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  #1  
Old 05-03-2008, 01:32 AM
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Hmmm, why are Toyota Prius cars always so darn clean?

I see lots of Prius models driving about, and as of late I've taken noticed that all are clean, and by clean I mean even the alloy rims have no visible brake dust. Are Prius owners that proud of their car that they dust it every day? And are Prius drivers as smug as popular culture has made them out to be? Also, is owning a hybrid the new status symbol in today's society? And are most car-carrying liberals? I'm serious here, but I just get the sense that most are, perhaps in that elitist sort of way.

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  #2  
Old 05-03-2008, 02:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by frosty View Post
I see lots of Prius models driving about, and as of late I've taken noticed that all are clean, and by clean I mean even the alloy rims have no visible brake dust. Are Prius owners that proud of their car that they dust it every day? And are Prius drivers as smug as popular culture has made them out to be? Also, is owning a hybrid the new status symbol in today's society? And are most car-carrying liberals? I'm serious here, but I just get the sense that most are, perhaps in that elitist sort of way.
Owning a hybrid is something in between a status symbol and a statement of holier-than-thouness. And most people who laud them have no idea how they work or the concept behind them. Maybe they're too busy patting themselves on the back to hold up a book and read about it. The shame of it is, those "flavor of the month" types give an awesome technology a very bad image. Hybrids should not be about tree hugging or feeling warm-n-fuzzy about your "carbon footprint." They should be about utilizing an innovation that can help our country in many applications. A few people buy them because they DO get the concept and the technology fits their particular driving habits. If you drive a lot in the city, or anywhere stop and go, it just makes good sense. I see a lot of taxi and city bus services moving to hybrid technology, and that's just good business sense (assuming your business can afford the new technology in the first place).

What gets me, and I see/hear this ALL the time, is that so many people just think hybrid means cleaner and better mileage. Well, there are qualifications. Example: A friend of mine (smart guy) wanted to buy an SUV to tow his boat on long highway trips ... he thought he'd be smart and get an Escape Hybrid ... useless move for highway driving, esp towing! He was surprised to find out that hybrids do better in city than on the highway. People see the ads and don't get the more detailed picture. If there's an answer to the "oil crisis," it's a mix of technologies, each for a different application.

Another funny example, and you can try this ... ask someone this: What's better for the environment ... a gasoline-powered hybrid travelling down the highway getting 30 miles to the gallon, or a gasoline-only-powered car travelling down the highway getting 30 miles to the gallon? Lots of people will say the hybrid.
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  #3  
Old 05-03-2008, 02:10 AM
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I believe the Prius doesn't have conventional brake-pads; so no brake dust there, I guess.
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  #4  
Old 05-03-2008, 03:03 AM
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It has conventional brake pads as well as a regenerative braking system. Keep in mind almost all new Toyotas made in the last few years come with ceramic pads that feature less brake dust.

There are a lot of hybrids on my morning commute. About 40 miles to work, I'll see 10-15 Toyota Priuses. Occasionally I'll see one that is totally filthy, so that shatters your perceptions right there. Either way, I know they are passing my 190e getting 75% better mileage than me, and occasionally I am a bit envious.

Based on the tone of the first two posts, the anti-hybrid crowd seems to be more smug and self righteous than any hybrid owner I've ever met.
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  #5  
Old 05-03-2008, 08:05 AM
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A guy I know at work owns one...it's ALWAYS spotless!!
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  #6  
Old 05-03-2008, 09:03 AM
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A couple of years ago I went to a lecture by Jared Diamond at the Colorado School of Mines. The auditorium was jam packed. When it was over and I was starting to drive away from the campus, I realized that for the first time, I was stuck in a traffic jam made up entirely of Toyota Prius's.
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  #7  
Old 05-03-2008, 09:07 AM
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In my opinion, the biggest factor is regenerative braking. In my Honda Insight, excluding emergency stops, 90% of my stopping applications only apply the brake pads under 20mph. There's not much brake being used.

Generally speaking though, all my cars are spotless.
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  #8  
Old 05-03-2008, 10:12 AM
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Originally Posted by thorsen View Post
In my opinion, the biggest factor is regenerative braking. In my Honda Insight, excluding emergency stops, 90% of my stopping applications only apply the brake pads under 20mph. There's not much brake being used.

Generally speaking though, all my cars are spotless.
A friend of ours bought one since the wife does primarily stop & go and city driving and wanted a new car. It's actually a pretty neat car for what it is. Yes, theirs is spotless like their other cars, house, yard, etc.

My problem is with the package moreso than the concept. If they made a true wagon instead of the goofy looking 5dr. hatchback I'd consider one for a runabout car if I was in the market for one. Mine would be filthy.
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  #9  
Old 05-03-2008, 11:06 AM
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Millions of gallons of water wasted to keep 'em clean.

Gotta look good while saving the planet.
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  #10  
Old 05-03-2008, 11:12 AM
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Please. We Mercedes owners are just as smug about our cars, which are also status symbols. We tend to keep them pretty clean and shiny (if you don't believe me, have a look at the detailing forum to see how extreme people can get). We tend to like people to notice that we drive them. As far as brake dust goes, I only really ever notice that on German cars, to be honest. I drove Hondas for years before driving MB, and I never had brake dust on my rims. Maybe the Japanese manufacturers use a different friction compound?

You could have replaced the word "Prius" with "Mercedes Benz" in every instance in the original post, and you'd have no problem finding a whole bunch of non-MB owners all too ready to agree with you.

Drive what you want, let them drive what they want. Free markets rock.
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  #11  
Old 05-03-2008, 11:12 AM
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Mine gets washed once a month, whether it needs it or not.

Pretty neat little car for running around town. Zips around, fits in small parking spots, etc. Lifetime MPG to date is 47.1. For long distance highway driving it could use a bit more legroom.

I agree on the idea of a wagon based on the existing Prius chassis. Square off the back and make it a couple inches longer. Something like that would make a very utilitarian vehicle. They have shown a prototype of a Prius pickup. Surprisingly, that looked pretty much useless, not enough real world capacity.

The major drawback to driving a Prius is that people automatically assume that you are a leftist crackpot. Putting a couple "Support our Troops" bumper stickers on the back confuses the hell out of 'em.
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Last edited by Palangi; 05-03-2008 at 11:50 AM. Reason: kant spel gud
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  #12  
Old 05-03-2008, 11:29 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jlomon View Post
As far as brake dust goes, I only really ever notice that on German cars, to be honest. I drove Hondas for years before driving MB, and I never had brake dust on my rims. Maybe the Japanese manufacturers use a different friction compound?
Yep the Germans use really soft brake pads on purpose to give you better bite and quiter stops.

You can buy cermic pads for just about every MB model of the dust bothers you, I clean my car so often it doesn't matter.

Its the smug, Toyota's are not supposed to be clean they are like a toaster just use the damn thing.

Mercedes are supposed to be clean.
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  #13  
Old 05-03-2008, 11:31 AM
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A clean car with a smooth surface will have a lower drag coefficient ... so it works out...

stupid hybrids
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  #14  
Old 05-03-2008, 11:33 AM
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http://video.google.com/videosearch?hl=en&sitesearch=&q=smug+prius

Typical Prius owner!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CxVxzXCbeOw

They create massive clouds of smug!
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  #15  
Old 05-03-2008, 11:34 AM
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Originally Posted by Hatterasguy View Post
a real live version of the south park lampooning of the prius

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