With fuel costs playing such a deciding factor, in many cases fuel efficient cars were simply cheaper to own over the long term. That made the hybrid and electric car categories especially tight..sort of.
The real story here is that over five years, these cars (both situated in the compact class) only cost about $10,000 more over five years than their conventional compact cousins. The best direct example is the Versa ($29,252) versus the LEAF’s $42,089. That’s about a $13,000 difference, which is a lot…but these are first-generation vehicles. Once prices for EV’s go down, and prices for gas go up, those numbers are going to get closer and closer with each year until there is perhaps a negligible difference. And from there? Well I can’t predict the future friends, but I would say that electric cars stand a pretty good chance of finding ready and willing customers as the cost of ownership closes the gap with conventional gas-powered cars.