Paying for the privilege of a Prius

Looking to save the environment one car at a time? Get in line. People are so desperate to buy the short-stocked Toyota Prius gas/electric hybrid that some have taken to paying $1,000 over sticker price for a used one. Their actions are commendable. However, AdFreak is somewhat reluctant to fork over 22,000 clams to tool around in a sedan that looks like an orthopedic shoe. But we digress. It’s not just Priuses (Prii?) that have drawn this kind of competitive bidding, according to Consumer Guide Automotive. Other mid-priced cars that have turned otherwise normal U.S. residents into rabid coveters include the tiny 1990 Mazda Miata convertible; the 1998 retro Volkswagen Beetle; and 2001’s Chrysler PT Cruiser. Not only did dealers have long waiting lists, but the more impatient buyers who couldn’t wait to be seen in the trendy rides would outbid others just to take one home. The redesigned Ford Thunderbird also got that kind of attention, but “fell from grace” quickly.

—Posted by Celeste Ward