Hybrid Stereotypes Challenged

Edward Niedermeyer
by Edward Niedermeyer

If car nuts have learned anything over the last decade, it’s that few categories are easier to stereotype than the hybrid car driver (thanks, South Park!). But how accurate are these images we carry of hybrid drivers as left lane-clogging, smug eco-weenies? A couple of recent reports indicate that we still have much to learn about our high-mileage friends. For example, TheCarConnection reports on a study which shows that hybrid drivers drive more than average, receive more moving violations, and incur more collision costs. And if that isn’t surprising enough, consider an online poll showing that hybrid drivers don’t even care about the environment.

To be completely fair, it should be mentioned that hybridcarblog.com‘s methodology involved setting up an online poll and forgetting it existed for “a few years.” Having rediscovered the poll (now with 28,000 responses), the data is intriguing if not totally scientific. The poll asked “why buy a hybrid vehicle?” and offered four options: 1.) Cool technology, 2.) Foreign oil dependency 3.) Global warming and 4.) Carpool lane access. The results? 37 percent picked “foreign oil dependency”, 29 percent picked “cool technology”, 27 percent “car pool lane access.” But the real stunner is that only 7 percent picked “global warming” as a reason to buy a hybrid. How’s that for a wrinkle on our perennial (and heated, if you’ll pardon the pun) global warming discussions? [thanks, USAFMech]

Edward Niedermeyer
Edward Niedermeyer

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  • Charly Charly on Jul 19, 2009

    Looking frugal as a look is the same as wearing a mullet or an Armani suit or any of the other looks which say something about yourself. It is not bad but maybe it is not what you want to say about yourself. @hwyhobo: Other cars that can do that to are the Mini (if you're young and female) and some oldtimers. the car is who you are.

  • Anonymous Anonymous on Jul 19, 2009

    p911 Running out of oil? That's your big worry? Do you know how much oil was used in making a Prius? Dude/Dudet...EVERTHING we use today has oil written all over it. If you are so worried about saving oil, pick on something else. Start picking on yourself, for instance. Don't fly yourself to your next vacation. Your new computer? Your closte full of clothes? Look at your shopping bag after the next trip to Target. Its entirely filled with crap you don't need, and all made from oil bi-products. Please, earthsavers, leave me and my car alone. Its my one real joy.

  • Vento97 Vento97 on Jul 20, 2009
    BigFire: I also believe that if the Environmentalist are serious about Global Warming, they’ll embrace nuclear energy as the new religion. ...until you have to figure out what to do with the radioactive nuclear waste by-products that are produced... Bring up the topic on where to store nuclear waste, and you will see the most ardent supporters turn into whining NIMBYs (Not-In-My-BackYard) overnight... ...you see, there are no simple solutions...
  • Saracen Saracen on Jul 20, 2009

    The Fit has WAY more space in it than a Prius. The trunk of the Prius is smaller than you would think it is. Yes, it looks like a massive hatch, but most of that spaced is occupied by batteries. The trunk is very shallow. The Fit costs 10k less. And is MUCH more practical. And has acceptable fit and finish. And is actually fun to drive. To me, this kind of excellent vehicle makes Prii (plural?) look useless and idiotic.