Hey... We all have to have a vice! Besides, speed limits are "more like guidelines" to quote a certain ficticious pirate captain.
The USG tinkering with the free market is threatening consumer choice. We aren't to the point of outright legislation, but the coersion is in full swing: - Artificial inflation of fuel prices by restricting domestic supply - CAFE standards (should not even be a subject of regulation) - Incentivising/deincentivising to alter market economics - Outright taxation on some models (ever hear of the new gas-guzzler tax?) - New car equipment regulations (safety glass is the only one I agree with)
Hybrids/EVs are just the current beneficiaries of the tyranny to which I object. But the 'holier than thou' attitude of the owners is always a good provcation for me to vent.
@ChriSharek that's fantastic to hear... what's your daily commute like and do you have charging capability at work? Also, you're obviously very conscientious about going pretty much all-electric. How has the Volt changed your driving habits or has it at all? Cheers, Brian
To be successful with electrics they will have to take the design away from automotive trained engineers. Their default is 4 passenger, wide tires, steel suspended, cushy riding, sound system laden, 4000 pounds of machinery and estetics. Everything must justify going along for the ride. I can see a carbon fiber body that incorporates the suspension, batteries that are either structural members or replaceable as you drive through a "power station", single passenger vehicles shapped more like an egg with wheels that could be stood up on its back end to reduce the parking foot print required . . . Its just engineering.
For the last 40 years I have wanted a pickup truck (I need one for my business) that would get 40mpg and I have been denied that choice by the auto companies that refuse to make one! Making cars is a business, and the car companies have decided that they can extract higher profits from you by putting a speedometer in their cars that goes up to 120, so they refuse to provide me with the 40mpg truck.
Why is it that a big truck(say a 20 ft box truck) gets the same or better gas mielage as my pickup? Your 100+ mph car and my 12mpg truck are the result of design choices by marketers in the auto companies who only focus on selling the samer old crap year after year. Remember when cup holders were touted as a technological breakthrough for them?
A modern gasoline or diesel car has an efficiency of only 12%. The same as in 1950! It's time that improved, and clearly the auto companies proved that they are incapable of doing that without any outside motivation. That's why we all hate them, and why they almost went bankrupt.
Common sense, I don't disagree with your political position - I don't really have strong political feelings about this one way or another, I'm just looking at it as a product development challenge. In that light, I'm not sure that diesel train batteries would be very successful in this application.
Well first, you're a gloomy guy, dude. Second, I'm as much a skeptic on electric cars as anyone, but many of the facts you quote are inaccurate or inapplicable.
Take removing heavy trucks from the road. Now I don't know your background, but I suspect you don't have intimate knowledge of how the US is laid out geographically. We're spread out over much of the country, with scattered and fairly rare centers of population density, unlike Europe and other areas. So relying on rail transportation is of VERY limited value. Trains can and do transport goods from population center to population center, then you have to use other transport methods to finish the products' journey. If you eliminated large trucks, then you'd have to replace them with a whole lot of additional smaller trucks and vans- hardly a suitable solution because they'd create just as much (or more) pollution. Also recall that those large trucks are diesel, a solution you favor elsewhere in your comment. Smaller trucks generally run on gasoline.
Also, mandating that everyone has to own sluggish and underpowered autos just because they're more efficient is about as anti-American as an idea can be. As free citizens, we demand the right to choose what we want to buy and own. We have to pay for our choices, but that does not impact our right to make them. There are reasons for having more power available than you need at any one moment- driving up a steep mountain incline, entering a fast-moving freeway from a dead stop, passing another motorist on a two-lane road, towing a trailer full of lumber for a household project, and so on.
As to using nuclear ships for civilian transport, there are a whole lot of cruise ships out there just looking for every advantage to enable them to stay profitable, and none of them are selecting nuclear. There must be a reason (cost? unfavorable popular opinion of the industry? lack of appropriate nuclear waste disposal sites? etc.).
I don't mean to discourage your study of the issue, because we need all the input we can get, but I recommend you go back to the drawing board.
Thanks for you comment. I am amazed with many people's inability to see key issuees with electric cars and many other kee issues:
Fisker is in bankrupcy, Tesla probably the same, technology is simply not there yet. Every where you go with electric car you must move one ton of non efficient batteries with you. So you make cars from aluminium, kevlar to be as light as possible which is very expensive. In order for electric cars to be feasible batteries must store 10 -15 times more energy and lose 90% of weight. It will nevet happen. Existing electric cars are extremely complex and expensive, resale value is almost non existing, someone jus sued Toyota regarding economic loss of used Prius. I am for green energy but you can't use wind or solar energy since it is stationary energy. I would purchase following electric car:
1. as a second car only for my 20 miles comote to work
2. I would pay $10K not more
3. Have one transferable licence plate for 2-3 cars like in Germany and pay one insurance since I can drive only one car at a time. (uh I can see State Farm comment)
4. Cars must be light, I don't want spending to much for new tires veruy often.
5. I acn continue like this but makes no sense. See you 3 year from now and let's check where will be Fisker, Volt, Leaf and all other electric cars.
I won't own a car that tops out less than 100mph (my current rides tops out around 160). I don't drive much different than anyone else, but I have the choice and I accept 20mpg to do it. Right now my foot is the difference between 13mpg and 25mpg
I'm not an outlaw. It isn't that I plan to dust the Police if they try to stop me; I just like having the option.
We are not all that different really - Hybrid owners love to feel superior and act pretentious because they drive a limited production car. I know that I drive a superior, limited production car. The only difference is that I don't want to force anything on others that they do not want. The alternative energy sycophants think they are the only ones that should have freedom of choice; Hybrid Hypocrites.
A slew of announcements about new materials and design concepts for transportation have come out of several trade shows focusing on plastics, aircraft interiors, heavy trucks, and automotive engineering. A few more announcements have come independent of any trade shows, maybe just because it's spring.
Samsung's Galaxy line of smartphones used to fare quite well in the repairability department, but last year's flagship S5 model took a tumble, scoring a meh-inducing 5/10. Will the newly redesigned S6 lead us back into star-studded territory, or will we sink further into the depths of a repairability black hole?
Focus on Fundamentals consists of 45-minute on-line classes that cover a host of technologies. You learn without leaving the comfort of your desk. All classes are taught by subject-matter experts and all are archived. So if you can't attend live, attend at your convenience.