My friend is Beverly Hills hairdresser- stylist type to the stars. She has always been conservative, well spoken and beautiful! (One time we went to the beach together with the kids and as I sat next to her in my one-piece while she was in her Chanel red RED bikini and I felt like the hairiest creature since Planet of the Apes). Mind you she does weigh under 105lbs and wears jeans called Filthy Rich.
Point is that she is-a-changing. Die hard Republican actually thinking of voting for the other side would have been enough shock to last me a life time. But a Mercedes driving person of that ilk who is married to perhaps the most conservative guy I know who drives a Porsche Cayman and they HUH? Want to buy a HYBRID? They want me to help them? They don’t even read the interwebs. At all. Evar. 79% of all hybrid owners fit a very particular type of creative personality currently and neither of this couple fit that profile so that must be a changing percentage.
I was so excited to delve into this. New territory for me- lease, buy, hybrid and no idea what is available? Bring it!
First I went to Twitter and asked @ageekgal who runs WildTexas.com for advice. She is great for info about hybrids as she owns the Ford Escape Hybrid, is an enthusiast, and is active on GreenHybrid.com. She said that she has very few hybrids in her great state and even said that it is difficult to find them there so she wasn’t aware of how much they cost used. We did establish through our Twitters that in California the state law require 150K mile warranties because the batteries can fail and if they do, are quite expensive. Great incentive for buyers to feel protected!
Then I called a dealer I know who had 5 Prius on his lot. When I told him the plight of my friend he did say that going from the Cayman to a hybrid Toyota is like going from a Porsche to a golf cart. (Sure, I thought but the Porsche isn’t green! Well, they haven’t delivered one yet but will.)
Apparently, as the dealer continued to tell me, the new Prius is about $26K for the base model currently and the used ones? Still are going for about $24K. Wait. What? The average depreciation on a new car in the first year alone is about 35%. The second year it is at about 45% of the original cost and from there depreciation does slow down but hybrids actually almost maintain their value!
So, for all of the naysayers that claim that the MPG saved does not outweigh the initial cost, I would argue that is actually not the case because they maintain their value so well that they act more as a financial investment than a rapidly depreciating piece of equipment. Okay- granted they will never gain in value unless the fuel situation gets even worse (which is possible). But then there is the extra bonus of offsetting carbon footprints.
All very interesting! Back to my friend though: her husband didn’t like the Prius but did decide that he likes the Ford Escape or the Mercury Mariner hybrids. My friend seems fine with that because she will get to drive the Cayman. It does suit her better. But then, so would a Tesla.
Originally published here