Buy a hybrid and save a guzzler...
Interesting article in the Times. For those who don't subscribe here's an out-take:
......hybrids have the most overblown mileage ratings in the auto industry. In the government's road tests, which are conducted in a world without much traffic or any air-conditioning, the Prius gets 55 miles to the gallon. Consumer Reports says the car really goes 44 miles on a gallon of gas. When I used one last week ? and there is no denying that it's a great car to drive ? I got 45 in Manhattan and on local highways.
This is just the beginning of the story. The more time you spend looking at the economics of the hybrids, the less comfortable you get.
The most important reason is a government policy that, amazingly enough, seems almost intended to undercut the benefits of efficient cars. In 1978, Congress set a minimum corporate average fuel economy, known as CAFE, for all carmakers. Today, the minimum average for cars is 27.5 miles a gallon. (For S.U.V.'s and other light trucks, it is 21.6.)
YOU can guess what this means for hybrids. Each one becomes a free pass for its manufacturer to sell a few extra gas guzzlers........
I've seen a similar situation with windmill farms, and don't get me wrong...I'm all for them. But, power companies get "green-points" for building them....meaning they can apply those green points which then minimizes their required green points needed in other areas....like cleaner burning or more fuel efficient energy manufacturing processes from oil.
Funny how these goverment insentives get mis-used.