More Americans Liking Hybrid Cars?

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What's driving interest in hybrids? High gas prices, plus twin desires to protect the environment and reduce the use of foreign oil.

We’re becoming more interested in hybrid electric/gas cars, according to a new study by research firm Harris Interactive.

A third of the nearly 2,000 car owners who the company polled are interested in buying a hybrid – and nearly a quarter said they’re more interested in hybrids than a year ago.

But interest in all-electric vehicles is still down: Almost two-thirds said they probably won’t consider one when next shopping a car lot.

Younger adults are most keen: “Nearly one-third (32 percent) of those under 35 years of age are more interested in alternative vehicle choices than they were a year ago,” but only 15 percent of seniors are. In fact, nearly as many seniors are less interested than a year ago.

And the motivation for the switch? For the majority (55 percent), it’s high gas prices. Environmental concerns account for another quarter (26 percent) and energy independence for the rest (18 percent).

Yesterday, MSN listed its list of best budget hybrid cars – and all of them were from Toyota, Kia, and Hyundai.

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