Their are many ways to combat the high gasoline prices. Car Pooling, Motor Scooters and buying four cylinders are a few of the ways to save on gas. What else should we do to handle this issue.
I can't car pool because I never know when I'll have to work overtime, and I live in a rural area where most people are retired. I bought a Toyota Prius. It uses only 3 cyl. in ordinary driving, then kicks into 4 cyl. when more power is needed. They have a surprising amount of power, but still my fuel bill lowered by about $150 to $200 a month depending on how much I drive and whether we go out of town. I drive about 20 miles round trip to work and with my weekend shopping trips, I use about 3 gals. of gasoline a week. I was getting only about 19 or 20 MPG in the Aztek.
That's two of us - I have one too and am very pleased with it. I try to have my son with me when I fill up; he always cries when the bill is $25 and I point out that that's good for about 400 miles. Like your Aztek, he gets only around 20 MPG in his minivan, while I almost always see around 50 or a little better.
But if the Prius is running on only 3 cylinders, that's a major change for them; I know that up until the new Prius III hit in 2010 that was not being done.
Mine is a 2010 and it is supposed to be a new generation Prius. I was told, and I need to check the manual, that this was the way it operates, but you can't prove it by me.
Bet it isn't - it would be news to me if it were, and I follow the Prius fairly closely. I also looked at some forums; anything running on 3 cylinders has something badly wrong, vibrates horribly, etc.
So probably not. What it does do though, is shut the engine down some of the time and run on zero cylinders; the electric motors do all the work during those periods.
I'll check on it. There is an economy mode on the car, which I use all the time unless I need extra power, and the salesman said that's when it runs on 3 cyl. But salesmen aren't always truthful. It doesn't run on electricity all the time, especially on the highway. The gas kicks in at 40 mph or at lower speeds if you are going uphill. They have an indicator that tells the driver when the gas engine is running. BTW I followed a coworker for 5 miles in town recently one misty morning, and I could see exactly when her Prius' gas engine ran and when it shut down.
Satisfied Prius owner since 2004. I fill up once every month or so, since I work at home (about 350 miles between fillups, although I can probably squeeze that to 390). I try to fill up when it drops below a third a tank, so that if there's some sort of temporary price spike due to a hurricane or other media frenzy, I can just wait it out until the price drops back to normal.
Nowadays hybrids are competitively priced and get much better mileage than my ten-year-old car, so you should be able to find one that suits your needs.
It's not required any particular maintenance beyond routine yet, knock wood, although I've only got about 65K on it.
One other good reason to get a car that doesn't use any gas while idling: major emergencies like hurricane evacuations, earthquakes, or anything that snarls traffic. During the evacuation of Houston ahead of hurricane Rita, highways backed up so much that many cars ran out of gas. But one Prius owner got to Austin on one tank of gas, 8 hours stuck in traffic, because when it's just inching along, it's running in electric mode and using the brakes to recharge the battery.
So true, love it! Greekgeek, my dealer cautioned me not to let it run out of gas. He said that the tank is a collapsible tank, and that if it runs empty, you have to put at least 5 gal. in it to inflate it back up. I can just see myself carrying 5 gal of gas to it. I fill up when the fuel indicator falls to 3 bars or Mr. B yells at me, whichever is sooner.
Again, bet your salesman is mistaken. There used to be a bladder in the gas tank (I have one) but that was supposed to be taken out in the Prius III, starting 2010. It was part of the emissions system but the bag also gave erroneous readings to the gas gauge, meaning you could easily run out even while it insisted there was gas in there.
Running out of gas in the Prius can be dangerous in another way as well: it will continue to run on the electric motor until the battery is completely dead if you push it, and that will damage that big, expensive battery a good deal. Probably not ruin it, but will absolutely cause damage.
*gasp!* You mean gasoline is a nonrenewable resource, and as it gets more and more scarce, the price goes up? Gosh Almighty, how did we not see this coming?!
If only someone out there has begun working on a car that doesn't use gas, but instead, some type of renewable energy source!
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