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Old 01-05-2013, 10:25 PM
anE934fun anE934fun is offline
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Location: S.F. Bay Area
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 6,807
Mein Auto: 2010 335d
Originally Posted by Pasa-d View Post
Funny how opinions of cars differ. I drove a Prius (the slightly older generation) as a rental for a weekend and then drove a friend's for a weekend when my previous car was in the shop. I was both surprised and disappointed. Surprised at how well it accelerated (but it's no diesel!), disappointed in overall handling, ergonomics and general driving dynamics. As others have said, basically a toaster on wheels. I found I could not live with one as my daily driver.

For dense urban living, hybrids are great, particularly plug-in ones, as they move the source of the pollution away from the dense urban center and significantly reduce smog impacts. I do not think they "save the planet" overall though; you'd be better off with a very high fuel economy gas or diesel powered car if that is your intent. They have a much lower cradle-to-grave overall impact.
The more I research the plug-in cars, the less impressed I am with them. The greatest down-side is the battery pack (number of discharge-recharge cycles for a lithium battery pack is around 750 - 1,000). Unless the manufacturer is giving a 100,000 mile warranty on the battery pack, the owner is going to be eating a big chunk of expense around the 80K to 90K mile point. If economy is the deciding criteria, I would go with a non-plug-in hybrid, especially if city driving is going to be a significant factor. Highway, I would stick with my d.

As regards the relative clean-ness of the battery manufacturing process, the issue has been debated ad nauseam over on
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