Continental to launch 3rd generation of power electronics for hybrids and EVs in August
Visteon and Codethink collaborate to improve development and maintainability of in-vehicle software; leveraging Baserock and Yocto analysis finds hybrids and EVs struggle to maintain owner loyalty in US; trade-ins for SUVs

Car buyers are trading in hybrid and electric cars for SUVs at a higher rate than ever before, according to a new analysis from car-buying platform According to, about 22% of people who have traded in their hybrids and EVs in 2015 bought a new SUV. The number is up from 18.8% last year, and it is nearly double the rate of 11.9% three years ago. Overall, only 45% of this year’s hybrid and EV trade-ins have gone toward the purchase of another alternative fuel vehicle, down from just above 60% in 2012. This marks the first time loyalty rates for alt-fuel vehicles have fallen below 50%.

For better or worse, it looks like many hybrid and EV owners are driven more by financial motives rather than a responsibility to the environment. Three years ago, when gas was at near-record highs, it was a lot easier to rationalize the price premiums on alternative fuel vehicles. But with today’s gas prices as low as they are, the math just doesn’t make a very compelling case.

— Director of Industry Analysis Jessica Caldwell

Edmunds calculates that at the peak average national gas price of $4.67/gallon in October 2012, it would take five years to break even on the $3,770 price difference between a Toyota Camry LE Hybrid ($28,230) and a Toyota Camry LE ($24,460). At today’s national average gas price of $2.27/gallon, it would take twice as much time (10.5 years) to close the same gap.

Edmunds’ analysis comes at a time when overall sales of alternative vehicles have continued to slide. EVs and hybrids accounted for 2.7% of all new car sales in the first quarter of 2015, down from 3.3% during that same period last year. The share of SUVs, meanwhile, has increased from 31.8% in Q1 2014 to 34.2% in Q1 2015.


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A breakdown on vehicle type would be useful. I am sure that Tesla owners are not unhappy with their BEV.

Edmunds has cast the numbers in a way that gives them the story they want. Is it a coincidence that their income comes from legacy OEMs selling gas guzzlers as their high margins cars?

They cite a Toyota Camry hybrid as an example, rather than a 100+ mpg plug-in.

Street price of Ford Focus Electric, Fiat 500e and Spark EV are roughly at parity with their gas-burning counterparts, or below in some states with generous rebates, like California, Massachusetts.

Fuel cost savings (not to mention savings in annual maintenance) make these virtually free cars for folks with average or better commutes.


Larger Electrified SUVs and Pick-Ups may be what Americans and western Canadians would prefer.

Others may be satisfied with small and mid-size electrified cars?


If a hybrid Camry can be built for only a $4000 premium then it seems likely that hybrid vehicles can be built in every class of light duty vehicle at reasonable costs that will probably have significant positive economic benefits in the regions where they are produced and used. I can't understand why governments who express concern for global warming do not force the adoption of fuel efficiency more aggressively.

Rather than a war on drugs why not a war on oil.

Meanwhile, us energy producers are happy to feed addictions.

If only we could get Washington and Colorado to reconsider their marijuana laws.


This isn't much use without more of the raw data.

Even car platform based SUVs like the 2015 Mazda CX-5 have 26/35mpg fuel efficiency, and probably still count as an "SUV". That's pretty good for an SUV.

That being said hybrid and PHEV sales are down while BEVs are up.

The value proposition of the BEV is better than the hybrids with the drop in fuel price, but as of now that is driven by subsidies.

Henry Gibson

Digital displacement hydraulic hybrid technology will give the performance of an SUV with half the fuel use in most cases of city driving. Engine downsizing will give even more fuel efficiency without noticeable performance loss; all at much lower cost than electric hybrids and cheaper transmission repairs. The new Ricardo vacuum flywheel magnetic gear system can be installed for even more energy storage. Flywheels have been tested in racing cars for years for energy efficiencies and fuel savings. ..HG..

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