Hybrid cars are the antithesis of powerful vehicles. They're compact. They're slow to accelerate. They appeal to fuel-saving sensibility instead of automotive grace. At least that's what you think, right?
It's now been just over a decade since the first hybrids, the original Honda Insight and Toyota Prius, were introduced. After a slow start, rising fuel costs caused consumer interest to take off mid-decade. Today, most consumers have some idea of what a hybrid is, but many are unaware that hybrid systems from competing manufacturers have entirely different hardware and function in dramatically dissimilar ways. That's why, for instance, you can't drive a Honda Civic hybrid on electric power alone
Take the internal combustion engine and computer-controlled automatic transmission that can be found in just about every single automobile sold in the past 50 years, add a complex electric motor, high-tech battery pack and a bunch more electronics to make them all play nicely together... and you've got a hybrid. When viewed in this manner, it comes as little surprise that repair costs might be a wee bit higher for a hybrid vehicle than for its conventional siblings ($182 on average higher, for w
The 2011 Nissan Altima Hybrid will hit dealer lots later this year and Nissan has once again decided to limit sales of the model to just nine states. Nissan gives several reasons why it has limited the Altima Hybrid to just nine markets (California, Oregon, Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island and Vermont) but we think that it mainly boils down to an issue of supply for many of the hybrid components licensed from Toyota.