GM, Ford, Chrysler vs. Toyota, Nissan, Honda production

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mailinglists wrote:


Try $1.40 and falling.
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Here throughout California, it's still $2.
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This morning I've paid $1.46 for premium. Regular was $1.36.
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I don't see how that could be since the price difference is always 10 cents, therefore regular is 1.36 then plus would be 1.46 and premium would be 1.56
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No, sir. Premium is 10c more than regular at this gas station. Plus is 5c more. I only get fuel where the span is at most 10c. This is becoming more and more common around here, I don't know if it's the same where you live.
I wish I had a picture of the price billboard, because I suspect you'll never believe me until you see it.
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You are correct in that I won't believe it until I see it, I have lived in Illinois, Ohio, Virginia, Washington state, California and Guam and it has always been 10 cents each octane higher. But I don't really want to argue about it, you may be right or I may be right, lets leave it at that.
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And the world can't be bigger than that...

Whatever. FWIW, gas prices are farther and farther from $2 around here: http://www.austingasprices.com /
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Average among the 4 gas stations within .5 miles for regular is $1.77 here in Rhode Island.
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Crunchy Cookie wrote:

You'll notice that the new Prius comes pretty well loaded up - like a middle-trim Camry.

More than that with the tax rebate. Only fair, IMO, since it pollutes a fraction of a typical engine, and the first year registration is pretty close to $1000.
Oh - the new one? 55mpg average. ~440 a year in gas. Roughly three years and seven months to make up the difference.
Call it four. That's as short as the typical loan periods get.(48 months)
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No one in the press ever managed to get more than about 35MPG in that thing.

Until one needs to replace teh 5-year rated battery pack for measly $3000...

Minus 3 battery packs, ringing $9000, that's $5000 more expensive!
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Whoopee. Of my 3 daily-driven vehicles, one is 37 years old with 265,000 miles, one is 30 years old with 430,000 miles, and one is 11 years old with 205,000 miles. A Dodge, a Plymouth, and an Eagle.
Toyota impresses me not.
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Neo wrote:

Actually, the packs are good for ten years or 200K miles and real world driving has verified the 200K part. 7 years so far on the others - and a mere handful of failures at the 7 year mark.
This is the real deal and not a piece of junk like the EV-1
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I just told you I think CR got 40 in mixed driving. Now that I looked it up for sure, I was wrong. They got 41.
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Thanks for digging that up.
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Crunchy Cookie wrote:

FYI, the Pruis came out in Japan seven years ago. It's had plenty of time to work the bugs out and is now in its second generation. The plan is to use this version for 3-4 years and then redesign it again.
Newer technology, batteries, bit better power - and stuff that into a larger, heavier car. You guessed it - a Camry.(the 2004 Pruis is about 80% as large as a Camry). The 4 cylinder Camry will go bye-bye and you'll get hybrid efficiency and the same performance for the same price.
GM and Ford - kludge city. They are TEN YEARS behind Toyota on building hybrid designs and the best they can rush to the market will be a first generation design with tons of bugs and horrible efficiency. Honda is already nearing the end of its first hybrid design and gearing up for a second generation as well.(Maybe 2-3 years from now, about the time GM anf Ford make competing designs.
Oh - Honda and Toyota are making a profit on these(if a slim one). GM? $40K or sell at a loss.
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GM and Ford aren't 10 years behind in hybrid technology because the most important parts of this technology were invented outside the industry, so every car maker has access to the very same technology. What's wrong is that GM, Ford, and Chrysler just don't run their design projects very well, probably because their companies are dominated by business types rather than engineering types. I don't have experience with Japanese car maker, but in their other companies, management doesn't seem to overrule the engineers nearly as much, except when they want them to do better.
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R. Anton Rave wrote:

Sure, but Toyota has seven years of real-world data and working out the bugs in a real vhehicle. Not prototypes. Not new implimentations. 200K+ miles on numerous vehicles used for deliveries and as Taxis, plus tens of thousands of U.S. sales. (started in 1997 in Japan)
That gives them a full generation leap on everyone else other than Honda, which is not as efficient as design.
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And it took GM to figure out a worthy application for that...
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Crunchy Cookie wrote:

Oh gimme a freaking BREAK.
Horsepower per liter means NOTHING. Less than nothing. Its a non-issue, except for bragging rights in glossy advertising. It means nothing in terms of efficiency. It usually has NEGATIVE implications in terms of reliability and driveability. There's nothing I need less than an engine that I must wind out to 8500 RPM just to keep up with traffic in my commute to work. Its another one of those things that gets the automotive press all hot and steamy, but is absolutely meaningless in the real world, except in the rarefied air of racing rules where there's some displacement limit. Here's a hint- there IS no displacement limit on street cars, so using displacement to improve efficiency, reliability, and driveability is a GOOD thing. Even if it doesn't yield "horsepower per liter" bragging rights.
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Just mention one Honda with such steering, one Infinity or Nissan with active suspension and a Subaru with CVT.

They really started with valve lift, not timing...

I believe that one could mention success and disaster stories about each and every manufacturer.

It remains to be seen if hybrids will go the way of 4-wheel steering, Waenkel or mainstream...
BTW, I'd never group each and every Japanese manufacturer in the same group of innovators or makers of fine cars...
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