Our friends at Jalopnik had themselves a hot Question Of The Day today that dovetails nicely with a recent discussion here at Gadgetopia; Are Hybrids Bunk? Some pretty opinionated opining going on there. Hybrids in general — and the Prius in particular — are like Macs in a way; they’re either loved or hated by most people, and many who love them can be pretty rabid about it.
I guess I’d fall into the hate column on this subject. My thought is that today’s hybrids are a waste; basically over-teched toys that return a miniscule increase in gas mileage from a comparatively massive increase in complexity and cost. To me a true hybrid would be a much better solution — an electric motor driving the wheels with a small bank of batteries to hold enough of a charge to get you up to speed, and a small gas or diesel motor driving a generator to provide enough power for cruising speeds & keep the batteries topped off. Same concept as a modern diesel electric railroad locomotive, just scaled down a bit.
So, how about you? Do today’s hybrid vehicles do anything for you? Are they the greatest thing since the threshing machine, a transitional step on the way to something better, or are they a total joke? Or are we about to get into a bloody war of words over the previous paragraph?