Roger L. Simon

Confessions of a Prius driver - one year in

I am frequently amused at the expressions of my more conservative friends when I take them for a ride in my Prius. “Oh, I’ve never been in one of these,” they sniff, covertly surveying the dashboard and the mostly so-so inner appurtenances. Actually, I’m pretty satisfied with my Prius in all, especially since I’ve been getting 40 plus mpg without much effort. After the first week or two I haven’t done any hyper-miling — too impatient. Nevertheless, since my daily RT to PJM HQ is about thirty miles, I’ve already saved a fair amount of money. And since I tend to keep cars a long time (I had two five-series Beemers, which I kept for ten years each) I imagine the savings will add up to a substantial number in the end. At the same time, I did my own tiny bit to encourage innovation. And, yes, I know full well that the Prius is far from a dream vehicle with all those ecological battery problems, etc., but it is a step along the way.

So I’m encouraged by reports on the Chevy Volt. Even if its reported 230 mpg is a “shaky” number, half a shake (115) is still mighty impressive. As the owner of a now-minute amount of GM stock, which is still trading under the rubric of MTLQQ and recently going up a tiny bit (How’d that happen?-ed. Beats me.), I’ve decided to hold onto my few, nearly worthless, shares. Miracles happen!