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  • I don't know jack about cars, but my co-worker does. He talked recently about some of these issues here [] and here [].
  • Very cool that you've got a Prius and are enjoying it. My car is slowly dying and I'm on the waiting list for a new Prius. I'm 13 at the dealership and they're getting about 1 per month. That means I could be waiting a year.

    I also read the Wired article and while it did seem to focus on the Honda, I was a little concerned about actual performance of the Prius. Nice to hear about your actual experience. Not that I would have cancelled my order. There are a ton of other amazing features to make it a cool ca

    • What I would *really* like to see is a diesel hybrid. Chrysler was working on one that was going to get 80 mpg, but cancelled the program because they didn't think there was going to be enough ROI.

      I'm surprised the Germans haven't come out with a hybrid diesel. Imagine a hybrid turbo diesel VW Beetle . All that power, plus gobs of torque. Scary.

    • Are there any problems with hybrids when you're living somewhere where it can get way below freezing in the winter?
      • The first winter I spent in Minneapolis was long and cold, with every day below freezing in December and January, and many days below zero. I never once had a problem with it and it never failed to start.

        The only thing that happened was that my mileage dropped to the low 30's because I was running the heater full blast all the time.

      • I can also pass along one of the features the salesman told me about. Apparently, the engine contains a large thermos that sucks in all of the hot engine fluids when you stop the car. This thermos keeps the fluids hot for up to 5 days so when you start the car again it can get warm again quickly.

        My guess is they need to do this because the small engine doesn't throw off a ton of heat, and when you are on electric, they must run an electric-based heater.

        Living in a cold climate, my question is why isn't

        • It's possible, but not something I remember reading about. I suspect it's a newer feature, because my car takes a few minutes to get warmed up, though it's still relatively (and surprisingly) quick - probably 3-4 minutes on average. It's a non-issue.

          My main complaint with the 2004 model is that they went overboard with the computer controls. The 2001 model kept a simple manual layout for the A/C and heater controls, while I think the 2004 has gobs of buttons to push, plus an unusual ignition system.

  • I wouldn't mind a hybrid or some other alternative fuelled car, but I need a large car for all my stuff. We have a Suburban. Someday, maybe there will be a suitable vehicle for me. Today, there is not.

    But yeah, cars are not the real problem anyway, either in terms of pollution or oil consumption. They are a minority of the problem in both. However, cars are the things we can most easily, as consumers and voters, control.

    The funny thing I almost never see people mention is that a geek who has a lot of