Hybrid Lovers Read This and Lament

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Is this a Toyota group? It looks like Ford, GM, and Chrysler in the cross-post.
The Toyota and Honda Hybrids come with recommendations for extremely low pressure in the tires, but anyone visiting an appropriate newsgroup (not these), knows that the pressure should be increased, for both handling and tire life.
Other than that, this post looks like ... complete crap.
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Clarence A Dold - Hidden Valley (Lake County) CA USA 38.8,-122.5
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snipped-for-privacy@XReXXHybri.usenet.us.com wrote:

Clarence, Nomen Nescio, whose real name is Ken Mitchell, drops in and out of NewsGroups and is generally little more than a nuisance. He is what is generally referred to as "A Legend in His Own Mind". His modus operandi is to post lengthy meandering posts, which are most often merely newspaper clips which he has plagiarized. Simply, he's not too bright - which is why he posts through anonymous remailers. He is to be pitied rather than scorned. Sad really.
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I personally do not own a prius yet but I think sometimes you have to balance out all of the bad things about the prius with some of the good. A few item I can think of are: no accessory drive belt to replace, no starter or alternator to replace (starting is handled by motor/generator1 and 12v battery charging is handled by a 100amp dc-dc converter with no moving parts that gets its power from the traction battery), long brake pad life thanks to the regenerative braking (some owners have reported better than 50% pad material remaining at 100,000 miles). The way I see it the whole point of owning the prius is not about the fuel economy, it is because they are fun to drive and are 90% cleaner than a SULEV vehicle such as my friend's ford windstar minivan (which has the infamous growling ford power steering pump with less than 80,000 miles on the clock). Also the NiMh traction batteries will not be filling up landfills they are being recycled presumably into new traction batteries and/or being made into consumer AAA, AA, etc size cells for your home use. Speaking of consumer rechargeables the mass-production of the traction batteries has desirable side affects. Less than a year ago the highest capacity AA size NiMh I could find were 2300mAh and those were from 1 brand with all of the others being lower capacity, last week I picked up an 8 pack of 2500mAh ones and there were about 4 brands to choose from at that capacity.
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On Mon, 21 Nov 2005 11:34:20 GMT, "Daniel Armstrong"

======I never knew that the Prius ran on AA NiMh batteries.

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It doesnt run on AA size but the development of better, lighter, and higher capacity modules for the car helps to make all sizes and shapes of cells better(the original 1997-2000 model in japan only did use "D" size cells in the traction battery)
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Here's an interesting article from Car & Driver on the subject:
You may want to read this.
Hybrid issues, and a rising star at Indy. BY BROCK YATES September 2005
I'm not exactly a betting man, but I'll give you 100 to 1 odds that if you're reading this nonsense you are not a hybrid-car owner. That's probably a good wager, considering that the new miracle vehicles are stuck at about a one-half-percent market share of the roughly 17 million annual new car and light-truck domestic sales and that you are vastly more likely to tear up the asphalt in a gas-swilling, earth-choking, mega-speed road rocket like the rest of us motorized Neanderthals.
Of course, if we pay attention to the Cassandra-like fulminations of the liberal media, we might be led to believe that hybrid vehicles are our only hope to save us all from ozone asphyxiation and indentured slavery to the Arab oil barons. To ignore their PC incantations and to continue our binge buying of conventional internal-combustion engines will, according to these all-knowing scribes and electronic chatterers, doom civilization to a dark age embroiled in a heat-soaked Sahara.
Yeah, maybe. Then again, maybe not. Yes, we understand the feds are giving a one-time $2000 tax credit to hybrid owners, and 16 states are offering come-on tax breaks ($1500 in Oregon, $4173 in Colorado), inspection exemptions, and single-driver use of HOV lanes as incentives.
Moreover, the hybrids being sold by Toyota, Lexus, Honda, Ford, and, soon, Chevrolet are all reasonably priced. Example: The hot-selling Toyota Prius-with a three-month waiting list in most markets-can be purchased for under $22,000 loaded (although most experts estimate that Toyota is taking a $2000 hit on each sale). The Pious-oops-Prius costs about $5000 more to manufacture than a conventional Corolla and retails for about three-grand extra.
Now let's jump ugly about the whole situation and talk a little reality. The guys at Edmunds.com, who run hard numbers about the car business as well as anyone, estimate that a Prius owner would have to drive at least 66,500 miles annually for five straight years, or gasoline would have to soar to 10 bucks a gallon, to equal the cost of operating a cheaper, conventional Corolla.
Then we have the battery pack, that heavy lump of nickel-metal hydride juice boxes that presumably improve fuel efficiency (but not that much, according to our road tests). Although the warranties are for eight years or 100,000 miles, battery replacement will cost $5300 for the Toyota and Lexus hybrids, and the Ford Escape replacements run a whopping $7200.
Moreover, the industry types aren't talking about total battery life. Will they actually last 100,000 miles? How will this affect resale value? Will the systems stay at full efficiency, or will they slowly drain power as they age or operate under heavy use? These are questions that remain to be answered, understanding that storage batteries, be they dry cells in your flashlight or exotic Ni-MHs, all have finite lives and store less power with age.
And now comes word that the computer brain inside the gas-electric grids in some Priuses is tending to go nuts. This causes instant blackout stalling at either 35 mph or 65 mph-the latter possibly in the fast lane of an interstate where 50-ton semis running 90 mph can crush compacts like beer cans.
This brings up an undiscussed issue: At some point, all these hybrid batteries will die and have to be disposed of somewhere, somehow. These are hardly biodegradable items like spoiled vegetables. They are in fact self-contained toxic waste dumps. How and where millions of these poisonous boxes will be deposited in the new hybrid nirvana has yet to be considered, much less resolved.
And speaking of the environmental component (the glamour issue centered on the brave new world of hybrids), a number of EMT and fire crews have announced that they will refuse to rescue victims trapped in such vehicles, openly fearing electrocution or fatal acid burns.
As with the now-defunct electric-car miracle, where it was quickly realized that the national power grid could not energize millions of vehicles without massive expansion of horrors-nuclear generation-the dark side of the hybrid miracle is now beginning to surface.
Says a dealer friend whose immense franchise network includes several brands offering hybrids: "There is no advantage to owning a hybrid in terms of fuel mileage when the extra cost of the vehicle is added in. Period. Do the math. This is a feel-good purchase. Hybrids are a statement about the environment, and they simply do not square with economic reality.
"The truth is, although the Prius is selling like mad, hybrid Honda Accords and Civics are backed up on dealer lots. Why? Because they look like conventional Hondas, whereas the Prius has unique styling. It has an iconic status among the Greenies. Like it or not, that's real life."
Until hybrids become economically feasible in terms of cost, reliability, and valid fuel savings and make real sense regarding performance and disposability, we're going to be driving conventional internal-combustion-powered vehicles-either gas or diesel -until rogue asteroids clean us all out.
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" I am STARTING to hear whispers that, environmentally, the Fuel cell "aint all that green".
The basic breakthrough in chemistry in the area of catalysts is still way in the future for fuel cells. Current fuel cell technology is only possible because of government support and military purchase programs that do not factor in cost effectiveness or long term reliability. People I work with in this field tell me it could be another 10 years before the technology is mature enough for it to stand on its own.
Richard.
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On Mon, 21 Nov 2005, Richard wrote:

Same goes for fuel ethanol.
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The reason the Pruis is selling better than other Hybrids, like the Civic and the Escape, is buyer don't think to compare it to Toyotas similar size car, the Corolla. Buyers looking at the other hybrids have the opportunity to compare it to the convention powered models. When they do it quickly become apparent that the premium price of driving home the hybrid model will buy nearly ALL of the fuel to power the conventional model for several years. When one factors in the enviable cost of battery replacement, at some point down the road, purchasing the conventional powered model over the hybrid becomes a no brainer. I think that says a lot about Toyota buyers
mike hunt
"Backyard Mechanic" >> "The truth is, although the Prius is selling like mad, hybrid Honda

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I say 100,000 miles for my Ford Escape. That may be 10 years for some people, two or three for others.
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Clarence A Dold - Hidden Valley (Lake County) CA USA 38.8,-122.5


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I hope you are you putting away some money to replace the battery pack a some point. Current cost of the Escape battery pack is over $7,000 ;)
mike
wrote:

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Last time this came up, I asked what the list price was at the Ford dealer for the standard 12v battery.
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Clarence A Dold - Hidden Valley (Lake County) CA USA 38.8,-122.5


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Around $30 to $60 for a lead acid battery. ;)
mike hunt
wrote:

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On Mon, 21 Nov 2005, NJ Vike quoted from Car & Driver:

No. My officemate has an '03 Honda Civic hybrid. It started giving problems on his way from Montreal to Toronto. The Integrated Motor Assist system went offline, which also meant the SLI battery (Starting, Lighting, Ignition -- the conventional 12v item under the hood) was not being charged. When he limped into the parking lot, his SLI battery read 9.9v.
Towed to the dealer, who after three days gave the diagnostic report: The traction battery's dead. Good thing the battery warranty is 6 years, otherwise it'd be a C$8,000+ event. Dealer claims this is the first-ever failure of a traction battery in a Honda hybrid of any year or model, anywhere in the world (Sure, right...) and that a new traction battery has to be brought in from Japan, which will take AT LEAST three weeks.
Of course, there are multiple different issues going on here. There's the car problem itself, then there's the dealer's fairy tales. I can think of half a dozen courier companies that'll happily get a package from Japan to North America in a matter of a couple of days, so that shoots the "three weeks to come from Japan" theory all to hell. And if this were indeed the very first-ever instance of this heretofore unheard-of failure in one of Honda's high-profile, high-PR-value enviro models, one would think the company would be falling all over itself to make the repair as quickly as possible to keep the customer as quiet as possible about it.

Pah. What resale value? This kind of traction battery failure does NOT bode well for the durability of these cars. Sure, it's covered under his battery warranty. The new replacement battery does not reset the battery warranty clock. What about in 5 years? They are disposable cars. 10 years *tops*. More like "end of warranty plus time to next failure".

NiMH batteries are indeed hair-raisingly toxic and expensive to reclaim/recycle. Once no longer in the dealer chain, they will simply get tossed -- along with the rest of the car.
DS
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The whole idea of hybrids is stupid. Just make cars smaller and leave out all the useless crap. Detroit could easily build a 2500 pound family car that gives 40 mpg and costs $8,000 brand new and gives 250,000 trouble-free miles on nothing but routine maintenance.
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to say this in rec.autos.driving on 21 Nov 2005 09:35:24 -0800:

<intro to business lesson>
Then why don't they?
</intro to business lesson>
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necromancer wrote:

Cause they make more selling the $50,000 cars with all sorts of useless gadgets. You think they sell AC and CD players and electric seats at cost??
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Laura Bush murdered her boy friend wrote:

Have a good weekend at the bath house, pud licker?
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On 21 Nov 2005 15:16:32 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@spamgourmet.com wrote:

Thank you for addressing the issue.
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