Affluenza? TiVo thumb? The latest affliction for today’s image-heavy consumers may be Prius backlash, according to a story in the Los Angeles Times. The Times reports that what was once a perk afforded to hybrid drivers—use of the state’s HOV lanes—is turning public opinion against drivers of the gas-electric cars. As the number of hybrids has increased, the HOV lanes have grown more crowded, the paper reports. And that’s driving other drivers crazy. Prius drivers are finding hostility from other drivers for reasons as varied as driving slowly to increase fuel economy, to the simple privilege of driving solo in the lanes designated for carpoolers. The state is set to study the effects of mass hybrid ownership and how it might clog the HOV lanes; the paper also says the state of Virginia has already modified its lane rules, only allowing hybrids with three passengers use the lanes.
April 10, 2006
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