The advantages for hybrid electric vehicles keeps increasing. They're currently in such great demand that they've far outsold the industry predictions.
Although hybrid vehicles presently cost more than comparable conventional gas cars, that's going to change. As consumer demand continues to increase, mass production will also increase, bringing costs down and making hybrid cars even more competitive.
But what are the advantages for hybrid electric vehicles right now?
Well, one advantage is hybrid electric vehicles can save you money on fuel, since every tank of gas lasts a lot longer. And with today's high fuel costs, that could add up to a lot of money.
For example, the Toyota Prius can drive 450 miles, the equivalent of a trip from New York to Cleveland, on a single tank of gas. And the Honda Insight, a smaller car designed for maximum efficiency, can run for as far as 700 miles without refueling.
Getting 40 mpg or more with a hybrid compared to 20 mpg or less with a conventional gas car will cost only half as much as you're paying right now for gas. You'll also save time from standing around pumping gas. And remember, your time is worth something too.
Another major advantage of hybrid electric cars for many concerned drivers is the fact that they do a lot less damage to the environment. For some consumers, feeling better about the environmental effects of the car they drive can offset the higher current cost of purchasing a hybrid car.
Not only do hybrid electric vehicles use less gas, they also burn fuel cleaner and more efficiently. The Toyota Prius, for example, meets the strictest California emission standards. It rates as a partial zero emissions vehicle (PZEV).
And, if you're concerned about global warming, the Prius also reduces greenhouse carbon dioxide gas emissions by around 50%. And, as technology improves, hybrid cars will cut global warming emissions even more, as well as reduce air pollution associated with asthma, cancer and other serious health concerns.
Driving a hybrid car has an advantage for some people of making a political statement. Many drivers enjoy driving past the gas station knowing they're not sending their hard-earned dollars to the Middle East to support war, terrorism or repressive regimes. Since cars and trucks, in this country, account for 40 percent of oil consumption, small improvements in fuel economy can make a huge difference in energy independence.
Did you know that more than two thirds of the world's oil resources are under just six countries - Saudi Arabia, Iraq, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Iran and Qatar? More than 50 billion dollars a year is spent in peacetime and a lot more during war years to ensure that the U.S. has free access to Persian Gulf oil.
But, according to leading environmental attorney, Robert F. Kennedy Jr, if everyone were getting just another 7.6 mpg of gasoline we would be able to eliminate 100% of all oil imports from the Middle East.
When you take everything into consideration, there are more than enough advantages for hybrid electric vehicles for everyone to consider making their next automobile purchase a hybrid model.