backtop


Print 105 comment(s) - last by afkrotch.. on Feb 17 at 2:43 AM


GM's 2010 Chevy Volt will offer 40 all-electric miles on a charge and will then get 50 mpg running on its gas-burning engine-generator system. GM is paying a lot of attention to fine details on the vehicle and is getting some help from Bose and Goodyear to help deliver the promised range.

GM is working with communities and cities to make electric charging stations a common site. This should help give the Volt a boost.
GM promises lots of improvements each year are in store for the Volt

General Motors' Chevrolet Volt will launch late in 2010 and is expected to usher in a new era for vehicles powered primarily by batteries. The four-passenger Volt can travel 40 miles on battery power alone and can be recharged either via its onboard gasoline engine-generator (which gets 50 mpg) or from a household outlet overnight (or at local charging stations).

Now that GM is getting closer to the launch of the vehicle, more information is being revealed about how the company plans to keep the vehicle up to date while at the same time lowering production costs and space requirements for critical components.

GM says that Volt customers can expect to see frequent updates each year, something virtually unheard of in the automotive world.  Frank Weber, GM's global vehicle line executive for the Volt describes, "This is almost like getting software updates into your car.  This is not a mechanical world. This is suddenly you get updates, improvements much more rapidly.  So, even within a vehicle lifecycle you will see updates that are very significant."

Top on GM's wish list is improving the Volt's battery.  GM wants to cut the costs of producing the battery, so that the Volt can be cost competitive with its other offerings eventually.  On the same note, it wants the battery to be smaller as well.  The battery, a 400-pound (181 kg) T-shaped battery pack, has cells manufactured by Korea's LG Chem, while the pack itself is assembled by GM in the U.S.  GM has not ruled out using A123's competitive designs, should they mature sufficiently.

GM officials reiterate that the goal with the battery improvements is not to extend the range the vehicle can go before burning gas, which they believe is already sufficient.  Rather, size and cost are the driving concerns.  States Mr. Weber, "My goal is not to go from 40 to 60 (miles) in the next generation vehicles.  My expectation is that the battery is equally capable, but they are half the size and half the cost of the batteries that go into the car right now."

Mr. Weber believes that the Volt is much more competitive than other plug-in hybrids coming to the market or pure electrics.  He believes the Volt's battery system is a solid platform, and should last several generations of vehicles via iterative improvements.  Furthermore, he believes the general market just isn't ready for battery-pack only vehicles like Tesla Motors' Roadster (without gasoline generators like the Volt).  Given the lengths GM had to go to deliver a 40 mile range on a battery pack not priced astronomically high -- including reducing friction on the tires and the battery drain from electronics such as stereo systems -- this assertion seems fair.

Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. is providing the special new tires to the Volt to help reduce its friction with the road.   Bose is applying its expertise to developing a lightweight extra energy efficient premium stereo system for the car as well.

Before porting the Volt's drive system to other vehicles in its lineup, GM plans on focusing on the Volt's success. States Weber, "Before we talk about diversification on the portfolio side, there is enough market for a vehicle that provides this level of functionality and performance." 

In 2010, GM plans on putting 10,000 Volts on the market.  It plans to increase this number to 60,000 a year within a few years.  GM has already stated that it expects to see no profits on the first generation of the Volt, which cost $750M USD already to develop.  The company, though, sees the vehicle as the defining symbol of its new forward-looking image and a critical component to its long term success.



Comments     Threshold


This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled

BOSE?
By Chris Peredun on 2/13/2009 9:32:30 AM , Rating: 5
As if the Volt wasn't expensive enough already.




RE: BOSE?
By RjBass on 2/13/09, Rating: 0
RE: BOSE?
By Insomniator on 2/13/2009 10:01:37 AM , Rating: 5
Are you blaming GM for not developing hybrid tech in 1970?!


RE: BOSE?
By RjBass on 2/13/2009 10:08:14 AM , Rating: 1
No. I am blaming GM and the other big American auto manufacturers for not trying to do something different back in the 70's. Why is it that the most powerful and richest nation in the world is still dependent upon Mid East oil while now Brasil, seeing the need to change in 1978 did what it had to do and is now almost completely foreign oil free?

Why is it that GM and Ford can build and sell fantastic little cars in Brasil that run on E85 or E10 or even regular unleaded, and can achieve up to 46mpg but they can't do it here in the US?


RE: BOSE?
By bhieb on 2/13/2009 10:13:41 AM , Rating: 4
Because the market historically has not wanted them. So you want GM to make a lower profit margin car, just because? It is business man pull your head out and realize that they make what sells.


RE: BOSE?
By crimson117 on 2/13/09, Rating: 0
RE: BOSE?
By omnicronx on 2/13/2009 10:32:15 AM , Rating: 1
I agree, there was also no market for computers at home, and look how that turned out. If all businesses were reactive instead of proactive, we would all still be typing on our typewriters and sending mail via telegraph. Historically those that wait around get burned at one time or another, and it seems in this case the Big 3 definitely fall into that category.


RE: BOSE?
By ebakke on 2/13/2009 10:38:31 AM , Rating: 4
The argument isn't that a company should never produce a product for which there was little demand at one point in time. The argument is that a company shouldn't produce a product at the time in which there is little demand. And until very recently, the US market had very little demand for high fuel efficiency.


RE: BOSE?
By bhieb on 2/13/2009 10:48:13 AM , Rating: 4
Thanks was about to post the same thought. Apple did not create the iPod becuase it saw some greater good, it did so becuase they saw a market for it. Very few businesses take huge risks building a product that they don't see a market for. And sorry but there was very little market share available for econoboxes until recently, and the niche that was there was already being filled by the Japanese makers. GM was content to sell the higher demand and higher profit margin trucks. Sure hindsight is 20/20, but don't act like GM is the only one, just that they are MUCH more leveraged in that market. Funny the only Superbowl add for Toyota was for the Tundra ... seems like they kinda jumped on the same boat huh.


RE: BOSE?
By kerpwnt on 2/13/09, Rating: 0
RE: BOSE?
By omnicronx on 2/13/2009 11:07:47 AM , Rating: 2
I don't think you realize that all the technology you use today was not invented for the 'greater good'. That being said, most of the technological advancement we see today were developed by those who took risks, not those who focused exclusively on margins and profitability. In hindsight to do you really think it was a good business decision for GM to put all the eggs in one basket on high margin vehicles such as SUV's and trucks? Yes they made money for a while, but it was a ticking time bomb just waiting to explode in their face.
quote:
Very few businesses take huge risks building a product that they don't see a market for. And sorry but there was very little market share available for econoboxes until recently, and the niche that was there was already being filled by the Japanese makers.
And these are the businesses that lack longevity. I find it funny you mention Apple here, because they did take a proactive approach. Apple made computers, not entertainment devices, it was a very bold move for them to put so much into the ipod in an unproven market, it was nothing more than speculation. If they had just sat back, and continued only selling computers, do you really think they would be in the position they are in today?


RE: BOSE?
By ebakke on 2/13/2009 2:15:22 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
That being said, most of the technological advancement we see today were developed by those who took risks, not those who focused exclusively on margins and profitability.
Agreed, though you need those profitable products to fund your non-so-profitable research, prototypes, failures, etc.
quote:
In hindsight to do you really think it was a good business decision for GM to put all the eggs in one basket on high margin vehicles such as SUV's and trucks?
No sane person thinks it's a good idea to put all of your resources into one thing. That's like putting your entire 401k in one stock. But it does make sense to weight your portfolio towards things that are your high performers. I don't think anyone's saying (or at least I'm not) GM did no wrong. It seems to be more of an understanding as to why they were selling so many trucks/SUVs. Yes, they should have been investing resources into some backup plans, but it made perfect sense for them to sell as many high margin vehicles as they possible could, for as long as they possibly could.
quote:
If they had just sat back, and continued only selling computers, do you really think they would be in the position they are in today?
...or not selling computers, which more accurately describes what they were doing.


RE: BOSE?
By Athena on 2/13/2009 9:12:09 PM , Rating: 4
quote:
And sorry but there was very little market share available for econoboxes until recently, and the niche that was there was already being filled by the Japanese makers.
In other words, there was a market but the Detroit manufacturers didn't think it was significant so they left it to others -- which is exactly why their share of the total US market share is now less than 43%.

To put it another way, 57% of vehicles sold in this country were designed and developed by manufacturers who saw opportunity that, by Detroit standards, didn't exist.


RE: BOSE?
By Athena on 2/13/2009 9:26:57 PM , Rating: 4
quote:
And until very recently, the US market had very little demand for high fuel efficiency.
I don't understand this statement. How do you think Toyota, Honda, Nissan, and Volkswagen got a toehold in the market here? What do you think drove their growth from less than 5% of the market in 1960 to over 50% today? From the very beginning, their appeal has been to a supposedly insignificant consumer segment that was interested in better fuel economy. Even today, when their fleets include luxury and truck models, their reputations continue to include better gas mileage than their US competitors.

Your statement is an example of the marginalization of consumers who did want better quality, more fuel efficient vehicles that blinded Detroit executives and led to myriad poor decisions at all levels.


RE: BOSE?
By Tsuwamono on 2/14/2009 12:24:29 PM , Rating: 1
which is ironic really since the chevy aveo at like 9,999 has 50mpg, ford focus at 15,599 also has 50mpg.

NISSAN VERSA - 13,999 = 40mpg(Not very reliable but decent)

Toyota Yaris(Echo) - 13,319 = 40mpg(terrible vehicle, its a rebadged Echo..)

Mazda 3 - 14,898 = 46.3mpg(excellent vehicle, if i was buying japanese id get a mazda 3.)

Looks to me like the big 3 americans are kicking ass for fuel economy/reliability/price.

Personally i own 97 ranger 2.3L, Jeep Cherokee, and BMW 328. I dont see me ever buying japanese but thats just because they dont offer what im looking for in my vehicles. Ranger is just my garage ornament because im preserving it(belonged to my mother before she died), the Cherokee is my offroader/plow and the BMW is my DD. Great fuel economy, great price(10g) and it gives off the look i need in my business.


RE: BOSE?
By WTFiSJuiCE on 2/14/2009 6:04:46 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
which is ironic really since the chevy aveo at like 9,999 has 50mpg, ford focus at 15,599 also has 50mpg.


I've never seen a Ford Focus achieve 50 mpg or seen it being stated that the Focus gets 50 mpg.
The '09 Focus is stated as having 24/35 mpg (Manual), 24/33 (Automatic).

http://www.fordvehicles.com/cars/focussedan/

The Chevy Aveo is stated at having on average 34 mpg highway.

http://www.chevrolet.com/aveo/

Toyota Yaris - 29/35 mpg.

http://www.toyota.com/yaris/specs.html

Mazda 3 series:
Best mpg version = 4 Door. 24/32 - Man. 23/30 Auto.

http://www.mazdausa.com/MusaWeb/displayPage.action...

Are you going by Imperial standards? Otherwise this is confusing.
Not trying to call you a liar, but also not sure where you are getting these numbers from.


RE: BOSE?
By Tsuwamono on 2/15/2009 6:39:17 PM , Rating: 2
All those are Canadian numbers.. except the MPG were in L/100km until i found a proper site that converted it to MPG. I believe the chevy and ford numbers had both MPG and l/100km but the others were only listed in L/100km.

check the canadian websites. All the facts are on the company sites for Canada.


RE: BOSE?
By 91TTZ on 2/14/2009 4:52:13 PM , Rating: 2
Actually your argument is factually incorrect.

There was a market for home computers well before IBM introduced their PC. Theirs just happened to become the most popular.

You make it sound like there weren't any choices until they went on sale from IBM. The original ones were either kits or were pretty expensive, and even the IBM PC was pretty expensive by today's standards. The reason they eventually took off is because technology (unrelated to the sale of the PCs themselves) became cheap enough that PCs could be built affordably.


RE: BOSE?
By Samus on 2/13/2009 12:15:20 PM , Rating: 4
The market didn't want fuel efficient cars?

Hmm, strange, I wonder why the Japanese auto manufactures, with tiny cars like the amazingly successful Mazda GLC, Toyota Corolla, Datsun 180, Honda Civic, all started booming in the 70's?


RE: BOSE?
By RU482 on 2/13/2009 12:46:25 PM , Rating: 5
Err...then why did those tiny cars grow up to be american-esque land barges with lower MPG ratings than they had in the 70s and 80s?


RE: BOSE?
By Motoman on 2/14/2009 5:04:28 PM , Rating: 2
...call me crazy, but I haven't seen a Civic or those other models he mentioned becoming "land barges." Maybe your eyes have gotten smaller?


RE: BOSE?
By 91TTZ on 2/14/2009 9:18:59 PM , Rating: 2
Well, an Accord for instance was about 2000 lbs back in the 70's, and is about 3000 lbs now. So it has increased in weight by 1.5x.

Also, Honda didn't sell anything like the Ridgeline back then, either.

The point is that in the US, consumers want larger vehicles. We have larger roads, bigger parking spaces, and gas is cheaper.


RE: BOSE?
By Athena on 2/15/2009 9:48:08 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
The point is that in the US, consumers want larger vehicles. We have larger roads, bigger parking spaces, and gas is cheaper
That may be your point but the actual experience in the industry says otherwise -- experience shows that the market has always been more diverse than Detroit was able to envision and that it is highly sensitive to both fuel, environmental, and by extension, legislative concerns.


RE: BOSE?
By lagomorpha on 2/15/2009 1:12:56 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
The point is that in the US, consumers want larger vehicles. We have larger posteriors, bigger stomachs, and soda is cheaper.


Fixed that for you.


RE: BOSE?
By Athena on 2/15/2009 9:41:27 AM , Rating: 1
quote:
Err...then why did those tiny cars grow up to be american-esque land barges with lower MPG ratings than they had in the 70s and 80s?
That is a specious argument. The assertion was that, until fairly recently, there was little or no market for fuel efficient vehicles in the US. The longterm success of imports shows that there was. Even as those manufacturers were smart enough to exploit additional market segments for larger vehcles, they continued to develop and expand the low end.

Detroit on the other hand, ceded the field and abandoned its pooly conceived economy models.


RE: BOSE?
By afkrotch on 2/17/2009 2:43:17 AM , Rating: 3
True. While the small Japanese cars of old grew in size, they made sure to continue to fill the void that was left. When your Corolla grew larger, they filled the gap with a Tercel (later on Echo). The Civic grew up and the gap got filled with the CRX. Honda doesn't really fill that gap to well now, with the Civic or Fit.

The Japanese companies always tried to continue filling all respective markets. Increasing/decreasing production in the markets that need it.

I don't know why the Big 3 doesn't start bringing some of the smaller cars from Europe over.


RE: BOSE?
By Hiawa23 on 2/13/2009 1:48:29 PM , Rating: 2
Because the market historically has not wanted them. So you want GM to make a lower profit margin car, just because? It is business man pull your head out and realize that they make what sells.

I think he meant they(automakers)should have had some foward thinking. You asked if the poster wants them to make a lower profit margin car. That's kind of funny considering they have been losing money for many quarters now. I am really concerned for our Automakers as I really don't see them generating enough $$$ to even start repaying back the loans given the downturn in the economy. I see em filing Chapter something in the future. The Volt does look pretty impressive & looks like it will cost upwards of $40k with everything they are putting into it, & will be out of the grasp of most Americans who may want one, & who knows how the economy will look like then. Might be a full blown depression by then. I am still wondering why gasoline technology hasn't progressed enough to have 50mpg gasoline combustible engines.


RE: BOSE?
By TomZ on 2/13/2009 2:12:39 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
That's kind of funny considering they have been losing money for many quarters now.
Nearly ALL automakers are in the red at the moment due to the recession. Year/year sales are down 25-50% across the board. That has nothing to do with automakers not being "forward thinking" or due to their "inability" to produce 50MPG cars.


RE: BOSE?
By Athena on 2/15/2009 2:18:24 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Nearly ALL automakers are in the red at the moment due to the recession.
You are conflating yearly results with longterm health. While it is true that the past year was bad for all automakers (and they will probably have a rough 2009 too), it is not true that they are all "in the red" or on the brink of collapse. A healthy company should be able to weather a bad patch while "unexpected events" can lead to the collapse of an unhealthy one.

Anyone who ascribes Detroit's problems to the current economic crisis is in denial. It's like the difference between a family living within its means and another living on paycheck to paycheck with credit card debt: An unexpected medical problem may require some cutbacks for the first but the latter may well end up in bankrupcy.
Executives in Detroit have been living beyond their means for decades and the bill has become due.


RE: BOSE?
By omnicronx on 2/13/2009 10:17:58 AM , Rating: 3
Read my post below, there are various reasons why ethanol production is far cheaper in Brazil than in the United States, and why this is unlikely to change unless we find a new source of ethanol capable of mass production.(without eating up our food supplies)


RE: BOSE?
By RjBass on 2/13/2009 10:31:55 AM , Rating: 1
Ohhh I know all about ethanol production. See that's not really the issue here. The vehicles that Ford and GM are producing in Brasil are flex fuel vehicles that can also run on standard unleaded fuel and still achieve over 40mpg. Again, why can we not have those vehicles here in the US.

Also, Brasil has offered to export their Ethanol to the US for a cheaper price then we can afford to produce it ourselves. But the US refuses to do it.


RE: BOSE?
By omnicronx on 2/13/2009 10:55:50 AM , Rating: 3
quote:
Also, Brasil has offered to export their Ethanol to the US for a cheaper price then we can afford to produce it ourselves. But the US refuses to do it.
I really don't believe that, the US already produces more ethanol than than Brazil. Are you really trying to imply that Brazil has the production capacity to fulfill its needs and the needs of the US(especially when you consider Brazil's flexfuel fleet only accounts for 25% of the vehicles, with expectations for that number to rise)?

Furthermore Gasoline is heavily taxed in Brazil, current prices hover around $6 a gallon. So its nice they can achieve 40MPG, but they also pay 50% more for their gas, which essentially negates the entire purpose of achieving a higher MPG, at least in the consumers point of view.

On the other hand, I would be interested to know what vehicles you speak of that are not only flex, but can achieve 40mpg. If the technology exists while still maintaining the safety standards of the US, then you may have a valid point here.


RE: BOSE?
By TomZ on 2/13/2009 11:03:00 AM , Rating: 3
Well, the fact of the matter is that there is a very high import tariff on ethanol, which currently leads to (a) it not being imported for use in most of the US, and (b) for ethanol to be more expensive in California where it is imported due to geography.

If this tariff was eliminated, countries like Brazil would be able to be competitive in the US market. The result of that would be lower ethanol prices for consumers. But of course, protectionism is only bad when other countries are doing it. When we do it, that is somehow justified. After all, we have to protect the interests of big agri-business.


RE: BOSE?
By omnicronx on 2/13/2009 11:26:54 AM , Rating: 2
This is the only front where I agree. On last check the tariff on imported Ethanol was something like 50 cents a gallon. The production capacity would still be a problem though, I just don't buy that Brazil and the surrounding countries will be able to export enough ethenol to meet the US's needs. Sugar cane also only grows in certain conditions, it requires a lot of rain and temperate conditions to grow. So simply ramping up production to a sufficient amount to fulfill the needs the US and other nations is probably not an option.

Personally I believe flex fuel vehicles are a waste of time, and are only prolonging the problem of our dependence on other nations for a viable fuel source. Its beyond me why huge amounts of money are not being pored into the development of other sources of ethanol. Generally using a food as source of fuel is not a good idea, and is certainly not a long term solution.


RE: BOSE?
By WTFiSJuiCE on 2/14/2009 6:20:32 PM , Rating: 1
Ethanol is a joke simply because it diminishes your ability to preserve the same mileage standard that gasoline provides. You're not saving money, you're going to the tank more often. The more you go to the tank, the quicker the fuel is used up in the stations. That fuel is transported to the stations by tankers and if those stations need to be filled more frequently, that's more gas/diesel fuel that tankers use in order to transport it to them.

Oh yeah, real efficient. Thanks for saving the planet E85.

Auto companies didn't research mileage improvements because people didn't care about that until the oil crisis of the 70s. Sure, then once the crisis was over, people went back to not caring. Ok, we get that.

But still, it was the failures of the companies to actually stimulate progress with new technologies that would better their cars while continuing to sell land behemoths or whatever the people want to buy.

No one is saying that the Auto companies shouldn't make what the people want to buy whether it be a gigantic SUV or a small compact car, but there is and never has been an excuse as to why we shouldn't be able to drive in a Hummer H2 or a GT500 w/ 500hp that gets 70 miles to the gallon by now. That is where the Auto companies failed.

Bottom line, we've known for some time that oil is a finite resource, yet we didn't care enough to actually better the vehicles.


RE: BOSE?
By lucre on 2/14/2009 7:23:21 PM , Rating: 2
I agree, and I also wonder why we are looking at ethanol. If you want a homegrown solution(to me, relying on brazil is a similar practice to relying on the mid-east) why not cover a fraction of our southern desert with facilites to produce algae-oil. If you care about emissions, ethanol is comparable to algae-oil, the most tangible difference is that algae isnt represented by lobbyi$t$ in congress.
I say go electric supported by algae, clean up our electricity production and after that, there really isnt much to talk about.


RE: BOSE?
By Lugaidster on 2/15/2009 1:09:01 PM , Rating: 2
Simply stupid statement, you are no capitalist, you are a mercantilist. And that is where U.S. economy is going, and it's starting to become a joke.

Brazil can't be compared to the mid-east. They aren't fighting holy wars, nor are they destroying their ethanol shipments. It's not about relying on someone. Its about trading with someone what you don't currently have. That doesn't mean that you don't develop technologies to reduce that dependancy.

You should promote trade.


RE: BOSE?
By captainentropy on 2/16/2009 5:02:34 AM , Rating: 2
comparing Brasil to Middle-East coutries is ignorant, however, I agree than algae is a better choice that ethanol and is less disruptive to the environment and food industry than ethanol. In Brasil ethanol comes from sugar cane which is a far superior to corn for ethanol but algae oil is far more energy rich.


RE: BOSE?
By Marlonsm on 2/13/2009 11:15:26 AM , Rating: 2
Brazil gets ethanol from sugar cane, that is a much better source than corn.

"especially when you consider Brazil's flexfuel fleet only accounts for 25% of the vehicles, with expectations for that number to rise"

all new cars sold here for quite some time are flex fuel, so it's just a matter of time until they become majority,
and most mid-class or higher families already have flex cars.
so it's at 25% because poor people(there are many here) couldn't get a new car, made over the last 5 years.

"Furthermore Gasoline is heavily taxed in Brazil, current prices hover around $6 a gallon. So its nice they can achieve 40MPG, but they also pay 50% more for their gas, which essentially negates the entire purpose of achieving a higher MPG, at least in the consumers point of view."

gasoline is more expensive here, but not that much. it's around R$2,60/liter, or about $3,80 a gallon(but all gasoline sold here has about 24% of ethanol), while ethanol is less than half of it, and gets about 80% of the mileage.
mileage here(with gas) is still far from 40MPG on most cars, even on newer ones, on real world is more like 30MPG for the economic ones, because of the ethanol mixed with gas and bad streets, full of holes (that's why Brazilian cars have higher suspensions than ones on richer countries).


RE: BOSE?
By RjBass on 2/13/2009 4:39:49 PM , Rating: 2
Where exactly do you get your facts from? I was just there, and gas is not $6 a gallon. It is a bit lower. Now i have to admit it is higher still then here in the US, but gas prices when i was there in December were hovering around $4 a gallon while ethanol was running around $3.25 a gallon.

And I never once implied that the US produces more ethanol then Brasil. I said Brasil has offered to export it's ethanol to the US to help bring the US cheaper ethanol and the US refused.

Also I want to know where you got your statistic that only 25% of Brasil's auto's are flex fuel vehicles. I am afraid you have that backwards. Only 25% of Brasil's vehicles run solely on standard unleaded.

As for the vehicle I rode in that was a GM that achieved 46mpg and was a flex fuel, I have forgotten the name of the vehicle but I have already emailed my cousin to find out what it was called. I can say that it most likely doesn't meet US safety standards as it didn't have any air bags, but that seems to be a small thing. I would bet they could easily make the vehicles US ready.


RE: BOSE?
By TomZ on 2/13/2009 4:50:31 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
As for the vehicle I rode in that was a GM that achieved 46mpg and was a flex fuel ... I would bet they could easily make the vehicles US ready.
The only way to achieve that - especially on ethanol - is for the car to be tiny. And tiny cars are (a) not well-liked by most US buyers, and (b) have a hard time meeting stringent safety standards.

You can't escape the laws of physics, and contrary to popular belief, GM does not have any magic MPG-increasing technology that it is withholding from the US market.


RE: BOSE?
By FishTankX on 2/14/2009 12:21:45 AM , Rating: 2
This is simply not true.
There is MUCH better technology for ethanol engines. It's called compression ignition technology, the foundation of diesel engines.

Using this technique, ethanol can run at the same thermal efficency of diesel engine, and even though it has 2/3 the energy of diesel per volume of fuel, if you take a 45/55 city/highway jetta and modify it for ethanol, theoretically it would get 30/36 AND meet American safety standards.

The only reason why we don't have these vehicles yet is because

A) Compression ignition engines are expensive, but this is slightly offset by the fact that you can still find Jetta's puttering around with 400,000+ miles on them.
B) You would need to re tune the engine to run most efficiently on E100, and frankly it's not always easy to find an ethanol filling station everywhere.


RE: BOSE?
By KentState on 2/13/2009 11:01:19 AM , Rating: 2
So, we are suppose to become reliant on fuel from Brazil now? What happens when demand shoots up and we are in the same position as oil from the Middle East?


RE: BOSE?
By TomZ on 2/13/2009 11:08:38 AM , Rating: 5
We will always be reliant on other countries for fuel, because in America, we don't seem to understand the need to produce wealth anymore. We Americans live in this fantasy world where some new technology is going to magically appear to solve all our energy problems.

But in the meantime, until that magic happens, we try to refrain from using our own natural resources and developing self-sufficient solutions (e.g., offshore drilling, building more nuclear plants, etc.) and import energy and continue to maintain a large negative trade imbalance.

This is the plan we have for America. Does this make any sense at all?

And don't even get me started on layering the "green mentality" on top of all this. Put it all together and you'd think we have full intention of doing ourselves in.


RE: BOSE?
By danrien on 2/13/2009 11:23:07 AM , Rating: 2
I would think that a lot of the green mentality actually leads into us becoming more self-sufficient again. Unless we're importing sun and wind energy from china....

I do whole heartedly agree, however, that nuclear energy should be our primary focus. 'Green' energy is nice, but not usually practical. However, the economic side of the argument for green energy (that we wouldn't rely on foreign energy any longer) does make a lot of sense. Also, doesn't this apply to your 'protectionist' argument earlier? Isn't this us being slightly 'protectionist'?


RE: BOSE?
By TomZ on 2/13/2009 11:50:38 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
I would think that a lot of the green mentality actually leads into us becoming more self-sufficient again.
But the problem with that "plan" is that there is no plan; there is no green tech in sight that can deliver that goal, except for nuclear. Wind? Solar? Tidal? Give me a break! At best can they can only supply a tiny fraction of our energy needs, and at a higher cost.

The lesson we can learn from Germany is that we can have green power and be self-sufficient, but only if we are prepared to pay more for our energy. To me, decisions like that will makes ours a second-rate economy.

All that's going on right now is that we're going to throw gobs of money at the problem and see if some kind of solution appears. That's not a reasonable energy policy, in my opinion, and its not any kind of plan.


RE: BOSE?
By danrien on 2/13/2009 11:58:09 AM , Rating: 2
When did I ever mention a plan? I just said the financial argument for becoming a self-sufficient energy producing nation that the 'green' proponents often mention makes sense.


RE: BOSE?
By Spuke on 2/13/2009 12:52:03 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
When did I ever mention a plan?
And that right there is the problem.


RE: BOSE?
By clovell on 2/13/2009 12:22:31 PM , Rating: 2
Because in the 1970s we drilled a lot more of our oil ourselves. Thank the anti-drilling movement.


RE: BOSE?
By 91TTZ on 2/14/2009 4:36:13 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
No. I am blaming GM and the other big American auto manufacturers for not trying to do something different back in the 70's. Why is it that the most powerful and richest nation in the world is still dependent upon Mid East oil while now Brasil, seeing the need to change in 1978 did what it had to do and is now almost completely foreign oil free?


The problem is that the price of gas went back down in the US and removed any need for more efficient vehicles. Sure, the company could have made them, but nobody would have bought them. And why should they? Gas was so cheap that they could pack their kids into giant SUVs and drive all over the place with the fuel price being no concern.

Also, most people mistakenly think that the US gets most of our oil from the middle east. We don't.


RE: BOSE?
By omnicronx on 2/13/2009 10:15:10 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Why can't GM and Ford produce and sell those same vehicles here in the US?
Because we don't have countless hectares of rain forest to cut down to grow sugar cane. The US also imports a large amount of ethanol which further increases production costs, and Brazil does not. Ethanol production from sugar cane is also a lot cheaper than production from corn. I think I read once that production costs in Brazil are up to 50% less than in the States as a result of using sugar cane, and not importing any ethanol.


RE: BOSE?
By TomZ on 2/13/2009 11:10:33 AM , Rating: 2
Fortunately (for US agri-business) we have huge ethanol import tarrifs, so they don't have to worry about having to compete with lower-cost ethanol produced in countries like Brazil.


RE: BOSE?
By theapparition on 2/13/2009 11:52:11 AM , Rating: 3
Oh what short memory everyone has, mostly because the average DT readership wasn't even old enough to suck on fudgesicles back then..

GM had plenty of high mpg vehicles. Remember the Geo Metro, that got close to 50mpg? How about Ford and thier Festiva?

Market reaction back then......We don't want small tiny cars with high mpg. End result, models were canceled. When you lose tons of money making small cars, you tend to be more gun shy. That explains (along with profit and market demand) why the "Big 3" put all development into larger SUV's.


RE: BOSE?
By clovell on 2/13/2009 12:29:55 PM , Rating: 2
I always thought the market reaction to the Metro and Festiva was more of an 'I don't wanna die' sort of thing...


RE: BOSE?
By TomZ on 2/13/2009 1:51:31 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Market reaction back then......We don't want small tiny cars with high mpg. End result, models were canceled.
Exactly. I don't know why this is so hard for people to understand. When gas is expensive, people become interested in smaller, more fuel efficient cars. When gas is cheap, people become interested in larger cars.

So let's please all put aside this stupid notion that the car industry has some kind of conspiracy to force Americans to buy bigger cars. At the end of the day, car companies do a great job of producing the cars that people want to buy. After all, if a car company made a make/model that people didn't buy, then it would get quickly killed off.


RE: BOSE?
By Athena on 2/15/2009 2:06:38 PM , Rating: 2
quote>That explains (along with profit and market demand) why the "Big 3" put all development into larger SUV's. What it illustrates is chronic shortsightedness... aka poor management vision. As the experience of transplants shows, there were customers who were interested in higher mileage vehicles; but the Detroit automakers were focused on the short term. Instead of learning from the customers who did want quality, low mileage vehicles and continuing to refine their products so that they would be perceived as competitive, Detroit manufacturers bet their future on a production plan that their own internal analysts said could not be sustained.

That's the difference that Detroit defenders never accept. They point to the fact that transplants reaped big profits from the same types of vehicles and ignore the fact they the foreign automakers also continued work on fuel efficiency. They never bet their companies on a single scenario. The result is that while Toyota and Honda are having a bad year (or two), they are no where near bankruptcy and are not soliciting government assistance here or at home.


RE: BOSE?
By tallcool1 on 2/13/2009 12:01:45 PM , Rating: 3
What does any of this have anything to do with the subject of this thread "BOSE?"... Major thread hi-jacking...


RE: BOSE?
By MrTeal on 2/13/2009 9:43:44 AM , Rating: 4
But Bose produces the highest quality sound possible, in their patented high-end and attractive "block of white plastic" waveguide system. According to airline inflight magazines, it's been scientifically proven to sound better than angel's trumpets.

Definitely worth the extra cost.


RE: BOSE?
By omnicronx on 2/13/2009 10:06:03 AM , Rating: 2
They never said it would be a Bose system, they may just be paying them to develop the technology. I agree it would be a terrible idea for GM to raise the price of an already expensive vehicle by adding a Bose sound system just to squeeze out an extra mile or two on battery power. Unless of course GM plans on taking the hit, and not passing on the cost increase to the consumer.


RE: BOSE?
By ebakke on 2/13/2009 10:42:36 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Unless of course GM plans on taking the hit, and not passing on the cost increase to the consumer.
Hahaha! ::sigh:: Thanks for the good Friday morning laugh.


RE: BOSE?
By Spuke on 2/13/2009 12:54:50 PM , Rating: 2
What makes me laugh are the people that STILL think this car was designed for cheapskates that have no intention on buying one even if it were in their price range.


RE: BOSE?
By ebakke on 2/13/2009 2:16:36 PM , Rating: 2
With a few more government tax credits, we'll all be able to afford it! Wheeee!!!


RE: BOSE?
By Motoman on 2/13/2009 12:43:26 PM , Rating: 2
Ha! Much funniness there.

One guaranteed way to make sure smart people don't buy your product...put a Bose sticker on it.


RE: BOSE?
By superflex on 2/13/2009 1:43:08 PM , Rating: 2
No highs, no lows, must be Bose.
Bose has to be the worst audio company in the history of audio equipment. Quality you cant hear, specs you cant see and 3x the price of similar equipment.


RE: BOSE?
By Sivar on 2/14/2009 12:24:36 AM , Rating: 2
This isn't a problem. Bose compensates for poor sound fidelity with outstanding marketing.


RE: BOSE?
By 9nails on 2/14/2009 1:33:28 AM , Rating: 2
I think MP3's use of psycho acoustics has proven that the ear isn't as cleaver as we think. Not all of us know how to wear the hat of the audiophile. The other half of us pay full spectrum prices for splinters of frequencies in our M4A files at the iTunes Store.

Kudo's to Bose for recognizing this and using engineered sound instead of perfect sound to present the illusion that you're positioned at center stage when you're really on the left side of the car.


RE: BOSE?
By Motoman on 2/14/2009 11:46:36 AM , Rating: 2
Wow. You are so lost. It takes little to no effort to produce audio equipment vastly superior to anything Bose makes. They deserve kudos for nothing other than mastering the basest of all primitive human instincts - taking advantage of others. They put out the most ridiculously inferior products, refuse to allow them to be reviewed by knowledgable people, refuse to allow them to be compared side-by-side with other products in a store, market them in the Apple manner, and suck dry the wallets of uncritical buyers who believe their hype.

...which is also something that can be said for those people duped into buying iTunes.

The only thing Bose recognizes is a sucker when they see one. And as we all know, there is a sucker born every minute. Count on Bose to be there to take advantage of them.


RE: BOSE?
By TSS on 2/13/09, Rating: -1
RE: BOSE?
By FITCamaro on 2/13/2009 10:27:59 AM , Rating: 3
That would require a redesign of the vehicle. The generator on board does not directly drive the wheels. It recharges the battery enough to keep the car operating in real time as the battery is drained. The 50 mpg figure is based on the distance that the car will go on a tank of fuel while operating on the onboard generator. Not based on how far it can physically drive the wheels.


RE: BOSE?
By clovell on 2/13/2009 12:28:25 PM , Rating: 3
I think he wass referring to using some short term capacitors rather than a battery pack. You might have to idle for a bit before you start off in the morning, but it would certainly be lighter and cheaper than a battery pack.

It's not a bad concept, but I'm not certain how much of a market there would actually be for it. If they could drop the volt down to $22k with such a design, it could be viable with some incentives. It would compete pretty well with the other, mature (i.e. lower-cost) hybrids.

What he neglects, though, is that Chevy went with the 40 miles without a drop of gas feature because the majority of Americans drive less than 40 miles on a typical day (to & from work). I think of the generator is more of a range-extender than anything else.


RE: BOSE?
By MarcLeFou on 2/13/2009 10:53:15 AM , Rating: 2
From my understanding, the Volt is that efficient because it runs on electricity and the ICE is set to run at a set RPM for maximum efficiency, just like trains do.

As such, I do think batteries are a necessity although they could probably be scaled down if you wanted to remove the 40 mile autonomy.

Another way to increase MPG would be to use diesel instead of gas like the trains do though. If you increase MPG, then you could decrease the size of the fuel tank, thereby reducing weight (since you could get the same distance with less fuel) and increasing MPG further (or getting rid of the special tires would should be ungodly expensive if it is custom tech from a single manufacturer).

This kind of hybrid (one propelled through electricity first and foremost with an ICE generator) could actually be the best thing to come out of this whole publicity stunt.


RE: BOSE?
By djc208 on 2/13/2009 11:55:43 AM , Rating: 2
Only problem with a diesel gen set is that a diesel engine is heavier than a similarly sized gas engine. Now if you can turbo the engine and set it up right you may be able to remove that penalty but that's still more weight. I don't know that you'd see a weight savings from the reduced size of the fuel tank.

A diesel train doesn't run at one speed. Since there is no battery they ramp the engine up and down based on energy required. While they may have an optimum "cuising" speed for effeciency (so does your car BTW) the only reason locomotives use a hybrid propulsion system is because the drive train is smaller and more flexable than trying to use a gearbox and drive shafts, similar to what you're seeing in more and more large ships.

Besides most diesel locomotives are two stroke for a better power to weight ratio, but that means they have worse emmissions compared to a conventional 4-stroke version.


RE: BOSE?
By MarcLeFou on 2/13/2009 3:57:51 PM , Rating: 2
I have to admit I'm far from being an expert in trains so this is all good to know.

The principle of of an ICE (whether diesel or gas) driving a small set of batteries to propel an electric engine does seem like an interesting concept for the sake of efficiency though which was my main point.

As for the fuel tank weight reduction, I'm only basing this off the reduction GM announced 6 or so months ago. Their justification, at the time, was to decrease the weight. While this might just have been PR and a cost cutting measure, it does make some sense as you not only remove the weight of the tank but also the weight of the excess gas but to what extent this would effect a half a ton vehicle (plus batteries!) in the real world is still up in the air.


Reduced Friction!??
By SilentSin on 2/13/2009 10:47:02 AM , Rating: 1
quote:
Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. is providing the special new tires to the Volt to help reduce its friction with the road.

Does anyone else think decreasing friction is a BAD idea? Seems to me that friction and traction go hand in hand...someone please correct me because I hope GM and Goodyear wouldn't be that stupid.

Come on down to your nearest Chevy dealer to buy the brand new Chevy Volt! The $40,000 package gets you all the hot options this year: A/C, Bose stereo, and 4 bald tires!




RE: Reduced Friction!??
By ThisSpaceForRent on 2/13/2009 10:58:36 AM , Rating: 2
Nah their aiming for zero friction tires that never wear. =)

(SPOILER: It's a joke!)


RE: Reduced Friction!??
By KentState on 2/13/2009 11:09:34 AM , Rating: 4
This is the rolling friction of the tire. A lower friction tire will take less force to start rolling. This is very typical in high MPG cars.


RE: Reduced Friction!??
By tallcool1 on 2/13/2009 11:59:01 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
special new tires
I'm sure goodyear is not going to be giving these "special" tires away... sounds more expensive to me.


RE: Reduced Friction!??
By b534202 on 2/13/2009 1:03:16 PM , Rating: 2
Low rolling resistance tires are the devil. This is getting into a safety issue. The same low rolling resistance that let you start and drive easier also make your car go straight when you want to stop or turn.

Have fun with the repair bill.


RE: Reduced Friction!??
By TomZ on 2/13/2009 1:14:02 PM , Rating: 2
Good point. We need to educate the general public about the concept of design tradeoffs.


RE: Reduced Friction!??
By ThisSpaceForRent on 2/13/2009 1:36:52 PM , Rating: 2
I dunno, the same people that don't understand why this might be a bad idea are most likely the same people you don't want driving on your part of the road. They should add chicanes to roads to weed out those kinds of people. Bad for them, fun for the rest of us.


RE: Reduced Friction!??
By 9nails on 2/14/2009 1:37:05 AM , Rating: 2
In California, we add rain.


RE: Reduced Friction!??
By Shadowself on 2/13/2009 4:56:48 PM , Rating: 2
You definitely don't want to reduce friction with the road. The more tire to road friction the better. This is not a sliding friction (or at the most minimally so). Thus it is not a significant source of energy loss. As long as your tires are not spinning on the ground the more friction the better.

What (I hope) they mean to say is minimize rolling resistance. This is the resistance of the rotating tire to flex and have a small flat spot on the road. This flexing heats up the tire and is a dissipative loss. Thus the less rolling resistance the better.

To some extent the two are related. Softer material tires flex more and heat up and become "sticky" thus having better friction to the road [better traction}; stiffer tires have a harder material and are typically less "sticky" and thus less traction. The trick is to keep the traction and still have less rolling resistance.

I assume that is what the original author actually meant.


Huh?
By austinag on 2/13/2009 11:02:03 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
recharged either via its onboard gasoline engine-generator (which gets 50 mpg)


How do you measure MPG for a generator?




RE: Huh?
By KentState on 2/13/2009 11:12:00 AM , Rating: 2
How do you measure MPG for an engine? Miles / gallons of fuel used.


RE: Huh?
By SilentSin on 2/13/2009 11:34:28 AM , Rating: 2
I'm guessing that a gallon of gasoline will charge the batteries with enough juice to go 50 miles. So a full charge of the batteries (est. at 40 miles) actually takes less than a gallon of gas using the generator if I'm understanding that right.


RE: Huh?
By omnicronx on 2/13/2009 11:45:09 AM , Rating: 2
No the first 40 miles without the gas engine are from a recharge only, there is no MPG rating here. Its once the gasoline engine kicks on that recharges the battery (although it is not connected directly to the drivetrain) that has the 50MPG rating is applied. The battery is never fully recharged after it is drained by the gas engine, it keeps the battery powered to a certain capacity somewhere in the 20-30% range from what I have heard, until you recharge the vehicle.


RE: Huh?
By TomZ on 2/13/2009 11:54:03 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Its once the gasoline engine kicks on that recharges the battery (although it is not connected directly to the drivetrain) that has the 50MPG rating is applied.
If that were true, then GM could make a traditional gasoline-engine version of the Volt that achieved 50+ MPG, which is not feasible. So you know there is something wrong with your logic/calculation.


RE: Huh?
By omnicronx on 2/13/2009 12:22:56 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
If that were true, then GM could make a traditional gasoline-engine version of the Volt that achieved 50+ MPG, which is not feasible.
Not to sure where how you got this out of what I said. Although, I claimed the gas engine 'recharges' the battery, when in reality it just keeps the current charge of whatever the cutoff happens to be (a.k.a where the 20-30% comes in).

Obviously there cannot be a gasoline version if the gas engine is not connected to the drivetrain, if it were, it would be taking the approach of previous hybrid designs such as the Prius.


RE: Huh?
By SilentSin on 2/13/2009 1:00:24 PM , Rating: 2
I think you're actually in agreement with me here. It's really just a question of physics: this generator makes a total amount of energy W at a constant rate y using amount x of fuel and the batteries are charged with that energy W which the electric motor uses to move the car.

I was just stating the hypothetical situation where you would leave the generator running with the car at a standstill with 1 gallon of gasoline, it would generate enough power for the car to go 50 miles. I really don't see any other way GM could have gotten that 50mpg rating. It would take less than a gallon of gas to recharge the batteries in that manner.

Obviously while moving the batteries are constantly being drained as they are being charged by the generator. That probably happens when the batteries are around the 20-30% mark as you are saying. Either way you are getting a full battery charge's worth of power that you can use to move the car out of less than a gallon of gas.


Their banking on a better battery system...
By Darkskypoet on 2/13/2009 9:53:22 AM , Rating: 1
One of the things I believe GM to be banking on, is much better battery being ready for production say Model Year 2011 or 2012. The design they are working on is great for the ability to simply drop in the more efficient T-Cell without having to rework much (if anything) on the vehicle itself. Sure the 40 miles on a charge is small, but the nice thing about this sort of design is that its made to just take a drop in upgrade. (factory probably, maybe aftermarket down the road)

I doubt GM is making the volt thinking that its going to be a 40 mile electric range for long, however that's all dependent on what they or their partners R&D can come up with. In a way, although product cycles are longer in the car world, waking up GM is like waking up Intel. Except its not such a sure thing that GM will come back and stomp on the competition, however, I personally hope that this massive company can leverage its resources to really put out some good vehicles and technology.

(Yeah, I am biased, I like GM... We've never had one that let us down. From an 80 Oldsmobile Custom Cruiser, to a Chevy Rally STX van, to a 84' Pontiac Acadian, then an Oldsmobile Silouette, and then a Chevy Malibu at nearly 250,000 km, and now a base Cobalt with 5 spd std for my dad. I just would like to see GM do what a company of that size, and experience should be able to do... Kick some ass for a change.)




RE: Their banking on a better battery system...
By Hulk on 2/13/2009 3:50:26 PM , Rating: 2
Why does GM beat the hell out of all of their beautiful show cars with the ugly stick on the way off of the design room floor?

(except for the Corvette)


RE: Their banking on a better battery system...
By MarcLeFou on 2/13/2009 3:59:38 PM , Rating: 2
I actually find GM's designs to be getting better and better.

You can't tell me with a straight face the new CTS and the new Malibu are ugly.

Pontiac's still look awful though and I'm glad they're going to kill that brand down the line.


By Hulk on 2/13/2009 4:04:32 PM , Rating: 2
Okay the CTS and Malibu are okay. The CTS is too angular and '80's looking to me.

But jeez there are about 30 other butt ugly models. And they're based off of like 3 or 4 platforms with different bumpers and grills and other nonsense.


How long untill..
By superunknown98 on 2/13/2009 10:04:21 AM , Rating: 2
Someone pimps out a volt with a huge stereo and 32" rims with 80 treadwear tires?




RE: How long untill..
By darkblueslider on 2/13/2009 10:15:06 AM , Rating: 2
somehow i think thats EXACTLY the market the volt is aimed at


Patches
By chmilz on 2/13/2009 11:10:51 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
This is almost like getting software updates into your car.


Great, beta vehicles.




RE: Patches
By consumerwhore on 2/13/2009 1:13:05 PM , Rating: 2
I know, I guess we'll just have to hold until SP2 before we take the plunge...


Volt
By adam92682 on 2/13/2009 11:26:31 AM , Rating: 2
I'll stick to my GMC Yukon XL.




RE: Volt
By omnicronx on 2/13/2009 12:12:06 PM , Rating: 2
I guess the kids have to get to soccer practice somehow =P


*groan*
By Yoshino Kurokawa on 2/15/2009 9:37:28 AM , Rating: 2
I must applaud GM for pressing forward with a viable high-mileage vehicle - but the entire point for this technology to be acceptable is for a good portion of the mass-market to adopt said technology.

With all of this, they're looking to throw themselves into the same boat as Tesla. It's absolutely pointless to have this great vehicle if you price it right out of the market - and with the economy and credit in the shape it's in - these will join the hordes of other vehicles taking up seagull landing zones at your local seaport.

That's akin to letting people recycle bottles and cans but you put the recycling center in the next state. Nobody will do it.




RE: *groan*
By drothgery on 2/15/2009 1:16:08 PM , Rating: 2
Eh. The Volt is, at launch, a $35,000+ car. No matter what kind of fuel economy it gets, it better feel like a $35,000 car, or no one's going to buy it even at last summer's gas prices. While BOSE audio may be a somewhat dubious choice, it's the drivetrain that makes the Volt expensive. If a high-quality interior and sound system makes the thing $1,000-$2,000 more expensive, it's worth it.


Bose's expertise?
By Sivar on 2/14/2009 12:20:16 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Bose is applying its expertise to developing a lightweight extra energy efficient premium stereo system for the car as well.

Bose? I'm no audiophile, but isn't it the case that Bose has never made a single good set of speakers?
Except they make a great clock radio. For $400.

Stock stereos in cars are usually not great, but it sort of saddens me that such a great new car is going to be associated with the "Better sales through marketing" company. :/
www.intellexual.net/bose.html has an entertaining write-up, but really just read any professional review of a Bose product, ever.
Ah well, there's always aftermarket if they do a particularly bad job. :)




RE: Bose's expertise?
By KeepSix on 2/15/2009 6:10:35 PM , Rating: 1
I'll start on-topic:
Have any of you Bose-bashers even listened to any of their offerings? I don't think so. My 601's I purchased 20+ years ago still sound better than any other offering I've heard in the store. But, how much fuel/power will be saved by shaving a few grams off the car stereo, or reducing its' power by a few watts? A greater savings would be realized by removing the sound system completely, and thereby make the cars safer (read: less distraction while driving).

As for the tire discussion, I agree with the majority here: there should be no compromise there for the sake of a few mpg's. THe contact patches are just a few square inches. I want the softest, "grippiest" compound money can buy, regardless of mpg.

As for the ethanol argument, I'm pretty sure I read somewhere that the negative impact on food-producing regions, coupled with the cost & pollution of growing/harvesting negates any "savings". In essence, it's a sham. Solar/wind etc. is the only long-term solution if we want to keep living on this planet. NO, it can't meet the power demands we have now - that's why we need to change the way we live. The BigOilCompanies are buying up the technology as fast as they can, and when they have the market cornered, it will be implemented.


Getting more mundane...
By Anonymous Freak on 2/13/2009 1:04:32 PM , Rating: 2
As with the other "electric car with a gas generator" I liked (the Venture Vehicles VentureOne,) the Volt seems to be turning more mundane by the minute.

Its styling is become less 'radical' (what can I say, one of the things I *LIKED* about the Prius was it's "different" look,) and its mileage is going down to 'good small sedan' levels. At this point, Toyota's plug-in Prius will probably be a better car. (And is due to be released at the same time, in mid 2010.)




Bose
By fifthlake on 2/13/2009 11:17:05 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Bose is applying its expertise to developing a lightweight...


Too funny, but accurate. They have been using paper cones and the flimsiest components possible for years. their expertise has always been about separating the customer from their money.

Greg




"We basically took a look at this situation and said, this is bullshit." -- Newegg Chief Legal Officer Lee Cheng's take on patent troll Soverain














botimage
Copyright 2014 DailyTech LLC. - RSS Feed | Advertise | About Us | Ethics | FAQ | Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information | Kristopher Kubicki