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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I recently turned my car in after a 3 year lease. I had planned to get another BMW 5 series, but rising gas prices have encouraged me to consider a hybrid. In addition, if I purchase a hybrid and put it into service before the end of 2005 there is a $2000 tax advantage. (Waiting until 2006 cause the tax credit to go down to $500). I test drove a Lexus RX400h. I liked it fine, but am a little nervous about the hybrid. Does anyone have a hybrid or know someone who is driving one? Is the gas mileage really as good as they advertise?
 

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Originally posted by msmagnolia@Aug 23 2005, 05:18 PM
I recently turned my car in after a 3 year lease.  I had planned to get another BMW 5 series, but rising gas prices have encouraged me to consider a hybrid.  In addition, if I purchase a hybrid and put it into service before the end of 2005 there is a $2000 tax advantage.  (Waiting until 2006 cause the tax credit to go down to $500).  I test drove a Lexus RX400h.  I liked it fine, but am a little nervous about the hybrid.  Does anyone have a hybrid or know someone who is driving one?  Is the gas mileage really as good as they advertise?
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Sorry ,I have questions regarding the hybrid cars. Is this the one were you plug it in your garage to charge and it give you 80 km for the day to drive. I'm getting confused with all the new energy saving cars. With the price of gas do belive this is the way to go. I's better for the enviorment and you.

Anyone have more details?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I also thought they had to be plugged in, but that is not the new hybrids. These have some sort of battery that converts the energy but I don't really understand these things. The battery has a 100,000 mile/8 year warranty. I drove it and it was pretty peppy. I kind of like the idea of doing some environmentally friendly, but I don't want to spend big bucks for technology that isn't really working.
 

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i know when my husband was looking at them (3 yrs ago) they said the battery didnt last but 3 years and was very expensive to replace (at the time more than gas would have cost) i dont know how they are now. but if there is an 8yr warrenty on the battery that should help a lot. i would still find out how much a new battery would cost.
 

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Originally posted by LadyMontava@Aug 23 2005, 08:56 PM
i know when my husband was looking at them (3 yrs ago) they said the battery didnt last but 3 years and was very expensive to replace (at the time more than gas would have cost)  i dont know how they are now. but if there is an 8yr warrenty on the battery that should help a lot.  i would still find out how much a new battery would cost.
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Yep find out how much the battery cost by contacting the auto shop, not the dealer.
That way you will get the realy price.
and find out how the battery is charged and how much km you get in the day. I'm not sure what it is in the U.S
 

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hello

If I may shed some light on this subject. I worked at a Japanese Motor company in the past 4 yrs and have gained a little knowledge on these hybrid vehicles.

First, you should know that hybrid is not a new technology. It's actually been around for years, especially in Japan. Second, Toyota and Nissan (although Nissan does not commercially sell any Hybrids in the US at this time) produces the best hybrid. What IS new is the concept of putting hybrid into SUV type of vehicles. Typically, hybrids are small urban cars.

How does it work? Basically, you have the electric motor, battery, and the gas engine (much smaller). Smaller engine does not equal to less speed. The reason the engine is small, is to of course, efficiently run the vehicle. The battery recharges itself when the vehicle is standign still or decelerating. When accelerating, the battery provides the extra push.

I say go get one. It's a really good deal. Given your short history of the previous car ownership, it does not look like you will keep a vehicle more than 5 years anyway. In which, the battery will be covered within the warranty. If someone is looking to keep their hybrid past the battery warranty period, I strongly advise against it becasue it's going to cost them thousands of dollars (2500-3500 USD) and not to mention that only trained technicians will be able to perform this job. The guy at the garage next street over isn't likely to have the expertise to work on these vehices- meaning high bucks paid to dealership technicians.

You will save money on maintenance overall during the short time you own the vehicle. I know that BMW still have their free maintenance program, but hybrid vehicles does not require any engine maintenance, and the battery does not need it either.

Ok- this is getting really long. In short, good deal on the Lexus. Good customer service overall (JD Powers winners in several categories) and their existing Prius has been a great buy on the market.

There are of course, some service bulletins/aka recalls to expect on newer model vehicles, but that's just about all the vehicles out there now. New production always have slight issues that need to be reworked.

It's funny because I really wanted a hybrid and then my husband talked me into getting our first GAS MONSTER. A Dodge Ram. It's so nice though. Just no fun to spend all our money on gas...

Hope my ESSAY helps you.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thank you so much for the information. You were even nice enough to provide understandable information to a non-mechanical type.

Our daughter recently ordered the 2006 Mercedes M350 but it is a gas hog and uses premium gas. I like that the Lexus is a hybrid and uses regular gas. The dealer tells me that it gets 31mpg around town and 27mpg on the road. It seems strange that the hybrid gets better mileage in city driving. I put about 12,000 miles a year on a car and most of that is running around in town. I believe that we will strongly consider the hybrid.

I have not owned an SUV but my husband did not like that the BMW because it is so low to the ground. I loved it, but it wasn't as comfortable a car for him. You are correct - I like driving newer cars. I also like a car that has a bumper to bumper warranty. You really can't beat the BMW in that respect. Once a car is out of warranty I usually sell it. A few really bad experiences with cars make me very skiddish about repair bills. I once had a Mercedes that literally cost me as much in repairs each month as I was paying in a car note. And once you start paying for big repairs you feel like you have to drive the car longer to make the repair pay off. It becomes a vicious cycle.

I am going to continue to read reviews. If anyone else has any experience please post. For now this thread has been very helpful. Thanks!
 

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If the battery recharges itself when it is sitting still or decelerating...then what happens if you are on a road trip...interstate driving? How long will it keep a charge? What happens if it starts to lose a charge?
 

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Originally posted by tlunn@Aug 24 2005, 06:59 AM
If the battery recharges itself when it is sitting still or decelerating...then what happens if you are on a road trip...interstate driving? How long will it keep a charge? What happens if it starts to lose a charge?

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Thank you for asking this. This is my question as well. Can you drive this car for like 4 hours straight. We normally go to a cottage sometimes in summer and fall. Not to mention we always do long driving.

Any way thank you for the essay . At least i know a car like that is not for me. My next car I hope to keep it way longer then 5 years. I would love not to use gas anymore but oh well.
 

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I don't recall what station the story aired on, but I recently saw a tv show regarding the actual mileage of the hybrid. According to the testing the show did, the hybrid did really well on interstate mileage, but it actually did approx. the same for city driving. I don't know, but I found it very interesting. Especially since I currently have a gas hog, a Yukon Denali AWD. But since I have 3 small children, 2 furbabies (my malt and a dach), and Kitty (a pound cat), the smaller vehicles just don't work very well for me. And take in to account that we travel 400 miles one way to visit family about once a month...Not very economical right now, but when we took away our parents grandbabies, we had to find some way to keep the peace. -_-
 

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I dont think I answered the questions fully regarding recharge. No- the hybrid battery does not require it to be plugged in. It occurs during normal drviving conditions such as braking and coasting. I believe most hybrid, there are several different types, use the gasoline engine to either directly or indirectly charge the battery as necessary.

Also, the gas engine shuts off (when conditions allow) when you are stopped. This is great because it emits 0 emission, very quiet, and no idling problem that usual vehicles experience.

Driving highway will not kill your battery because it's a rapid charging system and each time you slow down to avoid something or change speed, normal variances during driving, you are recharging.

Toyota may incorporate Hybrid systems to their full line up. Really ballsy move but they can do it.

Fun Fact- Did you know that Toyota Motor Corp can STOP production and sales of their vehicle for 3-4 years and still have enough resource/capital to pay all their employees?
 

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Originally posted by Paris'Mom@Aug 24 2005, 12:50 PM
Driving highway will not kill your battery because it's a rapid charging system and each time you slow down to avoid something or change speed, normal variances during driving, you are recharging.
Yeah, but what about cruise control? When I drive to VA from NY I'm on cruise a lot of the time.....what would that do to the battery?
 

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In regards to rare situations that require no braking on highway- what happens is that your gas engine would do most of the work. Therefore, your average mileage per gallon would decrease (fuel efficiency down). You won't have to worry about the car coming to a halt during a trip.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I found a really good forum on Edmunds.com where there are lots of owners of the Lexus RX400h. All but one are very happy. It is very interesting to see what people say about the mileage. The consensus seems to be that the summer is a terrible time (especially THIS summer) to check on the true mileage. In fact all cars have greatly reduced mileage when it is hot and the A/C is running full force. I am more convinced than ever that I will get the hybrid. I'm going to keep reading, but the reports are sounding good. BTW, it was so weird for the salesman to start the car and drive off the lot and I never even heard it crank up! I made him stop the car and do it again because I couldn't believe that the car had been turned on. Even if you aren't looking for a car, you should test drive a hybrid sometime. It is technology so different from what we are accustomed to!
 

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Originally posted by Paris'Mom@Aug 24 2005, 02:02 PM
In regards to rare situations that require no braking on highway- what happens is that your gas engine would do most of the work.  Therefore, your average mileage per gallon would decrease (fuel efficiency down).  You won't have to worry about the car coming to a halt during a trip.
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Ohhhh....hahaha...that's good to know. Thanks.
 

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Originally posted by msmagnolia@Aug 24 2005, 03:03 PM
I found a really good forum on Edmunds.com where there are lots of owners of the Lexus RX400h.  All but one are very happy.  It is very interesting to see what people say about the mileage.  The consensus seems to be that the summer is a terrible time (especially THIS summer) to check on the true mileage.  In fact all cars have greatly reduced mileage when it is hot and the A/C is running full force.  I am more convinced than ever that I will get the hybrid.  I'm going to keep reading, but the reports are sounding good.  BTW, it was so weird for the salesman to start the car and drive off the lot and I never even heard it crank up!  I made him stop the car and do it again because I couldn't believe that the car had been turned on.  Even if you aren't looking for a car, you should test drive a hybrid sometime.  It is technology so different from what we are accustomed to!
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LOL!

You have me thinking about getting one (not as nice of one) for my next car. I've been thinking of trading my car in when the mileage gets into the 20Ks. So probably by this time next year. I'm on the road so much that I like having the warrenty. My parents and I both like knowing that I'm driving a good car and that it will probably not break down on the side of the road.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Edmunds did a roundup of all hybrid SUV's and they gave a good rating to the Jeep Liberty. It is half the price of the Lexus (one might wonder why I'm not buying that one!). I think hybrids are the cutting edge. They might have some problems that are to be worked out now, but I think we'll continue to see them more and more and I think they'll be priced better as more come out.
 

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Originally posted by msmagnolia@Aug 24 2005, 03:58 PM
Edmunds did a roundup of all hybrid SUV's and they gave a good rating to the Jeep Liberty.  It is half the price of the Lexus (one might wonder why I'm not buying that one!).  I think hybrids are the cutting edge.  They might have some problems that are to be worked out now, but I think we'll continue to see them more and more and I think they'll be priced better as more come out.
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How about this car?

It is called the e4


LOL! JK
 

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Originally posted by Lexi's Mom+Aug 24 2005, 05:06 PM-->
<!--QuoteBegin-msmagnolia
@Aug 24 2005, 03:58 PM
Edmunds did a roundup of all hybrid SUV's and they gave a good rating to the Jeep Liberty.  It is half the price of the Lexus (one might wonder why I'm not buying that one!).  I think hybrids are the cutting edge.  They might have some problems that are to be worked out now, but I think we'll continue to see them more and more and I think they'll be priced better as more come out.
<div align="right">index.php?act=findpost&pid=93747
How about this car?

It is called the e4


LOL! JK
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Aahahahah!! omg thats funny....
 

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Originally posted by Carrie+Aug 24 2005, 04:09 PM-->
Originally posted by Lexi's [email protected] 24 2005, 05:06 PM
<!--QuoteBegin-msmagnolia
@Aug 24 2005, 03:58 PM
Edmunds did a roundup of all hybrid SUV's and they gave a good rating to the Jeep Liberty.  It is half the price of the Lexus (one might wonder why I'm not buying that one!).  I think hybrids are the cutting edge.  They might have some problems that are to be worked out now, but I think we'll continue to see them more and more and I think they'll be priced better as more come out.
<div align="right">index.php?act=findpost&pid=93747

How about this car?

It is called the e4


LOL! JK
<div align="right">index.php?act=findpost&pid=93752

[/QUOTE]

Aahahahah!! omg thats funny....
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There is a roof to it but for some reason it is a separate file. Found one that has the whole car. If you can call it a car. Looks like a golf cart to me.


 
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