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Monday, January 26, 2009

The Toyota Prius, The Original Hybrid

The mother of all hybrid electric cars, I only recently took my first ride in a Toyota Prius. The ride was accidental in that I had taken the wrong train home from work by accident. But when I got off at a station far from home, a nice guy offered to drive me to my town.

We walked over to his Prius and off we went -- talking about the car the whole way. It offers a really nice display that shows when the car is running on gasoline, when it is running off the electric batteries, or a combination of both. It was a fine ride down some rural highways. At the end of the ride, I offered him some gas money but he commented how he had spent so little on gas for the half-hour ride in his Prius, I needn't bother.

We all know the environmental benefits of a hybrid vehicle -- as well as the fact that less gasoline usage translates to less U.S. dependence on imported foreign oil. Yes, the price of a gallon of gas has come down over the last several months, but it likely will only rebound once the world economy get going again.

If you are considering the purchase of a hybrid, you might think about buying a 2009 Prius or you might be able to get a deal on a slightly older Toyota Prius 2008 model.

In the near future, the 2010 Prius model promises to be an entirely "next-gen" vehicle with even higher gas mileage and it might make sense for you to buy a hybrid at that time.

If a hybrid isn't for you, you can check out online reviews of other vehicles, as well such as the new Toyota venza model.

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