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Hybrid...The New Hip Drive

By
Services for Real Estate Pros with Milestone Motoring - Auto Broker/Dealer

the word "hybrid" on a carAs an Auto Broker in Los Angeles California, I'm keenly aware of the negative impact  gasoline prices have had on consumers.  Because of this and for other environmental reasons, many of our clients are inquiring about buying or leasing a hybrid automobile.

With gas prices over $4.00 a gallon here in Los Angeles this holiday weekend, it's no wonder clients are looking at their huge SUV's which have dominated the automobile industry for several years and "rethinking" what best suits their needs.  In Los Angeles, were everyone is so status conscious, a new leader has emerged. Hybrids are now the hip/chic/green auto to be driving.  

But it seems, being hip, chic and green comes with a price.

The increase in sales among hybrid cars has created a shortage of nickel hydride batteries in the manufacturer marketplace.  For example, the Toyota Prius will be on backorder through 2009 for 2008/2009/2010 models with the nickel hydride battery packs.  The delivery of the Prius is expected to drop 70% and the factory MSRP of the car is increasing. 

This creates a classic case of supply and demand.  Supply is low, demand is high and prices will go sky high. 

Ultimately, the question to ask is, how much are you willing to overpay in order to save money and help the enviornment?  It's a question that contradicts itself.  You buy a hybrid to save money and help the enviornment, but you totally overpay for the hybrid.  I think Kermit was right...it's not easy being green.

Adam Brett
The Adam and Eric Group - Fullerton, CA
The Adam and Eric Group, Fullerton's Finest

The ROI for hybrids is not there.  Even if you buy used - it will take too long to recoup the costs.

I am waiting for a diesel generated car.

May 26, 2008 06:41 AM
Kristal Kraft
Novella Real Estate - Denver, CO
Selling Metro Denver Real Estate - 303-589-2022

Personally I'm thinking of falling in love with my bicycle again.  It runs on the fuel I would prefer not to wear!  What better deal could that be?

:)

kk

May 26, 2008 06:43 AM
Patrick Lambert
ALLY Real Estate - Waikoloa, HI
Hawaii Real Estate Expert

This subject sickens me. With the powerful sun shining every day I can't believe we don't all drive around with some sort of solar panels on as the roofs of our cars. I wish I was smart enough to make that happen.

May 26, 2008 06:50 AM
Patrick Lambert
ALLY Real Estate - Waikoloa, HI
Hawaii Real Estate Expert

This subject sickens me. With the powerful sun shining every day I can't believe we don't all drive around with some sort of solar panels on as the roofs of our cars. I wish I was smart enough to make that happen.

May 26, 2008 06:50 AM
Tom Braatz Waukesha County Real Estate 262-377-1459
Coldwell Banker - Oconomowoc, WI
Waukesha County Realtor Real Estate agent. SOLD!

Melody

It only makes sense not to throw money out the window, and some hybrids are actually nice looking cars

Sincerely

Tom Braatz

May 26, 2008 07:40 AM
Neal Bloom
Brokered by eXp Realty LLC - Weston, FL
Realtor CRS-Weston FL Real Estate

Mel,

I'm still driving the old gas model but might consider a hybrid when it's time to turn in the SUV.

May 26, 2008 08:04 AM
Melody Young
Milestone Motoring - Auto Broker/Dealer - Westlake Village, CA
Auto Broker-Milestone Motoring

Adam: Thanks for stopping by

Kristal:  LOL I'm with you.  Exercise my wallet and thighs at the same time.

May 26, 2008 08:08 AM
Melody Young
Milestone Motoring - Auto Broker/Dealer - Westlake Village, CA
Auto Broker-Milestone Motoring

Patrick:  Wish I knew how to do that, it would change the world.

Tom:  I agree if you can get the hybrid for a fair price.  There are a lot of shady dealers out there who will take full advantage of the supply and demand situation.

May 26, 2008 08:11 AM
Melody Young
Milestone Motoring - Auto Broker/Dealer - Westlake Village, CA
Auto Broker-Milestone Motoring

Neal with an "a" - Thanks for stopping by.  Lexus makes a BEAUTIFUL RX400H hybrid.  I'm still driving my gas engine SUV too.

May 26, 2008 08:13 AM
Sam Miller
RE/MAX Stars Realty - Howard, OH
Knox County Ohio Real Estate Specialist

Depending on what you are driving now...it honestly may not be a good time to switch to a hybrid.  The higher cost, the lower availability and the hit you might have to take on your trade mean the price difference may be much greater than the future saves.  Now if you are switching to a hybrid because of the "GREEN" factor the pricing spread is probably not the main concern. 

May 26, 2008 08:16 AM
Melody Young
Milestone Motoring - Auto Broker/Dealer - Westlake Village, CA
Auto Broker-Milestone Motoring

Hi Sam,

I agree with you regarding wheather it makes financial sense to buy a hybrid right now.  As far as the "GREEN" factor, a lot of people don't realize these cars have batteries that go into a land fill some day!

May 26, 2008 08:22 AM
Sam Miller
RE/MAX Stars Realty - Howard, OH
Knox County Ohio Real Estate Specialist

Melody - We are thinking the same way and imagine if Toyota is having a problem getting batteries for new cars...just how easy will it be to get replacements down the road? 

May 26, 2008 08:24 AM
Melody Young
Milestone Motoring - Auto Broker/Dealer - Westlake Village, CA
Auto Broker-Milestone Motoring

Sam: It's clear that the hybrid is not the be all end all solution...we just haven't found it yet.

May 26, 2008 03:05 PM
Joshua Vida
Paradigm Realty Solutions - Elkhart, IN

Glad I got Prius a year ago.  I could make money if I sold it now.  You do have to figure the gas savings and figure that into the equation.  I literally get 45-50 mpg consistently, and since non-hybrids can only get 32 or so at best, that's pretty significant.  And it gets more so as prices escalate.

Jul 08, 2008 04:46 PM