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dpbaker

Incentives for Hybrid Vehicles

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Caught on the boob-tube this morning that Salt Lake City is now offering free parking (I think at parking meters?) for hybrids. What is your city or state doing in the way of incentives for hybrids/clean fuel vehicles?

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Minnesota offers tax incentives for buying hybrid vehicles, but right now our biggest boon is for E-85.

Minnesota has the highest number of E-85 vehicles and gas stations. (I have one 1 mile from my house).

Right now E-85 gas is $1.70/gallon here in my city.

Also, Minnesota has passed a law that says all vehicles need to be ready for 30% ethanol by 2012. Of course Ford and some other companies are making a big fuss about it.. but most Chrysler and Dodge vehicles are already ready for E-85. (Mini-Vans..)

Using E-85 significantly reduces CO2 output into the atmosphere and burns cleaner in general, and is now uses less energy to produce than it gives out (this was a huge problem before).

Minnesota is pushing it because the ethanol is derived from corn, and Minnesota is a huge corn state. Of course the oil industry is having a hissy fit.. screw 'em.

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It's not clear to me that hybrid technology is all that it is cracked up to be. For example it actually gets worse mileage during long highway driving. There is a lot of hype behind these vehicles, but aside from the issue with the fuel savings, they will never save you any money.

E85 is great stuff. We have a few stations here in NC and I do have a vehicle that will burn it so I try to take advantage of it when I can.

I think the real near term future is in Diesel vehicles like they have in Europe. And of course BioDiesel is the way to go with that.

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The good part about ethanol is that most states can make it. It can come from corn, sugar-cane or straw.

I understand Brazil is a huge ethanol producer too (sugar-cane) and many cars there use it. Sounds like it is a lot cheaper than gasoline too.

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Caught on the boob-tube this morning that Salt Lake City is now offering free parking (I think at parking meters?) for hybrids. What is your city or state doing in the way of incentives for hybrids/clean fuel vehicles?

I would not limit incentives to hybrids. That discourages innovation. Instead, give incentives to vehicles that get better fuel economy than 85% of the fleet, as long as it is in a safe and clean manner.

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I would not limit incentives to hybrids. That discourages innovation. Instead, give incentives to vehicles that get better fuel economy than 85% of the fleet, as long as it is in a safe and clean manner.

Well, that's a possibility, but identifying vehicles in this category might complicate things. Hybrids are fairly easy to identify for the moment. The other ones might be trickier to identify. I suppose a special label could be affixed to such vehicles....

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It's not clear to me that hybrid technology is all that it is cracked up to be. For example it actually gets worse mileage during long highway driving.

This is completely false and hasn't been the case for years now since they have improved the technology.

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1. Tax incentives

2. Low interest auto lowns

3. Free Parking atleast until Hybrid become common place.

4. Federaly Mandated Fuel discounts at the pumps (Never happen though)

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Diesel not being cheaper here is a function of the demand. Not much is demanded, not much is supplied; the supply here is further behind the demand then in Europe, so diesel is more expensive. And the quality of diesel fuels here is poor too. It's too bad as I think diesels are probably a more viable alternative, at least in the short run, than Hybrids. They can be quickly produced in great numbers, the design and theory is as well-proven as gasoline engines, and nearly every automaker has one that's utilized somewhere in the world that they could probably bring over. The EPA needs to stop demonizing diesel and mandate a higher quality with lower sulfur content then we have here now.

Hybrid battery packs have a definite lifespan...what happens to all the acids and caustic chemicals from these things once they get tossed? Hardly an environmental savior. Hybrids have gotten better looking of late, but none, even the ones based on "regular" cars are ones that look attractive to my eyes, anyway, and they still have a "treehugger/Hollywood trendster" stigma to them that most middle Americans won't touch with a ten foot sterilized barge pole. And of course, financially they make little sense because it takes close to the entire lifespan of the vehicle to recoup the initial extra investment in gas savings, as well as the fact that the maintenance costs on the exceptionally complicated Hybrid systems have proven to be higher than average.

Thge problem with ethanol is that it contains less energy than a comparable volume of gasoline, so your mileage suffers big time with it. You'd have to produce a pretty great volume of the stuff to satisfy demand. On the plus side, ethanol, like alcohol, is pretty detonation-resistant and allows you to run some pretty hot compression in an engine. Midwestern performance engine builders are already taking advantage of that.

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It's not clear to me that hybrid technology is all that it is cracked up to be. For example it actually gets worse mileage during long highway driving. There is a lot of hype behind these vehicles, but aside from the issue with the fuel savings, they will never save you any money.

E85 is great stuff. We have a few stations here in NC and I do have a vehicle that will burn it so I try to take advantage of it when I can.

I think the real near term future is in Diesel vehicles like they have in Europe. And of course BioDiesel is the way to go with that.

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Tax Incentives for Hybrid Purchasing in USA

You may not realize this but if you are going to buy a hybrid car, SUV or any similar vehicle you could get a whopping tax break. In fact few consumers have taken the government up on this offer, perhaps they do not realize that this was part of the Bill that President Bush recently signed?

If you buy a Honda or Toyota hybrid such as the Prius or Isight you could get a $2,000 deduction on your 2004 or 2005 tax return. Those in the 33% tax bracket that would cut your tax obligations by up to $600.00 just think about this. You can save fuel, get a cool car and save money on your taxes too; but why are people not taking the government up on this? Well, probably because many people are not even aware of it. But you must take the deduction by the end of this year as the offer from the government, as good as it is, ends on January one, 2006; which is approaching about as fast as our next named Tropical Storm.

Luckily there is a new tax credit, which starts as this deduction night falls. In 2006 the new deal is a Tax Credit, which is much better and it could be as much as $3,000 straight off your tax obligation in 2006 and it is based on the gross vehicle weight of the car or SUV that you purchase.

Unfortunately for the modern day instant gratification seeker, they may not be able to take advantage of these offers, as most Hybrids at dealers are sold out with an average of a 110 person waiting list, well at least at Toyota dealers that is. The tax deal has further complications as once the manufacturer sells over 60,000 vehicles the over a one-year period the credit will be cut to 50% and then to 75%. This provides incentives for auto manufacturers to continually innovate and come up with new models and more gasoline saving features.

So if you are in the market for a Gas savings hybrid, then now could be a good time, if not get on the waiting list and get ready of 2006, so you can save in more ways than one. Think on this, think of yourself in a technologically advanced futuristic hybrid vehicle.

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