The stupid Honda hybrid lawsuit – Chevy Volt take note

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Update: The lawyers for the plaintiffs are expected to receive $2.95 million. nytimes.com This is why I truly didn’t like this lawsuit.
There is no justice in gross profit from damages. That is $3 million that could go into R & D or anything that might be of value to the general population this supposedly damaged.
I’m even more glad now that I didn’t “cash in” for driving a Civic Hybrid.

Update: Reader comments that problem is real for her
I received an HCH Class Action Settlement for my 2005 Honda Civic Hybrid (True vs. American Honda Motor Co., Inc. ) last night.
Fortunately for Honda, the settlement includes rebates for new vehicles. I get $100 cash back and a video to train me how to best use my gas and brake pedal.


The lawsuit revolves around EPA mileage estimates for Honda’s hybrids and the lower than expected mileage figures some people got from their Honda hybrids.
I suggest Honda use a disclaimer sticker.

Failure to use common sense may result in lower than expected mileage figures.

Smashing the gas pedal (combining the use of electric and electric motors without the use of cylinder deactivation) and smashing the brake (not using regenerative braking) will result in lower than expected economy.

Accessories, like air-conditioning, use energy. When you shut them off you use less energy.

Very cold days and very warm days take more energy to keep you comfortable and move your vehicle.

Some days I can get over 50 mpg and some days it may be as low as 40 mpg.
All vehicle manufactures use EPA standards for fuel economy. It is the competitive benchmark for selling a car in the United States. It makes no more sense for Honda to post figures lower than the EPA testing procedure than it would be for Toyota.
Honda can keep my $100 and put it towards research and development. I am happy that there was a car on the market in 2005 (or 1999 with the Insight) with the potential of 50 mpg.
Perhaps it would be more beneficial to force the mindless, lawsuit money train toward adopting a universal standard that more accurately reflects the cost of driving. This would actually help all consumers.
It will be interesting to watch what happens when vehicles with an even greater variability of mileage like the Chevy Volt (230 mpg) or a totally electric car like the Nissan LEAF come on the scene with the same aging EPA standard.

About Paul Kuehnel


Paul Kuehnel
has worked for the York Daily Record/Sunday News since 1984.

Follow him on Twitter @paulkuehnel.

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