Yet another reason to hop on the hybrid car bandwagon early, free car washes for the rest of 2004 at the Studio City Hand Car Wash on Ventura Blvd.

They Clean Our Air – we clean their car

Excerpt: Press Release – December 19, 2003
Studio City.. Ed Begley Jr. and the owner of the Studio City Hand Car Wash, announce a new program whereby all electric and hybrid vehicles will receive a free car wash at the Studio City facility .

Begley, Jr., a noted actor, director, producer and longtime resident of Studio City, is a noted environmentalist. He drives an EV car and his wife drives a hybrid.

ìEd Begley, Jr. helps clean our air by driving a pollution free automobileî, said Ben Forat, owner of the carwash. ìBy offering free car washes to owners of these cars, we are offering a small incentive for people to purchase or lease a pollution-free car. We are also saying thank you to the Begleys and others, for helping to reduce the smog levels which are a serious danger to the health for all of us .î

The program will take effective immediately, and last through all of 2004.

I’m hoping they’ll continue it after that as well (though I don’t know if I’ll ever get over there to take advantage of it with my Prius).

Studio City Car Wash
Address: 11514 Ventura Blvd, Studio City, CA 91604
Phone: (818) 980-8999


  1. Hmmm… buy an enviro-friendly vehicle than drive all the way out to Studio City to waste and gray-up all that precious water keeping it shiny? Discuss…

  2. I can’t hear of Ed Begley, Jr., without thinking of this:

    Marge: Aren’t you coming, Ed?
    Begley: I prefer a vehicle that doesn’t hurt Mother Earth. It’s a go-cart, powered by my own sense of self-satisfaction. [Begley attaches a wired-helmet to his head and quickly drives off]
    — “Homer to the Max”

  3. First off, I think this is a cool idea.

    However, I own two cars at the moment – a Honda Civic hybrid my g/f drives, and the Hyundai Elantra I drive. My car had the option of a “Super Ultra Low Emissions” engine, which has cleaner emissions than our hybrid (which is believe “only” has Ultra Low Emissions” rating).

    Mr. Begley, can I have a car wash too?

  4. Michael, have you read about the controversy about giving hybrids and alternative fuel cars HOV lane passes? It’s the same sort of thing. It makes little sense to me – if you’re trying to reduce congestion on the freeways and improve air quality, the best car to have stuck on the freeway is a hybrid or electric car.

    I guess the point is to both reduce our use of fossil fuels and reduce emissions.

  5. last year, i remember alternative fuel cars can have those passes. but hybrids can’t (in california at least). i think that’s ok. no need to change

  6. Cybele, I did hear about that. The thinking, I believe, is that giving low emission/hybrid/alt.fuel cars those stickers was just one more incentive to get people out of their 8mpg SUVs and into something that spews a little less. That said, I was bummed to learn my hybrid didn’t qualify. The tax break on the car, however, was VERY nice (around $2000 back because of it).

    I love both my cars, though, and I’m still glad, for many reasons, that I got them.

  7. If CA Assembly Bill 2628 passes the state senate and the governor signs it, hybrids that get over 45 MPG / SULEV AT-PZEV will qualify – a max of 70,000 HOV exemption stickers will be issued. The Prius (all years), Civic Hybrid and Insight will qualify, but it’s unlikely that any of the new ones (Highlander, Escape) will because of the mileage requirement.

  8. even if the bill passes, i don’t think the hybrids can get the passes. i think it just means that CA will be on standby until the feds approve it. (is that b/c carpool lanes are part of interstate high/freeways?)
    i didn’t know there were limited amt of passes… i hate the dmv

  9. Bronwyn – re the loophole for SUVs – that deduction has been around for a while, up to $100K for business vehicles taken over the life of the machine. The change was for a limited time for large vehicles they could take the write-off all at once. It was intended for construction and farm businesses, but the SUV salespeople really latched onto that deduction! Just sickens me sometimes that some folks who would have done just fine with an Explorer ended up with a Hummer because of that.

    You – yeah, they’re gonna make the hybrid people jump through a lot of hoops to take advantage of any HOV access – and it is all dependent on Fed approval. But lots of other states (including VA) allow hybrids and EVs in the carpool lanes.

  10. Yeah, I knew it was meant mainly to ease the burden of purchasing farm equipment, but how hard is it to close a loophole where an H2 passes as a wheat thresher?

    Meanwhile, the deduction for hybrids and EVs drops $500 every year, which means you only have until 2006 to get the rebate at all. As if our air will be all squeaky clean in two years…

  11. Bronwyn, you are so right. It’s a strange strange world … all I can say is that I’m thankful I live in LA where it’s socially acceptable to drive a Prius. After all, the government has told us it’s our patriotic duty to buy the biggest vehicle that uses the most gas. Some Prius owners in other parts of the country have had their cars keyed and/or vandalized and branded for being “unpatriotic.”

  12. Well, it doesn’t help that “Prius” is verbatim sanskrit for “Commie Mofo.”

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