Serves the Commercial Small Fleet Market of 10 – 50 Vehicles

Web Site Posts Actual Hybrid-Buying Data

July 21, 2005

HybridCars.com has launched “Hybrid Car Price Pulse,” an interactive online tool that allows buyers to compare prices, availability and waiting periods for hybrids. The Price Pulse tool collects data posted by hybrid buyers across the country. Buyers share model, price offered, deposit amount and comments on the dealer experience. Users can sort the information by model or zip code. “Hybrid buyers are scrambling for information about how much they should expect to pay, and about the length of the waiting list at their local dealer,” Brad Berman, owner and editor of hybridcars.com, told Business Fleet. “Price Pulse shifts some of the power back into the hands of buyers.”Berman says that while it’s still very much a seller’s market, Price Pulse shows that some dealers—sometimes only a few miles away from those charging top dollar—are keeping their offer at sticker price. For example, there’s no wait for a $24,000 Prius in Fort Lauderdale, Florida—while a dealer in Boynton Beach is asking customer to wait for four weeks to buy a Prius for $26,500, Berman says. Market leader Toyota is not about to flood the market with hybrids, according to Dave Hermance, Toyota’s chief engineer for environmental engineering. “You don’t want to rush out and do something foolish, especially since there will be a bunch of new players in the market over the next 12 months,” Hermance said. “We need to watch that sift out and see what fraction of that we can get, and what unmet demand there might be then.”
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