Hybrid Owners Turning Back to Gas Powered Cars

With the price of gasoline climbing higher than Charlie Sheen on a Saturday night, you would expect hybrid owners to either hang on to their fuel efficient autos or trade them in for newer and better models.  But the latest stats indicate that most hybrid owners are hanging up their keys and loyalty for the electric and gas hybrids.

R L Polk and Company is a private holding company that provides marketing information for the auto industry and insurance companies.  In their latest study, they tracked whether or not the owners of hybrid cars who traded them in for another hybrid or for some other type car.  They also tracked it by make and model of hybrid being traded in.

Combining all of the data together, they found that only 35% of hybrid owners traded in for another gas-electric hybrid while 65% opted for the a more conventional gasoline powered engine.  When they broke it down to make and model, they found that only 205 of Honda hybrid owners traded in for another hybrid of any make and 41% of Toyota Prius owners traded in for another hybrid.

R L Polk attributed the low loyalty rates to the high price of the hybrids coupled with the greater fuel efficiency of a number of gasoline powered cars.  One of the examples they used was the 2012 Nissan Altima, a gasoline powered car that is supposed to get around 38 mpg while the expected mileage on the 2013 Ford Fusion hybrid is only about 37 mpg and Hyundai has five different cars that list 40+ mpg.

This example of green technology is not just limited to cars but nearly every aspect of energy savings in today’s world.  I’ve looked into green technology for my home and no matter what kind of green energy I look at, I find that it would take me years to recoup the higher cost of purchase and installation.  In the long run, I’m generally better off financially to stick with the old standard technology.

Bottom line is that green energy may be environmentally friendly, but it isn’t financially friendly.   Most people can’t afford to be environmentally friendly, and until it becomes more affordable, I would expect loyalty rates such as those discovered by R L Polk, to remain low.