For the last several months, I have been reviewing all types of vehicles, including hybrids. At first, I just knew I was not a fan and couldn’t justify spending an average of $10,000 more than the average gasoline only vehicle. You would think I would be just the opposite since I live in a huge city and hybrids are designed for maximizing mpg. After driving and reviewing several different hybrids, I have learned more about them and have found myself actual liking them.
I have had the opportunity to drive hybrids by various manufacturers including Toyota, Lexus, Hyundai, Kia, Ford, Honda and Nissan. When you think of a hybrid car, of course the first vehicle that comes to mind is the Toyota Prius. This vehicle has been the flagship of today’s hybrid vehicles, but is it really? Personally, I was never a fan in its appearance. Yes, it is functional, but I wasn’t going to sacrifice looks to get one. It’s apparent that other manufacturers have taken note, and you can see that other hybrids have come a long way in both looking stylish, efficient & performance.
In the last couple of months, my wife and I began discussing the purchase of a new vehicle. We slowly realized we needed to focus on maximizing our mpg being that we lived in the lovely city of Chicago. We currently have a 2 year old son and have another boy due at the end of the year. Space was a concern for us since we would soon be traveling with a larger family. Getting an SUV was the direction we were heading, but wasn’t ideal for everyday driving in the city. In my experience, you really don’t save much gas, if any from all, from the hybrid SUV’s I have driven. We liked the space offered, so we were considering some normal crossovers, such as the Kia Sorrento, Ford Edge and Hyundai Santa Fe. These certainly were our favorite to date, and thought they were a good value for the price considering the options that came with them.
We ultimately decided that we weren’t ready to take the leap to a SUV, so we decided to look into four door sedans that might fit our needs. At the time, we were driving a 2008 Honda Accord EX-L. We loved the car and found it to be very spacious, but the miles were getting up there and some major maintenance was due. I was at a Honda dealership getting normal maintenance done, and made the mistake of walking into the showroom. This is where I first laid eyes on the new Honda Accord Touring Hybrid. I was impressed at the big improvements Honda has made throughout the years, and upon seeing all of the gadgets and safety features, I automatically fell in love. Since we had an Accord already, we were familiar with the brand. The interior hadn’t changed much from what we were currently driving, so it was already comfortable to us. The main thing we knew was the reliability of the car, and felt that it was enough room to travel with two sons even with the loss of space in the trunk. We weren’t too crazy with the interior, but I really liked the safety features it had. Having cool features also came with a hefty price tag. Not crazy expensive, but enough to take step back and say am I really going to pay close to $40k (after all of the add-ons we wanted) on an Accord? It did give an approximate 50 mpg city driving which I liked. We decided to leave a deposit and order one in mid-June. If you know the history of the Accord Touring Hybrids, you’ll know that there was a long waiting period, especially for the color we wanted. So we got ready to wait.