vehicle to drive, but it never lacked for enough power to keep up with traffic. It regularly turned in about 28 mpg in combined driving, which is pretty good for an almost 4000 lb 4WD SUV. It was very reliable for the most part, I only had two issues which resulted in the car shutting down. The first was failure of the battery pack cooling fans. When the fans fail there is no indication by a CEL, but when the battery temp hits 45 C (about 113 F) the car shuts down abruptly. Through some diligent research I was able to troubleshoot and replace the fans for about $250. Cost at the dealer would have been over $1000. I had a similar issue with the coolant pump that cools the car's propulsion electronics. The pump failed, and the car again would shut down abruptly without warning. That was replaced under recall.

Apart from that, the car was reliable, and when my son traded it in it had over 175K miles and the battery pack still performed like new, the car used no oil and still got good mileage. If I saw a "basket case" Escape Hybrid for sale cheap I would be tempted to buy it since I've learned what makes them tick.

However, like Turtle's video states, these cars are incredibly complex and it can be difficult to recoup the extra expense over the life of the car. I kind of enjoyed the challenge of troubleshooting and fixing something that most shops were terrified to even open the hood of, but they aren't for everyone.

K3WE

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Posted: 10/02/19 12:04am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

gbopp wrote:

K3WE wrote:

The reason I ask is the DW was car shopping and was told that "hybrids only cost $800 more than equivalents with engines".

And hinted that this was the future for smaller cars and that this would have service and resale benefits.

Who gave your DW this information, the sales people?
Did they tell her that hybrids have gas engines?


Bad writing-I meant "equivalents with ONLY a combustion engine."

Hondavalk

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Posted: 10/02/19 06:07am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I bought a 2004 Prius hybrid that I put 214,000 miles on. In the 15 years I owned it I had 1 brake job done and replaced the starter battery once. I also replaced the wheel bearings around the 200,000 mark and the muffler once. The hybrid battery pack started going bad after 15 years so I bought a 2018 Prius Prime plug in Hybrid. That purchase also got me an additional 4,600 dollar on my federal tax refund.





JRscooby

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Posted: 10/02/19 06:56am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

DutchmenSport wrote:

I think it all depends upon your personal life style. I could never use successfully. I tow a behemoth 5er, and the distance from home to work is ... well ... not practical from an electric car.

Others may have great success. Just like anything in life, you have to figure out if it will work for you. Do all the logistics and see where it leads. What is the most AGGRESSIVE most ROBUST demand you will put on your vehicle (NOT THE LIGHTEST, DAILY USE) ... and then find out if electric power can handle it, that is, the greatest demand you would EVER need from it, even if that need is for a very short duration. Then you have your answer.


I wish a hybrid, or better yet plug in, would of been available for the same money when I bought DW's last car. For the "most AGGRESSIVE most ROBUST demand you will put on your vehicle" I would still have the pickup. Or as now, if she needs to go a couple hundred miles from home, rent a car.

valhalla360

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Posted: 10/02/19 08:11am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Hybrids come in different flavors:
- Parallel: Gas engine that drives the wheels but also has a secondary electric motor that can add a boost during acceleration.
- Serial: Gas engine connected to a generator and electric motors are driving the wheels.
- Plug-In-Hybrid: Has a larger battery pack and can run without starting the gas engine on shorter trips (10-50miles) but when the battery runs down, the gas engine starts up and it runs like a serial. Some of these don't do great in gas power mode.

But in terms of purchase, you have to look at your driving pattern.
- Find a standard gas engine car that is equivalent and look at the MPG.
- Find the MPG of the Hybrid.

Now estimate how many miles a year you will travel. Divide by the MPG and multiply by the cost of a gallon of gas...that's how much you will save per year. If that savings is enough, go hybrid but you may find that a comparable compact gas car getting 40-45mpg, going up to 50mpg may take a lot of miles to pay for itself.

Plug-In-Hybrid is a little more complicated. You have to estimate how many miles you typically drive in a day. Let's say you have a 40 mile commute and the car has a 25 mile range on battery (you recharge at night in your garage).
- You do the same calculation but assume 15miles per day as whatever the straight gas MPG is plus add in the cost of the KWH for the overnight charging for the other 25 miles.
- If the commute is only 10 miles, you will have almost no gas expense but don't forget the electric bill cost.
- If you commute 150 miles per day, the math is the same but you may find, it's not much better than a standard gas engine.

For your typical commuter, Plug-In-Hybrids are really going to take over in the next few years. Pure Battery EVs have a huge battery pack cost because they are trying to make them functional over hundreds of miles. A Plug-In-Hybrid can size the battery pack much smaller as it only needs to meet the typical commute (10-30miles typically) to get most miles under battery alone. That keeps them price competitive against gas engines while getting 70-95% of miles under battery power.


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Jayco-noslide

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Posted: 10/02/19 09:23am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I don't think a hybrid is for me. Higher cost at purchase which would take years to pay off with the better MPG compared to a nice used compact car which also gets excellent MPG. Also, I'm an old "car guy" that wants a little more zip and a motor I can hear.
However, a hybrid makes way more sense than any current all electric vehicle. They are not yet ready for prime time but are basically a rich persons toy. I want a car I can hope into and drive 2000 miles without worrying if I will run out of charge and where to get charged on the great plaines. I can't afford a $30000 car just to drive around town.


Jayco-noslide

time2roll

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Posted: 10/02/19 09:56am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

K3WE wrote:

SLIGHTLY off topic as I'm asking more about T(oad)Vs rather than T(ow)Vs.
Most important is how you going to pull the toad and that it is rated four-down if that is what you expect.

I think you will get more from a plug-in hybrid and my perception is Toyota has a superior system right now.


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K3WE

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Posted: 10/02/19 10:10am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

time2roll wrote:

K3WE wrote:

SLIGHTLY off topic as I'm asking more about T(oad)Vs rather than T(ow)Vs.
Most important is how you going to pull the toad and that it is rated four-down if that is what you expect.

I think you will get more from a plug-in hybrid and my perception is Toyota has a superior system right now.


To be honest, we are TT folks and NOT looking for a true TOAD as much as our "normal car"...but knew the motorheads here would provide a few bits of insight.

I actually UNDERSTAND things just fine- but was after what I like to call "the intangibles"...

I learned that battery life (as in YEARS of life) is not much of an issue.

Aside from that- they are still more expensive (how much will vary), still provide markedly improved MPG in "city driving", and may have improved mechanical life due to the electrical stuff TENDING to be simpler than traditional transmissions and drive trains. (Not that the car, as a whole, is may be more complicated).

Thanks all, good discussion.

time2roll

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Posted: 10/02/19 10:36am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Why stop at hybrid instead of going full electric?
Range and battery life keep getting better.

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