Friday, January 25, 2013

Hybrid cars save money

Surveys show that while hybrid cars were designed to save the environment, more and more people are buying them to save money. Auto companies invested lots of money in producing hybrids and their earliest market were eco-conscious celebrities. Like Natalie Portman, photographed outside the grocery store Gelson's in Los Feliz last week, making her way to the Mercedes-Benz S400 hybrid:
A survey by Deloitte shows that 89 percent of consumers want their next car to have better mileage, and that's why choose hybrids. And they prefer hybrids to electric vehicles. These gas saving cars also have the latest technology, which appeals to young buyers. With subsidies and tax breaks in many US states, hybrid cars are becoming more affordable, and their marketshare of 3 percent is rising. The technology is also improving. Peugeot is developing revolutionary air-petrol hybrid cars and hybrid cars running on compressed air will be available by 2016.

One place where hybrid technology has become dangerous to pedestrians, is when these cars run in electric mode and make no noise. This is particularly dangerous for pedestrians with visual impairments. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) wants minimum sound requirements for electric and hybrid vehicles. Known as the 'Quiet Cars' rule, mandated by Congress under the Pedestrian Safety Enhancement Act of 2010, it is believed will prevent 2,800 injuries every year and save roughly 35 lives.