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Old 01-04-2011, 01:54 PM
 
13,569 posts, read 14,813,040 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jc76 View Post
I would recommend you do more research on the Hybrid though, any brand of hybrid. They are crazy expensive to repair and seem more likely to malfunction. Also many shops wont even work on them and the (to me anyway) the gas mileage gain is not enough to justify the burden that comes with an Insight or Prius.
Sorry, but you lose a lot of credibility with those statements, none of which are true in the least. Hybrids are no more costly to repair or maintain than a conventional vehicle. You could argue the cost of replacement batteries over time, but depending on where you live, the warranty can cover those components for up to 15 years and 150k miles, far longer than most people keep a car. Even then the cost of replacement batteries is not nearly what people believe them to be.

On the failure front, hybrids are no more prone to failure or malfunction than any other car. Failures in the actual hybrid system are extremely rare to the point that they are less likely to occur than an engine or transmission failure in a regular car.

As for shops not working on them, that's another myth. There is no danger to working on a hybrid. If a shop refuses to work on one, they either have zero knowledge of the car and think they can't or they lack diagnostic tools.

You are right that the overall cost of a hybrid has little justification relative to another more efficient vehicle. In fact the Corolla vs. Prius comparison won't even begin to pay off over 10 years unless gas hit ~$6.50 a gallon.
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Old 01-04-2011, 02:36 PM
 
Location: Wyoming
6,510 posts, read 8,081,518 times
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I gave up on domestic cars in '86. That was the year I (unfortunately) bought a new Jeep Grand Wagoneer and had so many problems with it that I traded it a few months later for a new Saab. Since then I've had a number of foreign-built cars and trucks from Suzuki Samurai to Toyota, Subarus to Lexus and VWs to Porsches. Meanwhile I've also had a Chevy and two Ford 3/4-ton pickups.

I've generally had good luck with all of them, and that also includes my wife's Saturn that she's been driving now for 14 years with only a few minor problems. The best of the best had to be the Toyota pickup that I drove for 7 years and the Samurai that both of my kids drove during high school. It was driven hard around town, over back roads in the mountains, slammed against curbs, bounced over curbs, driven through blizzards and across mountain creeks. In the four years we had it, the only things I ever replaced were oil filters and windshield wipers. And I can say the same about the Toyota pickup. I hauled sand, bricks and lumber in it until it was so overloaded I thought the axles would break, regularly towed a 20-foot boat behind it, explored narrow mountain paths and generally abused it in every way possible for 7 years. Other than oil, filters and wipers, I never spent a dime on it. And my Saabs were my all-time favorite cars -- an '86 and an '88 Turbo 9000, built before GM bought them. I drove the last one until it had 180,000 miles on it.

I want you to know that I'm not a member of the "big 3 cult". That said, I'd have no qualms about buying Ford or GM products now. I believe they've made great strides in recent years and are probably the best value on the market.

Replacement parts on foreign cars are often crazy expensive and sometimes hard to find. I had a Subaru that I wrecked when it was only a month old. I had to wait SIX MONTHS to get parts from Japan! I was stranded in SD for several days when an alternator failed on my Saab and had to be shipped from Edmonton. It was the third alternator that failed in that car, and I believe each of them cost roughly $400. I finally gave up on repairing it when the heater developed a tiny leak. It didn't leak enough to notice, except that it leaked into the cabin and caused an antifreeze smell. Cost to repair it was going to be $900. It was the straw that broke the camel's back. As much as I loved that car, it just wasn't cost effective to keep it.

My son still trades cars regularly and has switched from foreign (Toyotas and VWs) to domestic (Caddy and now shopping for a 'Vette). If I were to buy a new car this year it would be a Ford or GM. It would not be a hybrid, because their cost just isn't justified by the "fuel" savings.
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