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Author Topic: Are high-mpg gas cars better than hybrids? Back to Topics
mastermariner

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Texas

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 6:32:31 AM

As gas prices fluctuate between $3 and $4, car buyers continue to seek relief at the pump by focusing on cars with high fuel-efficiency. But unlike in recent years, in which hybrids were considered the best bets for consumers wanting high fuel economy, auto observers are now saying gas-powered vehicles may now be the biggest bang for the buck.
Across the board, car companies are making their high-mpg gas cars faster and more powerful, which makes them more attractive than their counterparts from a few years ago.
"As more and more standard-fuel vehicles are coming out at 40 mpg ratings, it's harder for people to rationalize paying the premium for alternative-fuel vehicles," says Camryn Craig, a research analyst with Kelley Blue Book.
If a buyer springs for a high-mpg gas car, savings in fue
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remay
Champion Author Houston

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Message Posted: Jan 5, 2013 12:15:40 PM

"Ford is about to introduce a Stop-Start option for its 2013 Fusion, which for $295, improves fuel economy up to 10 percent by switching off the gas engine in heavy traffic or at stoplights and restarts when the brake is released."

Interesting...
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scu227
Champion Author New Haven

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Message Posted: Jan 5, 2013 2:24:30 AM

Depends on the cost !!!!
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CVA19
Champion Author Salem

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Message Posted: Jan 5, 2013 1:15:07 AM

Absolutely! Cost of ownership is less for the high-mpg gas cars, than for the hybrids.
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HawaiianGuy
Champion Author Idaho

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 11:13:38 PM

High mpg cars for me rather than hybrids.
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rabbit_tdi
Sophomore Author North Carolina

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 7:17:12 PM

My dilapidated diesel 1981 VW car, which is my daily-driver, commonly gets around 45 mpg.

The late '80s Geo Metro cars would commonly get around 55 mpg.
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kkimes
Champion Author Illinois

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 6:53:42 PM

It depends on where you drive. My Toyota Camry Hybrid gets over 40mpg regardless of where I drive it. Lets see you Mazda SkyActive 38 mpg (highway) do that. If you do mostly city driving, you'll be really disappointed.
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cmgodwin
Champion Author Raleigh

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 6:28:05 PM

so competition from the hybrids, which will only get better, is finally causing the industry to seriously develop higher mpg gas cars?
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bluebird1
Champion Author Toronto

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 3:06:42 PM

have to consider cost both to buy & maintain....so right now yes they are - especially as stop/go tech. comes out so that even city driving mpg is not that far off.
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Discovery02
Champion Author Colorado Springs

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 2:23:38 PM

MPG performance, quality, reliability are all factors to be considered.
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tankumo
All-Star Author Vancouver

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 2:03:28 PM

I think better mpg means a lot. With Prius, remember the battery doesn't last forever.

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jiml1965
Champion Author Harrisburg

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 2:03:10 PM

i want to find one, but it wont haul coal, or pull a trailer
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Nicoalbum
Champion Author Ottawa

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 12:43:54 PM

Posted MPG tags are misleading for a vaste majority of vehicles.

[Edited by: Nicoalbum at 1/4/2013 12:45:47 PM EST]
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JeffersonState
All-Star Author Oregon

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 12:03:05 PM

The more alternatives the better. The new clean diesel works best for me.
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peakkeller
Champion Author Colorado Springs

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 11:59:31 AM

Premium price for lower emissions, it's not just a matter of miles per gallon.
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bruceha2000
Champion Author Vermont

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 11:15:03 AM

@luckylindy:
"Yes, the whole concept of a hybrid doesn't lend itself to long distance trips. "

Right.

That is why the TOTAL round trip cost, INCLUDING tolls for a trip from NW Vermont through the Adirondack mountains and out I-90 to Cleveland cost me just over $100. 1,200 miles, 50 MPG average. Got gas once each way, both times at the Seneca Reservation south of Buffalo. It is 400+ miles from my home, still had nearly 200 miles left in the tank when I got home. The Seneca tribe sells gas without state tax pursuant to an 1842 treaty.

Yep, hybrids are no good on long trips, I should have rented a car that would have used twice as much gas.
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Norm10
Champion Author British Columbia

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 11:12:18 AM

Unless the price of hybrids comes down the high mpg vehicles are clear winners.
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qwerty17
Champion Author New Jersey

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 10:50:19 AM

do the math. sounds like it's close.
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85XJ
Champion Author Toledo

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 10:43:10 AM

Spirits makes a good point, for me at least. I need an all around vehicle that can get me to work and back but also pull my trailers (pop-up camper and small utility).
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bruceha2000
Champion Author Vermont

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 10:42:02 AM

@drillintheUSA:
"More & more people are realising that they don't want to pay the price to replace the batteries when they die (in 5 yrs.)"

5 years? Will the IGNORANCE never die?

The Prius battery (and all parts of the hybrid system) is GUARANTEED for 8 years/100K miles. 10 years/150K miles in CA emission states. And guess what - there is NO, NADA, ZERO, ZILCH, ZIP difference between a Prius sold in CA and one sold in a non CA emissions state. NONE!

The EARLIEST I have heard was a single car at 165K miles. VERY FEW have been replaced and WELL OVER 200K is NORMAL.
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gmcgas
Champion Author Atlanta

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 10:39:53 AM

for now it may be. hopefully they will get a better way.
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DesertRat2011
Champion Author Riverside

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 10:34:32 AM

My used 2002 VW Jetta diesel cost me $5,000 last tank was 48.3 mpg :)
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bisonjim
Champion Author Florida

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 10:24:26 AM

With over 24,000 miles on a 2012 Honda Civic, getting 39.94 mpg, overall. Many tankfuls over 44 mpg. Pretty good for a non-hybrid.
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crep1291
Champion Author Ottawa

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 10:19:15 AM

The number of years it takes to repay a premium is totally irrelevant. I look at total cost of owning and operating a vehicle for a 10 year period.
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bruceha2000
Champion Author Vermont

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 10:17:39 AM

@swepson:
"But on the highway in a steady flow of traffic, the hybrid system only adds weight to the car."

Wrong, REALLY wrong.

At least for the Prius. When was the last time you got steady state 50-55 MPG on the Interstate? The electric motor isn't used only in stop and go. Go for a drive on the interstate with your friend and watch the energy screen. You'll see the electric motor providing drive in conjunction with the ICE and on its own on down slopes. It all depends on the battery SOC, current demand, etc.

In fact, it isn't at all hard to get WORSE MPG doing a lot of city stop and go rather than constant flow at highway speeds. It still beats the cr@p out of regular cars in the city, but there is only so much juice in that battery and it will get charged as necessary by running the gas engine.

Yes, braking will generate electricity to the battery but you NEVER get out what you put in. For every 100W generated that go to the battery, only 64W will make it back to the electric motor later. And every time you stop, you have lost all the momentum you "paid" for with gas or electricity and have to pay again to get back to speed.

[Edited by: bruceha2000 at 1/4/2013 10:21:47 AM EST]
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pbalmeo
Champion Author Los Angeles

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 10:10:56 AM

I say yes.
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bruceha2000
Champion Author Vermont

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 10:10:06 AM

@Rockyguitar:
"And still no answer to what happens to all the spent batteries from EVs or hybrids! "

They get RECYCLED!
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humblepie
Champion Author Toledo

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 10:09:18 AM

you betcha
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bruceha2000
Champion Author Vermont

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 10:07:25 AM

@peabeax55: "I have a 400+ mile range on 12+ gallon tank that NO hybrid will ever come close to."

I HAVE to laugh at your ignorance.

400 mile range would be a really, really, REALLY bad mid winter whole tank in my Prius with a 11.9 gallon tank. It would have to be well below zero F (a temp you'll never see where you live) for the whole tank, I would have to slog though hundreds of miles of snow covered roads and I'll STILL get better than your touted 36-39 MPG.

I VERY RARELY get gas with less than 500 miles on the trip meter unless I find cheap gas somewhere or the cheapest gas is local and I am going somewhere I can't do round trip on whatever is currently in the tank.

A BAD summer tank is 600 miles on 11 gallons.

This was true in my 2004 Prius (rear end totaled in Sept with 130K miles and a lifetime 49+ MPG) and the 2009 Prius that replaced it 2 weeks later.

I'll wave as I pass you stopped at the gas station to fill up.
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CPayZombie
Champion Author Phoenix

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 9:53:09 AM

EV are just status symbols.
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werich44
Champion Author California

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 9:46:56 AM

Still too many problems associated with cars that use batteries as a power source.
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silvershark69
Champion Author Minnesota

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 9:40:44 AM

We have been dealing with batteries for some time. We can deal with the batteries that will come from the hybrids, we have delt with batteries that have been used in industry a long, long time. Bring on the Plug-In Hybrid. In a few year it will not be unusal for a plug-in Hybrid to get 60 - 90 miles before the gaas engine kicks in.
one more thought, batteries, cell phones, that is where the new tec has come from, cell phones, we can deal with it.
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dm9667_23
Champion Author Pennsylvania

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 9:40:38 AM

yes
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Rockyguitar
Champion Author Tampa

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 9:36:35 AM

And still no answer to what happens to all the spent batteries from EVs or hybrids!
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Buck_on_Bass
Champion Author Tennessee

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 9:28:01 AM

It depends on how you define "better." Financials and cradle-to-grave emissions are better for the buyer and the environment with the high mpg vehicles. Other vehicles, hybrids and EVs, are not as good in these terms as many would have you believe.
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swepson
Champion Author Greensboro

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 9:23:31 AM

It depends on the usage.
Hybrids excel at city usage. The constant stop and go is just what a Prius is designed for. It uses it's electric motor which uses no power when stopped, recharging it's batteries from regenerative braking. A friend of mine has a Prius with 114k and his original brake pads look practically new. And it's over eight years old and the batteries are still like new. Consumer Reports tested a 10 year old Prius and found Toyota smart battery management has kept them almost as good as new.
But on the highway in a steady flow of traffic, the hybrid system only adds weight to the car. With it's electric motor removed, the aerodynamics and simulated Atkinson Cycle Engine it would get even better fuel economy. The highway is where the high mileage gasoline, diesel, and even CNG powered vehicles beat the hybrids in cost per mile.

[Edited by: swepson at 1/4/2013 9:26:23 AM EST]
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drillintheUSA
Champion Author Rochester

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 9:22:42 AM

More & more people are realising that they don't want to pay the price to replace the batteries when they die (in 5 yrs.). That's more co$tly than replacing the engine AND the transmission combined in a traditional vehicle. Save on gas? It's a net-loss period. 'Power Wheels' are for kids:)
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ldiggy
Champion Author Wilmington

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 9:22:14 AM

I'll stick to gas.
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bruceha2000
Champion Author Vermont

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 9:20:05 AM

"Motor Trend reported that the M35h went from zero mph to 60 mph in 5.1 seconds, all while getting an Environmental Protection Agency-estimated 30 highway miles per gallon."

Um, not exactly. It can do 60 MPH in 5.1 seconds
OR
get 30 MPG highway.

Drive the first and you can kiss your gas money goodby.

"The 2012 BMW ActiveHybrid roars along with 440 horsepower while still managing to get 24 highway mpg.

First, no one needs 440 horses. Second, 24 highway isn't exactly something I would be bragging about. It doesn't even approach CURRENT CAFE standards let alone the 31.6 MPG combined for 2015 (which is sneaking up on the auto makers) passenger cars.

And this is the important part:
"But not all fuel-efficient cars are created equal when it comes to making up for their higher sticker prices .... Only two hybrids in the study, the Lincoln MKZ the Toyota Prius, made up for extra costs in a short time (1.2 years and 1.8 years, respectively.)"

IF the MKZ hybrid really gets 45 MPG city and highway, it is a fantastic achievement. Sized between a Camry and Avalon, it bests both on MPG.

I'd still buy a Prius though, better MPG, more cargo capacity and $10K less.
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mh44s
Champion Author Madison

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 9:19:24 AM

Most hybrids have too long a pay back period.
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lpatti1
Champion Author Philadelphia

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 9:10:34 AM

So many conflicting numbers, who knows?
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peabeax55
All-Star Author Atlanta

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 9:08:30 AM

Won't give up my 36-39 MPG modified engine Mitsu Eclipse. I have a 400+ mile range on 12+ gallon tank that NO hybrid will ever come close to.
I still hate getting gouged at the pump.
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millerin
Champion Author Orlando

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 9:05:49 AM

didn't try yet hybrids.
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PackerfanMN
Champion Author Twin Cities

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 9:03:38 AM

OK
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must87searcher
Champion Author Maryland

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 9:03:03 AM

This theory if very true. With conditions, long distance travel at high speeds is very common thing for most drivers. Hybrids don't really seem to have the stuff too meet up with it. They are probably best for traveling in cities, but most do their things in the suburbs.
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Luckylindy
Champion Author Milwaukee

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 9:00:11 AM

Yes, the whole concept of a hybrid doesn't lend itself to long distance trips.
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atdinut
Champion Author California

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 8:59:58 AM

There have been for many years, many cars that have gotten over 40 mpg, but now larger cars are able to do that also......
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EMoe57
Champion Author Jacksonville

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 8:58:47 AM

Less expensive to buy, but are there any hidden extra maintenance costs?
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DrGasPain
All-Star Author Dallas

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 8:57:42 AM

A lot of good cars out there now with great mileage. Bought 09 Chevy Cobalt 5 speed manual new with EPA highway of 35 mpg, now with 55,00 miles lifetime avg is 38.5 mpg for all driving. Drove 2013 Ford Focus rental for it's 1st 2,000 miles, EPA highway of 35 mpg and I averaged 40 mpg for all driving.

Those that that say that the EPA estimate is not realistic need to look at their driving habits. If you drive 65+ mph, accelerate quickly and do not anticipate stops and coast into stops you won't get the EPA. If you accelerate reasonably, keep your speed less than 65 and anticipate your stops and coast into them, it is not difficult to do better than the EPA estimate.
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element07
Champion Author Oklahoma City

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 8:55:14 AM

Diesel. Hybrids r too high priced plus you will have to replace the expensive battery at some point.
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FocusGuy
Champion Author Seattle

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Message Posted: Jan 4, 2013 8:53:53 AM

duh..... bought a Focus in July. went on a 3000 mile trip ..... 41.1
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