Every once in a while, an invention comes along that gains so
much popular attention that it may seem like it has been around
forever. While the basic idea for the hybrid car has been around
since 1917, the hybrids that we talk about on the market today
have only really been around since the Honda Insight and the
Toyota Prius made their debuts in the 1990s.
Since that time,
other dealers have become involved in the hybrid trade, in part
thanks to government initiatives such as the Clinton
administrationís agreement with Chrysler, Ford, and General
Motors (Partnership for a New Generation of Vehicles). What the
growth in both popularity and diversity means is that several
issues that have come up in the evolution of the hybrid car are
being dealt with in the age old capitalist way of competition.
Hybrid cars have always lived up to their touted ability to
save gas, but unless your soul is painted green this was not
necessarily of any benefit to the average consumers. Most hybrid
cars end up costing more than their standard engine counterparts
over the long term, largely due to their initial cost. In
addition, hybrid parts can be hard and expensive to obtain.
These are some of the key issues that need to be resolved from a
consumerís perspective in order to make the mass purchase of
hybrids by the public a reality. It should come as no surprise
that in terms of long term cost, the original manufacturer of
the hybrid, Toyota, is far ahead of its competitors when it
comes to addressing the purchasing needs of consumers. This is
currently the only model that over time will actually save a
consumer some dollars because of gas savings. Here are some
other models of hybrid cars slated for debut in the next few
Toyota Prius: Still the gold standard for hybrids,
the Prius 2007 model is now being advertised for sale and is in
the lot of a dealership near you. The model brags an incredible
110 miles to a single gallon. It is also expected that Toyota
will continue to set the standard when it comes to speed for the
hybrid (which has been another knock on hybrid vehicles,
although they can maintain a legal speed along with any other
model of vehicle just fine) as the 2004 model was designed to
reach speeds of up to 130 miles per hour. $20,875 US dollars.
Ford Escape: The 2005 is the latest model in the Ford hybrid
line, and is great for both domestic car enthusiasts and those
who insist on having a sports utility vehicle. The Escape offers
50 miles to the gallon (keep in mind that it is an SUV) and all
the luxuries of a standard model car. $27,000 USD.
Honda also offers three models in hybrid version, and these
are a few thousand dollars less than Toyota models. As for
hybrid luxuries, they might be in the near future as well, with
Lexus and Mercedes working on perfecting their own models.
About the Author:
Frank Little maintains a website dedicated to exploring the most
effcient hybrid cars.