Plug-In Hybrid Coming?

By Deane Barker on November 11, 2006

GM likely to launch new plug-in hybrid: Looks like Alexandra Paul finally got her way.

The advanced technology vehicle would have an extended driving range on battery power and would also have a diesel or gasoline engine that could power the car when the battery was low, the Detroit News said, citing unnamed GM officials.

Plug-in hybrids are gas-electric vehicles that can recharge their batteries with an extension cord and a normal wall outlet.

I’m really glad to see this, because I read another article the other day which is so true: “American car buyers get a case of amnesia”:

Who can remember all the way back to last summer, when we had daylight-saving-time, baseball and $3 a gallon gasoline prices?

Not American car buyers, apparently, and you can see the evidence in the results of October auto sales.

Sales of big pickup trucks and SUVs went through the roof – doubling from the year before in some cases. Sales of small, fuel-efficient cars, meanwhile, remained stagnant. It is as if all that moaning and groaning about price gouging by oil companies never happened.

This is a risky statement, but one I’m willing to make: it would do America good for gas prices to stay at $3 a gallon for the next five years. Why? Because this is the only way the auto-buying market will push the industry to make more fuel efficient cars.

As the article states, we get amnesia. As soon as gas prices come down, we fire up the Hummer again.

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  1. … it would do America good for gas prices to stay at $3 a gallon for the next five years.

    The scary thing is that there are those in politics who agree with you & could make such a thing happen.

    But the problem with extended periods of $3 gas is a variant of that same amnesia you mentioned; people will get accustomed to paying that much and soon it becomes the norm. When I first started driving, a gallon of gas cost less than a dollar; now I’m thrilled when I can find it for anything less than $2. We adjust our budgets and our expectations, and the prices that shock us now become normal later.

    Being one who believes strongly in the market economy, I say let the market determine fuel prices, and the market will drive any forthcoming departure from the internal combustion engine.

  2. I agree! It may actually be good for our economy to keep gas up that high… definitely have seen a massive interest in fuel efficient vehicles, but more so to save money as opposed to truly caring about the environment!

  3. Honda tried the plug in model and it didnt do so well. Then again, gas prices werent through the roof at the time. Either way, i think whatever it takes to get people into affordable vehicles that are better for the environment, then I’m all for it.

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