PHEV vs Hybrid - Kia Niro Forum
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post #1 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-02-2018, 10:59 AM Thread Starter
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PHEV vs Hybrid

I'm considering buying a Niro and wanted to share my thought process. Currently the PHEV with rebate prices out very near to the MSRP of the Hybrid. There is a few dollars here or there different but not enough to change a purchasing decision. No brainer right?

Advantage PHEV

Currently, there are fewer PHEVs available at dealers than hybrids and higher incentives from both the manufacture and dealers in discounting so the Hybrid does enjoy a price benefit. There are also many more in dealer inventory.

Advantage Hybrid

I made up a spreadsheet with some assumptions about price of fuel (always a guess) and MPGs based upon the statistics on Fuelly. I used our inexpensive price of electricity (0.105/Kwh - thank you Cascade Mountains) and ran some simulations based upon my driving habits which are well documented (thank you IRS). The PHEV would save me approx. $19/month at current fuel prices.

Advantage PHEV

Next, I check my local incentives. We live in VERY progressive Seattle and I think to myself, "surely there will be a big fat incentive". Almost.... a tax break which would have saved me paying sales tax on the PHEV just ran out. (Drats!) Then I look more and I find out not only is there no rebate, there is an extra $150/year registration fee for electric vehicles that pretty much erases all benefit of the plug-in! Arg..... what are these legislators thinking?

Advantage Hybrid

At the end of the day I think the availability of the color and options I want will win the day. I'll report once I buy.
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post #2 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-02-2018, 11:10 AM
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The Hybrid is also available in more colors. You can't even get a PHEV in red, at all.

Advantage, Hybrid.

Also, in the PHEV, the battery is kind of logically split up. The "hybrid" battery is the same size as in the hybrid. It will only use the extra capacity the PHEV comes with when you charge it via the plug. It'll try to maintain that PHEV-size battery using coasting and regen, but when it's gone, it reverts to a normal hybrid and that extra battery capacity is just dead weight until you get to another outlet.

Advantage, Hybrid.

Hey, at least you being on the west coast have access to the PHEVs. The only ones that make it here to the east coast are a bunch of LXes no one out west wants, and the odd EX that sneaks through. No EX Premiums, not anymore.


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post #3 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-02-2018, 11:22 AM
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Originally Posted by kevperro View Post
Next, I check my local incentives. We live in VERY progressive Seattle and I think to myself, "surely there will be a big fat incentive". Almost.... a tax break which would have saved me paying sales tax on the PHEV just ran out. (Drats!) Then I look more and I find out not only is there no rebate, there is an extra $150/year registration fee for electric vehicles that pretty much erases all benefit of the plug-in! Arg..... what are these legislators thinking?
I live in the Seattle area too. I just got my PHEV 3 weeks ago (missed the state incentive by even less than you...a week or less).

What is the EV registration fee? I've not heard of this. Got a link?

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post #4 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-02-2018, 11:27 AM
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OK...found a link. I didn't even know about this.

https://www.king5.com/article/news/l...iday/261151663

I see their point, with EVs not paying gas tax, revenue toward transportation issues is reduced, so it does make sense to pay some taxes, but over $10/mo over a year seems very steep.

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post #5 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-02-2018, 11:41 AM Thread Starter
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OK...found a link. I didn't even know about this.



I see their point, with EVs not paying gas tax, revenue toward transportation issues is reduced, so it does make sense to pay some taxes, but over $10/mo over a year seems very steep.
Yea.. the roads have to be paid for. But we are at a stage where electric vehicles are new technology so if you have to incentivize consumers if you want to make progress. Gas taxes make total sense because they are efficient to collect, tax appropriate behavior and are proportional to the actual use of the resource. Taxing good behavior is bad policy, especially when the numbers are inconsequential. Eventually, you have to come up with a replacement for gas taxation but you want the industry to be fully committed before you pump the brakes via taxation and then you want it to make sense based upon use and behavior.
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post #6 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-02-2018, 11:53 AM Thread Starter
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I understand they have to pay for the roads and a gas tax is a perfect mechanism because it incentivizes behavior, is proportion to use and is efficient to collect.

I'd argue that taxing PHEVs is misguided at this point. There isn't enough on the road to represent a significant portion of the use and it is the behavior you want in the population, taxing it is misguided until such time as it becomes accepted and a significant contributor to use.

Then I'd argue the right way to tax it would be via the public charging stations where the tax is proportional to use.

The issues with Washington is because we don't have an income tax, there is no tax that the legislators don't want. If they see something they want to tax it. The tolls on our roads are a complete misuse of transportation assets. They cause accidents, are tax inefficient (much of the tax is used in administration), they cause traffic problems and they are inconsistent in their rules. People from out of town have no idea how to navigate them. I'm not anti-tax nor anti-toll but they are a prime example of why people don't trust the government to manage an asset.
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post #7 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-02-2018, 12:24 PM
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If the best you can do on a PHEV deal is bring it close to MRSP on the HEV, that is a win for the HEV. I got my HEV for $3,000 less than MRSP.

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post #8 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-02-2018, 10:29 PM
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I live in an area where electricity rates are extremely high, about twice what you are paying. But I still love the PHEV, I do nearly all my driving in EV mode and the quiet and smoothness are quite enjoyable. And I like that with the mix of electricity sources in my area the CO2 emissions are lower than an HEV and much lower than a pure ICE.
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post #9 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-03-2018, 04:06 AM
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In high power/fuel rate areas, the Niro has (for me) been EXTREMELY disappointing. Be aware, there are more efficient choices when paying $4.50+/gal and/or $1+ per Kw/hr.
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post #10 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-03-2018, 08:37 AM
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Originally Posted by RedWouldForrest View Post
In high power/fuel rate areas, the Niro has (for me) been EXTREMELY disappointing. Be aware, there are more efficient choices when paying $4.50+/gal and/or $1+ per Kw/hr.
wow, where does one pay $1 per Kwhr?

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