Pacifica Hybrid? Alternative? Now or Later?

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Pacifica Hybrid? Alternative? Now or Later?

Post by Elbowman » Tue Jan 08, 2019 12:25 pm

Hey Bogleheads,

I'd like to draw upon your nuanced understanding of cars and car purchasing. I used to think that I should always purchase cars that are a couple years old to avoid the new car premium, but after reading a few threads I found (at least some of you believe) that is not a universal truth.

Situation: My wife and I are trying for a second child. By the time this second child is born, my wife would like a larger car (initially to remove the third row of seats to transport two car seats plus large strollers, etc., and eventually to transport the kids plus several of their friends).

- My wife would like it to be a hybrid of some sort. She really likes the idea of a plug-in hybrid, though the Pacifica's range wont cover her whole round trip for work.
- I would like it to have advanced safety features (adaptive cruise control, forward collision mitigation, lane departure mitigation in particular).
- Both of these constraints (the environment from my wife's PoV, my family's safety from my PoV) are more important than the $10k-20k we could save with a (more financially Bogleheaded) 2016 Honda Odyssey.

So given these constraints, how should I optimize? If we stick to minivans, the only choice seems to be Pacifica Hybrid, Limited trim, "Advanced SafetyTec Group" option, at about $46k before tax credits. It looks like it is eligible for a $7500 federal tax credit. There also appears to be a California "Clean Vehicle Rebate Project", but it is still piloting in San Diego County (of which I am not a resident).

Some specific questions I can think to ask are:
- Outside of minivans, are there SUVs I should consider?
- Does the federal tax credit or specificity of my constraints mean I am unlikely to get a much better deal on a used vehicle?
- We don't need this car for at least nine months. Should I wait and hope prices go down as we get closer to a year of vehicles being ready?

Do you have any other suggestions?

Thank you!

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Re: Pacifica Hybrid? Alternative? Now or Later?

Post by bloom2708 » Tue Jan 08, 2019 1:33 pm

Based on your list of must haves, the Pacifica Hybrid seems like a logical choice.

You have 12+ months to pile up cash. The plug-in hybrid version is pretty new, but in 12 months there will be 1-2 year old used ones on the market. Demos. CPOs. Short off lease.

Based on your criteria and plug-in requirements you are going to be looking 2017+ when adaptive cruise, lane departure, blindspot, auto-braking all came in a single package. We have a 2017 Ford Fusion Titanium Energi (the plug-in model). My wife drives it and loves it. Although our 3 kids are older (college, high school, grade school) so we don't need both our cars to be 3 row plug ins. I drive a 2013 Ford Flex (7 passenger) for our multi-passenger vehicle.

You could consider a 3 row non-hybrid + plug in hybrid/electric for in town, just kids in the car, just mom in the car. That would open you up to a wider array of options. We picked up the 2017 Fusion with 20k miles, 1 year old for $19,900. Less than half of the new MSRP.

Otherwise, just keep piling up cash and see what the options are in 9-12 months. It always took a bit longer than planned between kids. No idea how that works. I will say that car shopping is very highly correlated with car buying. If you shop now, you might just buy and that too will limit your cash and options.

Good luck!
"We are not here to agree with you; we are here to provoke thoughtfulness." Unknown Boglehead

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Re: Pacifica Hybrid? Alternative? Now or Later?

Post by ray.james » Tue Jan 08, 2019 1:59 pm

we did consider pacifica hybrid but went with clarity. Pretty happy with out decision so far. We will still go minivan route once kids are active enough for skiing, bring friends home etc, which is not for another 3-5 years. We replaced our newer car with clarity. The old one will be becoming mini-van in 3-4 years(6 and 11 year old cars). A few things we thought of

We live in urban area and the sedan has much better mileage.
Clarity is only plug in sedan with space for 2 strollers and 2 back face seats.
The tech is changing very fast in this space. I expect more mini-vans with a plug. Honda pilot 3 row plug-in is expected later this year(SUV) as a 2020 model.
If you constantly do trips that are far or haul, minivan might be a better choice.
When in doubt,

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Re: Pacifica Hybrid? Alternative? Now or Later?

Post by navyitaly » Tue Jan 08, 2019 5:22 pm

You misunderstand the clean vehicle rebate. San Diego County is for preregistering it online first...otherwise you just send the stuff in. It’s $1500 for registering the car in CA. You dont have to be a CA resident, just register it in CA for 36 months.

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Re: Pacifica Hybrid? Alternative? Now or Later?

Post by Elbowman » Tue Jan 08, 2019 11:02 pm

Thanks everyone for your feedback! I will look at what options appear closer to the deadline (pre-owned or new plug-in options) and read more carefully about the Clean Vehicle Rebate.

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Re: Pacifica Hybrid? Alternative? Now or Later?

Post by batpot » Wed Jan 09, 2019 11:51 am

Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV has hit the US market after a few years as the best selling SUV in Europe.

I'd trust them over any Chrystler product.

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Re: Pacifica Hybrid? Alternative? Now or Later?

Post by LukeHeinz57 » Thu Jan 10, 2019 8:42 am

Just bought a 2019 Plug In Pacifica at the end of last year. Simply said we love it. My favorite vehicle ever.
"Contentment", the only thing you ever truly need more of!

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