NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis

HYBRID CARS ARE NOT SO EFFICIENT WHEN IT COMES TO GAS MILEAGE

May 21, 2004

Hybrid cars may be the wave of the future, but in the real world, they are not getting the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) estimated miles per gallons. John DiPietro, road-test editor of Edmunds.com, says the performance of hybrid cars is coming up short.

According to DiPietro:

  • Most drivers get between 75 to 87 percent of the EPA estimate, and a car should be retested if it is getting less than 75 percent of its EPA rating.
  • But Consumer Reports data reveal that hybrid cars get less than 60 percent of the EPA estimate in the city.
  • The EPA rates the Honda Civic Hybrid as getting 47 miles per gallon in the city, but Consumer Reports found it averages about 26 mpg.
  • The EPA rates another hybrid, the Toyota Prius, as getting 60 miles per gallon in the city, but Consumer Reports found it averages only about 35 mpg.

Source: John Gartner, "Hybrid Mileage Comes Up Short," Wired News, May 11, 2004. "Stretch Your Auto Fuel Dollars," Consumer Reports, July 2003 and "Affordable Family Cars: The Hybrid Grows Up," Consumer Reports, May 2004.

For Government Ratings on hybrid cars: http://www.fueleconomy.gov.

 

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