You know, the Fusion hybrid popped into my head this morning. Maybe I’ll consider it when the time comes. It’s more expensive than the Prius and it gets worse fuel economy than the Prius, but it does have more style. I’d consider the Volt as well, but the Volt is more of a commuter car and not much of a touring car. The Prius seems to outperform all of its competitors in terms of fuel economy. Heck, as a Honda guy, I wish the Insight put out 50 MPGs in stop-and-go traffic. http://www.fueleconomy.gov/feg/Find.do?action=sbs&id=34312&id=34489&id=33900&id=34337
As for the mushy handling of the Prius, that is something I might find appealing. I was recently lamenting the fact that my '98 Civic has a pretty nice ride, and if I were to get a comparable car today, it would likely have much stiffer handling. The thought of feeling every bump and pothole so the car can feel more “sporty” doesn’t appeal to me.
I guess I’m getting ahead of myself. My commutes have always included a lot of highway driving, so it made sense to have a car that gets better fuel economy on the highway than in city traffic. Now I’m facing a very different commute, and I’m trying to find a way to make it as painless as possible. Lowering my monthly fuel bill would go a long way in providing peace of mind.
The one time I made this drive was for the interview that led to my new job, and I was late (by about 20 minutes). It was very stressful and rush hour traffic was really heavy. The commute includes a stretch of U.S. 1 through downtown Fort Pierce that has a 30 MPH limit. There is a scenic route I can take, but it still leads through downtown Fort Pierce on U.S. 1. Maybe the best long term solution is to move north of downtown Fort Pierce and get a normal non-hybrid vehicle like the Tacoma I was thinking about. The most attractive features of the Tacoma would be that it would be easy to maintain and repair and I could get one with a manual transmission.
I appreciate everyone’s insight. It looks like the consensus is that the Prius c doesn’t measure up compared to the Prius. One thing that bothers me is that the least expensive version of the Prius c doesn’t offer cruise control - even as an option. Shouldn’t every hybrid come with cruise control?