Prius fatality rate is half of national average--

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Submitted by EmilyHicks on March 6, 2012 - 12:54pm

The Prius fatality rate of 0.64 per 100 million miles is less than half of the NHTSA 1.37-1.51 fatalities per 100 million miles for the years 2001-2007. This is based upon the annual Prius sales from 2000-2007 minus an overly high estimate of 3% Prius lost per year; an annual usage of 15,000 miles per Prius per year; and 75 prorated deaths of the 124 fatalities from 111 fatal accidents including Prius and non-Prius vehicles. A more conservative accounting of Prius contributions, a count of Prius participation by accident, gives an even lower rate, 0.55 Prius fatalities per 100 million miles.

http://hiwaay.net/~bzwilson/prius/Prius_...
http://www.carinsurancecomparison.com/ho...
http://wheels.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/08/...

Submitted by svelte on March 6, 2012 - 2:02pm.

That's pretty good. I wonder if it has to do with Prius drivers being overly cautious, at least from what I've observed.

It all depends on how you slice and dice it, but it isn't in the lowest 25 as given in the IIHS list:

http://www.iihs.org/externaldata/srdata/...

It does well within it's size class (small), tying with the Mazda 3.

The five cars with the lowest driver fatalities:
Audi A6 4dr 4wd
Mercedes E-class 4dr 4wd
Toyota Sienna
Ford Edge
Nissan Armada

The five cars with the highest driver fatalities:
Nissan 350Z 2dr
Nissan Titan crew cab
Chevrolet Aveo
Chevrolet Cobalt
Nissan Titan extended cab

Interesting to note a 350Z driver died on I-15 last month, racing another car down an onramp to the freeway at Lake Hodges.

Submitted by Ren on March 6, 2012 - 2:48pm.

Interesting - I would think the Prius death rate would be higher, due to the anger focused on them.

Submitted by sdrealtor on March 6, 2012 - 3:14pm.

I would think it was lower as top speed is 23 MPH

Submitted by ocrenter on March 6, 2012 - 4:21pm.

sdrealtor wrote:
I would think it was lower as top speed is 23 MPH

http://www.people.com/people/article/0,,...

Al Gore must have fixed up his son's Prius.

Submitted by paramount on March 6, 2012 - 9:33pm.

svelte wrote:

Interesting to note a 350Z driver died on I-15 last month, racing another car down an onramp to the freeway at Lake Hodges.

I was wondering what had happened, I saw that accident going home; it looked like the car struck a pole but I didn't see a pole nearby.

Submitted by svelte on March 6, 2012 - 9:50pm.

paramount wrote:
svelte wrote:

Interesting to note a 350Z driver died on I-15 last month, racing another car down an onramp to the freeway at Lake Hodges.

I was wondering what had happened, I saw that accident going home; it looked like the car struck a pole but I didn't see a pole nearby.

He was entering I-15 southbound from via rancho, was racing a black pickup, lost control and hit the pole on the right edge of the roadway. That sent him careening into the center divide. Died on the spot. Young guy, early 20s as I recall.

Submitted by EmilyHicks on March 6, 2012 - 10:01pm.

This data is deaths per 100 mil cars which is not the same as death per 100 mil miles driven because we know that Prius drivers on average drive a lot more than an average drivers hence the need for a Prius.

svelte wrote:
That's pretty good. I wonder if it has to do with Prius drivers being overly cautious, at least from what I've observed.

It all depends on how you slice and dice it, but it isn't in the lowest 25 as given in the IIHS list:

http://www.iihs.org/externaldata/srdata/...

It does well within it's size class (small), tying with the Mazda 3.

The five cars with the lowest driver fatalities:
Audi A6 4dr 4wd
Mercedes E-class 4dr 4wd
Toyota Sienna
Ford Edge
Nissan Armada

The five cars with the highest driver fatalities:
Nissan 350Z 2dr
Nissan Titan crew cab
Chevrolet Aveo
Chevrolet Cobalt
Nissan Titan extended cab

Interesting to note a 350Z driver died on I-15 last month, racing another car down an onramp to the freeway at Lake Hodges.

Submitted by svelte on March 6, 2012 - 10:04pm.

EmilyHicks wrote:
This data is deaths per 100 mil cars which is not the same as death per 100 mil miles driven because we know that Prius drivers on average drive a lot more than an average drivers hence the need for a Prius.

Please supply link offering proof.

Submitted by paramount on March 6, 2012 - 10:38pm.

svelte wrote:
paramount wrote:
svelte wrote:

Interesting to note a 350Z driver died on I-15 last month, racing another car down an onramp to the freeway at Lake Hodges.

I was wondering what had happened, I saw that accident going home; it looked like the car struck a pole but I didn't see a pole nearby.

He was entering I-15 southbound from via rancho, was racing a black pickup, lost control and hit the pole on the right edge of the roadway. That sent him careening into the center divide. Died on the spot. Young guy, early 20s as I recall.

Most unfortunate, I found the video here:

http://www.nbcsandiego.com/news/local/Cr...

Submitted by svelte on March 7, 2012 - 7:26am.

svelte wrote:
EmilyHicks wrote:
This data is deaths per 100 mil cars which is not the same as death per 100 mil miles driven because we know that Prius drivers on average drive a lot more than an average drivers hence the need for a Prius.

Please supply link offering proof.

Actually, I just did 3 searches for all 2008 Civics, Mazda3s, and Prius within 100 miles of San Marcos on AutoTrader.

When I added their mileages and divided by number of cars, here is what I found:

2008 Prius: 15,600 miles/year (73 cars found)
2008 Civic: 13,400 miles/year (188 cars found)
2008 Mazda3: 13,400 miles/year (51 cars found)

So Prius averages 2,200 more miles per year. Higher mileage cars usually have freeway miles. Freeways are safer than other roads. Extra miles probably a wash when factoring in more freeway miles?

http://www.bts.gov/publications/national...

Submitted by EmilyHicks on March 7, 2012 - 7:46am.

delete

Submitted by Navydoc on March 7, 2012 - 8:40am.

Surprisingly all these safety statistics about the Prius don't make me feel any safer around them, since I bounced off the hood of one last year. The only safe car is one being driven by someone who is aware of their surroundings and understands the capabilites and limitations of their vehicle.

Your high milelage presumption is interesting svelte, as Prius gas mileage on the highway isn't all that great. Their biggest advantage is in stop-start driving. It has always been my contention that the average Prius driver would get better mileage and thus less environmental impact from a Jetta diesel. Your numbers might support that. I wonder if we can get HOV stickers for diesels? (Ha Ha)

Submitted by EmilyHicks on March 7, 2012 - 9:28am.

Prius gas mileage on the highway is around 50 mpg ±5mpg depending on how you drive. I consistently get over 50 mpg.

Jetta's combined mpg is 34, Prius's is 49. That is a 44% difference. Prius’s total carbon dioxide emissions are 4 tons per year, compared to 6.2 for a six-speed manual VW Jetta diesel according to the EPA. These numbers assume 15,000 miles per year, 45 percent in the city, 55 on the highway.

If they make a diesel hybrid, now, I think that would be great.

Navydoc wrote:
as Prius gas mileage on the highway isn't all that great. Their biggest advantage is in stop-start driving. It has always been my contention that the average Prius driver would get better mileage and thus less environmental impact from a Jetta diesel. Your numbers might support that. I wonder if we can get HOV stickers for diesels? (Ha Ha)

Submitted by blahblahblah on March 7, 2012 - 11:41am.

Navydoc wrote:

Your high milelage presumption is interesting svelte, as Prius gas mileage on the highway isn't all that great. Their biggest advantage is in stop-start driving. It has always been my contention that the average Prius driver would get better mileage and thus less environmental impact from a Jetta diesel. Your numbers might support that. I wonder if we can get HOV stickers for diesels? (Ha Ha)

Our Prius averaged over 45mpg on a recent round trip to Vegas, including over all of the hills and through lots of wind. Turbo diesels do get good long distance mileage but the majority of people drive most of their miles in daily commutes through start/stop traffic. Popular Mechanics did a comparison of the Jetta TDI and the Prius that demonstrates this well. Yes the TDI performed better on the highway -- by .6mpg. In city driving the Prius beat the Jetta TDI by 12.7mpg and again, that's where most of us do most of our driving.

Also, the yellow stickers are no longer available. If you want to drive solo in the HOV lane you're going to need to go electric.

Submitted by briansd1 on March 7, 2012 - 11:56am.

I've rented Prius cars and I like them.
I like how quiet they are.
If you appreciate beautiful things like Apple products, you'll be impressed with the finish of the Prius.

I want to buy a compressed natural gas Honda Civic. You can refill it at home and don't have to pay the gas tax that is included in the gasoline you purchase. That makes for very low operating costs. Plus you can get the white HOV sticker.

Problem is I live in an apartment and don't have a garage where the refueling unit would go.

Submitted by Navydoc on March 7, 2012 - 3:20pm.

Wow, after reading these comments and a little research, I realize that the city/highway difference on the Prius isn't as great as I believed. I thought it was the reverse of a gas or diesel powered car, but that is clearly not the case. Considering the current price difference between diesel and gasoline, the Prius makes more sense from a strictly economic sense.

Having driven both the Prius and the TDI I know I'd rather drive the TDI, but that's a personal choice.

Submitted by ucodegen on March 7, 2012 - 4:08pm.

Interest Popular Mechanics article.. but one of the things I noticed, is that their driving techniques:

Since fuel economy is so dependent on driving style, we accelerated as smoothly and consistently as possible in both tests. Our general rule was to accelerate from each stop with just enough throttle to be as quick as the slowest car leaving the light. This, we believe, best approximates the driving style that an average consumer would adopt with fuel economy as a main priority.

actually worked against the Jetta TDI. With turbocharged vehicles, efficiency goes up with boost pressure. Boost effectively increases the compression ratio of the engine (by increasing working pressures). If you feather the pedal on the Jetta TDI, the turbo never spools up.

How about testing the BMW 335d... !!

Should add a mileage category for mountain driving .. up to Big Bear, Laguna.. those types of areas ;-P

Submitted by briansd1 on March 7, 2012 - 4:37pm.

Navydoc wrote:
Wow, after reading these comments and a little research, I realize that the city/highway difference on the Prius isn't as great as I believed.

I'm no mechanic engineer... but I read that it's got something to do with it not taking much power to keep a small car moving on the highway.

The Prius is pretty aerodynamic as compared to another hybrid like the Ford Escape.

Turbocharged cars are a bad deal if you plan to keep them for a while. Turbos go bad and cost a lot of money to repair. The resale value ain't great either.

Submitted by blahblahblah on March 7, 2012 - 5:23pm.

Navydoc wrote:

Having driven both the Prius and the TDI I know I'd rather drive the TDI, but that's a personal choice.

The Prius is not an exciting car to drive. I like the mileage but driving it is a little ho-hum. Actually really ho-hum, it just sort of floats along.

I like the TDI idea because the cars are usually cooler and more fun to drive. I really like the Audi TDI mini-SUV thingy but it costs a mint so no thanks. I am hoping that Mazda will put the new Sky-D turbo diesel in the Mazda 3 at some point, that would be a cool fun-to-drive car that gets pretty good mileage.

Submitted by ucodegen on March 7, 2012 - 6:05pm.

briansd1 wrote:
Turbocharged cars are a bad deal if you plan to keep them for a while. Turbos go bad and cost a lot of money to repair. The resale value ain't great either.
Having owned a 300zx turbo in my past, and putting almost 200,000 miles on it (not all gentle - had the ..ahem.. exercise the thing) I would have to disagree. It does depend upon the design of the turbo system, including the turbo. The Nissan 300ZX used a turbo with waterjacketed bearings. This makes a large difference to the life of the turbo. It prevents cooking of the turbo bearings. The other thing that helps is having an engine oil cooler - prevents breakdown of the oil, as well as good oil. In my case, I had belts, hoses, waterpumps, cracked exhaust manifold, clutch, brakes, and transmission second gear dog-clutch go out on me(or need major overhaul) first.

Submitted by sdrealtor on March 7, 2012 - 6:28pm.

Most turbocharged cars are not bought with an eye toward resale. Just sayin....

Submitted by Ren on March 7, 2012 - 6:43pm.

If my turbo goes before I trade, I'll just use that as an excuse to get a bigger one.

Submitted by AN on March 7, 2012 - 7:31pm.

Ren wrote:
If my turbo goes before I trade, I'll just use that as an excuse to get a bigger one.

Do you really need an excuse? :-)

I can't wait till more car maker jump on the turbo wagon. Next miata will have 1.3l turbo and weigh 2200lb. Sounds exciting to me.

Submitted by temeculaguy on March 8, 2012 - 1:50am.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2lMIOE5pQTo

Emasculation on wheels, what's next? Sitting down to pee?

Submitted by Navydoc on March 8, 2012 - 7:25am.

briansd1 wrote:
Turbocharged cars are a bad deal if you plan to keep them for a while. Turbos go bad and cost a lot of money to repair. The resale value ain't great either.

Actually Brian, when you're talking about durability in turbos, your're likely referring to GAS turbo engines. The turbocharger was originally invented for diesel engines and the boost is typically far less than in a gas engine (not sure about the newest ones though). I used to have an '89 Jetta turbodiesel and those things lasted FOREVER. Got about 40 mpg too. Was a great car, my dad put about 200,000 miles on it after I sold it to him and he never touched the car mechanically, aside from routine maintainance. Remember when you think about diesel durability, think about tractor trailers. Many are turbocharged.

By the way, a diesel without a turbocharger is nearly undrivable. My mother had a '79 Audi 5000 non-turbo and it couldn't get out of its own way. 69 galloping horsepower in a 2500 lb car.

Submitted by svelte on March 8, 2012 - 7:35am.

lol TG! That's classic!

The only car I can think of that leans more that way is the New Beetle. I was invited to a focus group about a year before it was released, back in 97 or so.

They didn't tell us what we were going to be "focus"ing on, and I was stunned when I walked around the curtain dividers and saw a complete New Beetle sitting there in that green color that was unique at the time.

They had us walk around to different small rooms and review colors, options, I don't remember what else. Then they walked us over to another room where we could sit in the car. I remember sitting there looking at the seats, the instruments. Then my eyes wandered right and right there, smack in the middle of the dash, was a flower vase with a single daisy. A flower vase. From the factory. On the dash.

Then they walked us over to another room where we filled out an online survey asking what we'd pay for the car. I basically said 0 as I wouldn't be owning one.

If you look at the M/F purchase ratio for the New Beetle, very very few males buy it. I wonder why?

Submitted by flu on March 8, 2012 - 7:44am.

ucodegen wrote:
Interest Popular Mechanics article.. but one of the things I noticed, is that their driving techniques:
Since fuel economy is so dependent on driving style, we accelerated as smoothly and consistently as possible in both tests. Our general rule was to accelerate from each stop with just enough throttle to be as quick as the slowest car leaving the light. This, we believe, best approximates the driving style that an average consumer would adopt with fuel economy as a main priority.

actually worked against the Jetta TDI. With turbocharged vehicles, efficiency goes up with boost pressure. Boost effectively increases the compression ratio of the engine (by increasing working pressures). If you feather the pedal on the Jetta TDI, the turbo never spools up.

How about testing the BMW 335d... !!

Should add a mileage category for mountain driving .. up to Big Bear, Laguna.. those types of areas ;-P

The 335d is nice. I had a loaner once with it...But screw the 335d or x5 35d.... What I need is the M550d

Nope, we won't get it here in the states...
http://www.autoblog.com/2012/03/07/2012-...


We grin because BMW has dropped a tri-turbo (yes, three turbochargers) 3.0-liter inline-six diesel engine under hood. With a lot of boost, the N57S engine is rated at 376 horsepower and an astounding 546 pound-feet of torque. Mated to an eight-speed automatic, the 5 Series will crack the 60-mile-per-hour benchmark in 4.7 seconds and run to an unrestricted 185 mph top speed (BMW electronically caps it at 155 mph). Permanent all-wheel drive, in the form of BMW's xDrive, ensures the torque shreds all four tires equally. The surefooted driveline also makes the 37-mile-per-gallon oil-burning sedan the perfect all-weather friend.

Why are we sobbing? As of today, BMW has no plans to offer this magnificent machine to the North American marketplace

Submitted by Ren on March 8, 2012 - 9:10am.

AN wrote:
Ren wrote:
If my turbo goes before I trade, I'll just use that as an excuse to get a bigger one.

Do you really need an excuse? :-)

I can't wait till more car maker jump on the turbo wagon. Next miata will have 1.3l turbo and weigh 2200lb. Sounds exciting to me.

Oh I've thought about it! I think there's a complete kit for my car at around $1,700. The problem is, guys with big turbos on this platform have serious traction issues (as in standing on it in 5th at normal freeway speeds will just smoke the tires), and running bolt-ons/ethanol with the appropriate tune will make you nearly as fast anyway.

Nothing like a factory turbo. I'm bummed the "baby Boxster" was pushed out. A 2.5 liter turbo flat-4 (behind the seats, of course) in a 2,500-2,700lb car would have been legendary the moment it was released.

Submitted by AN on March 8, 2012 - 10:10am.

Ren wrote:
Oh I've thought about it! I think there's a complete kit for my car at around $1,700. The problem is, guys with big turbos on this platform have serious traction issues (as in standing on it in 5th at normal freeway speeds will just smoke the tires), and running bolt-ons/ethanol with the appropriate tune will make you nearly as fast anyway.

Nothing like a factory turbo. I'm bummed the "baby Boxster" was pushed out. A 2.5 liter turbo flat-4 (behind the seats, of course) in a 2,500-2,700lb car would have been legendary the moment it was released.


Do you mind saying what car you're driving? $1700 sounds cheap for a complete kit. What's included in the kit? I'm assume it has to be an I-4 inorder for a complete kit to be that cheap.

WRT to traction, is it because your car is a FWD? If it's RWD, traction can easily be solved by wider and stickier tires.

A baby Boxter would be freakin' sweet. 2500lb and a 2.5L I-4 turbo would be my ideal weekend/track car. Now, if only BMW can slim down the M3 to be around 3000lb with a I-6 turbo from the 335i and I'd be a happy man.

Submitted by AN on March 8, 2012 - 10:10am.

Ren wrote:
Oh I've thought about it! I think there's a complete kit for my car at around $1,700. The problem is, guys with big turbos on this platform have serious traction issues (as in standing on it in 5th at normal freeway speeds will just smoke the tires), and running bolt-ons/ethanol with the appropriate tune will make you nearly as fast anyway.

Nothing like a factory turbo. I'm bummed the "baby Boxster" was pushed out. A 2.5 liter turbo flat-4 (behind the seats, of course) in a 2,500-2,700lb car would have been legendary the moment it was released.


Do you mind saying what car you're driving? $1700 sounds cheap for a complete kit. What's included in the kit? I'm assume it has to be an I-4 inorder for a complete kit to be that cheap.

WRT to traction, is it because your car is a FWD? If it's RWD, traction can easily be solved by wider and stickier tires.

A baby Boxter would be freakin' sweet. 2500lb and a 2.5L I-4 turbo would be my ideal weekend/track car. Now, if only BMW can slim down the M3 to be around 3000lb with a I-6 turbo from the 335i and I'd be a happy man.

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