Re: Toyota Prius Being Investigated by the Fed
"Jeff" <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote in part:
>"Jim Chinnis" <jchinnis@SPAMalum.mit.edu> wrote in message
>> "Jeff" <email@example.com> wrote in part:
>>>One thing that is not considered is the environmental costs of building a
>>>hybrid, e.g., the extra materials for the motor and especially the
>> People have done such analyses, coming up with figures for various
>> types of environmental harm from the total "cradle-to-grave"
>> What I've seen is very favorable for hybrids. The batteries are
>> completely non-toxic. You could grind 'em up and make playground
>> equipment out of 'em.
>That's good. Of course, you have to look at the cost of getting the nickel
>out of the ground, too.
That's part of the $3000 premium.
>>>Also, the metals in the battery have to be disposed of at some point.
>>>A much better way to save fuel is to get a more fuel-efficent truck or
>>>If you increase the fuel milage from 10 mpg to 15 mph, you save twice as
>>>much gas as you do when you increase the fuel mileage from 20 to 30 mpg.
>> Not sure I follow. If you mean that people are wasteful and buy
>> big trucks for the hell of it--yeah, some do. Tax and regulatory
>> pressures can maybe address some of that.
>Unless you make illegal for someone with money to buy a big SUV, they will.
Sure. They also have huge homes with fireplaces going while the
air conditioning runs.
>> If you mean that it would be better to build hybrid versions of
>> large SUVs and trucks, I agree.
>Although I agree that it is better to have hybrid versions of an SUV, I
>meant that one would save more gas by going from a big SUV to a small one
>than from a small gas car to a more efficient one (which is what a hybrid
That's the earlier point. People choose bigger vehicles for the
image sometimes. For safety. For hauling big loads. Some choices
are optional and some aren't.
>> I think some of the emphasis on
>> relatively small vehicles for hybrid platforms has been due to the
>> greater willingness of individuals to pay for lower emissions.
>Plus it is easier to build a small hybrid than a big one, because you need
>smaller motors and batteries although NYC does have some hybrid buses. NYC
>is able to usedeisel hybrid instead of compterss natural gas, because the
>exhaust is so clean.
I don't think Ford would have any problem builder bigger stuff...
>> Part of producing lower emissions is using as small a vehicle as
>> possible. Businesses don't have the same latitude, unfortunately.
>> Unless there is an economic advantage to hybrids in the pattern of
>> use they require, they aren't likely to buy.
>> If you look at savings in business applications where the vehicle
>> racks up lots of miles fast, the current hybrid technology pays
>> for itself very quickly. Even at current low US fuel prices, a
>> diesel-electric hybrid in a big rig could probably pay for itself
>> quickly if the vehicle is in heavy use. I imagine there will be
>> some introduced, especially if fuel prices rise.
>This is true only for vehicles that stop and start a lot, like buses in
>cities. For long haul trucks, I don't think you save nearly as much. (I
>could be wrong.) For the Ford Escape, you go from 25 mpg to 29 mpg, only a
>16% gain, compared with going from 22 to about 33 mpg, a 50% gain.
The biggest payoff is in varied-load driving. A long, flat highway
trip doesn't benefit much from the hybrid.
>For big trucks, I would suspect that the gain would be even lower, as a
>percentage, on the highway. Of course, trucks do stop at truck stops and go
>into cities to make deliveries, so that they would save money.
>However, if a truck got a 5% gain, and the gain cost $10,000 (meaning about
>5000 gal of deisel), then, assuming 6 mpg, you will burn about 170 gals /
>1000 miles. That would save about $17 / 1000 miles. That would take about
>600,000 miles to get the money back.
Even with your 5% assumption, that could be just two years on a
long-haul truck. (But I don't think long-haul trucks are a likely
target for hybrid technology!)
>However, I would imagine that if it costs $3000 for a escape hybrid system,
>it would cost more that 3.3 times more for a truck hybrid system.
>Considering that truck motors last more 1,000,000 mi, it seems reasonable
>that one could save money by using a hybrid in a tractor trailer.
Jim Chinnis Warrenton, Virginia, USA