Jul 4, 2008

The downside of hybrid vehicles

We love our Honda Civic Hybrid. We have had it for 6 years. It has 67,000 miles on it. It has averaged between 42-48 miles to the gallon depending in the type of driving we are doing. We can only sing its praises...

...except it is not a baby friendly car. The trunk is small, but it fits our stroller snugly. No, the problem is the auto-idle. This feature is one that causes the engine to go temporarily quit (and stop wasting precious gasoline) whenever the car comes to a stop at full stop. It can be a little eerie at a stop light at night with TOTAL silence. The car ceases all noise.

But the problem for us as parents is that when we are driving around with our screaming infant (who we love dearly), whenever we finally get her to fall asleep with the gentle vibrations of the car, we eventually get to a traffic light. The car stops, the engine idles and Nesya is jolted awake by the eerie quiet. So we have to endure the screaming until we can get going again and the vibrations slowly lull her to sleep again...

It's a vicious cycle. I bet no one thought about parents with screaming babies when they invented the eco-friendly and cost saving feature of the auto-idle. I think about them (the people who engineered the car), though, every time I have a screaming baby in the car...

P.S. For the record, we never drive for the sake of making our daughter sleep. Gas costs too much and it is bad for the environment. We do, however, always hope she will fall asleep as we are driving.

1 comment:

Lisa & Mark said...

Yeah, that's why we don't run ours with that feature on. All about the baby, not the fact that the air conditioning turns off... ;)