Last post on Nov 13, 2008 at 12:13 PM
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Toyota Highlander Hybrid, Honda Civic, Hybrid Cars
Aug 04, 2008 (5:26 am)
I would buy an EV if it was available. Not too interested in the PHEV. Just too much crap to go bad over the long haul. Several years ago I wanted a GEM in the worst way to beat out the oil companies. It was Government regulations that blocked me. They are only legal on roads posted 35 MPH and below. The Xebra was just not a well built vehicle for the $12k price tag. Now GEM is importing the ACE and I would consider one of those. I think the regulators will do everything in their power to block EVs.
Tata and Chrysler sign deal to import electric Ace
Chrysler's Global Electric Motorcars division (GEM) is working with Tata to import fully-assembled vehicles that meet all the appropriate U.S. regulations. The battery-operated Ace has successfully navigated the required safety tests, and they're reportedly ready for production. Tata wants to eventually export up to 50,000 vehicles to the US, but they've pegged the goal for 2008 at 10,000 units. This is definitely the year to keep an eye on Tata.
Aug 04, 2008 (6:06 am)
"If plug-in technology can prove it's reliability and reduce it's price premium then it becomes a no-brainer. I don't blame people for wanting to stay on the sidelines for a few years. Personally I'm also watching from the sidelines but am definitely rooting for the EV's to prevail. "
Absolutely. I look at the options being discussed, and think some combination of HEV/PHEV/EVs it the only option we have for the next 10+ years as an add-on to ICEs. The massive expenditures on hydrogen aren't going to yield anything in that time period, if ever. We already have the distribution system up, running, and tested for PHEV/EVs, unlike hydrogen. Yes, there will be some capacity constraints, but we know how to build power plants.
Aug 04, 2008 (3:31 pm)
"Chrysler's Global Electric Motorcars division (GEM) is working with Tata to import fully-assembled vehicles that meet all the appropriate U.S. regulations. The battery-operated Ace has successfully navigated the required safety tests, and they're reportedly ready for production. Tata wants to eventually export up to 50,000 vehicles to the US, but they've pegged the goal for 2008 at 10,000 units. This is definitely the year to keep an eye on Tata."
Does that big box in the back house the batteries?
#324 of 330 Re: [stevedebi]
Aug 04, 2008 (4:02 pm)
Looks like they use them for appliance delivery in India.
I just wonder what kind of range they have. I imagine with lead acid somewhere in the 25 mile range. It would work for me if it was legal. I can live with 25 MPH running my errands. The problem is the roads are all narrow and 45-50 MPH posted. Most places you cannot pass the bike riders without crossing the double yellow lines. I can imagine getting a few folks miffed at me plugging along at 25 MPH. The nursery I use is only 6 miles and all the stores we shop at most of the time are only 3 miles.
#326 of 330 Hybrid vehicles on delivery routes
Aug 15, 2008 (1:44 pm)
I'm employed by the post office as a rural mail carrier in NH, and my daily drive consists of a 30 mi. interstate highway commute, a 30 mi. mail route with approximately 500 stops and some instances with speeds above 30mph, then the reverse 30 mi. homeward commute. I currently drive a late model Ford Taurus wagon and get about 9mpg on the route and about 15mpg overall. This gets expensive! I've been thinking about the practicality of a hybrid vehicle, particularly the Escape or the Prius. I've test driven the Escape (and liked it) and have spoken to Prius-owning friends. (The Escape has an advantage because of the greater interior volume). Both vehicle present some problems in conversion to right-hand operation for the route. I have had concerns as to whether a hybrid would hold up to this fairly severe duty cycle or likely be running on engine for much of the route. The discussion now about plug-in hybrids has me interested again. Does anyone know of hybrids, regular or plug-in, having been used in circumstances similar to mine? I see A123 has an operation in Watertown, MA., not far from me. Does anyone know how I can contact someone in their tech department to query them?
#328 of 330 Re: Hybrid vehicles on delivery routes [docvox]
Aug 15, 2008 (5:28 pm)
Is your Taurus high enough that you can reach the mailboxes without a strain? I would think the Prius would be ideal if you could get it converted and reach the boxes without a strain. The Escape would be ok also. Though you would probably get 10-15 MPG more from the Prius. Unless you have deep pockets I would avoid any after market plug in kits. They DO void the warranty as soon as you install them. You should be able to triple your mileage with a Prius. They have lots of room if you fold down the seats. I would try to order one built for the UK with right hand drive.
#329 of 330 I *KNEW* someone would start doing this soon !!
Sep 10, 2008 (7:08 am)
A long time ago I posted that this would happen. People would put solar panels on parking garages and allow PHEVs and EVs to plug in.
It's finally happening in San Diego. Let's hope it's a trend which catches on !!!
UCSD Solarizes outside parking
UCSD is a sunny campus, and they’re taking advantage of it. As a way to capture more renewable energy, they’ve planted Solar Trees on the roofs of two parking garages. The trees shade vehicles and soak up sun.
I am starting to get frustrated that most parking lots and structures don’t already have these – how absolutely perfect are they? Everyone wants to park in the shade or in a sheltered spot, and businesses can always use the extra energy.
Anyway, the trees also provide outlets so that students and faculty with plug-in hybrids and EVs can utilize the energy collected, which is a serious incentive for people who are considering buying hybrids…free energy? Yes, please.
The best part for UCSD is that the trees were covered by three local companies, so the university is billed monthly for the electricity received, but didn’t have to provide any initial investment.
The solar trees are intended to be functional as well as look cool, with "trunks" and "branches." This kind of biomimicry is beginning to grow, with designers working to blend solar panels into environments in a more natural-ish way.
Each tree can generate more than 17,000 hours of energy annually. This kind of green initiative could be great for a whole lot of other universities. Hopefully they get the green bug and start “planting.”
Nov 13, 2008 (12:13 pm)
A reporter from a national magazine would like to speak with Toyota Prius owners who have bought the Hymotion kit to convert their car into plug-in hybrid. If you own or drive one of these converted vehicles, please respond to jwahledmunds.com with your daytime contact information no later than Monday, November 17th.