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Chrysler, Mazda, Mercedes-Benz, Mercury, Chevrolet Impala, Chevrolet Monte Carlo, Chevrolet Avalanche, Alternative Fuels, Hybrid Cars, Coupe, Hatchback, Truck, Sedan, SUV
#1257 of 2104 Re: Hybrid hot rods [socala4]
Jun 22, 2006 (9:16 pm)
You've either described a perpetual motion machine or a hybrid
We have trolleys running all over San Diego on electric. I think he was putting forth an electrified road system that was projected when I was a kid in the 1950s. I guess we just have not advanced very far in the last 55 years. We let the oil companies and the automakers dictate what we should or should not drive. Has nothing much to do with what we want. I have not been able to buy what I really want for 30 years. All my vehicle purchases were compromises.
and best of all, the market seems ready to embrace it. You can't say that about electric cars
I can and will continue to say that. I test drove the first Prius in San Diego twice. I thought it was cool. Wife hated it and we did not buy it. They had two and they were there for two months. They called me several times to reconsider. The biggest selling point for me was 8 years 100k miles Bumper to bumper. What did I have to lose $20k even. They were saying at that time in 2000 that Toyota had $35k in each Prius. The Prius Classic was never a success here or abroad. The Prius II came out in late 2003 with all the fanfare and freebies for the Hollywood elite. That is what sold the car. Just like the diesels and EVs the Prius has been dribbled out so that you do not know the true market value. That is the part you leave out. People want what is in short supply. If the market gets flooded with diesels and hybrids, neither one may sell. That is when I pop in and buy at a decent price. Never pay MSRP for a vehicle.
#1258 of 2104 Re: Hybrid hot rods [socala4]
Jun 22, 2006 (9:26 pm)
You have not demonstrated any reason to believe that your chosen favorites have any hope of success
Likewise, you have not shown that if they are offered people would not buy both diesels and EVs. I guess we will not know who has the insight until they are offered. I can tell you one thing for sure. My phone rang off the hook when I put my 2005 Passat Wagon diesel up for sale. It would have been easy to sell a dozen at more than I paid the year before. looks like about 9 people are trying to cash in on the diesels. Average asking price about $3000 over what was paid new a year ago. Yeah your right no demand. You need to get out more and see what people really want. I had to turn down 3 friends that wanted my Passat. I never sell cars to friends. Kind of a shame as it was a great car. I do miss it as cars go. Not as much as I would miss having a PU truck.
#1259 of 2104 Re: Hybrid hot rods [gagrice]
Jun 22, 2006 (9:27 pm)
I think he was putting forth an electrified road system that was projected when I was a kid in the 1950s.
This was what I alluded to -- electric cars have been all talk and no walk for fifty years now. It's a mature technology that has nothing to show for itself, with largely the same problems that it had during the sixties.
Whether or not you like it, this is a reality that you have to face in considering its odds for gaining acceptance. And we've had fifty years to find a market for it, with no successful from anyone, large or small.
The thing I don't understand is why the EV crowd seems so hostile to hybrids. It's as if it's an emotional reaction -- perhaps there is a belief that the hybrid is a "sell out" to the petroleum industry, or that this is part of a conspiracy to keep us hooked on oil?
If anything, the best hope for the electric car is the hybrid, because of all of the R&D work that will ultimately contribute to the electrical aspects of the car. You should be happy that Toyota is behind this, you have one of the most creative, profitable and well managed car makers on the planet taking an interest in this stuff.
And if there are companies on earth that would be most interested in electric cars, it would be the Japanese. Japan is wholly dependent on imported oil -- it has no oil of its own -- and gas is taxed to a point that pump prices in Japan are among the world's highest. Not only do the high prices prepare the consumer for an alternative, but the government would probably appreciate a way to make the economy more immune to oil shocks and the inflation that comes from them. If the Japanese automakers saw a bright future with electric cars, they'd be pushing forward to build them, but obviously they don't.
#1260 of 2104 Re: Hybrid hot rods [gagrice]
Jun 22, 2006 (9:30 pm)
Likewise, you have not shown that if they are offered people would not buy both diesels and EVs
For one, that's a logical fallacy, it's not up to me to prove a negative. If there is a market, then those who claim there to be are obliged to show it.
For another, the past sales data and the behavior of automakers make it very clear that they don't see it. Nobody who understands the market sees this becoming anything more than a niche product, I've not seen a single source that validates your view that there is a great future for diesel in the US. Europe, yes, but the US, no.
#1261 of 2104 Re: Hybrid hot rods [socala4]
Jun 22, 2006 (9:35 pm)
You should be happy that Toyota is behind this
Another case of not learning the facts. The Prius was a direct result of TMC R&D on the RAV4 Electric Vehicle. Without GM the Prius would have never gotten on the road. Toyota tried to steal the NiMH batteries without paying royalties and lost a big lawsuit. Toyota is a copy cat company since inception. Nothing has changed other than they are doing a better job now than in the 1960s. Chrysler was several years ahead of Toyota on hybrids and junked the project because they were too expensive for the public to buy into. They misjudged the "sucker factor" in America.
#1262 of 2104 Re: Hybrid hot rods [socala4]
Jun 22, 2006 (9:39 pm)
that's a logical fallacy
Only in your mind. Do you think that Toyota and now Honda were successful in the EU with their gas guzzling cars. No they were not. They had to sell diesel cars to have any market share. So they have the technology and now that Honda is using their own diesel engines it will be interesting to see if they make a concerted effort to regain their position using diesel. Their hybrids were all but a flop, Civic excepted.
#1263 of 2104 Re: Hybrid hot rods [gagrice]
Jun 22, 2006 (9:46 pm)
Do you think that Toyota and now Honda were successful in the EU with their gas guzzling cars. No they were not. They had to sell diesel cars to have any market share.
OK, Gagrice, would you care to explain why Europeans like diesel, and Americans don't? If you can, it might give you a sense of why its popular in one place, and not the other.
(If your answer involves some sort of conspiracy theory, I'm going to skip over and ask you again, so please, something based upon actual facts as you understand them.)
#1264 of 2104 Re: Hybrid hot rods [socala4]
Jun 22, 2006 (9:50 pm)
Three good reasons:
Diesel is taxed less than gas.
Diesel gets better mileage than gas.
Diesel cars perform better where most drivers like them to.
Why Americans don't like diesel:
Ignorance and lack of choices.
Diesel costs less to refine. I know in CA it is taxed higher to cover the highway abuse by truck drivers.
#1265 of 2104 Re: Hybrid hot rods [gagrice]
Jun 22, 2006 (10:03 pm)
Diesel cars perform better where most drivers like them to.
You were doing well with the first two, but I don't know what this is supposed to mean.
For one, most drivers in Europe still seem to prefer gas cars, given the sales figures, and that's despite the higher cost of the fuel and the ready availability of the alternative fuel. For another, I think we've already covered that two turbocharged engines of equal size will see better acceleration and top speed performance from the gas version than from the diesel.
Ignorance and lack of choices
You need to learn from GM's mistakes -- the customer is always right, and blaming the consumer for not liking your product is the fault of the seller, not the customer. You can bet that the product and/or the marketing is flawed.
For another, you don't seem to see the correlation between the lack of demand and the lack of desire by automakers to provide choices that nobody wants.
Makers such as Audi and BMW make diesels for Europe that they don't sell here. I'd say that they're pretty wise, and can't see why they should work hard to sell cars that not many people would buy. Their US customers have other preferences, and they market what they think will be profitable. It's the same reason why Baskin Robbins doesn't sell ice cream made out of garlic and jalapenos -- not because they can't or of some grand conspiracy, but because they can't see anyone wanting to buy it.
#1266 of 2104 Re: Hybrid hot rods [socala4]
Jun 23, 2006 (4:08 am)
Diesel cars can give drivers what they lust for: low end torque. Typically this low end torque is from a relatively small displacement engine (but with high -- relative -- volumetric displacement [a.k.a. not naturally aspirated].)
Despite this, you have identified with facts the truth of the situation: 30% of the EU mkt is diesel. We know that means 70% is not. 70% of the premium and super premium mkts, however, are diesels. How long will be required for the trickle down? until the total market reaches 50+% diesel?
Beats me. It does appear that the total mkt for diesel in that part of the world continues to grow.
Will that translate to US sales. Again, beats me. Predictions, at this point, from folks apparently far more in a position to know that are we, range from 5% to 20% with 30% being a kind of holy grail number that I really doubt can happen without some impetus that is neither here nor on the immediate horizon.
The Bosch interview link I posted, despite its self-serving bent, does seem to argue that 15% penetration is what it believed to be likely. According to the EPA that would, however, cut our middle eastern oil importation by 50%. Time will tell.
The Germans, thus far, have not brought the recent generation of diesels to the US for the reasons you cite -- overall they would not be purchased by many folks. Die hard Mercedes diesel owners are probably the exception to that.
But another reason for the lack of diesels pushed by the three Germans we often cite: they run on a type of fuel that we have not, still do not, offer -- this fuel is mandated to be available starting now and the transition has to be complete by 2007.
Even such a switchover to this so called clean diesel fuel is certainly no guarantee of sales for Audi, BMW and Mercedes. Apparently, they have decided to test the waters with the US buyers, though, as they will be bringing the diesel powered vehicles here within the next one to two year time frame.
Will diesel catch on? It hasn't so far -- but there have not been reasons for it do be able to do so. If the diesel sales in the US don't make sense, Audi, BMW and Mercedes will withdraw them -- assuming they bring them to market in the high end and "big dog" cars. Even the BMW 3 series, eventually, will need to be offered in a diesel and available to be ordered with all the toys of the gas versions if they are to succeed.
At this point, Audi sells 50% of its total production as diesels; one can assume some pretty decent numbers from BMW and Mercedes, too -- but in full disclosure, I haven't found these data points.
Maybe if and when US customers get a taste of the "feel behind the wheel" there will be sufficient demand to "encourage" a go to market strategy from other companies (US companies perhaps?)
I tend to agree, however, that diesel may have a tough row to hoe in the US. Some things never catch on here.
On the other hand, there are cycles of popularity (and that is what it would take -- popularity) that originate elsewhere and do catch on here. I remember trips to Italy over the past two decades where I will eat certain foods and wonder "why not in America" -- then a few years later, they pop up here "as if" we discovered them.
Hope is not a strategy -- hope is hope. I hope for modern, clean AND very powerful diesels to be in my future.
As an army of one, I would vote thusly with my dollars.
Screaming voice in the wilderness, out.