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Heavy hybrids drag down savings, study finds
Description: Thanks in part to tax incentives, the hybrid car market is gaining speed. But the full potential of these fuel-saving vehicles is being offset by the fact that 30 percent of hybrids sold in 2006 were SUVs.
Date: 09 August 2007
Author: Michael Schirber
Source: MSNBC.com

Thanks in part to tax incentives, the hybrid car market is gaining speed. But the full potential of these fuel-saving vehicles is being offset by the fact that 30 percent of hybrids sold in 2006 were SUVs.


"The average hybrid is growing rapidly heavier, more powerful, and as a result the fuel consumption benefits are reduced," said Conor Reynolds of University of British Columbia.


Reynolds and Milind Kandlikar, also from UBC, compiled data from the current automobile market to determine how hybrid fuel efficiency drops as vehicles become bigger. The results, published in the journal Environmental Research Letters, could help shape environmental policies.


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