Last week I shared with you my first few days of driving a hybrid vehicle. In this blog, I’ll finish that story and give you some facts about the car.
There was a hard frost so another new challenge. The car took a bit longer to clear than I’m used to but once it got going it defrosted very quickly (I’m a engine on, scraper kind of driver as I don’t like the chemical stuff).
I just tootled around town from meeting to meeting and I used hardly any petrol. This car is definitely very good around town. I also find I’m getting used to the automatic and don’t really have to think about it.
Parking is fine but – being so quiet – I’ve noticed that other road users and pedestrians DO NOT HEAR this car. It has made me even more vigilant.
My home is near a popular cycle route in Swindon and it quickly became obvious that cyclists don’t know you are there and they don’t modify their behaviour or road position.
Several people liked the look of the car and have admired it. The children love the space as my own car is small. They feel it’s spacious and smooth with lots of flashing lights.
In the dark, when you open the car, the dash lights your way which is very appealing.
On my last day, the Toyota Auris Hybrid took me very smoothly to Devizes where I drove around for ages trying to find a long stay car park as it was an all day event.
It turned out to be one of those days where I had to move the car around town twice due to there not being any long stay parking spaces available. Each time I looked forward to getting in it.
I also really like the fact it has front parking sensors – my own car doesn’t – and the wing mirrors also automatically fold when it’s locked. This does two things – reduces the risk of them being knocked in a car park and gives you confidence that you’ve locked the car. It’ s a clear visual clue. My own car does not do this and I feel it’s a bonus to have folding mirrors.
At the end of the working day, I drove the car back to Andrew and must admit I felt a bit sad. I suppose the real question is – would I buy a hybrid car?
The answer is yes, I’d definitely consider it when the time comes. In the five days I’d driven it, I used half a tank of petrol. Given I’d been all round Swindon, across Wiltshire and a longer journey to Cardiff, that’s less fuel consumption than I’d normally expect.
There is also a slight feel good factor that you are trying to do something more positive for the environment. There are also vehicle tax advantages – though the tax on my current car is only £30 a year.
All in all, I was grateful for the opportunity to try the car and would like to thank Andrew Crosby of Fish Brothers Toyota for the opportunity. If you’d like to find out more – please contact Andrew, or one of his colleagues, by calling 01793 467525.
Toyota Auris Hybrid factfile:
Cost – Hybrid range from £20,045 OTR.
Fuel consumption – Up to 78.5 mpg combined.
Engine size: 1.8 petrol + electric motors and battery – total output 136 hp, automatic transmission.
Service intervals: 10k miles or 12 months whichever comes first.
Warranty from new: 5 years or 100k miles.
CO2 from 79 g/km; 13% BIK for company car driver; £0 road tax.