Looking for an Affordable Mercedes? Try the Hybrid


Photo: http://www.flickr.com/people/dsix/">Derrick Noh under a Creative Commons license.

OK, affordable might be a bit of an overstatement, unless you're one of the richer tree huggers out there. We've told you before about Mercedes-Benz's hybrid S400, but here's the interesting news: it turns out, at $88,825, the S400 is the least expensive car in the S-Class line the company has to offer. Mercedes shares a parent company with Smart Car in Daimler, which seems to have registered that the future of the auto industry is a green one, so this news doesn't come as a shock.That's hardly saying that the S400 is an exercise in moderation, or particularly green living. But if you're going to drop $90,000 on a car that features the latest in technology and comfort, this is a good choice. On top of that is the point that usually, hybrids are more expensive that their conventional counterparts, putting them out of reach for most car-buyers.

But it looks like hybrids are making headway into the market. Last year heralded the release of Honda's Insight, the first hybrid priced under $20,000, and it turns out that a lot of the negative press directed at hybrids is unfounded. According to the Hybrid Owners of America, the future is bright: Toyota, Nissan and Tesla are all bringing their A game to the hybrid market, with new releases planned for the next year. Cars are getting smaller and more gas-efficient, and that's music to our ears.

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