As gas prices go higher, some choose to go smaller

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News 12 at 11 o'clock, May 7, 2008

AUGUSTA, Ga.---As gas prices hit record highs, some people are choosing smaller vehicles over trucks and SUVs.

Buddy Hynes and his wife are looking to buy a new car. They're thinking about going with the same kind they already have, a Chevrolet HHR.

"Sometimes on the road I get about 33 to 34 [miles per gallon], so with today's prices in gasoline you can't beat it," said Hynes.

Buying a truck or sports utility vehicle is something he wouldn't even consider right now.

"SUVs are nice. They're comfortable, but lousy gas mileage," he said.

Because of gas prices, some people are walking away from SUVs and choosing smaller cars because they get more miles to the gallon.

Trucks and SUVs usually drive about seventy percent of the business at Gordon Chevrolet, but not lately.

"We saw almost the inverse of that: 70% cars, 30% trucks," said Vice President Adam Logemann.

He says it can probably be attributed to high gas prices.

"The thought of driving that full size SUV and what it was gonna cost them on a regular basis," he said.

And that cost even has people getting rid of their SUVs.

At another dealership about six to ten people a week have been trading in their SUVs or trucks, and blaming the gas prices.

Some dealerships are offering more incentives to rev up sales of the bigger vehicles.

"Chevy for instance right now is offering up to $4,000 on full-size trucks and SUVs," said Logemann.

But still, for the Hynes' the decision is clear. They want to pump up their wallet by saving at the pump.

"Every penny you can save, it's a penny earned," Hynes said.

For some buyers, it's proof bigger isn't always better.

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