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Old 03-23-2008, 10:09 PM   #1
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Default Lutz Hints at Price Points for Both the Two-Mode and Plug-In Hybrid Vues

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Lutz Hints at Price Points for Both the Two-Mode and Plug-In Hybrid Vues

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To date Saturn's hybrid vehicles have been of the "mild" variety, but that's going to change in the next few months as the automaker prepares to launch a second Green Line Vue model with a hybrid system designed to leapfrog its competition.

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Old 03-24-2008, 09:17 AM   #2
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Default Re: Lutz Hints at Price Points for Both the Two-Mode and Plug-In Hybrid Vues

Wow, only 48K? Where do I sign???!!!

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Old 03-24-2008, 10:09 AM   #3
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Default Re: Lutz Hints at Price Points for Both the Two-Mode and Plug-In Hybrid Vues

I originally was thinking that $48k was a very steep price..

But this is great... Think about people that do short city drives, it could just run on battery power...

If I could afford that, at my young age (lol) I would definitely buy one.

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Old 03-24-2008, 11:28 AM   #4
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Default Re: Lutz Hints at Price Points for Both the Two-Mode and Plug-In Hybrid Vues

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Originally Posted by HotIonDrvr89 View Post
I originally was thinking that $48k was a very steep price..

But this is great... Think about people that do short city drives, it could just run on battery power...

If I could afford that, at my young age (lol) I would definitely buy one.
In theory, yes....it would probably save people money over a very long period of time. However, buyers do not look at it this way. People want immediate returns and expect to pay very little for it. As I said in the other post, the average buyer only sees "hybrid" and will compare it to a Prius or an Escape hybrid as that has become the benchmark for hybrids. If they see the Vue is more expensive, they won't look further to see why. It's a great concept and I understand GM can't give the technology away, but the fact of the matter is the two-mode will sell in low numbers and will be produced accordingly.

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Old 03-24-2008, 02:57 PM   #5
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Default Re: Lutz Hints at Price Points for Both the Two-Mode and Plug-In Hybrid Vues

Insanity!

$48k for a little Vue?!?!?!?!?! He's totally high! Isn't the BMW SUV less than that? Isn't the full-size, Two-Mode Chevy/GMC around $48 or 50k?

I'm sorry but that is way too expensive. The beauty of the 2-Mode system was that it was supposedly smaller and cheaper than Toyota's synergy system, with the Two-Mode system being incorporated into the vehicle's transaxle.

Well even with plug-in capability, I think many people would balk at $48k. GM should, and likely will be forced, to subsidize them if the first models will cost that much.

The Prius plug-in is supposed to come out within the next few year(s). I haven't heard anything on price, but I would be shocked if it were that high.

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Old 03-25-2008, 08:51 PM   #6
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Default Re: Lutz Hints at Price Points for Both the Two-Mode and Plug-In Hybrid Vues

Glad I didn't wait for the hybrid!

Hopefully GM is willing to take a big loss on these at a lower price until the volume gets high enough to bring the cost down. If not, GM might as well not even make it. Especially if fuel economy only improves by 25% on the standard 2-mode version. Assuming it will average 8 mpg better combined (18 vs 26 which is not realistic since it is 45% improvement), driven 12k miles per year you would use 462 gallons of gas in the hybrid, 667 gallons in the standard 3.6L V6. Even at $4 per gallon that only adds up to $820 savings per year. That means a 10 year payback. Good thing there are a bunch of California greenies out there to buy these things even if they don't pay for themselves.

Now on the plug-in, that is a tougher calculation because I don't know how much higher your electricity bill will be. Just for the sake of discussion, lets say you only drive 12000 miles per year with none of your trips longer than 40 miles. Let's say the cost of electricity is less than half the cost of gas. You would use 667 gallons of gas at 18 mpg. At a cost of $4 per gallon ($0.2222 per mile), that's $2668 per year. At half that cost for electricity, you would spend $1334 per year. At that rate, it would only take you 13.5 years to pay back the plug-in hybrid premium. Good thing most people think electricity is free and will think their operating costs are zero until after they get that first big electric bill!

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Old 03-26-2008, 09:26 AM   #7
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Default Re: Lutz Hints at Price Points for Both the Two-Mode and Plug-In Hybrid Vues

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Glad I didn't wait for the hybrid!

Hopefully GM is willing to take a big loss on these at a lower price until the volume gets high enough to bring the cost down. If not, GM might as well not even make it. Especially if fuel economy only improves by 25% on the standard 2-mode version. Assuming it will average 8 mpg better combined (18 vs 26 which is not realistic since it is 45% improvement), driven 12k miles per year you would use 462 gallons of gas in the hybrid, 667 gallons in the standard 3.6L V6. Even at $4 per gallon that only adds up to $820 savings per year. That means a 10 year payback. Good thing there are a bunch of California greenies out there to buy these things even if they don't pay for themselves.

Now on the plug-in, that is a tougher calculation because I don't know how much higher your electricity bill will be. Just for the sake of discussion, lets say you only drive 12000 miles per year with none of your trips longer than 40 miles. Let's say the cost of electricity is less than half the cost of gas. You would use 667 gallons of gas at 18 mpg. At a cost of $4 per gallon ($0.2222 per mile), that's $2668 per year. At half that cost for electricity, you would spend $1334 per year. At that rate, it would only take you 13.5 years to pay back the plug-in hybrid premium. Good thing most people think electricity is free and will think their operating costs are zero until after they get that first big electric bill!
The equivalent cost of "filling up" with electricity is about 1/10th the price of a gallon of gas. That depends on how you get your electrons though.

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Old 03-26-2008, 09:39 AM   #8
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Default Re: Lutz Hints at Price Points for Both the Two-Mode and Plug-In Hybrid Vues

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Originally Posted by hyperlexis View Post
Insanity!

$48k for a little Vue?!?!?!?!?! He's totally high! Isn't the BMW SUV less than that? Isn't the full-size, Two-Mode Chevy/GMC around $48 or 50k?

I'm sorry but that is way too expensive. The beauty of the 2-Mode system was that it was supposedly smaller and cheaper than Toyota's synergy system, with the Two-Mode system being incorporated into the vehicle's transaxle.

Well even with plug-in capability, I think many people would balk at $48k. GM should, and likely will be forced, to subsidize them if the first models will cost that much.

The Prius plug-in is supposed to come out within the next few year(s). I haven't heard anything on price, but I would be shocked if it were that high.
The 2-mode Tahoe starts at $50k. The 2-mode system was never intended to be a cheaper alternative to Toyota's HSD, it was supposed to be better and more extensible - which it is. Toyota subsidized the cost on the Prius for years and GM will as well.

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Old 03-26-2008, 03:23 PM   #9
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Default Re: Lutz Hints at Price Points for Both the Two-Mode and Plug-In Hybrid Vues

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Originally Posted by K-1 View Post
The equivalent cost of "filling up" with electricity is about 1/10th the price of a gallon of gas. That depends on how you get your electrons though.
Good to know. If that is true, then in the scenario I presented above for the plug in hybrid, the premium would pay itself back in only 7.5 years
==> $18k / ($2668 - $267) = 7.5 years

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Old 03-26-2008, 09:00 PM   #10
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Default Re: Lutz Hints at Price Points for Both the Two-Mode and Plug-In Hybrid Vues

an $18k premium for a plug-in???

Even if the electricity was FREE, it would take over 100k miles to make up that premium. (assuming $3.50/gallon of gas and 20mpg on gasoline)

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Old 03-26-2008, 09:33 PM   #11
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Default Re: Lutz Hints at Price Points for Both the Two-Mode and Plug-In Hybrid Vues

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Good to know. If that is true, then in the scenario I presented above for the plug in hybrid, the premium would pay itself back in only 7.5 years
==> $18k / ($2668 - $267) = 7.5 years
Only 7.5 years huh? I'm still not convinced on the payback as most American cars have significant repair costs beyond 5 years of ownership. Also, factor in higher than average depreciation. I guess it remains to be seen.

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Old 03-31-2008, 12:10 PM   #12
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Default Re: Lutz Hints at Price Points for Both the Two-Mode and Plug-In Hybrid Vues

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Only 7.5 years huh? I'm still not convinced on the payback as most American cars have significant repair costs beyond 5 years of ownership. Also, factor in higher than average depreciation. I guess it remains to be seen.
Well, Americans are keeping their cars for much longer periods on average, than in the past, and also, the drivetrain warranty/hybrid system on the hybrid models are extended to 8+ years.

Depreciation is definitely a factor, but after 8 years, any vehicle, even higher end marques will suffer.

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Old 03-31-2008, 06:44 PM   #13
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Default Re: Lutz Hints at Price Points for Both the Two-Mode and Plug-In Hybrid Vues

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Only 7.5 years huh? I'm still not convinced on the payback as most American cars have significant repair costs beyond 5 years of ownership. Also, factor in higher than average depreciation. I guess it remains to be seen.
The "only" was meant to be sarcasm. If you noticed, that pay back is only if you use ZERO gasoline and run the car strictly off of electricity for that 7.5 years. Not gonna happen.

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