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Is your future hybrid cost effective?

Hey everyone, thought this was interesting. Not all hybrids are worth going green.

So, is going green worth it? The answer, as you may have learned by now, is that it all depends on what car you’re buying. The key is to choose wisely, consider your options carefully, and always take time to do the math.

Check out this chart for specifics on how hybrids compare to their conventional versions.

Hybrid Average MPG

Price Premium for Hybrid Version

Annual Gas Savings

Years to Pay Off

Mercury Mariner

32.2 $1,770 $801 2.2

Ford Escape

32.2 $2,740 $581 4.7

Lexus RX 400h


$4,180 $641 6.5

Saturn VUE

28.15 $4,120 $593 6.9

Nissan Altima

34.1 $6,860 $926 7.4

Toyota Highlander

26.1 $6,700 $616 10.8

Toyota Camry

33.45 $6,630 $575 11.5

Honda Civic

42.25 $7,590 $624 12.1

GMC Yukon 21.45 $14,700 $920 15.9

Chevrolet Tahoe

21.45 $14,960 $920 16.2

Saturn Aura

27.6 $3,495 $175 20

Chevrolet Malibu

27.6 $3,995 $175 22.8


Don’t know about the rest of the numbers, but the Camry hybrid is not $6600 more than an equivalent non-hybrid. It’s much faster than the 4cyl, with more standard equipment, so anaylsis is faulty.

Fuel cost savings is certainly one fact to consider. Two other substantial components of total cost of ownership are depreciation and service costs. Some hybrids are very good in the former and also save some in the latter.

Edmunds has a TCO calculator that is useful, after you correct their unreasonable depreciation values. You can find rasonable ones elsewhere on their web site. Odd, eh?


This is one of those stupid biased analysis.

YES the Camry hybrid IS $6000 more then the BASE Camry. But the Camry hybrid comes fully loaded. The Base Camry accounts for less then 20% of ALL Camry sales. If you compare a fully loaded Camry to a fully loaded Camry hybrid then the cost difference is only about $900.

Exactly, and this analysis also doesn’t account for the higher resale value (you’d make money on a 2 year old Prius, I’d bet). Only with hybrids is the ‘cost’ put under this kind of a microscope. When’s the last time the value of, say, a nav system, big wheels, or a stereo was analyzed in this way?

I’d rather have a diesel than a hybrid

IMHO fuel costs is a secondary or even tertiary consideration when making an automobile purchase based on financials. The primary considerations should be depreciation and insurance costs.

This is one of those stupid biased analysis.

I agree, things like this can say whatever the gatherer wants to say, but I thought it was worth perusing.

I would also, anybody ever put a $3000 battery in a diesel?

For my type of driving and the fact that I need a vehicle for towing…I would LOVE a diesel.

Anyone ever put a $3000 battery in a Hybrid?? First off the cost of those batteries have come down…and second…they are very very reliable.