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.: August 2006 --> Hybrid premium recouped in 3 to 6 years

Hybrid premium recouped in 3 to 6 years

» With the rise in gas prices, hybrid owners can expect to recoup the extra cost of their vehicle in 3-6 years, a new study says.
 [ 08.23.06 ]


I wonder if that's just a sticker-price comparison. I'd have to think about the difference in terms of lost investment potential--would I rather gradually recoup my money over 5 years, or invest and add another $1000 to what I already had? I think more important than going hybrid is just using the smallest car that works for you. I think one of those cute little Euro diesel cars could be great [for me]. Of course, it's also hard to beat a bike if you live in the right spot.

For me, the appealing aspect of the hybrid car has always been that it's easier on the environment. Up until now, buying a hybrid has meant paying a premium to be less impactive, a perfectly reasonable cost for some people (me). But for others, who don't feel as motivated, knowing that the premium will pay for itself in gas savings—meaning that after 5 years there is no premium—may be the information they need to buy a hybrid.

(To be honest, I don't think we drive enough in a year to come even close to these figures. If we were to buy a hybrid, it would be entirely for the environmental impact, not to save money in any way.)

As for your investment comparison, it seems to me that it's a matter of gradually recouping your money over 5 years, or gradually spending your money over 5 years. When you add inflation and rising gas costs, how much more will you make (in interest) than you will spend over that same period of time on gasoline?

Valid points about inflation and fuel costs. I suppose you'd also have to factor in room for depreciation and eventual trade-in money you could get for the vehicle. Now that I think of it, I wonder which variety, hybrid or standard, has a better pre-owned market?

But there is more to the purchase than dollars and cents. Either way, I think we'll both agree that lower prices for earth-friendly[-ier] vehicle is a good thing.



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