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Chrysler's all-electric sports car  (Source: Detroit Free Press)

Chrysler Vice-Chairman Tom Lasorda unveils the new models
New all-electric sports car leads the pack.

While GM has generated a media frenzy over its upcoming release of the Volt plug-in hybrid, and even Ford is getting in on the act, little has been heard from Chrysler. That's all changed now, as the smallest of the US Big Three today announced plans to release three electric vehicles, including a totally new all-electric sports car. One of the three models will be on sale as early as 2010.

Chrysler unveiled an "electric range-extended" versions of their Town and Country minivan, as well as their iconic Jeep Wrangler. Both models will be plug-in hybrid variants. The automaker says each will have a 40 mile range on electric-only drive, at which time the gasoline engine will kick in.

This range is identical to GM's Volt, which should come as little surprise, given Chrysler has been working with A123 Systems, the same Lithium-Ion battery supplier GM reputedly will use for the Volt. Chrysler has not announced an official supplier yet, however, and says they are "working with multiple suppliers" on potential sources for batteries.

Tom LaSorda, Vice-Chairman for Chrysler, said the new models have been in the works for nearly two years. According to LaSorda, Chrysler's strategy is radically different than GM's. "We said we’ll take something more bold on the electric — all electric."

LaSorda said, "we didn’t want to spend the time on developing an all new platform, an all new car and then an all new propulsion system. We said we’ve got two icons for our company, a Wrangler, which is the icon for the Jeep brand, and the minivan, there’s 11 million-plus which we’ve sold. And people would say, ‘My god, they brought green to a minivan and Wrangler, this is unbelievable."

The most interesting of the new models, perhaps, is the new all-electric Dodge sportscar, capable of a 0-60 acceleration time of under 5 seconds. The vehicle's range will be 150-200 miles and will have a charging time of 6-8 hours on a standard 110v outlet. The vehicle will also accept a 220v supply, which will cut charging times in half.

No name or price was given for the sports car.

Chrysler has been hit hard by poor sales due to high gasoline prices. The automaker's sales have been down more than 20% in 2008-- a value double the industry average.



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Where are the diesel hybrids?
By Lord 666 on 9/24/2008 9:09:30 AM , Rating: 2
Or even diesel powered Volt vehicles like diesel locomotives?




RE: Where are the diesel hybrids?
By Fnoob on 9/24/2008 10:19:22 AM , Rating: 2
CSX is running an interesting ad regarding the efficiency of their locomotives.... something like one gallon of fuel can haul one ton of freight over 400miles. I get the feeling there is something disingenuous about those numbers, but who knows, it could be accurate. If so, why couldn't a scaled down diesel in a car achieve similar figures?


RE: Where are the diesel hybrids?
By Suntan on 9/24/2008 10:34:24 AM , Rating: 2
Try scaling it down.

-Suntan


RE: Where are the diesel hybrids?
By phxfreddy on 9/24/2008 1:20:49 PM , Rating: 2
Lionel train ? HO HO HO choo choo Charlie


RE: Where are the diesel hybrids?
By Lord 666 on 9/24/2008 10:36:43 AM , Rating: 2
Agreed. Here are other diesel questions with respect to Volt-like vehicles:

1. Since the diesel motor is not powering the wheels directly, would they be able to use off-road diesel which has much lower taxes?

2. Since the diesel motor in this vehicle acts as a generator and not driving the wheels directly, would it be exempt from B2T5 requirements? This generator does not require emission controls

http://cgi.ebay.com/RAMSOND-PORTABLE-6500-W-6-5-KW...


RE: Where are the diesel hybrids?
By Suntan on 9/24/2008 10:47:07 AM , Rating: 2
1) No. Road tax on diesel for vehicals is intended to tax for the purposes of keeping the roads in working shape. the diesel is still powering the vehical, even if it is ultimately connected to the ground through a propshaft or a couple of copper wires.

2) Again no. Taxes and regulations are directed at vehicles, not drivetrains.

Even if the current mandates are written such that you could technically get around them, politicions have a habit of closing those loopholes when it becomes evident that the "intent" of the law is being end-run by technicalities.

-Suntan


RE: Where are the diesel hybrids?
By foolsgambit11 on 9/24/2008 2:37:15 PM , Rating: 2
Of course, you could just buy that generator and plug an all-electric car up to it for charging.... But as long as the power source is on board the vehicle, it's not going to matter in the long run.


RE: Where are the diesel hybrids?
By Lord 666 on 9/24/2008 3:06:15 PM , Rating: 2
Interesting idea. GM hasn't specified if you can charge the car through the charging outlet and be driving at the same time. Run an extension cord to one of those generators in the back seat.

Even better would be someone taking a Volt, ripping out the petrol motor, and slapping in a diesel generator like that one. Then for sure you can use off road diesel as it no longer uses the original motor.


RE: Where are the diesel hybrids?
By Spuke on 9/24/2008 3:31:02 PM , Rating: 2
What's an off-road diesel? And what is the significance of this?


RE: Where are the diesel hybrids?
By Lord 666 on 9/24/2008 3:51:04 PM , Rating: 2
The taxation of the fuel is much different.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Red_diesel


RE: Where are the diesel hybrids?
By Spuke on 9/24/2008 5:19:48 PM , Rating: 2
Thanks. I take it you guys are in Europe?


RE: Where are the diesel hybrids?
By Lord 666 on 9/24/2008 10:49:10 PM , Rating: 2
NJ. Many friends and business trips to the UK though


RE: Where are the diesel hybrids?
By NullSubroutine on 9/25/2008 2:08:12 AM , Rating: 2
Road diesel is for vehicles, semis, etc. Off road diesel is like for farm vehicles. At least, thats what we used on my different families farms.


RE: Where are the diesel hybrids?
By Spuke on 9/25/2008 7:23:44 PM , Rating: 2
Thanks again. Never knew there was a difference nor that you could get tax free fuel (or less taxed?) for them.


RE: Where are the diesel hybrids?
By Lord 666 on 9/25/2008 9:30:57 PM , Rating: 2
A little taxation tidbit... even tax exempt organizations in NY state still have to purchase the regular diesel with regular taxes. http://www.tax.state.ny.us/pdf/2007/fillin/st/st12...

There is a slight tax credit that municpalities and not-for-profits will gain by using bio-diesel or other "alternate" fuels.

For current prices of off-road diesel, it typically is the same price of heating oil; which the going rate currently is about $3.20 or about .70 cheaper than current prices of regular diesel. http://tonto.eia.doe.gov/dnav/pet/hist/whore144w.h... Problem with that is use of red or heating oil in road applications is its a federal crime. But off-road is ULSD but just with red dye and an additional chemical tracer added.

Anyway, going back to the original idea... if someone took a Volt, put a pickup chassis body on it or did it el camino style, and then mounted a diesel generator in the bed they could technically use off-road diesel to power the electrical connection :)


RE: Where are the diesel hybrids?
By RU482 on 9/24/2008 10:48:13 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
.... something like one gallon of fuel can haul one ton of freight over 400miles.


But how much fuel does it take to bring the locomotive up to speed?

Talk about comparing apples to oranges.


RE: Where are the diesel hybrids?
By quiksilvr on 9/24/2008 12:13:33 PM , Rating: 2
The electric motor can bring the car up to speed and the gasoline/diesel engine can maintain it's speed. The main difference between trains and automobiles is that locomotives have virtually no obstacles. It has a path drawn out and doesn't have to worry about traffic (usually).

Personally I feel that purely electric cars are the future NOW and it is totally within the realm of possibility to make a decent performing electric car with a 250+ mile range for sub 50 grand prices, but a good transition to this is a diesel hybrid. I just hope that Bluetec spills its way to other companies soon so that diesel engines can be further implemented in automobiles.


RE: Where are the diesel hybrids?
By Suntan on 9/24/2008 1:28:38 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Personally I feel that purely electric cars are the future NOW and it is totally within the realm of possibility to make a decent performing electric car with a 250+ mile range for sub 50 grand prices


Come up here to Minnesota and try that theory out in the middle of Feburary...

-Suntan


RE: Where are the diesel hybrids?
By guacamojo on 9/24/2008 11:16:28 AM , Rating: 5
There are quite a few reasons why the fuel economy doesn't scale. Here are some:

Rolling resistance-
Trains have steel wheels rolling on steel tracks. Even the best "low rolling resistance" tires don't really compare that well to steel-on-steel.

Aerodynamic drag-
Train cars are close enough together that each car can "draft" behind the car in front of it. This gives pretty huge aero benefits to the train considered as a whole, even though each car may not be that streamlined.

Constant speed operation-
Freight trains don't accelerate fast. They also don't do a whole lot of stop-and-go cycles (compared with cars.) So they don't waste a whole bunch of fuel (or burn through a lot of brakes) accelerating their mass, they only spend what they need to do the work of climbing grades and overcoming drag and friction.

Consider a freight train that takes minutes to get to 60 mph. Would you accept that in a car?

Overall, although turbo-diesel engines tuned for constant speed operation are relatively efficient, they're not the reason that freight rail is so efficient.


RE: Where are the diesel hybrids?
By clovell on 9/24/2008 11:22:41 AM , Rating: 2
How many trains haul only a single ton of freight? Consider that a train has a small cross-section in proportion to its actual size (hence, less drag), and that its wheels aren't made for stop-and-go traffic (lower coefficient of static friction), and you've just eliminated some of the largest power losses there are in a vehicle.

If cars ran on rails and traffic control systems could be designed that kept us moving and out of wrecks, along with some narrower designs, we might be able to get close.


RE: Where are the diesel hybrids?
By markitect on 9/24/2008 3:21:53 PM , Rating: 1
Its easy to get those numbers:

Step one take a vehicle and make the acceleration really really suck. like 0-60 in 5 minutes.

Step two. Let it run at 40 miles an hour for 6 hours without any stops


RE: Where are the diesel hybrids?
By bertomatic on 9/24/2008 11:01:05 AM , Rating: 2
I feel that you can thank California for that. "Ford has a [diesel] vehicle that gets 65MPG and will not be released in the US."
http://tech.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=08/09/15/2...


RE: Where are the diesel hybrids?
By Keeir on 9/24/2008 12:43:46 PM , Rating: 1
Alright, a few points to remember

#1. 65MPG is likely British. For example, the US EPA rated prius acchieves ~45 MPG combined, the British (only ones that do MPG) Prius acchieves ~66 MPG combined.

#2. Diesels are more efficient and release less C02 per mile. However, they typically release more chemical pollutants (NOx etc) per gallon and mile. The big thing is that a Diesel releases much much more particle matter. Particle matter is terrible for human health. Particle matter already shortens the lifespan of thosands to millions of USers every year. Yes, filters etc and Bluetec cuts that down significantly, but this addition could be very costly for Ford.


RE: Where are the diesel hybrids?
By 306maxi on 9/25/2008 11:16:37 AM , Rating: 2
GTL (gas to liquid) fuel is excellent in regards to particulate emissions. I don't know if they sell it in the US but in the UK Shell sell GTL diesel and even if you stomp on the accelerator in 5th at 30 mph it still doesn't spew out big clouds of black smoke. As an asthmatic I'm very happy that this sort of thing is being done.


RE: Where are the diesel hybrids?
By Keeir on 9/25/2008 6:05:33 PM , Rating: 2
Yes, I am aware of all the changes, but given the California already has significant problems with Particle emissions

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:US-PM10-nonatta...

I think they are being reasonable. Both gasoline AND diesel must pass these requirements. Even with filters than remove 85% of the particles produced, Diesel fuel in most diesel cars is beyond california limits.


Lotus Europa?
By Hoeser on 9/24/2008 8:44:30 AM , Rating: 2
That new "Dodge" electric car sure happens to look a lot like, or maybe even *exactly* like a Lotus Europa...




RE: Lotus Europa?
By Aloonatic on 9/24/2008 9:02:38 AM , Rating: 2
I was just thinking the same thing.

The front of a Lotus Elise/Exige (guessing that the Exige is called Europa in the States?) but with the back of the last model Toyota MR2 roadster.

Still, it looks pretty good, there are worse cars that they could have taken "inspiration" from.


RE: Lotus Europa?
By mdogs444 on 9/24/2008 9:18:36 AM , Rating: 2
I read an article on Yahoo about this yesterday. It indeed does share design and parts/platform with Lotus and Telsa.


RE: Lotus Europa?
By Hoeser on 9/24/2008 9:23:44 AM , Rating: 5
It's not inspired by the Lotus Europa, it *is* the Lotus Europa... google it.


RE: Lotus Europa?
RE: Lotus Europa?
By Fnoob on 9/24/2008 10:10:46 AM , Rating: 2
Kinda looks like the bastard child of Mrs. Vette and MR2.


RE: Lotus Europa?
By Spuke on 9/24/2008 12:30:41 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
guessing that the Exige is called Europa in the States
It's called the Exige here too.


RE: Lotus Europa?
By Aloonatic on 9/24/2008 3:54:30 PM , Rating: 2
Kewl.

I vaguely remember the Exige being a version of the Elise which had an engine from a Toyota that passed US emissions laws or something.

Looking at the Lotus site it seems that there are far more Lotus cars than I thought, I'd never heard of most of the cars. Top Gear, you have let me down.

Seems odd that there is no reference to it being a lotus copy in the article though?


RE: Lotus Europa?
By Spuke on 9/24/2008 5:38:51 PM , Rating: 2
Looks like the US didn't get the Europa model.


RE: Lotus Europa?
By Raidin on 9/24/2008 5:50:54 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
I vaguely remember the Exige being a version of the Elise which had an engine from a Toyota that passed US emissions laws or something.


The Exige is the coupe version of the Elise. Both use the same Toyota engine. There wouldn't be a point in changing the name of the US version unless the name wouldn't market well.

The Elise didn't show up in the US when it was first introduced, but eventually made it here once Lotus decided to produce a US-street legal version, same with the Exige.


RE: Lotus Europa?
By mircea on 9/24/2008 9:42:51 AM , Rating: 2
I think it takes more from the Smart Sport version, since Dymler Chrysler relations are not completely dead.


And yet again...
By UppityMatt on 9/24/2008 8:57:24 AM , Rating: 2
Chrysler unveiled an "electric range-extended" versions of their Town and Country minivan, as well as their iconic Jeep Wranger .

Jeep makes a Wrangler...not a Wranger




RE: And yet again...
By Choppedliver on 9/24/08, Rating: -1
RE: And yet again...
By mdogs444 on 9/24/2008 9:35:04 AM , Rating: 1
Maybe he takes it personally because hes a Wrangler owner? After all, I never understood why Wrangler owns feel the need to wave to other Wrangler owners on the road. lol


RE: And yet again...
By rudolphna on 9/24/2008 12:51:03 PM , Rating: 3
Same reason that motorcyclists, and Bus Drivers do. I have a jeep, and its true, that you do the little wave to others, its a courtesy thing.


RE: And yet again...
By fibreoptik on 9/24/2008 1:07:48 PM , Rating: 1
Courtesy has nothing to do with it. It's a closet homosexuality thing, admit it!


RE: And yet again...
By Spuke on 9/24/2008 3:35:48 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Courtesy has nothing to do with it. It's a closet homosexuality thing, admit it!
Yes because it's gay to be nice to people you don't know.


RE: And yet again...
By amanojaku on 9/24/2008 9:10:09 PM , Rating: 2
It's like giving a thumbs-up to a guy with a hot chick. You wish she was yours, so you gotta give him props.


RE: And yet again...
By fibreoptik on 9/25/2008 11:59:26 AM , Rating: 2
That's pretty retarded. I really hope you don't do that...


RE: And yet again...
By Homerboy on 9/24/2008 9:49:55 AM , Rating: 3
I doubt he feels "better" but it is amazing the amount of grammatical and spelling errors Dailytech has on any given day. They could just copy and paste from a Word doc and it would cross check the spelling and grammar for them!


RE: And yet again...
By UppityMatt on 9/24/2008 10:07:16 AM , Rating: 3
The fact that i consider this site a great source of news, it bothers me when the first two articles i have read today have blatant typos that could be caught with a simple spell check. Its unacceptable for a site dedicated to journalism to not take a few minutes to even proofread the articles.


RE: And yet again...
By Fnoob on 9/24/2008 10:20:46 AM , Rating: 2
My, you are uppity!


RE: And yet again...
By austinag on 9/24/2008 10:57:49 AM , Rating: 2
Thank you four your totally honest sign in name! You've inspired me to change mine to Laughs@ownjokes


110 vs 220
By GeorgeH on 9/24/2008 1:50:52 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
The vehicle will also accept a 220v supply, which will cut charging times in half.

And will a 440v supply charge the batteries in 1/4 the time? If that's really true, why not throw a transformer in the trunk for the 110v supply? Pardon the ignorance, I just don't see why a voltage difference is going to charge quicker - unless 220v supplies can push more power as well as higher voltage. Anybody care to enlighten me?




RE: 110 vs 220
By evildorf on 9/24/2008 3:28:41 PM , Rating: 2
At 220V, you can output the same power with half the current of a corresponding 110V outlet (P = IV). At the same current, you get double the power, because you have double the voltage. That's the idea, I think. I suppose that 440V power would give you similar gains, though there is certainly an upper limit on the power you can shove into a battery and expect it to function properly afterward. By the way, the "throwing a transformer in the trunk" idea doesn't work, because 1) transformers that can tolerate those kind of currents are quite heavy, and 2) transformers wouldn't add any power, they would just change the voltage.


RE: 110 vs 220
By GeorgeH on 9/24/2008 4:41:37 PM , Rating: 2
Okay, but what you're saying is that a 220v supply can provide twice the power of a 110v supply. That may be true if the wire gauge is the same, as more current leads to more heat and increased risk of fire, but is that really the reason behind the "twice as fast" claim? If it were, why not add a second (or third, or fourth) plug to the car for 110v supplies?

I know transformers don't add any power, which is why the claim that doubling the voltage halves the charge time still makes no sense to me. It's kind of like saying you can recharge a AA in Europe twice as fast as you can in the U.S., which is a little silly.

(As far as weight goes, even a 10,000W transformer is only going to weigh about 50-100 lbs. Not incredibly light, but not exactly monolithic either.)


RE: 110 vs 220
By Suntan on 9/24/2008 6:09:37 PM , Rating: 2
Think less about the purely technical aspect of it and more of the practical aspect of it.

Most 110 outlet you have available are going to be 15 Amps (20 Amps is common too, but not universal so you can only setup for the most common denominator.)

Even if you had "two" plugs on the car, you would still need to plug them into different circuits, not just different outlets. People would not want to have to plug two plugs into outlets on opposite sides of their garage.

-Suntan


RE: 110 vs 220
By Choppedliver on 9/24/2008 8:07:35 PM , Rating: 4
Basic electronics

A transformer that UPS the voltage, REDUCES CURRENT. Likewise if you lower voltage, you will INCREASE current.

Power = Voltage x Current. Simple

If you up the voltage, and reduce the current, as in a transformer, the POWER stays the same. Power is what you are after.

This IS NOT the case of a dedicated 220 Volt circuit compared to a dedicated 110v circuit.

If you have two circuits:

a) 110v x 10amps 1100 watts
b) 220v x 10amps 2200 watts

The 220v circuit has twice as much power capacity. Therefore you have the potential to charge the battery twice as fast, depending on the battery


RE: 110 vs 220
By GeorgeH on 9/24/2008 9:29:08 PM , Rating: 2
Yep, I know. My main concern was the apparently glib statement that you could cut the charge time from 8 to 4 hours by simply doubling the input voltage.

As a side note, if it were possible to use 2 (or even 3 or 4) 110v connections to increase the charge time to 4, 2.5, or even 2 hours, I'd be all over it. Finding seperate circuits would be a pain, but the charging time savings would be more than worth it. If I were charging at home, I could even imagine a "charge station" in my garage with a single heavy-duty cord that connected to the car.


RE: 110 vs 220
By Oregonian2 on 9/25/2008 2:37:26 PM , Rating: 2
The 240V option is basically that. Same as done for kitchen stoves and electric clothes dryers.


A123 raking in the dough
By MagnumMan on 9/24/2008 10:21:39 AM , Rating: 2
So basically A123 is getting paid twice to produce the same thing...




RE: A123 raking in the dough
By Suntan on 9/24/2008 10:40:28 AM , Rating: 2
...ah, just like every other automotive parts vendor.

You think Ferrari gets those fancy shocks for free just because the Corvette paid to use them first?

-Suntan


RE: A123 raking in the dough
By Spuke on 9/24/2008 12:36:01 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
You think Ferrari gets those fancy shocks for free just because the Corvette paid to use them first?
Ferrari doesn't use magnetic shocks. They use traditional dampers.


RE: A123 raking in the dough
By Suntan on 9/24/2008 1:47:05 PM , Rating: 2
Oh really?

Better tell the various car mags about that...

http://www.roadandtrack.com/article.asp?article_id...

-Suntan


RE: A123 raking in the dough
By Spuke on 9/24/2008 2:57:37 PM , Rating: 2
I sit corrected. Thanks for the info.


RE: A123 raking in the dough
By RU482 on 9/24/2008 10:55:22 AM , Rating: 2
who's paying them twice?


who cares if it looks like a lotus!
By omnicronx on 9/24/2008 10:29:21 AM , Rating: 2
This is great news, I've always wanted a god damn Wrangler! If I can get one that goes short distances on battery, I'm sold!.




RE: who cares if it looks like a lotus!
By Fnoob on 9/24/2008 10:33:08 AM , Rating: 2
Seems like the instant torque response of electric motors would lend itself well to off-road use. Especially one motor at each wheel ;)


RE: who cares if it looks like a lotus!
By rudolphna on 9/24/2008 12:53:55 PM , Rating: 2
sometimes. Water, and mudding wouldnt bode well though. What is really needed is low-speed torque, for rock crawling. I dont know how well an electric motor would turn those big tires, if you are running 33s it takes alot of power to turn those tires. If jeep was smart, they would replace that mini-van V6 with a newer, improved Inline 6, like good ol 4.0L.


By Spuke on 9/24/2008 3:01:15 PM , Rating: 2
An electric Jeep would have no issues turning any big tire provided the torque output was sufficient.


By Keeir on 9/24/2008 4:47:00 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
What is really needed is low-speed torque, for rock crawling. I dont know how well an electric motor would turn those big tires, if you are running 33s it takes alot of power to turn those tires.


Electric motors typically have lots of low end Torque.


The EV sounds interesting, the rest is crap
By fibreoptik on 9/24/2008 1:04:36 PM , Rating: 2
Specs on the EV model sound very, very similar to the specs on a Tesla Roadster.

If they can bring something to market with similar performance/body styling/reliability to the Tesla, but about 1/3 the price, I will not only get on the waiting list... I'll snatch up as much Chrysler stock as I possibly can :)




RE: The EV sounds interesting, the rest is crap
By Doormat on 9/24/2008 1:22:41 PM , Rating: 2
1/3rd the price is really unlikely (that would put it under $40,000).

I would put the cost at around $90,000 for the Dodge EV - basically its very similar to a Tesla Roadster with a smaller battery pack (150 mile range instead of 220 miles). There is an outside chance of it getting down to $80,000 but its unlikely.


By fibreoptik on 9/25/2008 12:02:40 PM , Rating: 2
Well then, people will just buy the Tesla :) If you're already prepared to pay $80 or $90k for a vehicle then an extra $10k to NOT be driving a fcking Chrysler is worth it.


By Oregonian2 on 9/25/2008 2:42:28 PM , Rating: 2
Yes, it'll also be so much more convenient with a Tesla because of their large infrastructure of dealers around the country who can provide repair support for the vehicle after one's purchased one. And a bonus, one gets to participate in a start-up company's success (and if it doesn't one then has a "rare" car with undoubtedly high value to collectors -- a win in either direction).


Please be more descriptive....
By pauldovi on 9/24/2008 9:35:23 AM , Rating: 2
A plug in hybrid is not very descriptive. Please elaborate that these are series hybrid's in future articles.




warranty
By bugzrrad on 9/24/2008 1:19:53 PM , Rating: 2
Are the electric motors and batteries covered in the lifetime powertrain warranty?




By kilkennycat on 9/25/2008 3:12:07 AM , Rating: 2
I sure would not like to be near (or in) a crashed vehicle that included a potentially-reptured Li-ion battery and a gas tank on a wet night. Especially if the battery was anywhere near fully-charged. Lithium is the most reactive metal in the Periodic Table. Explosively-reactive with intense heat in the presence of water. see:-

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8ypUVpwgcAA




"Electric" - I don't get it
By IronBoy on 9/25/2008 6:12:07 PM , Rating: 2
Here in California, the hit to my electric bill would be astronomical if I plugged in my vehicle every night.

About 43% of electricity generated in the US comes from coal alone, so the notion of 'clean' electricity is a myth. Not to mention, diesel and natural gas. When you plug in your car you're burning fossil fuels.... Just indirectly.

I never hear any talk about these enormous downsides to plug in vehicles. Hybrids, sure. But pure plug-ins are a ridiculous concept IMO.




JOb lot
By andrinoaa on 9/24/08, Rating: -1
The novelty electric car is doomed from the start
By tastyratz on 9/24/08, Rating: -1
By isorfir on 9/24/2008 10:06:07 AM , Rating: 2
tastyratz:
quote:
Useless for long trips or work commutes, extended traveling away from home, "forgetful" people who didn't plug it in 1 night (even if it doesn't happen all the time)... you know - most of the population.


Article:
quote:
The automaker says each will have a 40 mile range on electric-only drive, at which time the gasoline engine will kick in.


If you don't remember to plug it in or need to go more than 40 miles, you'd treat it like a normal gasoline car. Far from “useless.”


By clovell on 9/24/2008 11:25:17 AM , Rating: 2
...unless battery technology continues to develop.

fixed.


RE: The novelty electric car is doomed from the start
By Spuke on 9/24/2008 12:34:12 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
unless battery technology continues to develop.

...which has been a slow and painful development.

Fixed.


By Doormat on 9/24/2008 1:35:22 PM , Rating: 2
Compared to what? Li-Ion batteries enjoy a 5-10% efficiency gains every year. Many companies are working on producing batteries that will outclass current generation Li-Ion (AltairNano for example).

I would fully expect that by 2020, batteries that are capable of providing 50 miles of electric only power are available for $3,000 or less, last 15 years and are quite small (about 1/3 the Volt battery size).


RE: The novelty electric car is doomed from the start
By Spuke on 9/24/08, Rating: -1
By clovell on 9/24/2008 5:43:25 PM , Rating: 2
Perhaps, Spuke, you've forgotten the definition of the word 'never', or how 5-10% annual gains compound (like in a 401(k)). I'm really trying to give you the benefit of the doubt here, but you're making it hard.


RE: The novelty electric car is doomed from the start
By Spuke on 9/24/08, Rating: -1
By dragonbif on 9/24/2008 8:24:40 PM , Rating: 2
I don’t think you can read!
*5-10% per year
*by 2020 with a 10 mile increase in range
This is the kicker that you just can’t seem to read!
quote:
and are quite small (about 1/3 the Volt battery size)

That is 33.333333% of the size they are now. By simple math if you can go 50 miles on that battery, then the same size they are now would be 150 miles. Granted because of the added weight it may only be 130 miles but without figures we can only do the simple math. I fail to see why you feel the need to criticize this gain in range? Or are you looking for 500 miles by 2020? Also because of the new technology we may be able to charge them in 1-2 hours that would be nice. I used to live in Alaska and at some of the stores they had plug ins for your engine heater to keep it warm as you shop so I could see places adding them in with a fee or for free.
Some day I could see some one asking “Gas? What is gas?” It is like a fart!


By Spuke on 9/25/2008 7:26:15 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
I don’t think you can read! *5-10% per year *by 2020 with a 10 mile increase in range


But before this, I said,
quote:
So you're saying that 5-10% gains EVERY year until 2020 only amounts to a 10 mile increase in all electric range?


Hmmm. Who can't read again?


By clovell on 9/26/2008 11:19:10 AM , Rating: 2
No, I wasn't trying to say that. hell, with even half a percent increase per year, we'd be able to see this within our lifetime. Never is just a strong word. I don't mean to argue the exact figures, just the concept.


RE: The novelty electric car is doomed from the start
By Keeir on 9/24/2008 12:49:29 PM , Rating: 2
... unless battery technology in the form of charging times continues to develop.

It doesn't matter if a car has a 6000 mile range. If it takes me 1 hour to charge for 10 miles (Ref, 40 AER Chevy Volt, 4 hour charge time @220V), thats a serious drawback to me.


RE: The novelty electric car is doomed from the start
By Keeir on 9/24/2008 4:43:41 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Last food for thought. Average US household uses 11,040 kWh/year (Source: Energy Information Administration – Table 5: US Average Monthly Bill by Sector, Census Division, and State 2006)
To charge that car 1 time takes more energy than the average household uses in a year. Scary thought.


Well, assuming a 90% charging and energy retention rating

A chevy volt will travel 40 AER miles on 8kWh of stored energy.

Therefore, the average electrical usage into miles should look something like-

11040 kWh * 0.9 * 40m/8kWh= 50,000 miles (49,680).

I might be able to live with a pure electic car that gave me a 50,000 mile buffer...


By tastyratz on 9/24/2008 5:01:59 PM , Rating: 2
Ahh good point, touche. I made a mistake with my census example I am glad you pointed it out. I was for some reason thinking the household uses 11,040 wh/y instead of kwh/y.

90% rate seems a bit optimistic though, doesn't it? I would assume a drastic decline in efficiency as well if we were to charge a battery in a far smaller amount of time (consumer convenience factor)


By Keeir on 9/24/2008 5:55:45 PM , Rating: 2
Well...

http://www.greencarcongress.com/2008/02/nissan-tes...

Real Li-Ion packs for cars are typically able to acchieve 110V to 220V efficiencys of 95%+. I think even higher voltages may lead to even high efficieny. The real issue with large capacity batteries is retention as most batteries will lose energy over time. In such situation as a 50,000 mile battery pack, energy loses would be very significant as it would take years to use all the energy.


By mdogs444 on 9/24/2008 10:12:08 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Vehicles that are all electric and require an overnight charge are only suitable for secondary forms of transportation for most people.

This part I would 100% agree with. Especially with a 150-200 mile range...and I'm guessing that's with very conservative driving habits.

Especially considering the amount of people who live in apartment buildings don't have access to external electrical outlets. The electric car that could vastly help their monthly bills, if the car was affordable, is really out of reach for them anyway.


By Fnoob on 9/24/2008 10:29:28 AM , Rating: 2
Those numbers do look discouraging. 3600amps! Might as well just replace the radio antenna with a lightning rod!

Most batteries I have used in the past seem to degrade performance in extreme heat or cold. If 'they' could create a rechargeable battery system that increases in charge efficiency the warmer it gets, the charge time would decrease significantly. Further, they could route some of that heat to the occupants and windshields in cold environments, eliminating the need for a heating/defrosting system that draws power.


By Oregonian2 on 9/24/2008 12:47:23 PM , Rating: 2
What are you talking about? The Chrysler EV (minivan version) has an eight gallon gas tank and can go 400 miles on it, according to Chrysler. Although those with commutes of less than 40 miles round trip (like me) can use no gas at all on a daily basis, it has a gas engine electric power source as well -- yielding a 50 mpg gas car as a result (well, more like 40 mpg because the first 40 miles weren't using the gas). So even if I forget to charge it, it's still a very high MPG gasoline minivan.

A full charge using 115V takes 8 hours, less if one has 220/240 available. But the charge is not mandatory.

Not mentioned in the article, Chrysler has a dedicated website about these cars, it's linked to in the regular news articles about it (look in Google news). The minivan version is the one I wish were out now, and if the price weren't too astronomical I'd probably get it (and because it is leveraging off a current design, perhaps it won't be).


RE: The novelty electric car is doomed from the start
By Keeir on 9/24/2008 1:09:11 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
(well, more like 40 mpg because the first 40 miles weren't using the gas).


I find thier claims a little bit... far fetched. They are claiming thier mini-van will acchieve 45 MPG city?

The Cd of the Chry. Mini-Vans is typically ~0.35 with a frontal Area around ~31 ft2.

For comparison, the Prius has a Cd of ~.26 and a frontal area ~23 ft2.

This means the drag component has a difference of 10.85 (Mini-Van) to 5.98 (Prius).

I would also think the mini-van would have a higher mass than the Prius

There are gains in efficieny to having serial hybrid design and running a maximum fuel efficieny point at all times, but there is a limit to how efficient a gasoline engine can be. Somehow, I doubt that the serial+engine Chrysler is designing can power a mini-van to the same level as a Prius... it may require increasing energy out per gallon of gas by 25-50%! (Which seems to indicate a massive leap in engine technology... something not typically easily accomplished or produced in very short time frames)


By Doormat on 9/24/2008 1:30:23 PM , Rating: 2
I agree, the Volt is supposed to get 45MPG on the gasoline generator. The idea that the minivan will also get that seems laughable.

If you work backwards, the Volt should get about 9kWh from a gallon of gasoline (200Wh/mi * 45mi). If the van is using 275Wh/mi as I estimate, it would get about 32MPG, or 260 miles on gasoline alone. Still not too bad, but I would expect Chrysler to up the fuel tank to 10 gallons before its all said and done, and offer a combined range of 360, or 320 on gas alone. Unless they've managed to build a more efficient electric generator and get more kWh out of the gallon of gas.


By JediJeb on 9/24/2008 3:04:02 PM , Rating: 2
One thing to consider though is the minivan has a lot more room to put in a larger engine and generator which would not have to work as hard as the smaller ones in the Prius so maybe that is where they are making up the difference. Just like a Vette or Trans Am can get 25+ mpg highway, if the increase in size/weight/engine displacement versus milage was linear then comparing them to a Camry the bigger cars should be in the 5-10mpg range( just an estimate not exact calculation).

When you figure the 2.0L displacement engine is running maybe 3000rpm at 70mph and the 5.0L displacement engine is running 1700rpm at 70mph. The 2.0L is moving 3000L of air per minute while the 5.0L is moving 4250L of air per minute at cruising speeds ( figured as displacement X rpm / 2). The larger engine is displacing 1.4 times as much air but is 2.5 times larger. Assuming equal fuel/air ratio is needed to run them both then the amount of fuel difference is the same as air difference.

I guess what I am getting at is that with more room to play with the minivan may be able to compensate using a larger engine/generator combo to keep the same milage and range as the smaller car. So the numbers Dodge is puting out may be correct. There are so many factors that figure into effeciency besides just Cd and frontal area. Torque, gearing, rolling resistance, ect all have to be factored in.


RE: The novelty electric car is doomed from the start
By Keeir on 9/24/2008 4:37:30 PM , Rating: 2
Current Mini-vans get 20-25 MPG combined. I just have difficulty conceptionalizing a system that nearly doubles thier fuel economy without reducing the required energy output. I mean, compare the Camry and the Camry Hybrid. Or the Volt and the Cruze. Differences exist of 10-20% or more in certain situations. Maybe the mini-van is going to harness lost heat energy?

Not sure, but I am sure that Chrysler can not do 25%+ better than GM and Toyota. That seems fantastic.


By Oregonian2 on 9/24/2008 5:41:14 PM , Rating: 2
fwiw - Note that Chrysler still gets technology (including hybrid technology) from Mercedes (Daimler). Possibly they got some "good stuff" from them. In any case, Chrysler does have a second generation prototype according to their website. Perhaps their marketing may have been helping their claims a bit, but even with "standard" deflation of marketing numbers "still ain't bad". I've an ancient 1996 Chrysler T&C and with the A/C running full blast I'll still get maybe 23~24 mpg on the highway.


RE: The novelty electric car is doomed from the start
By Keeir on 9/24/2008 6:05:21 PM , Rating: 2
I have a 2003 Chrysler T&C AWD which has averaged just about 19.5 MPG combined over its life. Removing the AWD and adding some lower resistance tires... maybe 23 combined?

If Mercedes has that technology... where are the Mercedes cars that have nearly doubled thier fuel efficieny? Not heard any announcements or etc...

Note: It would be great if the final results was 30 AER/30 MPG combined. However, given that the 2008 T&C is rated at 17/24 with a 3.3L V6 and 4 speed Automatic... I just have trouble believing the 45 MPG number by 2010. Even a Mazda5 (smaller) with 4 cyclinder and Manual gets only 22/28.


By Oregonian2 on 9/24/2008 8:46:40 PM , Rating: 2
Note that Toyota has a minivan (not sold in the US) that supposedly gets 35 mpg. It's a toyota style hybrid meaning not an "electric car" and not using lithiums (which are supposed to get the effective mileage higher than the Nimh ones they're using). This makes the Chrysler claimed numbers more believable in that they'll be lithium, a pure electric vehicle, and I understand front-wheel drive (less losses with drive train stuff at all four wheels).


By Oregonian2 on 9/24/2008 8:48:19 PM , Rating: 2
Make that "less losses without drive train stuff at all four wheels"


By Keeir on 9/25/2008 6:14:14 PM , Rating: 2
"Supposedly" gets 35 MPG.... is it a "full" sized mini-van, or a cross over (IE Subaru Forester type)? What testing methodology was used to get 35 MPG? Note, British MPG test for example give results 25-50% higher than US ones.

Even if it was a Full-sized Mini-van under US testing, I reference the Volt/Prius. Similar sized cars, One a Parrell (Toyota Style) Hybrid with 45 MPG combined using Nimh. One a serial hybrid (proposed Chrysler) with 45-50 MPG combined with Lithium. Seems to me that 35 MPG combined would be a reasonable outcome.

I guess I refuse to believe that using the existing ~.35 Cd body shape and same A combined with existing engine technology will result in a mini-van that nearly doubles fuel economy. Or the same 40 AER that the volt gets without either A.) increasing battery size and thus cost or B.) using a greater discharge which will reduce battery life


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