• Where Are All The Hybrid Cars?

    January 18th, 2011 | No comments

    When hybrid cars first hit the market, they were touted as the vehicle that was going to take us into the future. Finally, every science fiction writers dream had come true a fuel-efficient car. Why, then, isnt a hybrid car in every drivers garage? The answer to that is simple, and it has to do with human nature.

    You may think that since hybrid cars and other more fuel-efficient models have failed to become omnipresent, something strange is going on. Some people assumed that the technology would be in wide use once it was available because it made sense for the environment. These cars were good for us. Therefore, we would use them, right?

    Beets are good for us too, but think about how many people eat fries and cheeseburgers instead of beets. Fast food is more pleasant and its more convenient. When you keep this idea in mind, the reason why gasoline-powered vehicles are still so popular begins to make sense.

    Manufacturers have a particular infrastructure set up to produce a certain type of vehicle. To change this infrastructure would mean refurbishing factories, which would take a lot of money. In addition, manufacturers arent sure that, if they did refurbish their factory, the models they made would sell well. No businessperson in his right mind throws away successful products to rely on something untried in the marketplace.

    For another thing, the consumer has a particular way of behaving. He understands gasoline-powered cars. Perhaps he doesnt want to spend the time researching how to fuel and care for a hybrid car. With every new bit of technology, there is a learning curve. Like the fast-food eater who doesnt want to take the time to prepare beets and make them tasty, the consumer simply wants to do what is easiest and most convenient, not to mention what is the least expensive.

    There is another thing that needs to be taken into consideration as well why people purchase cars to begin with. Human nature is not always straightforward. People do not purchase cars to get from Point A to Point B. If that were the case, we would all be driving basic-model cars. We don’t drive these cars, though, because we purchase cars to gain prestige. There is no prestige to be had from driving a hybrid. There is plenty of prestige to be had from driving a Mustang, however.

    There is most likely a place for hybrid automobiles in our future, but change will be slow. Automobile makers will have to be sure the cars will sell. That means people will have to start demanding the hybrid cars already on the market, and they wont do that until the cars become easy to deal with, cheap and prestigious. Hybrid cars arent in everyones driveways because they dont satisfy those three core needs that human beings associate with vehicles. Until that happens, hybrids will stay on the periphery of the market.

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