historical gas price indicates that it will take longer to recoupe cost difference

Discussion in 'Gen 3 Prius Main Forum' started by kuku5354, May 25, 2012.

  1. john1701a

    john1701a Prius Guru

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    Here's the prices I've been paying, data from all of my Prius driving... since way back in 2000:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  2. ETC(SS)

    ETC(SS) The other One Percenter.....

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    Buying a new car to "save money" or to "get a payback" is like buying an airline to get the free peanuts that they used to give out. It just doesn’t make walking around sense, as they say in this part of the world.
    First of all...if you want to "save money" then buying a new car in the first place is moronic.
    Cars pretty much last for well over 100,000 miles, if any attempt is made to replace filters and fluids during this period. Meanwhile, their street value is diminished by well over 50-percent during the first few years of ownership. If you're one of unfortunates out there that feel that they have to live a bunch of miles from where you earn your paycheck, then you probably don't need to be buying a new car every few years when a used car could provide the same transportation utility for 25 to 50 centavos on the dollar.
    Priuses retain more of their street value because they're pretty reliable, and you get most of the same fuel efficiency during the last 10-percent of its life cycle that you get during the first 10-percent---and let's face it. People aren't buying Priuses to pimp them out for street racing. They're pretty much used for commuting duty---which is an easy gig for a car. Prius drivers are also rather anal, which means that the maintenance schedule will probably be more assiduously adhered to. Take away: Priuses are a little more expensive when bought used, cause they’re usually worth it.

    If I were in the market for a car to get me to work and back every day, I'd probably pay the freight for a good, used G2 or G3 and drive it until it goes Tango-Uniform, and then look for another one.
    In addition to being a LOT cheaper to own than any new car, Used Priuses have the advantage of having a pretty big battery, which can be pressed into service with inverters as an AUX power source if you live in areas where you have to worry about prolonged power outages......like hurricane country.
    It's also a helluva lot easier to store a few weeks worth of gas for a Prius (or a motorcycle) than it is for a pickemup truck.
    Several times during my life, I've lived in places where the fuel supply has been seriously disrupted for more than a week. It's not fun.
    The question shifts from "how much does gas cost?" to "I don't care what I have to pay for it....where can I get some gas??!!"
    I have a supply of fuel that I keep on hand for my lawn equipment, pressure washer, chipper, etc. My lawn tractor has an 11-gallon tank. ;)
    So……keeping a little extra fuel on hand for something like a Prius is just a lot easier to do than it would be for a truck.....like almost three times easier.

    There are legitimate reasons to buy a hybrid, that go well beyond the "payback" period, but math is math. If you want to buy a new, entry level 5-seater then...no. A new Prius isn't going to be the cheapest. There really is a hybrid premium, and a Prius really is more expensive than a Corolla. Of course…it’s a “nicer” car (to some) than a Corolla, but a Camary is “nicer” than a Prius…to some. And so on.
    If you have a tow requirement or you have to haul a 4x8 sheet of anything regularly, or you live in areas where the diminutive ground clearance of a Prius will be problematic, then a new G3 might not even be the "best" car. No car is for everybody.

    In short, the "payback" argument is just plain wrong on many levels, no matter which side of the debate you're on.

    Aaaaaas they say.
    YMMV! :)
     
  3. css28

    css28 Senior Member

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    That's just silly. In our case, I very much enjoy saving on the gas and the accessibility, practicality and comfort of the car made it a winner. It's about as far from a status symbol as you could imagine in *this* metropolitan area. I buy my vehicles based on their benefits with respect to my wants.

    You'll never be able to predict the future, particularly with respect to economies and commodities. Judge each vehicle as a package. If the worst happens and gasoline goes down in price (oh noes!) you'll still have saved a bunch of gasoline consumption and driven a good car for the duration.
     
  4. drinnovation

    drinnovation EREV for EVER!

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    I'll start by saying its not just about the money and ROI, but that can still be a factor. When considering the cost savings everyone has to make assumptions and do analysis. Your assumptions are up to you.


    Interesting article on the price of EV vs gas.. (Electric Cars Equal $1/Gallon Gas For Life + $1,200 Cash A Year)

    with the following image.. putting all cost in 2011 dollars.

    [​IMG]


    When considering the payback for hybrids, the price of gas is there for both cars.. when considering a PHEV or BEV, its more about miles on electricity than gas prices. Even if you use 3.00 a gallon, I'm saving compared to what I would have consider a comparable car (my leading alternatives were a BMW 325i or z4). I also considered Tesla, Leaf and Prius (with PHEV kit or a Pip) and cost savings there was more about my driving assumptions.
     
  5. eliteconcept

    eliteconcept 700 mile club, top tank mpg 69.5

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    I have to go back 4 years on your link to see US average prices around 1.80. I'm by no means a statistics person but in looking at the longest range that link provides, 8 years, the time period between 10/25/08 and 2/2/09 the bottom absolutely fell out of the market. Not to say you can't count this towards a 20 year average but in a shorter time period like you were looking at, these 3 months aren't representative of what we saw before 10/25/08 and what we've seen after 2/2/09, I'd personally call them a statically anomaly, at least in my opinion.

    There is as close to a guarantee that gas will absolutely hit $5 a gallon, look at the trend over the past 20 or 30 years. Gas is made from a nonrenewable resource that is also used to make just about EVERYTHING else we use or own. As we use more of it today, in manufacturing or in our cars there is less of it for use tomorrow, so demand stays consistent or increases, supply goes down, we have all see the supply and demand chart, that means prices can only go up. Don't you think people said the same thing about gas prices in 1950, "gas will never be higher than 75 cents per gallon even at its absolute worst", or in the early /mid 1990's "gas prices will really never ever hit $2, thats just crazy talk"

    Gas prices in the midwest, chicago land area for the past 6 months or so have been right around $4.00 per gallon. Currently the national average as reported by gaspricewatch.com is $3.66, so you think that theres no way that we could see an average increase of 1.44. Ask your elders if they thought they'd ever see consistent $3.00+ gas prices. It can happen and it will happen, and as demand for the crude increases as well prices. I personally know two people who in the last year have bought chevy tahoes, all i say to them is, where exactly do you think gas prices are going? I know where they are going, UP.

    references
    gaspricewatch.com
    Vehicle Technologies Program: Fact #364: March 21, 2005 Historical Gas Prices, 1919–2004
     
  6. Codyroo

    Codyroo Senior Member

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    I find it rather troublesome that our culture feels that if you purchase something that is efficient and reduces ones impact on the environment that people feel the NEED to ask what your Return On Investment is?

    If I want a PV solar system, to reduce my monthly electrical expenses, then this is a fiancial discussion. But if I say that I want to reduce the amount of Coal emissions into the air, reduce my overall carbon footprint, keep our drinking water cleaner, reduce my impact on human habitation of this planet AND save money on my monthly electric bill, the ROI questions has been rendered meaningless.

    Conversely

    No one asks them their Return On Investment for their upgraded V8 vs V6 engine.
    No one asks them their Return On Investment for their Jet Skis, Dirt Bikes, Motor Homes.
    No one asks them their Return On Investment for their Flat Panel TV's, I-PAD's, or Pedicures.

    Return On Investment makes more sense if you are discussing points on a Home Loan, because at least that is purely a money transaction and it takes into account money paid out over the lifetime of a loan.

    I wish this hybrid premium argument would go away. People over simplify it.
     
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  7. walter Lee

    walter Lee Hypermiling Padawan

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    Looking further back through history, history suggests that over time the price of gasoline will increase. 20 years ago, 87 oct gas cost about $1.15/gallon in the DC Metro Area; now 87 oct gas costs about $3.70/gallon (+3x more) in the DC Metro Area. The gasoline in the Washington DC Metro Area is mainly derived from middle east so whenever there are problems in the middle east there are spikes in the regional price of gasoline here, so given the Middle East tendency for instability - the probability that the price gas will stay fixed under $4 per gallon is highly unlikely. However, even if a new oil distribution system was devised and the DC Metro Area got all its oil from domestic sources , the DC metro area faces another major force that is likely increase the cost of gasoline -- state/local governments are increasingly looking to raise gasoline taxes as part of a efforts to raise revenue to build and maintain the road.

    However, for argument sake ... Let's say the price tag of a Prius(23,000usd) is the principle investment for our ROI computation. If the fuel saving per year is considered the return on investment(ROI) then a savings of about 300 gallons of gas per year is equal to about an earning of $990 (@ $3.30/gallon) per year. This would roughly be equivalent to a bond with return on investment of 4.3%.
    Depending on the car you comparing the prius against and the amount of your mileage you can alter these numbers to fit your situation. Also note that the a 2-year CD is currently returning an average of about 1%. To get a better ROI, you would have to use more riskier financial instruments like Vanguard's Total Bond Index Fund (VBMFX) which is about 6% over two years. - but VBMFX'a past earning are no guarantee of its future earning -- with these types of risker investment it is also possible to lose principle investment. But such analogies are crude at best... you can't drive a Vanguard mutual fund like you can a Prius.

    Codyroo is right in pointing out that when people buy a Prius - it is not just about the money.

    The Prius has many selling points: 1) reliable transportation, 2) fuel efficiency-hypermiling, 3) bluetooth, 4) functional cargo space, 5) the support that you got from its driver/owner community, and 6) its low greenhouse emissions.
     
  8. ProximalSuns

    ProximalSuns Senior Member

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    As a matter of fact, the price of oil does equate to higher gasoline prices and gasoline tracks oil, a lagging track to some degree as the gas at the pump was purchased at prices 30 days ago but that's about it.
     
  9. ProximalSuns

    ProximalSuns Senior Member

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    Prius owners are carbon crusaders. That's it in a nutshell with the emphasis on nut.
     
  10. marper

    marper New Member

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    I would say you have a valid point when your talking about just any Hybrid car. Like the Camry Hybrid your only going to average 40mpg and the Hybrid is going to add about $5K onto your price tag. But the Prius average is 49mpg. I just bought my 2012 prius and it was strictly for the $ I am going to save. Any other mid-sized sedan camry, altima etc. will cost for an average equiped car around $21,000-$24,000. I just bought my prius 2 at $100 over invoice. The MSRP was $25,399. I paid $24,100. A camry LE which has the same equipment on it was going to be $22,000. So my Prius was only $2100 more then the Camry. The Camry average fuel was 28mpg. When I did up my fuel savings I am saving $ imediately. My payment on the prius is $380 a month. On the Camry payment was $340. I drive 400 miles a week average. With the Camry my fuel bill would have been around $200 a month with the Prius my monthly fuel bill is around $110. So the Prius saved me $ imediately. I sell Toyotas so I put alot of thought into the Prius it was really a no brainer. I usually keep my cars 10 years and the Prius will save me over $10,000 with gas @$3.50
     
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  11. fuzzy1

    fuzzy1 Senior Member

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    Some are, some are not. For example, there are numerous Prius owners who don't believe carbon is a problem at all, but do dislike funding both sides of the war on terror.
     
  12. Insight-I Owner

    Insight-I Owner 2006 Insight-I MT + 2011 Prius

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    Price difference is $3400, not $5000 (Camry LE Hybrid $25,990, Camry LE $22,600). Surprisingly close to the Prius' prices.
    Also, Camry Hybrid EPA is 41mpg combined, Camry is 28mpg EPA combined. And what you're "going to average" depends on how and where you drive; you don't automatically get EPA, can be above or below EPA.
    2012 Toyota Camry models and prices
     
  13. ProximalSuns

    ProximalSuns Senior Member

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    Some admit it. Some don't. No big deal.


    I'd consider the oil wars and the eco-wars as one and the same thing but I guess one could divide the Prius carbon crusaders into two sects, one purely environmental, the other purely political/military. Three sects really. Those two and the integrated carbon crusaders who see the two issues as one.
     
  14. marper

    marper New Member

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    Not all of us. I could care less about global warming. Im not even convinced its real. Either way with the price of fuel the Prius makes sense. Everything points to gas continuing to go up.
     
  15. fuzzy1

    fuzzy1 Senior Member

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    There are a significant number of adamant AGW deniers who have other reasons to drive Prii or other hybrids. The cars have gone mainstream.
     
  16. ProximalSuns

    ProximalSuns Senior Member

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    It's OK. Your secret is safe with us.
     
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