Inconvenient Truths about Toyota's Prius

Supply / spend product-guru extraordinaire Jim Wetekamp forwarded me a fascinating article earlier in the month about some inconvenient truths about Toyota's supposed eco-friendly Prius. The piece itself is absolutely shocking -- you must read it for yourself. The gist, as Jim pointed out to me, is that if it's personal TCO that you're after -- from both an environmental and gas cost -- then the Prius is not for you.

A Hummer, in fact, might be a better choice if you consider that "building a Toyota Prius causes more environmental damage than a Hummer that is on the road for three times longer than a Prius ... The Prius costs an average of $3.25 per mile driven over a lifetime of 100,000 miles --- the expected lifespan of the Hybrid ... The Hummer, on the other hand, costs a more fiscal $1.95 per mile to put on the road over an expected lifetime of 300,000 miles. That means the Hummer will last three times longer than a Prius and use less combined energy doing it." But these numbers do not even begin to tell the story of the massive damage to the environment that Toyota's suppliers have caused in producing Prius components (or the inflated Federal MPG figures). It's shocking.

Jason Busch

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