Volkswagen, and every German car enthusiast, is saying today, “Hybrid who?”

John and Helen Taylor took their brand new Volkswagen Jetta Turbo-Diesel around 48 states within 5 miles per hour of the speed limit. That means that they traveled 9,419 miles and they got, now get this, an average of 58.82 mpg!!! That is an official World Record according to Guinness. They traveled about 853 miles per tank, which is amazing, and filled up 11 times throughout the whole trip.

Now this is something that is great news to me. Sure, diesel is expensive. But it’s been proven right here, right now, that a Jetta will get a better average than a Toyota Prius. Just for reference, according to Toyota, the Prius only gets 45 mpg in the city and 48 mpg on the highway.

The Jetta TDI has a 14.5 gallon tank, versus the 11.9 gallon tank of the Prius.

This means, that according to the average mileages on both cars, the Jetta gets 853 miles to a tank versus the 743 miles to a tank for the Prius. I’m going to be nice and say that the Prius gets 48 mpg average for the same 9,419 miles that the Volkswagen TDI did. So that means that’s 10 mpg less than the Jetta. That means that over the same amount of miles, that is 110 miles to a tank less for the Prius.

On September 24, 2008, the Energy Information Administration -the official energy stats administration for the U.S. Government-released its weekly report on gas prices for the week. The report stated that diesel gas had dropped to $3.95 a gallon. The price of regular gas had dropped to $3.71. Remember, there were two major hurricanes that shut down 7 of the 15 Gulf Coast refineries. So, with price per barrel of crude oil dropping, the price didn’t go down as much as it should have. So expect a bit more of a drop throughout the next few months.

Okay, let’s add all this stuff up…

The Jetta filled up 11 times, and with my math, the prius would do the same trip filling up 12.67 times. Let’s say 13 times since the average mpg’s isn’t 48. I’m being nice and compensating for the lack of the Toyota. So let’s add that all up…

The Jetta’s fuel cost each fill up would be about $57.275. The Prius would cost a bit less at $44.149. Okay, the Prius fills up 13 times, which equals= $573.937. The Jetta would equal= $630.025. That is $56.088 in fuel savings for the Prius. But is it really a savings? Not really. Let me show you why.

The new Jetta TDI qualifies for a Government tax credit of $1,300. The 2009 Toyota Prius qualifies for… nothing… If you purchased a Prius in the years of 2006-07, you were eligible for a tax credit, but it kept getting smaller and smaller, and now it’s down to $0. Add this up to the fact that the Prius‘ MSRP is $22,000. The higher end Touring model retails for $24,270. The Jetta TDI’s lowest retail price is $21,990, with the Sportwagen coming in at $23,590.

With all of that said and done, you then get a $1,300 tax credit for buying the Jetta. That’s like the Government saying, “Thank you for caring about a fun to drive car that gets great gas mileage. Here’s how much we care.” And a $1,300 check is given to you in your name.

with that $1,300 check you would have to fill up 23 times in the Jetta before the Prius’s $56 savings per 9,419 miles were to actually become a reality.

The Volkswagen Jetta TDI also comes with a manual. That’s something no Hybrid car in the world can say they do. That means that on the fun factor, the Jetta already gets 5 stars to the Toyota’s 0 stars. Oh, but wait, it gets so much better. The Jetta is German. That means that it’s fun to drive!!! It drives great, does an 9.5s 0-60 according to VW, and it’s, again, fun to drive. The regular Jetta is a great. They are fun to drive, small, quick, you can throw quite a bit of stuff in the back and haul your friends, dogs, whatever, around. And you still would be having fun while driving. Try saying that in the Prius. I gaurun-damn-tee you that there is no one out there saying, “Oh my God! You got a Prius!!! That car is like, so much fun to drive around these back roads. Give me the keys, I’m driving to dinner.” But there are millions of diesel lovers that would be saying that about the Jetta TDI. I know I sure as hell would. Hell, just to make my case that much better, Volkswagen has its own racing series for the Jetta TDI. Does Toyota have that for the Prius? No.

After seeing the numbers, who’s really triumphing? Is a Hybrid really worth it? Well, now you say that the Hybrid is better for the environment… Hold it right there Columbo. With the new Clean Diesel, low sulfur diesel that is currently on the market, it is almost as C02 friendly as a Prius is. A Prius emits 104g/km of carbon dioxide emissions. That is roughly 167g/mile for us here in America. I can’t seem to find the figures for the new 2009 Jetta TDI, but I’m sure it will be less than 200g/mile. And let’s not even begin to go into the amount of global harm that the Prius actually causes just to be made…

Oh, and did I mention that with the new VW service warranty, similar to that from BMW, the Jetta’s service is free for the 3yr/36,000 mile warranty?

I know where my money would go.

You can read a full test drive review here at AutoblogGreen.


“Happy Motoring!”

[Source: Autoblog]

[Photos taken from: AutoblogGreen:Jetta, AutoblogGreen:Prius]

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