It's simple, really: the Toyota Prius, rated at 55 miles per gallon for combined city and highway situations, can't hit those inflated numbers in real world driving. Most owners, including Environmental Protection Agency officials, are reporting that something in 40s is much more accurate. The Honda Civic Hybrid comes closer to its claimed 47 mpg average, although this hasn't stopped the EPA from asking both companies to voluntarily lower their figures, so as not to hoodwink unsuspecting, easily confused hippies. The Big T and Big H refuse to change their numbers, saying that their averages are attainable if your hybrid is equipped with ice cubes instead of wheels and you only drive (well, slide) across Teflon roads in a frictionless vacuum that itself represents a rift in the space-time continuum.

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