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Buying Advice

  • 2006 Toyota Prius and 2015 Nissan Leaf  [photo: John C. Briggs]

    It's now time to shop for a new car for my wife, as her wonderful 2006 Toyota Prius has 144,000 miles and we're ready for something new. So I thought I might throw the question out to Green Car Reports readers. What car should replace our 2006 Prius hybrid? DON'T MISS: 2017 Toyota Prius Prime: gas mileage, electric range review Our needs and requirements are clear: No plug, no deal: it must be electric, either a full battery-electric or a plug-in hybrid The main use is a 16-mile daily roundtrip commute to work. It must also handle occasional 300-mile round trips from Boston to Woodstock...

  • Owner Dawn Hall before 800-mile road trip in 2017 Chevrolet Bolt EV electric car
    Note to (a few) electric-car advocates: get off your high horses

    Any movement produces passionate advocates and angry detractors, even as the vast mass of people pay it little or no attention. When that movement involves most people's second most-expensive purchase, and plays a role in reducing manmade carbon emissions to alleviate the worst effects of climate...

  • 2001 Toyota Prius Sedan
    Is The 2001-2003 Toyota Prius A Good Used Car Buy?

    It was small, unassuming, almost a shrinking violet, really. The first-generation Toyota Prius hybrid -- launched in the U.S. in 2001 -- was the first five-seat family car to offer hybrid-electric drive and unimaginably high gas mileage. Twelve years after its initial launch, the Prius family has...

  • 2013 Suzuki Kizashi
    Should I Buy A New Suzuki (Now That It's Leaving The U.S.)?

    There's nothing like a bargain price on a brand-new car. And since Suzuki has announced that it'll stop selling cars in the U.S., there are bargains galore on new Suzuki models. But is buying a brand-new car from a departing manufacturer a good deal? That depends on how the carmaker exits; unlike...

  • 2012 Ford Focus Sedan and Hatchback
    2012 Ford Focus SFE Vs 2012 Chevrolet Cruze Eco: Compact Sedans Compared

    You want a compact sedan that gives great gas mileage, comes from an American company, and costs less than a hybrid car. If that sounds like you, the chances are you’ve considered test-driving the 2012 Ford Focus SFE and 2012 Chevrolet Cruze Eco. But what comes as standard on each car? Which...

  • 2011 Honda Fit Sport
    2012 Toyota Yaris Vs 2012 Honda Fit: Subcompact Hatches Compared

    The trendy 2012 Toyota Yaris is certainly an improvement on its predecessor, attracting a lot of attention wherever it goes. But can Toyota’s latest offering in the subcompact hatch war compete with the granddaddy of the segment, the venerable, flexible, upright but jaunty Honda Fit? Both...

  • EPA Beyond Tailpipe Emissions Tool

    If you’re looking to buy an electric car, you’re probably familiar with the Environmental Protection Agency’s Fuel Economy website, which lists the gas mileage of every car on sale today along with the miles per gallon equivalent rating for every plug-in car. Unfortunately, the EPA’s MPGe rating isn’t the best way to work out how green your electric car is, but there is another tool you can use from the EPA that can help you figure it out. Hidden away as part of the “Energy And Environment” tab of the EPA’s vehicle comparison tool is a section...

  • Three Nissan Leafs
    Five Ideal Companion Cars To The 2012 Nissan Leaf

    You’ve taken the plunge and shelled out anything from $33,000 upwards for an all-electric 2012 Nissan Leaf. Quiet, efficient and full of gadgets, you’ve discovered that it has quickly relegated your gas car to the garage, carrying out the weekend chores, work commutes and maybe even...

  • 2012 Toyota Prius C, drive event, La Jolla, CA, Feb 2012
    2012 Toyota Prius C: Price-Gouging Pic Proves Popularity Of 50MPG Hybrid

    The 2012 Toyota Prius C is probably the most anticipated hybrid of 2012, and offers subcompact style and hybrid gas mileage. It’s no surprise then that Toyota has already had to up production volumes in Japan, where the Prius C is currently made. But if the photograph we received this week...

  • 2012 Toyota Prius C Online Configuration Tool
    As The 2012 Toyota Prius C Goes On Sale, We Spec Our Own

    Toyota has just this week started sales of its newest Prius family member, the 2012 Prius C. The smallest Prius hybrid yet, the Prius C is Toyota’s first subcompact Hybrid to go on sale in the U.S. At a starting price of $18,950, the Prius C is also Toyota’s cheapest hybrid yet...

  • 2004 Volkswagen Jetta Wagon GL
    Five Top Used High Mileage Cars To Help You Survive High Gas Prices

    Unless you don’t own a car, or happen to drive an all-electric car, the chances are you’ll have noticed that gas prices have risen dramatically over the past few days. But as growing uncertainly in the Middle East -- not to mention the knock-on effects of a large gasoline refinery fire...

  • Chevrolet Votls for sale on eBay
    Buying An Electric Car: Pay More Now, Or Wait A Bit?

    As demand for electric and plug-in cars continues to remain high, many dealers and some private individuals are offering cars like the 2012 Chevrolet Volt on auction sites like eBay. With “Buy-It-Now” prices well above the starting sticker price of $39,995, these Volts pose an...

  • GE WattStation Electric Car Charging Station

    For several years now, the Federal Government has offered tax credits to people buying brand new highway-capable electric cars, as well as those installing electric car charging stations. But while the $7,500 federal tax credits towards the purchase of an electric car most likely won't end for several years, the Federal Government tax credit for part of the cost of installing an electric-car charging station will end on December 31, 2011. The basics In short, the electric-car charging station tax credit offers private individuals the ability to take 30 percent of the cost of installing their...

  • 2012 Chevrolt Volt Gas Station Advert
    2012 Chevrolet Volt V 2012 Toyota Prius Plug-in Hybrid: Which Is Cheaper To Drive?

    If you need a plug-in car that is capable of traveling long distances between charges but can’t afford the 300-miles per charge option offered by the 2012 Tesla Model S, the chances are you’re looking at buying a plug-in hybrid. But which of the two main plug-in hybrids on offer today...

  • For Sale
    Want A Good Deal On A Used, High MPG Car? Wait Till The Holidays

    If you’re in the market for a used car -- especially a small car or hybrid that gets good gas-mileage -- you might know that used car prices have been dropping since early this summer. But according to Kelley Blue Book, if you want a really good deal on a used high-mpg car, you’re best...

  • 2011 Toyota Prius
    Buying A Used Toyota Prius? Here’s What You Need To Know

    The venerable Toyota Prius hybrid is generally accepted as the car which changed consumer’s attitude toward hybrid-electric drivetrains. While the Prius wasn’t the very first hybrid to be sold in the U.S. (the original Honda Insight beat it by a few months), it has proven by far the...

  • 2003 Honda Element DX
    Advice: Better Gas Mileage, Used Small, All-Wheel-Drive SUV--UPDATE

    UPDATE: Well, we got a note from Denise: I bought a car today. It's a certified pre-owned 2005 Toyota RAV4, single owner, 41K miles. The only thing I need for it is an iPod adapter! It's really nice, fabulous condition, and I did fairly well on both the price and trade-in. What do you think of her...

  • 2011 Chevrolet Volt
    Buying or Leasing An Electric Car: Why Residual Value Matters

    You’ve read up on the latest electric cars, gone for test drives and are ready to make a purchase. However, there’s one more thing you should consider before singing the contract: how much will your car be worth in a few years’ time? The answer depends on who you ask and could...

  • 2011 Honda Odyssey Touring

    "We have not yet fully accepted the fact that we need a new car. Some call it denial. But we do need one." That's how our friend Gordon Platt began a note asking our advice on what cars he should consider as he sets out to replace the family's aging 2003 Toyota Sienna minivan. "What are your suggestions for a car with a lot of space (need not be a mini van), good mileage (ideally, "greenish") and relatively affordable?" The first step was to ask Gordon a few standard questions about how the family really uses their car, plus any likes or dislikes. Our questions are in bold, his responses are...

  • Think City $17,995 ad campaign
    Theory Meets Reality: How Expensive IS The 2011 Think City?

    It’s well known that any sales material always uses the most attractive pricing option as a way of enticing customers to buy a product. But is it helpful, confusing or downright misleading for an electric automaker to advertise an electric car for sale at more than $17,500 less than its own...

  • 2011 Mitsubishi i-MiEV, E.U. spec
    2012 Mitsubishi "i" VS 2011 Nissan Leaf

    What is the basic purpose of the new electric cars? For most of us, it is as a city or local commuting vehicle. The basic commuting "appliance" might be optimized to: 1. cost as little as possible to acquire; 2. have decent functional range for the typical commute or errand, e.g. 50 miles?; and 3...

  • 2011 Nissan Leaf for Sale on eBay
    Buying Or Selling a Used Electric Car? What You Need to Know

    On the face of it, buying or selling a used electric car could seem like a great idea if you either need to make more room in your garage for your shiny new plug-in ride or you just can’t afford the sticker shock associated with buying new. However, we’ve been watching Internet auction...

  • 2011 Mitsubishi i-MiEV, E.U. spec
    Mitsubishi ‘i’, Chevrolet Volt or Nissan Leaf? We Compare the Basics

    As our sister site GreenCarReports covered last week, the online pre-ordering process is now live for the 2012 Mitsubishi ‘i’, with the car due to hit the roads of California in January 2012. The 2012 Mitsubishi ‘i’ is now the third all-electric car from a major automaker to...

  • 2011 Nissan Leaf
    Buyer Beware: 'Fake' Electric Car Charging Stations?

    You’ve ordered your electric car and like many, you’ve been put off by the seemingly extortionate quote given to install a level 2 electric charging station at your home. As we’ve discussed before, sourcing your own Electric Vehicle Supply Equipment (EVSE) can save you hundreds of...

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