Do you ever notice how goofy most hybrid/electric vehicles always seem to look? Is it really that difficult to make a fuel efficient vehicle that doesn’t look like it’s straight out of the Jetsons cartoon? Not for Kia!
Confession: I have been scared of hybrid vehicles because I had no idea how to charge them. And I honestly thought they were gutless. Oops!
The brand changing the hybrid world is Kia and I’ve had fun getting to know the 2017 Optima PHEV (Plug-In Hybrid). This is the car that I’ll be cruising around in for the next three months, learning all there is to learn about the benefits of having a fuel efficient car. And since we’re on the topic of benefits, let’s name a few perks of owning a hybrid electric vehicle (HEV) in California.
Some Perks of HEV Vehicles in California
You will find many reasons to love an HEV vehicle, but in case you needed more of a reason to purchase one, check out the list below of some of my favorite perks of HEV vehicles in California:
HOV Lanes: California law allows single-occupant use of High Occupancy Vehicle (HOVs) lanes by certain qualifying clean alternative fuel vehicles. The current Kia vehicles approved for the HOV lanes are the Optima Plug-In Hybrid (PHEV), the Kia Niro Plug-In Hybrid, and the Kia Soul Plug-in Hybrid. You can learn more here.
Free Hotel Parking & Charging: A number of hotels in California are extending hybrid, plug-in and alternative fuel vehicle perks to their customers. Check with hotel when making reservations.
Farmer’s Insurance: Farmers Insurance offers 10% discount on all major coverages for those who drive hybrids.
Traveler’s Insurance: Travelers Insurance offers up to a 10% discount on most major coverages for those who drive hybrid vehicles.
Rebates: The CVRP, funded by the California Environmental Protection Agency’s Air Resources Board (ARB) and administered statewide by CSE, provides rebates of up to $5,000 for the purchase or lease of zero-emission and plug-in hybrid light-duty vehicles. See the CVRP website for an important notice regarding funding.
Kia Optima PHEV
The Kia Optima PHEV looks nothing like the Jetson mobile, but instead looks like a trendy car that I’m totally into. Charging it for the first time wasn’t as painful as I had imagined (thanks to my husband for teaching me how to do it). And this thing sure is peppy!
When in electric/gas mode, the Optima PHEV gets around 103 MPGe, and gets about 40 MPG in gasoline mode only. With those numbers, you’re estimated to save about $3250 in fuel costs over 5 years compared to the average new vehicle. Those are truly numbers to brag about.