To lower travel expenses, there are several options people have at hand. Going carless is one, and if the opportunity is there, it's possible to choose walking, biking or taking public transportation like buses and trains. Yet even with cars, commuters can lower costs and their environmental impact, too. Carpooling with a group of co-workers or classmates is one way to take an extra two or three cars off the road, and if everyone pitches in or takes turns driving, everyone in the group pays a fraction of what they'd pay if they were driving alone.
For some, of course, walking, biking, public transportation or carpooling doesn't necessarily work, and driving solo is the only option available. If this is the case, a hybrid car might be a good choice. A hybrid car owner typically spends less money at the pump, especially if most of the miles are spent driving at lower speeds -- that is, speeds where the electric motor is in use more often. It's important to note, however, that full hybrids and plug-in hybrids offer the best savings at the pump, since they use the available electric power more often; so-called mild hybrids, on the other hand -- which only use idle-stop systems to save fuel while coasting or at full stops -- don't deliver fuel savings on the same level.
For more information about hybrid cars and other related topics, follow the links below.
Related HowStuffWorks Articles
- Carr, Brian. "Average gas mileage relatively flat between 1980 and 2004." DailyFuelEconomyTip.com. Oct. 19, 2006. (Aug. 14, 2009) http://www.dailyfueleconomytip.com/miscellaneous/average-gas-mileage-relatively-flat-between-1980-and-2004/
- CNET Reviews. "Green car buying guide." CNET.com. (Aug. 13, 2009) http://reviews.cnet.com/hybrid-car-buying-guide/?tag=contentMain;contentBody
- Consumer Guide Automotive. "2008 Toyota Prius: Overview." (Aug. 14, 2009) https://consumerguideauto.howstuffworks.com/2008-toyota-prius.htm
- EarthTalk. "Are hybrid cars really better for the environment?" Physorg.com. March 30, 2009. (Aug. 14, 2009) http://www.physorg.com/news157618076.html
- Fueleconomy.gov. "Reduce climate change." (Aug. 12, 2009) http://www.dailyfueleconomytip.com/miscellaneous/average-gas-mileage-relatively-flat-between-1980-and-2004/
- Honda. "2010 Honda Insight Hybrid." Honda.com. (Aug. 14, 2009) http://automobiles.honda.com/insight-hybrid/
- Hybrid Cars. "Top 10 Hybrid Myths." HybridCars.com. March 23, 2006. (Aug. 13, 2009) http://www.hybridcars.com/decision/top-10-hybrid-myths.html
- Internal Revenue Service. "Alternative Motor Vehicle Credit." Oct. 3, 2008. (Aug. 14, 2009) http://www.irs.gov/newsroom/article/0,,id=157632,00.html
- Zimmerman, Cali. "Hybrid cars: Are they worth the investment?" NuWireInvestor.com. Aug. 13, 2008. (Aug. 14, 2009) http://www.nuwireinvestor.com/articles/hybrid-cars-are-they-worth-the-investment-51906.aspx
Is an all-electric car a bad investment? Keep reading to learn about electric cars and if an all-electric car is a bad investment.