Home » Toyota’s Hybrid Cars Are Selling Like Crazy Because Hybrids Are The Right Answer

Toyota’s Hybrid Cars Are Selling Like Crazy Because Hybrids Are The Right Answer

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Last Sunday was Reformation Sunday, the day when my Lutheran side of the family celebrates the Protestant Reformation and the Catholic side of my family quietly grumbles, which is maybe why I feel so compelled to preach to the choir today. I don’t have 95 theses this morning, though, I just have two: Hybrids are good and Toyota is right to pursue a strategy that increases hybrids while not ignoring EVs.

Today’s Dump will be (almost) all about Toyota because there’s just a crap ton of Toyota news to talk about. From news about wage increases to profitability to EV investments, we’re super into it.

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Oh, yeah, I guess we’ll also talk about Tesla’s successful lawsuit and about a CEO eviction because that’s in the news today.

Also, side note: Martin Luther would have loved that we call our morning news roundup The Morning Dump because Martin Luther loved poop jokes. Seriously.

Toyota’s Hybrids Are Now As Profitable As Its Gas-Powered Cars

2023 Toyota Prius Spec 1Toyota put out a bunch of financial reports for the third quarter (their second quarter because they run on a different fiscal calendar), and you can see most of it here. There’s a lot of information, and most of it is good.

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From a financial standpoint, it looks like the fiscal year ending in March 2024 will likely be the best ever if nothing wild happens in the next fiscal half-year. In just the last quarter, the company’s net income was up to a whopping $8.6 billion, compared to about $2.9 billion for fiscal Q2 (calendar Q3) last year. Revenue also rose almost 25% to $76.6 billion.

Buried in all of that information, though, is a key piece of information, summarized nicely by Automotive News:

Toyota says its hybrids have achieved profit margin parity with its internal combustion vehicles. Today, hybrids account for about 28  percent of Toyota’s global sales and nearly that much of the company’s overall operating income. Plug-ins, fuel cells and EVs account for only a small sliver of retail sales and operating income.

Toyota does not disclose a regional breakdown of its electrified vehicle forecasts.

But in its quarterly earnings report, the company said it now expects to sell 3.6 million traditional hybrids in the current fiscal year, up from an earlier outlook of 3.5 million. It also upgraded its plug-in hybrid goal to 141,000 vehicles from 137,000.

Profit parity for hybrids is a big, big, big deal. Toyota’s hybrids command a small premium over non-hybrids (a base Corolla costs $21,900 while a base Corolla Hybrid starts at $23,300), and that’s apparently enough to cover the additional costs. In the example of the Corolla, the vehicle’s city MPG jumps from 32 mpg to 53 mpg, a not insignificant amount.

While there are some obvious advantages to a society that has more EVs than gas-powered vehicles, the market has simply not been able to provide the affordable EVs that people want in much of the world. For reasons both political and practical, the charging infrastructure and the incentives to buy vehicles that are at a low enough cost haven’t yet materialized. Society will get there, eventually, but the crash EV program that the U.S. is doing right now hasn’t worked yet.

Hybrids are a great interim step, and Toyota has the best hybrid lineup in the business, having gotten a huge start with Prius.

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Toyota Hasn’t Totally Given Up On EVs, Doubles Investment In NC Plant

2018 Lexus Dealer Meeting Akio Toyoda 9169493a1f2a50f6699521f904041ddf3d67c8d3 600x400
Photo: Toyota

Akio Toyoda is still the Chairman of Toyota, though he’s no longer the CEO. What he says matters and for what feels like the last 900 years, the departed (from The Autopian) Patrick George has been working a giant piece on Toyoda for Road & Track and he finally published the damn thing, which you can read here, and includes this great section on Toyoda’s seeming resistance to electrification:

Questioned about this, he insisted he’s not against EVs but has doubts they can be the only solution to cars’ contributions to climate change. “What we are really fighting against is carbon,” he said at Le Mans. “But if I’m asked, will that be the only option, or only solution to global warming, then I have some questions.”

For one, he said, Toyota operates everywhere in the world; “There are about 1 billion people among our customer base who do not have enough electricity infrastructure in their everyday lives,” he said. “If we say that [EVs] are the only options that we should pursue, what will happen to these people?”

Toyota downgraded its guidance for FY 2023, saying it’ll only sell about 123,000 EVs, way short of its initial goal of 202,000 EVs. So is the EV dream dead? Not quite.

The AP has a story out today from North Carolina about Toyota’s plan to double its investment in its massive battery plant outside of Greensboro.

The Japanese automotive manufacturer projects the new investment will create about 3,000 additional jobs, bringing the total to more than 5,000 jobs, when its first U.S. automotive battery plant begins operations near Greensboro in 2025. The plant will serve as Toyota’s epicenter of lithium-ion battery production in North America and will be a key supplier for the Kentucky-based plant tasked with building its first U.S.-made electric vehicles, the company said.

Toyota’s fourth and largest investment in the North Carolina facility brings its total investment to about $13.9 billion to help meet its goal of selling 1.5 million to 1.8 million electric or hybrid vehicles in the U.S. by 2030. It will also add eight new production lines for electric and plug-in hybrid batteries.

While it’ll make batteries for hybrids, the plan is also to support the sale of EVs in the United States by being able to take advantage of tax credits. Toyata’s hybrid advantage is great, but this doesn’t mean the company can skate forever without competitive EVs (the Bees Forks ain’t it), especially for Lexus, which is losing massive market share to Tesla.

Toyota Reportedly Raises Salaries For Employees In North America

2023 Bz4x Limited Awd Heavymetal 042
Photo credit: Toyota

Huh, what a strange coincidence. Just days after the United Auto Workers reached a tentative deal with the Detroit Three automakers that will see huge pay increases and a massive reduction in the time it takes to reach the top pay level, Toyota is reportedly doing the same thing.

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From pro-labor site Labor Notes:

Fain said the other reason for the longer contract was that the UAW is planning a push to organize the many nonunion automakers: Tesla, Toyota, Volkswagen, Mercedes, BMW, Honda, Nissan, and others. “When we return to the bargaining table in 2028, it won’t just be with the Big 3, but with the Big 5 or Big 6,” he said.

Labor Notes received a message from a Toyota worker in Alabama the next day, saying management had called an emergency meeting. Toyota—clearly running scared—was raising top pay to $32, he said, and shortening the time to get there from eight years to four. Another worker at a Toyota plant in Kentucky said the company was boosting wages and slashing the progression to top rate in half there, too. The new top rate will increase to $2.94 to $34.80 for production workers and $3.70 to $43.20 for skilled trades.

If this is happening it’s just a super strange coincidence.

Tesla Wins Lawsuit Over Autopliot Crash

Tesla Model X
Photo: Tesla

In what could be a good sign for Tesla’s many legal issues regarding its Autopliot system, a jury yet again determined that Tesla wasn’t liable for a crash in California:

Per Reuters:

The outcome in civil court shows Tesla’s arguments are gaining traction: when something goes wrong on the road, the ultimate responsibility rests with drivers.

[…]

The 12-member jury announced they found the vehicle did not have a manufacturing defect. The verdict came on the fourth day of deliberations, and the vote was 9-3.

So, just remember that the next time you try to use an assisted driving system. If something goes wrong, it’s your fault.

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Ex-Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn Is Apparently Getting Kicked Out Of His House

Ghosntime
Photo: Nissan

Lebanon might not allow its citizens to be extradited, but a court in the country just decided that former Nissan-Renault Chairman/CEO Carlos Ghosn can’t just keep living in the house Nissan purchased for him.

From The Japan Times:

A Lebanese judge has decided to evict former Nissan boss Carlos Ghosn from his luxury home, a judicial official has said, four years after an investment firm accused him of “trespassing.”
Ghosn, who took up residence in the Beirut property after fleeing prosecution in Japan in 2019, appealed the ruling on Friday, the official added. A spokesperson for Ghosn confirmed he had appealed.

Ghosn and his wife must “vacate the property … within a month,” according to a copy of the decision dated Oct. 16.

Ghosn’s legal team says they have new documents that weren’t available at the trial that will show the house is actually his. It’s a bummer for Ghosn, but we’re sure he could downgrade from the $19 million mansion as we know he’s used to cramped quarters.

The Big Question

Do you think the new Prius is sexy? Also, bonus question: Do you get the topshot joke?

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Lightning
Lightning
7 months ago

The surfacing on the Prius looks good to me already, they just need to fix the overall shape. It would look a lot better proportioned to me, and fix the complaints about front headroom and windshield being too close to driver’s head, if in that side profile, they tilted the back of the windshield up to be more vertical (more like previous Prius and other aero efficient cars), extended the roof forward to meet that, and made the front side windows much larger instead of the current tiny triangle. Toyota acknowledged when this came out that they sacrificed some aero for “style” by tilting the windshield back so much. It looks like an airplane wing profile in the reverse direction now. It also looks too thick in the middle like most cars these days, even though doesn’t have the skateboard battery underneath excuse. A larger side window size for the front would mitigate that somewhat, but not enough to make it “sexy”. Maybe some black below the doors to make it look slimmer.

I’d also shrink the wheels back down to 17″ from 19″.

Last edited 7 months ago by Lightning
Dogisbadob
Dogisbadob
7 months ago

Now all Toyota has to do is bring back teh Prius V and offer a third seat this time 😀

(other markets got a third seat in the Prius V, but they have a different battery)

Drad
Drad
7 months ago

This. So much this. I have a Corolla hybrid hatch as my work car. I’m beginning to mildly fall for the little thing. It’s actually nice to drive, it has an adequate amount of power (for an economy hatchback) but uses 4 liters of petrol per 100 kilometers. Four!!!! To put this in context it is 3 times as efficient as our mid size ford Kuga SUV. In fact I actually like driving it more than I do the Kuga. The Organisation I work for is swapping the hybrids for EVs next year and I’m actually a bit sad. The hybrid is so efficient I can’t actually work out how an ev will be better in any way. I’ll have to look for charging stations more often (I can currently do 1000ks to a tank) so I’ll have to to stop and charge twice as often (probably more) than I do now. We’ve been told that they won’t let us charge them at home for insurance reasons (thankfully we have an ev charger at our office – but I’m there once or twice a week) apart from a PR greenwashing exercise I can’t wrap my head around this decision.
Note: personally I’d buy an ev to replace one of our personal ICE cars, but the use case is very different for our personal cars.

OrigamiSensei
OrigamiSensei
7 months ago

Speaking as someone who was an avowed Prius hater for many years this latest generation is quite interesting. They finally made it attractive, and from the reviews I’ve read they also fixed the driving dynamics – my two pet peeves about the car. Believe it or not, if I wrecked my Fiesta ST tomorrow I’d have to take a serious look at a Prius Prime to replace it. Of course I’d rather have a GR Corolla but good lord, I wouldn’t touch one at MSRP much less what dealers are actually trying to sell them for. If I was going to spend over $50k on a Toyota I’d go find a used LC500.

I hope we see a lot more effort in developing good hybrids. Putting money aside for a moment, if my Suburban could be a plug-in that would be awesome.

Finally, my meme and references game is pretty good for an “old guy” but I absolutely do not get the topshot joke.

Andy Individual
Andy Individual
7 months ago

Everything’s coming up roses today for Toyota, their employees and I guess even Tesla.

Harmanx
Harmanx
7 months ago

Toyota’s reduced EV investing is short-sighted. The EV market will go through swings, but adoptions rates will continue climbing year-over-year. Companies investing now will benefit as electric vehicles continue gaining market share.

OrigamiSensei
OrigamiSensei
7 months ago
Reply to  Harmanx

If we were talking about any auto manufacturer other than Toyota I’d agree, but their management has proven themselves to be smart and adept for many years. Toyota will be a trailing adopter but when they get the technology to where they want it, watch out. They know how to move quickly when they want to and they’ll overtake their competitors in less time than you’d expect – all without hurting their bottom line on technological dead ends for EVs.

RootWyrm
RootWyrm
7 months ago

Because Hybrids Are The Right Answer

LOUDER FOR THE PEOPLE IN THE BACK.
What the hell have I been saying for YEARS? Gee, it’s exactly that. Because guess what? Hybrids don’t require $1T of infrastructure investment that will take another 20+ years to build. Hybrids don’t require tens of thousands of dollars in batteries to build. They don’t require manufacturers throw away billions of dollars in prior investments; they build on those billions.
You can take an existing car, an existing engine, slap a generator on the back (though sometimes shouldn’t JEEP GRAND CHEROKEE 4xe,) and bam. All that investment? All those intangible assets? They’re paying dividends for your business and for your customer (except Jeep just fucking use the Pentastar already) instantly. No change in habits. No loss of investment.
HYBRIDS. ARE. THE. RIGHT. ANSWER. They always were.

Labor Notes received a message from a Toyota worker in Alabama the next day, saying management had called an emergency meeting. Toyota—clearly running scared—was raising top pay to $32, he said, and shortening the time to get there from eight years to four. Another worker at a Toyota plant in Kentucky said the company was boosting wages and slashing the progression to top rate in half there, too. The new top rate will increase to $2.94 to $34.80 for production workers and $3.70 to $43.20 for skilled trades.

Oh, look, you can pay people more fairly. (Still not fairly enough.) All it takes is the threat of people withholding their labor until they’re compensated for it. Imagine that. Of course, their benefits are still a total joke. So Toyota can fuck off; people are justifiably fed up, and throwing a few crumbs? That just means you’ve bought some goodwill in upcoming negotiations. (Don’t spend it in one place.)

Know why other countries (e.g. pretty much all of Europe) is unionized-by-default? Because unions work, and because corporations are absolutely amoral. Yes, even my employer. And I don’t mean ‘amoral’ in the ‘hey let’s outsource to slave labor’ sense. I mean in the ‘we will pay as little as possible and then less because our only obligation is paying the owners/shareholders or increasing our share price’ sense. This is true of ALL corporations.
The objective of a business is to make money – which is fine! I like making money as a business myself. I don’t begrudge the Autopian crew doing their level best to turn a consistent profit. This is a reasonable and noble goal. The problem is that corporations are amoral, and will (or are allegedly ‘obligated’ in the US to) achieve that through any means available to them. (Ethics is what keeps them from breaking laws to do it. Not the same things.)

So, just remember that the next time you try to use an assisted driving system. If something goes wrong, it’s your fault.

This was all about a DUI ultimately. Not Autopilot. And as I said on Mastodon:
Tesla Dipshit: “Are you gonna blame Toyota for drunk driving accidents?”
Me: When Toyota claims that their cars are fully self-driving, making it safe to get behind the wheel drunk and just let the car drive you home, absolutely I fucking will.
And yes. Tesla has previously made exactly that claim, and attempted to scrub all evidence of it from the collective consciousness. But they did. They claimed explicitly that ‘Autopilot’ made it ‘safe’ for a drunk to get behind the wheel by just having the car drive them home.

Protodite
Protodite
7 months ago
Reply to  RootWyrm

Nailed it with the Hybrid talk right there!

Doctor Nine
Doctor Nine
7 months ago

I’ve been saying this since the economic crash of 2008. If we are gonna do this EV thing, we need to do PHEV’s first. While we are doing that, we need to upgrade the grid. Using PHEVs also is something that encourages electrification in third world countries. Having a few standardized PHEV buses and trucks could be incorporated into a local grid, between houses in a small village. It would be something you might even do in Mali.

Bite Me
Bite Me
7 months ago
Reply to  Doctor Nine

Agreed, hybrids should have been the norm ages ago and it’s insane that instead we got regulations that ended up eliminating small and economical cars

Hgrunt
Hgrunt
7 months ago
Reply to  Doctor Nine

My thought is, although PHEVs can run electric-only without the compromises of a BEV, there’s no reason to plug them it in. If PHEVs saw mainstream adoption, there’ll be a lot of people who simply don’t plug them in because it’s an extra step, and 30-40 miles EV range doesn’t look like much on paper. When they’re not running in EV-only mode, plug-ins are about as efficient as a hybrid

Pure hybrids don’t need as large a battery pack or motor, since it only has to assist the engine rather than drive the car, and they fill in where ICEs are least efficient, like idling, and taking off from a stop

All my rambling aside, I think hybrids are a good holdover while everyone gets their crap together on public charging for BEVs, at least in developed nations

edit: I forgot a couple other things…in cold weather, the PHEV would still have to occasionally run the engine until a certain temp, just to make sure the condensation in the oil pan is burned off, etc.

Last edited 7 months ago by Hgrunt
William Domer
William Domer
7 months ago

I think that a 3 cylinder diesel in a PHEV in the low cost circus would be a home run. Mileage, and more mileage for those of us who actually look at petrol costs and don’t really want to spend a few grand on outfitting the garage with a space age electrical system. (As I look at my suburban neighbors, most have one of their 2 cars/trucks in a the garage. A garage stuffed and overflowing with the detritus of American life. Literally barely room to get the SUV in)

Healpop
Healpop
7 months ago
Reply to  William Domer

Thing is a diesel PHEV would never be low cost. Cheap to run sure, but the upfront cost would be huge relative to everything else in its class. You’d have all the cost of a PHEV system with a decent sized battery plus the cost/complexity of a modern diesel (urea after treatment, particulate filters, etc.). My guess is it would add $10k over the cost of a regular gas or even hybrid setup.

Bhtooefr
Bhtooefr
7 months ago
Reply to  Healpop

And the best gasoline engines are pretty close to diesels on thermal efficiency anyway (Toyota’s M20A-FXS and A25A-FXS are 41% peak thermal efficiency, most passenger car diesels are in the 42% range with the best light-duty ones being 45% peak), and a hybrid system can also keep it close to peak thermal efficiency anyway.

M K
M K
7 months ago
Reply to  Healpop

As a former owner of many diesels and having worked on diesel hybrids I can tell you 100% that diesel PHEVs are not going to happen. Fully 3/4 of the SW and 1/2 of the hardware and volume of the engine is dedicated to aftertreatment. All the extra stuff adds cost, reduces efficiency, and reduces longevity. Diesel is dead in anything that doesn’t have a huge payload capacity.

Austin Vail
Austin Vail
7 months ago
Reply to  William Domer

I agree but only with an old-school analog diesel with mechanical fuel injectors and not as much emissions equipment, with the intention being to run it on veggie oil/biofuel. As carbon neutral as an EV, but cheaper and simpler, and possibly even cheaper to run as many places will just give you used cooking oil for free.

Hgrunt
Hgrunt
7 months ago
Reply to  Austin Vail

Old school diesels went away specifically because they produce a lot of emissions, even if powered by carbon neutral fuel sources

Diesel engines are most efficient when they’re warm and running at a certain load, so turning it on and off like a gasoline phev/hybrid would decrease efficiency, likely to the point where one might as well use a modern gasoline engine. Even if one is set up like a serial hybrid (engine charges the battery, which powers the drive motor) the efficiency gains, if any, may not be worth the effort

The BMW i3 REx is set up that way, where a 650cc two-cylinder ‘range extender’ charges the battery while the electric motor moves the car. It gets around 38-42 mpg on the freeway in range extender mode, which is about what a non-hybrid Civic gets

10001010
10001010
7 months ago

So, just remember that the next time you try to use an assisted driving system. If something goes wrong, it’s your fault.

I don’t get how people don’t get this. My wife loves her Crosstrek and it has eyesight but she never uses it because she doesn’t trust it. I’ve learned to like it and use the adaptive cruise control in traffic all the time. However I KNOW that if eyesight screws up and crashes into the car in front of me that my wife will gut me alive and it will be 1000% my fault for trusting the eyesight in the first place. Deep down, these autopilot and FSD folks have to know the same thing.

Spartanjohn113
Spartanjohn113
7 months ago
Reply to  10001010

I agree completely but then using terms like “Full Self Driving” and “Autopilot” should be illegal if you’re still driving. I’m frustrated because I can’t find the source now but it was either in Japan or Korea where the automaker took the liability upon itself if there was an accident to win regulator approval. Those same standards should exist here if the technology is being advertised as such.

10001010
10001010
7 months ago
Reply to  Spartanjohn113

I agree completely they shouldn’t be allowed to name it either until they reach Level 5 automation. Speaking of Japan or Korea, it was one of those countries a while back that wouldn’t let Apple call their overpriced mouse the “Magic Mouse” because it doesn’t actually use any magic. The same should apply to Autopilot and FSD.

Andy Individual
Andy Individual
7 months ago
Reply to  10001010

I mostly just resent having the cost and complexity added to the vehicle for what amounts to a gadget or marketing gimmick. The argument that this stuff makes the roads safer is just B.S. The problem is tech bros don’t make any money off of proper driver training and traffic enforcement. They make their money off of code nobody asked for and in many cases makes our roads more dangerous due to distractions.

Drew
Drew
7 months ago
Reply to  10001010

Deep down, these autopilot and FSD folks have to know the same thing.

With the number of public statements about FSD being actual full self-driving, as well as the implication that it’s just the government keeping them from allowing it without a driver, one can see why a Tesla true believer might believe it works as advertised.

You’d think accidents, criticism, and driving would be enough to disabuse them of that notion, but there are people who keep believing in a flat Earth. People will believe what they want. Which is scary and why Tesla should not lead people to believe they offer full self-driving.

Manwich Sandwich
Manwich Sandwich
7 months ago

“Toyota’s Hybrids Are Now As Profitable As Its Gas-Powered Cars”
That’s what happens after 20+ years of development, refinement and cost optimization. The same thing will happen with BEVs in a faster amount of time since theoretically, BEVs are fundamentally less complex than hybrids.

“Toyota Hasn’t Totally Given Up On EVs”
Toyota doesn’t really have a choice in the matter… unless they want to pull out of the EU or China.

“Tesla Wins Lawsuit Over Autopliot Crash”
Which is how I expected it to play out. When you are in the driver’s seat, YOU are responsible. And if you’re using something like Autopilot, YOU are still responsible for paying attention and taking over driving if the system does something stupid.

And it will always be this way due to many legal precedents already set.

Do you think the new Prius is sexy?”

I think it’s more sexy than any previous Prius. Now having said that, it’s less sexy than a Tesla Model S or a Porsche 911. But it’s more sexy than most CUVs or SUVs

Sexiness is not an all-or-nothing thing in my view. It’s a sliding scale.

Doctor Nine
Doctor Nine
7 months ago

I personally like it better than the Model S. But taste is certainly individual.

Spartanjohn113
Spartanjohn113
7 months ago
Reply to  Doctor Nine

The Model S is pretty vanilla whereas the new Prius design is more aggressive. I’d definitely rock the fabled GR model no questions asked. Hell, I’m hoping I can convince my girlfriend it’s the best choice available when her Honda Fit gives up the ghost. She likes the RAV4 but there’s nothing she’d need it for other than a higher seating position. And for real outdoorsy stuff, we’d used my Maverick.

Mr Sarcastic
Mr Sarcastic
7 months ago

So you are saying the Prius isn’t sexy but doable? Or given it’s age a MILF? Or acceptable after a few beers? Comments are made for humor purposes and not meant to insult or upset anyone.

Col Lingus
Col Lingus
7 months ago
Reply to  Mr Sarcastic

At my age I’d prefer a milf in a Prius over a gilf in a Prius anytime.
I just barely escaped the Walmart parking lot due to brain dead old women who do not understand how to drive in a parking lot. Stupid twat almost caused several wrecks with no awareness of what she was doing at all.

Manwich Sandwich
Manwich Sandwich
7 months ago
Reply to  Mr Sarcastic

My vote goes to MILF… Like Mary-Louise Parker in the show Weeds.

Harmanx
Harmanx
7 months ago

Traditional hybrids were the right thing 20 years back, when Toyota had a legit argument in favor of them. The company should have been ramping up EV battery investments (as this articles says they now are) at least decade ago. Plug-in hybrids might be an electrification stepping stone for the 2020s — but traditional hybrids are not.

Vic Vinegar
Vic Vinegar
7 months ago

I have a Prius now. I’m actually bummed the new Prius is doing wasteful things like offering 19″ wheels (I stuck with 15s instead of 17″ to keep tires cheaper). It is awesome at being a commuting appliance. 50 mpg, maintenance is cheap, hatchback swallows a bunch of stuff. No it doesn’t excel at the track, it isn’t supposed to.

If Toyota had any supply, I’d be lining up for two Toyota hybrids. They are the best solution to not be crushed at the gas pump if (when) prices go up but still have the flexibility of a gas vehicle. And for the Sienna and Grand Highlander, there is no competition.

Nsane In The MembraNe
Nsane In The MembraNe
7 months ago
Reply to  Vic Vinegar

I have no idea why there aren’t more hybrid family haulers. It seems like an ideal application for the technology. But the Sienna/new CX90/Highlander variants/Pacifica PHEV are essentially it. There’s no Palluride hybrid, no Pilot hybrid, no Traverse hybrid, no Carnival hybrid, the list is long.

My wife and I will be looking in that segment in the next few years and her only requirement is hybridization. And as of no no minivans, but don’t worry I’m working on that part. Suffice to say, it’s probably going to be a Highlander Hybrid or one of the CX90s.

Healpop
Healpop
7 months ago

We just went through the same process though she was on board with minivans – having a hybrid drivetrain was pretty high up on our list, but none of the available options were compelling unfortunately. Ended up going with an Odyssey.

I somewhat regret not getting a hybrid, but the Sienna felt cheap and awkward inside and we couldn’t trust the reliability of the Pacifica. If a CX-90 was more available that might have been the winner though

Nsane In The MembraNe
Nsane In The MembraNe
7 months ago
Reply to  Healpop

The CX90 is a mild hybrid with the straight 6 setups too. I believe both the turbo and turbo S manage to average 24 city/28 highway, which is amazing for a car that big. Obviously there’s the PHEV too, but even the ICE versions have fuel economy benefits over their competitors.

It’s a really compelling package.

Healpop
Healpop
7 months ago

It does look good on paper. When we looked a few months ago there were barely any around, so we never ended up testing one in person. She was trading in a CX-5 that she liked so it would have made sense.

The practicality of the minivan really just won out. Sliding doors are just impossible to beat with car seats.

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