NPR is doing a series looking at automakers’ push to meet the new CAFE standards. Included is this map of hybrid/electric vehicle sales across the US by market:
I thought it would be interesting to compare it to gasoline prices across the US. Here’s one from Gasbuddy.
I’m having trouble getting the frames to work, so you need to open two separate windows to view them side by side.
The correlation looks near perfect with the exception of the most rural parts of the mountain west and (MT, UT) and norther Great Plains (ND,SD). These states buy fewer hybrids than you would expect given their gas prices. My guess is that they see it as unmanly: at least that was the case with one of my sister’s ex-boyfriends, a farmer from Montana living in Wyoming.
The flip side is the desert southwest: Tucson and Albuquerque buy more hybrids than I would expect based solely on gas prices. Perhaps the fragile ecosystem makes them more environmentally conscious?