OT-Why I still hate the Prius

User Forum Topic
Submitted by Navydoc on April 5, 2011 - 8:37am

I was going to resurrect the "Why do you hate the Prius" thread, but since I had already commented in that, I felt what happened yesterday warranted a new one.

It finally happened- I was hit by a Prius. I was traveling IN THE BIKE LANE on my way to the Shady Grove metro station when I suddenly became airborne. I was hit square from behind, bounced off the hood, rolled over the top of the car and landed on the ground behind it. My helmet was smashed (instead of my head-thank God and Bell helmets), the bike a twisted pretzel, and all my belongings strewn across the debris field, included all the blinking red LEDs I wear on my back. I was able to get up and out of the street, started collecting my stuff when the ambulance came to take me to the trauma center. The cop that examined the scene said from the point of impact my body was thrown 40 feet. I can't believe I'm alive. Of course I'm experiencing more pain than I've ever felt from the muscle strains, but once the road rash heals I should be just fine.

So why to I hate this Prius driver? Because he FLED THE SCENE! Fortunately another motorist chased him down and phoned in his tags, and the police got him late yesterday morning. He claims he didn't know he hit me. I weigh 200 lbs, there were 2 dents in his hood, one from my shoulder, the other from my helmet, and he claims he didn't notice. My only problem is I'll probably be in the desert when the court hearing comes up- but I'll deal with that through the Jag. This drivers swinish behavior is what I've observed in other Prius drivers when sharing the road with my bicycle.

This event occurred in almost the identical spot where I hit a fallen tree last September. I really can't wait to get back to California-I think Maryland is trying to kill me.

Submitted by briansd1 on April 5, 2011 - 1:36pm.

Be glad you didn't get hit by an F150. You'd have ended up under the wheels.

Submitted by Navydoc on April 5, 2011 - 3:08pm.

I was actually thinking the exact same thing.

Submitted by Aecetia on April 5, 2011 - 3:16pm.

Wow. I am so happy your alive. I hope the idiot gets jail time for hit and run, loses his license and may his Priass rot in hell.

Submitted by scaredyclassic on April 5, 2011 - 3:23pm.

I rode my bike to work first commute from new place. Wasn't hit. Sorry you were. Anyone who commutes by bike is my friend.

Prius driver should get lengthy prison sentence. In cal. Assault with a deadly weapon to wit a car results in lifetime loss of license.

Submitted by Aecetia on April 5, 2011 - 3:55pm.

As they should Walter. Bikes and motorcycles, many times drivers just do not see them even when they wear all the right clothing and do everything right. People are so distracted with gadgets, cell phones, etc.

Submitted by eavesdropper on April 5, 2011 - 4:51pm.

Navydoc, glad to hear you're okay. Also, thanks for giving the nod to Bell....not enough credit is given to the protection afforded by properly fitted helmets.

Some may think that your attitude about the homicidal tendencies of states is simply pychopathological sequelae of your accident. They would be wrong. Maryland IS trying to kill you. Much of Maryland is lovely to look at: rolling hills, bucolic pastures...all very deceptive. Once you venture into a roadway, your defensive driving skills had better be sharply honed and at the ready.

While I understand your antagonism toward the driver of the Prius that hit you, I have found that shitty, completely self-involved driving habits to be a tendency shared by a large number of drivers in a wide variety of motor vehicles in our fair state. I've never taken the driving test here, but I'm fairly sure that it must include a segment on how to text effectively while driving in heavy commuter traffic at 60 mph. That's the module with which the Maryland DMV replaced the tutorial entitled, "Use Your Turn Signals: They're Not An Add-On Option". I can't tell you how many times a texting driver has repeatedly drifted several feet into my lane, and then cursed me for interrupting him with my honking horn.

Like you, I must have a well-established death wish, since I choose to motorcycle here. It's turned out to be very good training in defensive driving. As a motorcyclist, I have two advantages over bicyclists:

1. If a car driver makes a sudden, boneheaded move into my territory, I have the assistance of the motorcycle engine in evading him. Unless my sudden movements knock my fuel petcock into the shut position, whereupon all bets are off (been there, done that, didn't like it).
2. If I am fortunate enough to be cut off in traffic by a driver believing it her civic duty to focus completely on the call she is making on her cellphone, I can get a perverse thrill by following her to the next stoplight, and pulling up beside her to lob loud, angry verbal abuse through her open window. If I was riding a bike or driving a car, this would likely elicit reciprocal abuse-lobbing. However, thanks to society's irrational and total fear of black leather-clad motorcyclists, it's a very satisfying experience for me.

Other than these two advantages, I'm pretty much in the same boat: a sitting duck for "drivers" who feel absolutely no responsibility for paying attention and for operating their vehicle in way that ensures the safety of others.

As for the Prius driver that hit you yesterday, I'm willing to bet that he was (1) fiddling with his GPS or audio system controls, (2) looking for change to park at the Metro, or (3) in all likelihood, texting, tweeting, or talking on a communication device. However, it's also possible that he saw you, small and defenseless on your bicycle, and decided to deliberately hit you. A year ago I was on Route 2 in Anne Arundel County when the Prius I was driving was hit from behind by a 58 year-old woman in a GMC Yukon. Deliberately. She opined to the investigating officer that she felt morally and legally justified in doing so because I had passed her, using the passing lane (She, too, had tried to hit and run, but succeeded only in the hitting part).

Navydoc, I would definitely get out of this area as soon as you can. People don't drive here...they use their vehicles as fashion accessories, not transportation. When that is your attitude, you are definitely not thinking about the danger you and your vehicle pose on the streeets. But it pretty much sums up a lot of what's on the highways of the nation's capital.

Submitted by eavesdropper on April 5, 2011 - 4:55pm.

Aecetia wrote:
Wow. I am so happy your alive. I hope the idiot gets jail time for hit and run, loses his license and may his Priass rot in hell.

Ha!! "Priass". That's a good one, Aecetia!

Jail time?? Not in Maryland, my friend. Really crummy self-involved driving is practically a professional sport in these parts. Driving under the influence is an employee benefit if you're a senator or congressman.

Submitted by eavesdropper on April 5, 2011 - 5:06pm.

walterwhite wrote:
In cal. Assault with a deadly weapon to wit a car results in lifetime loss of license.

I don't know about Cali, but in Maryland and other places I've lived, loss of license, lifetime or otherwise, is ineffective. Dangerous drivers and incorrigible DUIs simply drive (and maim and kill) without them.

Now, if the cops/courts would confiscate the vehicle for immediate impoundment and auction each time they stopped one of these selfish bastards, while assessing a $2,500 fine, that might hit them where it hurts. At the very least, there'd be more money for the Crime Victims Fund.

Submitted by Rhett on April 5, 2011 - 5:15pm.

Not really offering any sort of opinion, but I bet you are a lot happier now than you'd be if you'd been hit by a F-350. Or a bus...

Submitted by Navydoc on April 5, 2011 - 5:16pm.

eavesdropper wrote:
Really crummy self-involved driving is practically a professional sport in these parts. Driving under the influence is an employee benefit if you're a senator or congressman.

Boy aint that the truth. By far the rudest, shittiest, unfriendly drivers I have EVER encountered, and as a military person I've driven and ridden all over the world. I could perhaps forgive them if they were GOOD drivers, like the ones in Japan, but they aren't. Plowing around in 3000lb Gucci purses. To make matters worse, I get called an effin asshole about once a week for daring to exist on their blessed roads.

I'm about to leave for a little stint in the middle east, but when I get back we have one more year here. After that I have orders to Okinawa, which is just fine with me. We'll be looking to return to SD around 2014-15. Maybe Carmel Valley will be affordable by then :)

Submitted by eavesdropper on April 5, 2011 - 8:02pm.

Navydoc wrote:
eavesdropper wrote:
Really crummy self-involved driving is practically a professional sport in these parts. Driving under the influence is an employee benefit if you're a senator or congressman.

Boy aint that the truth. By far the rudest, shittiest, unfriendly drivers I have EVER encountered, and as a military person I've driven and ridden all over the world. I could perhaps forgive them if they were GOOD drivers, like the ones in Japan, but they aren't. Plowing around in 3000lb Gucci purses. To make matters worse, I get called an effin asshole about once a week for daring to exist on their blessed roads.

I'm about to leave for a little stint in the middle east, but when I get back we have one more year here. After that I have orders to Okinawa, which is just fine with me. We'll be looking to return to SD around 2014-15. Maybe Carmel Valley will be affordable by then :)

The attitude on the part of "drivers" here just slays me. I, too, have lived all over, and never encountered the level of road bullshit that I do here. Some of the places have had crazy-ass drivers, but you learn their idiosyncrasies and acclimate yourself to the conditions. It's completely different here. Almost every driver is completely self-focused, "It's all about me" being the prevailing attitude. Virtually no one uses turn signals anymore, no matter the situation. They drift in and out of their lanes, not once or twice, but constantly. I get the same attitude from drivers when I'm on my motorcycle that they dish out to you on your bike, along with a generous dollop of misogynistic bullying from some.

The purchase or lease of a car here is the way in which the locals choose to express what they perceive as their personalities. The use of the vehicle is not considered transportation, it's a way to show off. I've never seen such a disproportionate number of luxury vehicles; prior to the crash, it was ridiculous, but even now you see a ton of Lexuses, Mercedes, Escalades, Navigators, and Infinitis. The danger inherent in actually operating of 3-ton 400 horsepower machine does not even enter into the minds of many of these people. It's all about the message that they think it sends to those around them. For some, that's not even enough: they have to push the outside of the envelope. These are the folks who honestly believe that it's okay to bully with their car.

I'm not necessarily speaking only of the well-to-do. This area is stuffed with people who do not see the incongruity of spending $60K on a fully-loaded Harley-Davidson Ford F-150 pickup (plus $50K for another overweight, overpowered, oversized truck/SUV for the wife) when they are supporting a family of five on an income of $70,000 or $80,000 per year. You see these highly-polished behemoths with their pristine truck beds parked in front of tumble-down mid-century suburban capes because there is no garage, or even driveway, in which to keep them. Unfortunately, it's no longer enough for a lot of these owners simply to pretend that they're tough and badass because they drive a huge pickup; some of them have to act out on the highway. Not a lot of fun to deal with when you're the other driver, but even scarier when you're an unprotected vulnerable motorcyclist. Just as dangerous are the distracted and/or frightened drivers who have always been a hazard, but are much more so now that they have the keys to 4 or 5 tons of idiot-propelled steel.

There you have the DC-area driving arena: 80% of the people who don't understand what owning a car has to do with driving, courtesy, skill, and following rules and laws. Unfortunately, we're probably stuck here for the next 5 to 10 years, depending on developments in the economy. However, whenever possible, I escape to rural Virginia (rural, NOT suburban or exurban). Great biking roads without the DC pathology.

Submitted by svelte on April 5, 2011 - 9:05pm.

Glad you're okay Navydoc.

Interesting phenomenon that you point out with Prius drivers, as has also been noted at this link I posted previously:

"Ever been cut off by a prius with an Obama sticker? It happens more often than it should. The tipping point for the One Less Prius sticker was nearly being hit by one such vehicle IN THE BIKE LANE on Sunset Blvd. The guy gave me the finger when I threw my hands up."

from:

http://nowhip.blogspot.com/2009/07/one-l...

I don't ever see this because I don't ride a bicycle. I might if they had dedicated separate paths where I need to ride, but sharing the roadway with autos is too dangerous for my blood.

But why you cyclists notice an increased danger from Prius owners is very interesting. Three possible reasons I can think of:

(1) Maybe they are generally less attentive drivers? I sometimes think that many Prius owners don't like visiting gas stations because they just don't like cars. Since they don't like cars, I wonder if that gives them poorer than average driving skills - maybe they don't take the time to hone those skills.

(2) Maybe they are envious of someone greener than they are?

(3) (thought I had a third possibility but have forgotten)

This would make an interesting case study...if one every gets done, let me know because I'd love to find out the psychology behind this behavior!

Submitted by paramount on April 5, 2011 - 10:54pm.

NavyDoc: Glad your ok, and remember lightening never strikes twice.

Do you really want to come back to California?

BTW, we all might be driving a Prius or riding a bike if this comes true (from Reuters):

Oil could hit $200-$300 on Saudi unrest-Yamani

LONDON, April 5 (Reuters) - Oil prices could rocket to $200- $300 a barrel if the world's top crude exporter Saudi Arabia is hit by serious political unrest, former Saudi oil minister Sheikh Zaki Yamani told Reuters on Tuesday.

Yamani said he saw no immediate sign of further trouble following protests last month calling for political reforms but said that underlying discontent remained unresolved.

Submitted by ninaprincess on April 6, 2011 - 8:48am.

Being hit by a Prius is not a good reason to hate it. There are good Prius drivers and bad Prius drivers like any other vehicle out there. Like many have mentioned before, you are much more likely survive in a collision with a car like prius than a big SUV.

From my experience, I see more speeding F-150s or Tahoes than speeding Prii. the big speeding SUVs are far more dangerous. If anything, Prius drivers are more on the slow side except Al Gore's son who was caught driving 110 mph with his prius. And most of us probably agree that there are way too many speeding drivers out there.

Submitted by Navydoc on April 6, 2011 - 11:55am.

You obviously didn't read my comments in the prior "Why do you hate the Prius" thread. This incident didn't germinate my hatred for Prius drivers, it merely confirmed it. As I stated in the prior discussion, these drivers tend to be among the most discourteous, along with their SUV driving cousins.

I do agree with you though, the SUV's are quite a bit more dangerous, and I'm quite certain I wouldn't be typing this if I had bounced off a Suburban on Monday.

Submitted by eavesdropper on April 6, 2011 - 1:43pm.

svelte wrote:
Interesting phenomenon that you point out with Prius drivers, as has also been noted at this link I posted previously:

"Ever been cut off by a prius with an Obama sticker? It happens more often than it should. The tipping point for the One Less Prius sticker was nearly being hit by one such vehicle IN THE BIKE LANE on Sunset Blvd. The guy gave me the finger when I threw my hands up."

Okay, I'm not getting it. What does the Obama sticker have to do with the fact that the guy's driving a Prius? I mean, the "One More Prius" blogger makes some very good points, but what the hell??!! The ownership of a Prius automatically confers the title of "environmentalist" on the driver, and the Obama endorsement amps him/her up to Executive Level membership in the Treehugger Club??

I'm not sure why most people buy Priuses. I've done no studies, nor am I planning on doing so in the future. However, I do know why I, and eleven people who happen to be friends or acquaintances have. All of us, without exception, made the purchase based on one thing only: We don't want to have to pay any more for gas than we have to. Not a particularly altruistic motive, and glaring in its lack of environmental concern, but there you have it. I've had the car for two years, and I still smile when I see that little screen indicating that she's getting an average of 50 mpg or more. If drivers of other vehicles ask me what kind of mileage I get, I tell them. If they don't, I keep my trap shut.

I'm way overdue for a trip to Cali. Based on the anti-Prius comments that are left here on Piggs, I have to believe that California Prius drivers are a truly obnoxious breed. They're everywhere. As I mentioned in an earlier post, people choose cars not as transportation, but as a way of communicating what they perceive as enviable personality traits to others. "I drive, therefore, I am." Of course, we know that these people are, in actuality, achieving the opposite.

svelte wrote:
I don't ever see this because I don't ride a bicycle. I might if they had dedicated separate paths where I need to ride, but sharing the roadway with autos is too dangerous for my blood.

Svelte, even if dedicated bike paths were created alongside highways, there'd be safety issues. Again, not because of the vehicles themselves, but because of the self-centered arrogance of a few. Several years ago, I and my bicycle were driven into the streets by the dangerous riding habits of some Lance Armstrong wannabes on some of Philly's great dedicated bike trails (sluggish cerebral blood circulation caused by extremely tight bike shorts made them imagine they were at the Tour de France). However, chances are you'll come out of a bike-on-bike collision better than you will from a Prius-on-bike incident.

svelte wrote:
But why you cyclists notice an increased danger from Prius owners is very interesting. Three possible reasons I can think of:

(1) Maybe they are generally less attentive drivers? I sometimes think that many Prius owners don't like visiting gas stations because they just don't like cars. Since they don't like cars, I wonder if that gives them poorer than average driving skills - maybe they don't take the time to hone those skills...

No, that's not it. They just have more things competing for their attention. All of those things that tempt drivers of other vehicles (cell phones, satellite radio, changing CDs, putting on makeup, reading the paper, picking their noses, etc.) into shifting their attention from the road, PLUS the incomparable Prius fuel management system. Some people really, REALLY get into this feature. In fact, if Navydoc's assailant was following him on a downgrade, chances are strong he was focusing his attention on the "99 mpg" that was flashing on his screeen, or determining if coasting had boosted his battery life to 100 percent. If this sounds far-fetched, do a Google search on "better Prius gas mileage".

BTW, I DO like cars. Very much. But visiting gas stations is not high on my list of places to visit, a sentiment that I am willing to bet is shared by many owners of a wide variety of vehicles. I think your logic may be a bit flawed on that one. But you could start a new thread to find out for sure.

svelte wrote:
(2) Maybe they are envious of someone greener than they are?

I think this could be a winner. Seriously. In my own (admittedly limited) experience: When I first took up motorcycling in the mid-70s, there was a serious cultural bias against female bikers...at least in the eastern US. I was forced off the road so many times that I stopped riding alone to avoid being an unwilling participant in games of "Chicken". Males were quite demonstrative in their views.

I gave up motorcycling for over 20 years. When I went back to riding, I was gratified to find that attitudes had changed, and no one seemed to have an issue with females on bikes. Then I bought a new bike: a 1500 cc cruiser with a longer wheelbase than my previous bike, with a raked out front end and straight pipes. My other bike had a very powerful engine, killer torque, great performance, but the fact that it had a smaller wheelbase, more conventional appearance, and standard exhaust made it appear more innocuous, I'm guessing.

All of a sudden, drivers started to get aggressive with me. What was really disturbing was that is seemed to be primarily petite females in 6000 lb. SUVs. I had no problem with males, aside from the occasional "race" where a guy would prove the mettle of his F-350. But I'd have these soccer/lacrosse moms riding my tail (unnecessarily), riding the lane markings, and cutting into my lane before they had passed me. This was not accidental; they were well aware of what they were doing. Here I am, just trying to get from Point A to Point B, and I'm having to deal with crazed suburban moms who were apparently getting testosterone injections instead of Botox. Because they were all driving Expeditions and Hummers and Sequoias and Tahoes, I had to wonder whether they were pissed that I was on something that they perceived to be more badass then their vehicles.

Whatever. I finally decided that I no longer wanted to take the risk of offending their sensibilities, and I sold the bike two years later. Hey, when I assumed the risks of motorcycling, that didn't include ending up as the hood ornament/hunting trophy on a frustrated housewife's Armada.

svelte wrote:
(3) (thought I had a third possibility but have forgotten)

Because they're dicks?

svelte wrote:
This would make an interesting case study...if one every gets done, let me know because I'd love to find out the psychology behind this behavior!

Chances are strong that research exists, svelte. Automobile manufacturers pay for huge amounts of market research, from the moment they even think about building a particular model until after they've discontinued selling it. One needs only to look back at the Edsel fiasco to understand why.

While I'm not aware of any specific studies on personality traits and driving habits of Prius drivers that are available to the general public, I can recommend other reading material on automotive market research. "High and Mighty" by Keith Bradsher is a fascinating look at the marketing of SUVs. Bradsher was the NYT's Detroit bureau chief during the years of the SUV's meteoric rise, and whether you're a fan of SUVs or not, it can't be argued that this was Ford's greatest exhibition of ingenuity except, perhaps, for the Model T.

In the case of SUVs, what's really striking is that the Ford conducted/ commissioned research allowed them to identify a potential target market and then create a marketing strategy that featured a lifestyle at the complete opposite end of the spectrum from their target market. This is an impressive accomplishment when a car company creates a new model, but, in this case, Ford was creating a market for an entire class of automobile. In fact, this marketing concept was so hugely successful that it is still being used today, virtually unchanged for the past 20 years. That it is being employed successfully today (as evidenced by what is, consistently, the best-selling vehicle) is even more incredible when you take into consideration that the price of gasoline has risen by over 300% in that time.

If, like me, you are compelled by tales of how companies persuade us to repeatedly buy their crap, you will not regret reading this book. I'm sure you can get it through your local public library system.

Submitted by CBad on April 6, 2011 - 1:47pm.

Scary story. Glad you are OK and they found the guy.

Submitted by Coronita on April 6, 2011 - 4:38pm.

Navydoc, I'm so sorry you got injured, but I'm glad you're alright....

I'm glad they found the driver who did the hit and run...But considering how slow a typical prius driver probably was going, I doubt it was that hard to spot his/her getaway.....har har har....

On the bright side, you did manage to take one prius out of commission and out of public roads for a few weeks at least.. Thanks for taking one for the team and doing your civic public duties. Although next time, just use an F-150 instead of a bicycle.... har har har....

I do hope you feel better soon....Thankfully, you were wearing a good helmet.

Side note: I bet the one reason why some prius drivers drive so slow and otherwise distracted is because they keep dicking around with the navigation unit that displays the instantaneous fuel consumption/savings on the system...Probably to the point that they drive 50mph on the left lane in a 70mph freeway like has happened a few times to me and/or just failed to stop around a right red light, as happened to me a few times too, or just did a lane change at such a slow speed, to make others screech at the brakes... as happened to me a few times too.

Submitted by eavesdropper on April 6, 2011 - 5:20pm.

flu wrote:
Navydoc, I'm so sorry you got injured, but I'm glad you're alright....

I'm glad they found the driver who did the hit and run...But considering how slow a typical prius driver probably was going, I doubt it was that hard to spot his/her getaway.....har har har....

On the bright side, you did manage to take one prius out of commission and out of public roads for a few weeks at least.. Thanks for taking one for the team and doing your civic public duties. Although next time, just use an F-150 instead of a bicycle.... har har har....

Okay, that's it, flu! As a proud Prius owner, I've had enough abuse. It's time for a Piggs smackdown: me in my Prius, you in your Pinto, on a 5-mile stretch of Federal government-maintained, pothole-ridden interstate highway.

Your choice of location. However, keep in mind that should you elect to accept my challenge on the West Coast, it will take me three weeks to drive there....

Submitted by Coronita on April 6, 2011 - 5:28pm.

eavesdropper wrote:
flu wrote:
Navydoc, I'm so sorry you got injured, but I'm glad you're alright....

I'm glad they found the driver who did the hit and run...But considering how slow a typical prius driver probably was going, I doubt it was that hard to spot his/her getaway.....har har har....

On the bright side, you did manage to take one prius out of commission and out of public roads for a few weeks at least.. Thanks for taking one for the team and doing your civic public duties. Although next time, just use an F-150 instead of a bicycle.... har har har....

Okay, that's it, flu! As a proud Prius owner, I've had enough abuse. It's time for a Piggs smackdown: me in my Prius, you in your Pinto, on a 5-mile stretch of Federal government-maintained, pothole-ridden interstate highway.

Your choice of location. However, keep in mind that should you elect to accept my challenge on the West Coast, it will take me three weeks to drive there....

Heh heh.... Well look on the bright side. My audi probably would fall apart on the way there....Kinda like what happened to me last week...Car went completely dead while merging onto the 5....Nice german electronics :)

Submitted by urbanrealtor on April 6, 2011 - 5:44pm.

comment deleted cuz it made me sound like too much of a dick

Submitted by urbanrealtor on April 6, 2011 - 5:44pm.

urbanrealtor wrote:
comment deleted cuz it made me sound like too much of a dick

And really you have to know your appropriate level of dickishness.

Submitted by bubble_contagion on April 6, 2011 - 9:24pm.

flu wrote:
Side note: I bet the one reason why some prius drivers drive so slow and otherwise distracted is because they keep dicking around with the navigation unit that displays the instantaneous fuel consumption/savings on the system...Probably to the point that they drive 50mph on the left lane in a 70mph freeway like has happened a few times to me and/or just failed to stop around a right red light, as happened to me a few times too, or just did a lane change at such a slow speed, to make others screech at the brakes... as happened to me a few times too.

The computer of my Prius has an ECO indicator that lights up when the engine RPM is at maximum efficiency. I usually drive the car so this indicator is on regardless of speed. If done successfully 50+ mpg are easily achieved. It is like playing a video game. This style of driving can bother other drivers on the freeway, in particular when going uphill. I always move to the right lane when approaching a hill. When going uphill my speed is not slower than trucks. Most drivers go around trucks but do not do the same for the Prius. Maybe because trucks are tall and people see them from far away and automatically start changing lanes to avoid them.

Submitted by EconProf on April 6, 2011 - 10:11pm.

A little too harsh here on Prius owners, and, lets face it guys, you are bitter about the gas saving they are getting compared to your vehicle. I'd guess Prius drivers are more likely to drive conservatively and have a lower incidence of hitting bicyclists than other cars.
I once rode my bike to MN. I quickly learned my greatest threats were young guys in pickups and old ladies in Buicks. The first group had it in for me; the second never saw me.

Submitted by Navydoc on April 7, 2011 - 2:53am.

I'm really not bitter at all about the gas savings a Prius gets compared to my bicycle. Now if Toyota could harness the gas I have while riding, that would indeed be impressive!

I'm harsh on Prius drivers because of the way they treat me when I share the road with them. I am also harsh on pickups/SUV's for the same reason. And honestly, if gas savings were really my only issue I'd buy a VW diesel.

Submitted by EconProf on April 7, 2011 - 7:02am.

Just wondering, what if all Americans drove vehicles that got Prius-like gas mileage? How much would US oil consumption fall by? How much would gasoline prices fall by? Would this change our foreign policy for the better? Our defense committments in the Middle East? Would NavyDocs still be as frequently deployed?
The fact is, drivers of gas-guzzlers should thank Prius drivers (and bicyclists).
And realistically, it is the drivers of behemoths who are less likely to share the road with bicyclists than the more agile and controllable small vehicles.

Submitted by svelte on April 7, 2011 - 8:00am.

EconProf wrote:
A little too harsh here on Prius owners, and, lets face it guys, you are bitter about the gas saving they are getting compared to your vehicle. I'd guess Prius drivers are more likely to drive conservatively and have a lower incidence of hitting bicyclists than other cars.
I once rode my bike to MN. I quickly learned my greatest threats were young guys in pickups and old ladies in Buicks. The first group had it in for me; the second never saw me.

WTF dude. If I wanted a Prius, I could buy one today! (shakes his head)

Also, I mentioned this thread to my wife and she went off on a tirade about Priuses (and she is hard to get riled), stating they cut her off regularly then go slow. I was shocked at her reaction!

If a car attracts a$$hole drivers, they are gonna take the wrath of cyclists and other drivers...

Submitted by svelte on April 7, 2011 - 8:14am.

eavesdropper wrote:

...If, like me, you are compelled by tales of how companies persuade us to repeatedly buy their crap, you will not regret reading this book. I'm sure you can get it through your local public library system.

Loved the post, eavesdroppers. You and I think similar.

I'm not sure what the Obama sticker had to do with Priuses, I almost cut that part out then didn't.

I still haven't given up on the Prius drivers having less skills, I think it is a very real possibility but like you, think the greeness envy thing may be it also.

Loved the "because they're dicks?" part, another possibility for sure!

And I had never thought about how male bikers treated female bikers in the past few decades, very enlightening. Glad it is dissipating.

Had noticed the soccer mom in SUV thing and could never figure it out...except maybe they feel all that metal makes their little offspring safer. I'm not an SUV fan, but feel ppl should drive what they want. I've never owned one and don't plan to - glad to see you mentioned Sequoias alongside Expeditions and Tahoes as those who go on a SUV tirade usually feel it is exclusively US brand while obviously the Japanese (and Europeans) have their fingers in that pie too! I will probably buy the book you mention...think it would be a fun read.

Finally, since we've started talking about auto types we have problems with, I almost invariably run into difficulties with Nissan Titan drivers. They are super aggressive...like 4x4 Tacoma drivers used to be. My theory is those drivers have gotten older and upgraded to full size Titans. :-) I don't seem to have any problem with other full size truck drivers..for example, Tundra drivers are just fine. Shrug.

Submitted by briansd1 on April 7, 2011 - 1:10pm.

It's all an image thing.

Americans have love "don't mess with Texas" type bigness.

The Prius is too small and refined. It's something that an intellectual or a professor would drive. And we know that Americans don't like intellectuals and professors. They want some crassness and vulgarity.

The Prius is something that you most likely see in the cities or hip urban areas. So it's not something that real Americans can relate to.

Americans also like to tinker with their cars. The Prius is too complicated and takes an engineering degree to figure out. Not really a muscle car type vehicle that a high-school drop-out could work on.

I was told that back in the 1970s only professors and nerds drove small Toyotas and imports. By the late 1980s those brands became mainstream (except in the Midwest and Texas).

During the early days of Starbucks, fancy coffee was seen as elitist and drinking a latte was definitely un-American. But now, Starbucks is mainstream.

At one point, wine drinking was seen as too European and un-American. Now it's a must for the educated. In La Jolla or Carmel Valley, I'm sure that parents buy soy milk or rice milk for their kids.

We are moving on up....

As far as driving is concerned, most drivers don't drive at constant speeds. They accelerate and slow down as part of their natural way of driving... The Prius encourages drivers to drive at constant optimum speeds to save gas.

I don't drive a Prius but I'm a Prius lover. I like to be ahead the pack. Great technology and quality manufacturing will win out eventually.

Submitted by paramount on April 7, 2011 - 8:47pm.

If nothing else always be mindful of the 105ers (and below)....

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