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Growing Demand, Shrinking Supply For Hybrid Cars

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VW's Hybrid Car XL1. (Credit: JOHANNES EISELE/AFP/Getty Images)

VW’s Hybrid Car XL1. (Credit: JOHANNES EISELE/AFP/Getty Images)

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BOSTON (CBS) – Hybrid cars are some of the hottest vehicles on the market, but they’re not easy to find.

Lisa van der Pool of the Boston Business Journal reports:

WHY THE SHORT SUPPLY?

Some of the hybrids coming down the pipeline are extremely efficient.

High gas prices are definitely driving demand for hybrid vehicles and smaller, gas-sipping cars, although dealerships are really struggling to meet that demand.

Hybrids are in short supply because the recent earthquake and tsunami in Japan disrupted production of cars and car parts there. Local dealerships say that they’re running low on Japanese hybrids, as well as some American hybrid models.

The short supply of hybrids doesn’t necessarily mean that consumers will pay more for them in this market. Local car dealers said that consumers can usually strike a deal when buying a cars, however finding the exact model in the exact color that you want will be much tougher during the summer. The shortage will most likely last for 90 days.

FUTURE HYBRIDS

Volkswagen has the prototype of a car that could potentially be game-changing called the XL1, which is a plug-in hybrid that also uses clean diesel fuel and gets 261 miles per gallon.

Some people think charging an electric-only car would be a drag because it takes a long time, but for the XL1, you wouldn’t have that problem, because it also uses diesel fuel.

The XL1 won’t be available for a while, as it’s set to start production and roll out in 2013. It is not known what model this technology will be in, but one expert has suggested that the VW Golf TDI would make a lot of sense.

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