By on April 25, 2013

The Feds will get an additional 10,000 hybrids over the 10,672 they already have, lifting the federal hybrid market share from 5.3 percent to over 10 percent, the Detroit News says.

According to the paper, the GSA will fund the incremental cost to replace eligible vehicles with new hybrid sedans.

Allegedly, the move will save 1 million gallons of fuel per year for the life of these vehicles.

It was not released what badges the division-strength hybrids will carry. Seeking Alpha presumes that “General Motors and Ford will receive some home field advantage.”

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33 Comments on “The Feds Will Double Their Hybrid Fleet...”


  • avatar
    Hummer

    Alright ignoring the 7500 credit for purchasing, which is unfair from a financial focus since is from the same bank account (7500 * 10000 = 75m)

    Lets see at 3.60 for fuel (higher than current actual cost) 1 million gallons equals 3.6m

    10,000 of the cheaper EVs ( Prius) I suppose at 28,000 for car (again ignoring credit applied) equals 280M

    That means at 1 million gallons of less fuel used per year, it would take 77 years on these cars assuming they never needed oil change never had breaks never needed gas.

    Now with that said, eventually fleets get old and have to be replaced, however if they extended the use 10 years they would save much more. The math they did is for the ill informed.

    I feel like I missed something….

    • 0 avatar
      KixStart

      A Prius Group 1, which is only available to fleet buyers, is something like $22.5K and gets 48 MPG. It’s a reasonable alternative to a $20K 26 MPG Malibu. If we suppose 15K miles/year:

      Prius @ 15K miles /48 MPG = 313 gallons @ $3.50 = $1094
      Chevy @ 15K miles /26 MPG = 577 gallons @ $3.50 = $2019

      or about $925 fuel savings per year, which suggests the Prius pays for itself in under 3 years. I had to guess at the price of a fleet Malibu, the cheapest listed on Edmunds is just shy of $22K.

      And just as YMMV, so does the government’s. If the usage involves a lot of idling, the Prius looks even better. If it’s all highway driving, the hybrid advantage probably shrink, some.

      • 0 avatar
        Hummer

        Regardless of the savings from it, even more would be saved by increasing the fleet span an additional 10 years. A million gallons of fuel is a drop in the bucket compared to what is used each year total.

        Your comparison is also a bit unfair, the whole idea of govt using minimum and saving us money would suggest to most they buy vehicles such as the ford fiesta and the chevy sonic that would make much more sense at about 40 mpg and starting price around 14k it makes much more sense for the current average fleet life.

        Now this harkens back to all the reports we’ve been seeing of agencies buying hundreds of these vehicles only to let them set, only for new voted officials to get into office and find several hundred of these cars with less than 100 miles outside of warranty.
        Most people given the choice would rather drive the older Tahoe’s, crown Vic’s and Taurus then be in a boring Prius or such.

    • 0 avatar
      James Courteau

      Given the usage patterns of most government vehicles (Used all day long, lots of stop and go, lots of idling) the actual fuel economy could easily be double that of a non-hybrid car. Couple that with lower maintenance costs and substantially increased resale value, hybrids start to look pretty attractive in a fleet.

    • 0 avatar
      bball40dtw

      Not EVs, hybrids. There is no federal incentive on hybrids. They may purchase PHEVs, but the article doesn’t specify. One thing you are right about, it probably won’t save any money. They would be better off just buying the fleet Impala for peanuts.

      I own a hybrid but know the limitations. If my emplorer didn’t subsidize the purchase, I would have bought whatever Ford CUV, not called the Edge, had the best lease deal in the Detroit area. This is one of the few places where leasing is often better for new cars.

    • 0 avatar
      xtoyota

      Yes….it our stupid Government in action
      I still can’t believe our country voted in these socialists

    • 0 avatar
      redliner

      “however if they extended the use 10 years they would save much more.”

      Remember that a very important consideration for managing fleet cost is resale value and maintenance expenses. After a while, it’s just not worth it to keep the cars. Older high mileage cars require more maintenance and are less reliable. Then when it’s time to sell, no one wants a 10 year old Malibu with 150k+ miles in bare fleet-spec trim.

  • avatar
    Commando

    The ultimate government subsidy paid for by all the taxpayers. Paying to support 1/10th of what the public wants in total to benefit 2 or 3 special interests groups.
    I need to create a lobby that hasn’t been created yet and make a fortune.

    • 0 avatar
      KixStart

      Unless the economics work in favor of the hybrid. I think they do… and I voted “hybrid” with my own checkbook. I’m satisfied with the results. Overall spending is likely to decrease.

      There’s another way this may pay off for you… Gas prices are supply and demand driven. The Feds’ chunk of the fue market is not inconsiderable and reducing their fuel demand puts downward pressure on prices. The reduced GHGs also produce a long-term benefit for you.

      • 0 avatar
        Commando

        This Hybrid binge we’re on is a bubble waiting to burst. This will flame out faster than LP Record Players mounted under the dash.

        • 0 avatar
          Astigmatism

          Why? LPs didn’t last because better technology came around to do the exact same thing. If any technology is on the horizon to replace the hybrid, it’s something that will be more efficient, not less.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            LPs have had sales increases in the last few years, and they are at thier highest sales in two decades. While CD sales tank, vinyl is up 18%.

            In car record players are not enjoying a comeback though.

  • avatar
    SomeGuy

    I’d be more concerned with putting our air traffic controllers back to work before buying a bunch of depreciating assets…

  • avatar
    danio3834

    Well, someone’s gotta buy all these vehicles being legislated into existence. Might as well be the legislators.

  • avatar
    30-mile fetch

    The wisdom of this depends on what “replace eligible vehicles” means. If they are replacing a gas-only car that was scheduled to be replaced anyhow, this probably makes sense.

  • avatar
    Conslaw

    Many more hybrids are built either in the USA or in one of our NAFTA partners. The Ford C-Max, the Honda Civic Hybrid (and the Acura as well), the Malibu and at least some of the Buick mild hybrids all are US-made. I think Toyota either is or will be building hybrids in the US and it is up for consideration by Hyundai & Kia.

    I have a C-Max, and I think it would be an appropriate for quite a few government purposes. It costs about the same as a similarly equipped Ecoboost Ford Escape and has similar interior room. It trades about half it’s cargo area for double the low-speed mpg. I’m getting 43 MPG overall.

    • 0 avatar
      bball40dtw

      I love my C-Max too. It is a great CUV replacement. The trade off of smaller cargo space compared with the Escape to get almost double the real world MPG is worth it. For people that don’t tow anything, it makes way more sense over most small CUVs.

  • avatar
    Car Guy

    The smart thing to do would be to purchase CNG or LNG vehicles. We are swimming in it here in the USA. But that doesn’t fit the political mantra of the current administration………….

  • avatar
    redliner

    I for one think this is a good thing. Not every meter maid and code enforcement officer needs a V8 powered land boat.

    • 0 avatar
      corntrollio

      “Not every meter maid and code enforcement officer needs a V8 powered land boat.”

      Most of the meter maid types in San Francisco drive glorified golf carts. In Los Angeles, they usually have Civic Hybrids (I assume they’re hybrids, or else it’d probably be a Ford Focus).

  • avatar
    Dan

    If these dorkwagons save money, which on any duty cycle other than parked 23.2 hours a day they do, it should be a crime to use public money to buy anything else.

    I’m unaware of a government position with duties that include driving a fast car that looks cool. Do that on your own dime. Now if only this could be applied to police, too.

  • avatar
    icemilkcoffee

    seems like a handout to Ford. Ford makes more hybrids than the other 2 domestic factories. And political realities means that the government is unlikely to buy a Toyota Camry Hybrid, even if it is made in the USA.

    • 0 avatar
      mkirk

      You’d think so, but most of the new Hybrids I see rolling around the various army posts I frequent are Hyundais while the Fords are the base 4 cylinder Fusions of the previous generation.

  • avatar
    Mandalorian

    And yet the CIA will still cruise around in loaded Escalade ESVs.

    • 0 avatar
      corntrollio

      The only CIA Escalade I’ve heard about is this one — not the CIA you were looking for:

      http://mojoey.blogspot.com/2005/12/funny-story-about-cia.html

      As far as I know, most of those big cars for government are Suburbans, not Escalades.

    • 0 avatar
      Hummer

      If you had the choice and didn’t pay for the gas you would take the ”burban too.

      Besides there’s nothing that screams stealth secret agent mission like a Prius
      /sarcasm


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