Carpool Stickers Expire, Still Want A Hybrid?
California had an awesome incentive to purchase a hybrid (beyond doing good for the planet and the gas tank), and that was that hybrid drivers could freely use the carpool lane at any time, even if there was only one person in the vehicle.
Since hybrids are typically not the cheapest model for any car manufacturer, this extra incentive meant a lot when it came to deciding whether or not to purchase a ‘green machine’.
Well, the stickers are about to expire, meaning that the carpool lane should be faster, and the 3 or 4 other lanes, more congested. That’s not to say that you should overlook a 51 mile per gallon rating, or the fact that you’d significantly decrease carbon emissions, but it’s definitely a deciding factor for some when it comes to purchasing a new vehicle.
However, I have to argue that with gas prices around $3.50 a gallon (and recently $4 a gallon), it does make a whole lot of sense to spring for a hybrid, especially if you have a daily commute.
I’m still waiting for hybrids to actually look cool, although I think the Honda Civic Hybrid looks alright, at least compared to a Toyota Prius. Given the thousands of dollars I will save each year on gas, I will probably keep my eyes focused on those fuel friendly vehicles in the coming years.