Rising Gas Prices Not Resulting in More Hybrid Car Sales

4 years 6 months 1 week ago Sunday, June 02 2013 Jun 2, 2013 Sunday, June 02, 2013 3:15:00 PM UTC June 02, 2013 in News
By: Brendan Cullerton
loading

COLUMBIA - With gas prices running near all-time highs, there is disagreement between car dealerships about how those high prices affect what cars mid-Missourians are buying.

The average price for a gallon of gasoline sold in the Midwest rose from $1.437 in June of 2003 to $3.498 in April of 2013, according to the U.S. Energy Information Association. Although there were many dives and spikes in the rates, the change is mostly a result of a steady year-by-year increase.

Steve Rennells, general sales manager at Head Motor Company, a Columbia Kia dealer, said the increase in gas prices has prompted car buyers to be more aware of fuel efficiency.

"I think most customers now are more conscious about buying a vehicle that doesn't get as good of fuel mileage," Rennells said.

Rennells also said that in some cases, people actually save money by purchasing a new vehicle because of how much money they end up saving by needing less gas.

However, Scott Calhoun at Joe Machens Mercedes Benz said the shift of having more fuel efficient cars is not market-driven.

"It seems that it would have to approach $5.00 or more per gallon in order for people to actually alter their buying decisions," Calhoun said. "People are going to buy whatever it is they have a need for."

Calhoun said there are more fuel efficient cars now than ever before, but that is because the U.S. government requires specific fuel efficiency rates for car dealers, not because of consumer demand. 

Rennels and Calhoun both said the sales for Hybrid and Electric Vehicles (HEV) are still well below those for conventional, gas-powered cars.

According to the U.S. Department of Energy, HEV sales are trending upward. HEV car sales first reached over 200,000 in 2005 and reached 352,274 in 2007. Despite the government tax credit for purchasing an electric vehicle, sales then dropped in every year until 2011 before jumping back up to 382,704 in 2012.

Electric and hybrid vehicles currently comprise 3.8 percent of all cars purchased in the United States, according to the Electric Drive Transportation Association. That means less than one in 25 people who buy a car choose an HEV.

"Sometimes you have to justify how many miles you're going to drive that car to see whether the value is going to pay for the hybrid or not, and in a lot of cases it doesn't," Rennels said.

Consumers agreed that price is a barrier when it comes to purchasing electric vehicles.

"The electric cars are pretty expensive," driver Zach Porter said. "But they are pretty fuel efficient. I'll give them that, but that's a large sum of cash."

Calhoun said it is difficult to tell where the market for hybrid and electric cars will go in the coming years because of the uncertainty of gas prices and new car technology.

More News

Grid
List
COLUMBIA - Nearly four years ago to the day, local business owner Linda Bonebrake was diagnosed with severe sepsis at... More >>
16 hours ago Sunday, December 10 2017 Dec 10, 2017 Sunday, December 10, 2017 6:47:00 PM UTC December 10, 2017 in Continuous News
JEFFERSON CITY - Bird lovers got an up close look at birds typically seen in their backyards Sunday. It... More >>
17 hours ago Sunday, December 10 2017 Dec 10, 2017 Sunday, December 10, 2017 5:36:00 PM UTC December 10, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - Museums around Columbia hosted docent led tours Sunday, spreading awareness about their exhibits and art collections. Docents are... More >>
19 hours ago Sunday, December 10 2017 Dec 10, 2017 Sunday, December 10, 2017 3:59:00 PM UTC December 10, 2017 in Continuous News
COLUMBIA - 2017 will mark the 140th Christmas the historic Maplewood House has seen from its home in south Columbia.... More >>
19 hours ago Sunday, December 10 2017 Dec 10, 2017 Sunday, December 10, 2017 3:54:00 PM UTC December 10, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - MU Police Department, MU Greek Life, local businesses and residents made Operation Steal Back Christmas a huge success.... More >>
20 hours ago Sunday, December 10 2017 Dec 10, 2017 Sunday, December 10, 2017 3:31:00 PM UTC December 10, 2017 in News
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (AP) — After more than 20 years of providing resources and activities for home schooling, a southwest Missouri... More >>
23 hours ago Sunday, December 10 2017 Dec 10, 2017 Sunday, December 10, 2017 11:38:00 AM UTC December 10, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — Jordan Geist, a role player known most for his scrappy style, scored 28 points Saturday night... More >>
1 day ago Sunday, December 10 2017 Dec 10, 2017 Sunday, December 10, 2017 9:39:00 AM UTC December 10, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA- Alyssa Schell joined the University of Missouri Police Department as a dispatcher in February, excited to be living out... More >>
1 day ago Sunday, December 10 2017 Dec 10, 2017 Sunday, December 10, 2017 9:28:00 AM UTC December 10, 2017 in News
CENTRALIA - A husband, wife and visiting grandchildren escaped a Saturday night house fire in Centralia, fire officials said. ... More >>
1 day ago Sunday, December 10 2017 Dec 10, 2017 Sunday, December 10, 2017 1:36:00 AM UTC December 10, 2017 in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — Police in Kansas City, Missouri, say an 8-year-old boy has died after being hit by a... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, December 09 2017 Dec 9, 2017 Saturday, December 09, 2017 11:35:21 PM UTC December 09, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - Students, staff and community members volunteered at University Village this morning to create a community garden, with the... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, December 09 2017 Dec 9, 2017 Saturday, December 09, 2017 9:41:00 PM UTC December 09, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - Columbia provides plenty of Christmas experiences for families to enjoy, but Columbia Access Television (CAT) offered a unique... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, December 09 2017 Dec 9, 2017 Saturday, December 09, 2017 3:38:00 PM UTC December 09, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - When Hurricane Harvey struck Texas, the Patrick family watched news reports about the damage from their home... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, December 09 2017 Dec 9, 2017 Saturday, December 09, 2017 3:25:00 PM UTC December 09, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - With two years added to his contract, Mizzou football head coach Barry Odom will remain with the Tigers... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, December 09 2017 Dec 9, 2017 Saturday, December 09, 2017 3:15:00 PM UTC December 09, 2017 in News
SPRINGFIELD (AP) — The first-degree murder trial of a 28-year-old Wisconsin man charged in the stabbing death of his Missouri... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, December 09 2017 Dec 9, 2017 Saturday, December 09, 2017 3:06:46 PM UTC December 09, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA- As winter approaches, cold temperatures are making their way back to Columbia, with lows this week consistently below freezing.... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, December 09 2017 Dec 9, 2017 Saturday, December 09, 2017 2:37:00 PM UTC December 09, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA – Treats Unleashed hosted “Milk and Cookies” Saturday to benefit Everything Greyt, a greyhound rescue organization. Dogs and... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, December 09 2017 Dec 9, 2017 Saturday, December 09, 2017 2:28:00 PM UTC December 09, 2017 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — Police officers in St. Louis have come under gunfire for the second time in three days.... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, December 09 2017 Dec 9, 2017 Saturday, December 09, 2017 2:04:54 PM UTC December 09, 2017 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 32°
6am 33°
7am 34°
8am 35°
9am 41°

Select a station to view its upcoming schedule:

Coming Up Next

5:00a
KOMU 8 News Today
6:00a
KOMU 8 News Today
7:00a
Today
5:30a
Paid Program
6:00a
Page Six TV
6:30a
Cops

Tonight's Schedule

7:00p
The Voice
9:01p
Better Late Than Never
7:00p
Penn & Teller: Fool Us
8:00p
Valor
9:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Nine on The CW
9:30p
Seinfeld