Hybrid Cars Earn a Thumbs Up

Hybrid Cars Earn a Thumbs Up

With gas prices rising, more and more consumers are seeking out alternatives to the traditional car such as the hybrid car. Hybrid cars combine conventional technology with an electric motor and a Lithium Ion battery.

One such consumer is twenty-four-year-old landscape architect Emily Callahan. When purchasing her first car in Spring 2007, Callahan was one of the first of consumers who decided on the Nissan Altima Hybrid, a mid-sized Sedan which came out on the market in January of that year.

“Fuel efficiency, environmental impact, size, and tax incentives, were among the factors that I took into account when purchasing the Altima Hybrid,” Callahan said. Since Callahan was one of the first consumers to purchase a hybrid, she got a tax refund of about twenty-three hundred dollars, the full sales tax paid.

Needless to say, in addition to tax perks, with current fuel prices, hybrids also offer consumers more than just a pocket full of savings on gas. Callahan said that the Altima Hybrid averages thirty-six miles per gallon and that the miles add up. While Callahan said that one friend, who drives a traditional Nissan Altima 2007, spends one-hundred dollars a week on her hour commute, Callahan in contrast spends only seventy-five dollars on her hour commute.

When asked whether she would ever go back to a non-hybrid vehicle, Callahan said that she would not, citing that “the hybrid also has zero carbon emissions.” In addition to the economic and environmental benefits of hybrids, Callahan described that there is also a sense of camaraderie amongst hybrid drivers. Callahan said that one-day, while stopped in traffic, another Altima Hybrid driver rolled down her window and gave her a thumbs up.

With hybrids offering so many advantages, Nissan is just one of the many car manufacturers who are hopping on the hybrid bandwagon. Saturn, Ford, Toyota, Honda, and Lexus have also released hybrid vehicles, ranging from compact to SUV versions.