Jeep’s 2014 Grand Cherokee features a nine-speed transmission in order to keep the RPMs at a more stable and optimal rate for fuel consumption.
Car manufacturers have to meet certain government-regulated corporate annual fuel economy (CAFE) requirements, which essentially call for an average fuel mileage to be met by the company’s fleet.
“On the priority list (fuel economy) is number one, and that has to do with the price of gas,” Evans said. “People are more conscious about gas mileage because $4 per gallon and $2.50 per gallon is quite a big difference.”
While traditional gasoline cars are losing weight and getting smaller engines, hybrids are selling like never before, according to Flake.
“Within the last year, we have sold more hybrids collectively than I think I have in the 25 years I’ve been doing this,” Flake said.
Flake said hybrids nowadays are affordable and realistic for somebody to own one. Consumers can now find hybrids in nearly every model category, even among luxury cars and SUVs.
Others have concerns about the cost effectiveness of hybrids.
“The bang for the buck is not where it needs to be as of yet,” Evans said.
Ryan Klase, the general manager of Sorg Dodge, agrees.
“You can get a car that gets great fuel economy, but at what cost?” he said. “How much of a difference in the budget is five miles per gallon?”
Hybrids have become common choices among consumers who value excellent fuel economy. However, after seeing the increased fuel economy of normal gas vehicles, some people question whether the slight edge of a hybrid is worth the extra money.
Dzung Nguyen, the owner of Goshen Motors, hasn’t seen as many hybrids sell because many of the Hyundais he sells have four-cylinder gas engines that get close to 40 miles per gallon already.