Hybrids Cost More, Save Even More, Study Finds

Transcript of Living on Earth interview with James Bell, publisher of Intellichoice discussing company's study on hybrid costs and savings.

Published: 14-Jan-2007

GELLERMAN: Conventional wisdom has it that hybrid cars save on gas but they're a lot more expensive to buy, and in the long run, more expensive to own. But a new study by an L.A. based auto buyer's guide calculated the total cost of owning a hybrid over five years, and found well, let's ask James Bell. He's publisher of Intellichoice.com and he joins us from the Detroit Auto Show. James, you did the study. So let's compare the cost of similar midsize cars—say, the hybrid Toyota Prius with a regular gas engine Camry. Show me the money.

BELL: Oh, yes. According to our cost of ownership analysis you're looking at a 13,000 dollar savings
GELLERMAN: I'd save 13,000 dollars over 5 years by buying a hybrid?

BELL: Well, if you look at how the vehicles going to depreciate, what it's going to cost you to maintain and of course the fuel savings, it all adds up.


Tongji University and Shanghai Maple Automobile, a privately run car manufacturer, are working together to design three models of hybrid cars, which are expected to go into small-scale production in 2008. SMA is a subsidiary of China's largest carmaker, Geely.

Even longtime hybrid doubters like Robert Lutz, vice chairman of GM, are admitting that the systems have gone mainstream. Photo: Toyota Camry Hybrid.

Mahindra unveiled India's first SUV with the advantage of a hybrid powertrain called Scorpio-HEV (hybrid electric vehicle) at the ongoing New Delhi Auto Expo.


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