Maybe I'm a cynic, but IMO the current government is pushing hybrids,
hydrogen, ethanol, etc. to distract the public and shut down
discussion of measures which might actually reduce fuel consumption.
The subsidy for hybrids is a tiny fraction of the subsidy for real
estate agents to buy Hummers. Throwing a little money at fuel cell
research is much cheaper and much more over-the-horizon than improving
mass transit. Any measures which might decrease fuel consumption by
monster SUVs are strictly off the table.
Message from Gordon McGrew written on 2/4/2006 11:57 AM:
Doesn't GM have a hybrid Silverado truck now? And doesn't both Ford and
Toyota have hybrid versions of some of their SUV's. I would think that
would make them more fuel efficient (if one can afford to buy them!)
Go to the Chevy web site and see how much information you can find on
this "hybrid." Then see how much information is available on the
"THUNDERING 345-HP VORTEC MAX 6000 V8"
The Ford and Toyota might theoretically save some fuel if they replace
a vehicle of equivalent size, but I don't wee many out there compared
to the number of Avalanches and Tahoes driving around. In any event,
my criticism isn't of hybrids, it's of the government policies that
throw a few crumbs at a huge problem while refusing to take the most
simple steps toward reforming defective regulations. For example,
what is the EPA fuel economy of a Hummer H2? Give up? It's a trick
question. It doesn't have one because it is not a light truck. It
doesn't count against the GM CAFE.
Message from Gordon McGrew written on 2/4/2006 6:39 PM:
If the government got back into this they would just mess it up worse
than it already is at best and create even worse "unintended
consequences". CAFE is a big contributor to what pushed people to buy
these monstrosities. And all because a family sedan or wagon that could
tow 5000 pounds and haul 7 people around couldn't be built any longer
and still meet CAFE. The American family still had the requirement for
vehicles with those capabilities. Enter the scene first was the minivan
(as a people mover, not so much a tow vehicle), followed by the SUV that
covers both requirements
Before you say anything, I drive a mid-sized sedan and never owned an
SUV. But when the kids were still around, we simply didn't all fit in a
"sedan" and needed at least a minivan. So that is what we had.
numbers are important.
A properly designed hybrid sizes the IC engine to equal the AVERAGE
power requirement, the electric motor to fit the difference between
desired PEAK and the AVERAGE.
Many of these so-called hybrids have very large IC engines with a small
electric motor to provide a slight performance boost. Yeah, they are
technically hybrids, but not worth much. A 300 hp IC engine and a 25
horse electric is not going to save you much gas.
I agree. The amount of increased spending the administration is talking
about is minimal, and it is going to be directed in some wrong ways. We
don't NEED fuel cells to run our cars on hydrogen. The gasoline or
diesel engine can be easily adapted to run on hydrogen. We need the
research on how to economically OBTAIN hydrogen.
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