That shiny new hybrid is going to save you money

A new study by Los Angeles-based, which specialises in automotive cost-of-ownership data, says that despite higher initial prices, hybrid buyers are still the winners when you factor in costs of financing, fuel, insurance, state taxes and license fees, repairs, maintenance and depreciation. This conclusion is in contrast to previous studies conducted by Consumer Reports and others that have shown that most hybrid owners won't make back the cost differential of their vehicles in fuel savings.

Hybrid vehicles have enjoyed high customer satisfaction to this point and hybrid owners will just be smiling all the more now that this study proves the financial sense of their investment. A comparison of the Ford Escape and Honda Civic conventional models versus their hybrid counterparts concluded that even without the benefit of the tax credit, the hybrids have lower Total Ownership Costs over five years.

The Toyota Prius was highlighted as a great example of low total cost of hybrid ownership; no doubt helped by the fact that overall, fifth-year retained value projections show hybrids holding their value 5-10 percent better than gas vehicles, depending on the make and model. Intellichoice calculated that Prius owners save $13,408 over five years compared to a similar-size non-hybrid sedan.

Hopefully such studies will convince more consumers to demand hybrid versions of their favourite vehicles from the car manufacturers and accelerate the drive towards a more fuel efficient future.

[Source: L.A. Times]

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