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Toyota and the 2010 Prius = Evil Government Conspiracy (according to Rush Limbaugh)
One of the most vocal political talk show hosts, shares his opinion of the hybrid movement, and doesn't stop there

When it comes to hybrids and fuel efficiencies it’s all a huge conspiracy -- at least according to Rush Limbaugh.  Mr. Limbaugh, famous for his controversial opinions on all sorts of issues, sounded off on Tuesday about what he sees as the evils of hybrids.

He launched into his speech, stating, "The Ford and Honda hybrids due out this month are among dozens planned for the coming years as automakers try to meet new fuel-efficiency standards and please politicians overseeing the industry's multibillion-dollar bailout."

While fuel efficiency standards are definitely a hot topic here at DailyTech, there's something strange about his comments -- perhaps the fact that Ford did not accept any bailouts and that Honda, a foreign automaker cannot qualify for them?  But never mind that little slip, according to Mr. Limbaugh, environmentalists and the president are in a big conspiracy to sell more efficient cars and "trick" consumers.

However, he says consumers aren't falling for this devious plot.  He states, "Nobody's buying 'em (hybrids)!  Nobody wants them!  The manufacturers are making them in droves to satisfy Obama!  Sorry for yelling. Nobody wants them!"

For the record, by nobody Rush Limbaugh actually means "only 1.3 million drivers" -- as that's how many have bought hybrid vehicles since they hit the U.S. market in 1999 with the Honda Insight.  However, Limbaugh does have the current market trend right -- industry wide hybrid sales have dropped 44 percent, slightly worse than the general industry drop of 37 percent in total vehicle sales.

Mr. Limbaugh says that Toyota, which recently finished work on the 2010 third-generation Prius, in particular, is among the most sinister of conspirators.  He states, "God bless Toyota, but Prius is a loss leader. They'll lose money on the Prius to keep Congress off their back, to have a good brand, to make 'em look like they're socially conscious citizens of the earth, but they're making the freight on the big cars and trucks they sell."

Despite Limbaugh’s claims, the Prius has actually been profitable since 2001.

While he fails to explain why "big car" sales -- like those of GM's Hummer brand -- are way down, he does explain what he thinks is wrong with the auto industry.  What "killed" the auto industry?  Limbaugh states, "Politics. Politics. Politics outta Washington and Sacramento and other state capitals, politics killed the auto industry. Politics is why you can't get a car you really, really like or why they don't make as many as you really, really like 'cause they're being forced to keep the Gestapo off their back."

New York Times columnist David Brooks offers a differing opinion, writing, "Some companies are in the steel business, some are in the cookie business, but General Motors is in the restructuring business. For 30 years, GM has been restructuring itself toward long-term viability. There are many experts who think that the whole restructuring strategy is misbegotten. These experts think that costs are not the real problem. The real problem is the product. The cars are not good enough. The management is insular. The reputation is fatally damaged. But if you are in the restructuring business, you can't let these stray thoughts get in the way of your restructuring."

So who's right?  Ultimately it’s a matter of opinion.  Did government interference sink GM?  Are big cars selling like hotcakes, while hybrids languish?  Are Ford and Honda fishing for a bailout? It really depends on who you ask.



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Bah humbug
By bighairycamel on 4/3/2009 11:28:31 AM , Rating: 2
Does anyone actually respect this douche as an intellectual thinker? I mean besides right wing devotists?




RE: Bah humbug
By codeThug on 4/3/2009 11:32:38 AM , Rating: 4
quote:
Does anyone actually respect this douche as an intellectual thinker?


No. We all think our President and Congress are the smartest people on the planet.


RE: Bah humbug
By Staples on 4/3/09, Rating: 0
RE: Bah humbug
By rdeegvainl on 4/3/2009 12:02:32 PM , Rating: 5
There it is... Right here is exactly what I hate the most. Everyone assumes that you are either far left or right. The whole country, and most parts of the world are polarized. Everyone bashes on bush, or obama, repubs and dems.
Screw that crap, take an argument based on its merits, not which political party it fits with. Why can't people be against growing government without being assigned a political party by people who know little to nothing about them.
A few years ago everyone would accuse me of being a democrat, and now everyone would think im a republican, just cause Im not all for everything a current administration is doing.

tldr; RAGE!!!!!


RE: Bah humbug
By Jalek on 4/3/2009 12:13:47 PM , Rating: 5
The biggest problem with the labels is that both parties want nothing other than expanding government with increasing powers. They're focused on different powers and controls that they want, but they have more in common than differences.

People can fire all the rhetoric they want from party platforms, their actions are all that matter.


RE: Bah humbug
By fic2 on 4/3/2009 5:55:53 PM , Rating: 4
Difference between Democrats and Republicans:
Democrats: Tax and Spend
Republicans: Tax Cut and Spend


RE: Bah humbug
By MrBungle123 on 4/3/09, Rating: 0
RE: Bah humbug
By nixoofta on 4/3/09, Rating: -1
RE: Bah humbug
By rdeegvainl on 4/3/2009 12:43:32 PM , Rating: 5
no... im me


RE: Bah humbug
By Steve1981 on 4/3/2009 1:08:43 PM , Rating: 5
But...but...life is so much simpler when you can neatly categorize yourself as a Democrat, Republican, Libertarian, Green, etc. Imagine just going to the polls and knowing what box you're going to check without having to do any research!


RE: Bah humbug
By SteelyKen on 4/3/2009 4:10:04 PM , Rating: 4
What a refreshing line of reasoning posted in this portion of the thread.
I rate this whole thread 100!


RE: Bah humbug
By MrBungle123 on 4/3/2009 4:21:10 PM , Rating: 3
+1!


RE: Bah humbug
By True Strike on 4/3/2009 5:11:27 PM , Rating: 2
Most definately not sir.

Generalizations are bad.


RE: Bah humbug
By GaryJohnson on 4/3/2009 6:20:52 PM , Rating: 5
Are you generalizing generalizations there?


RE: Bah humbug
By nixoofta on 4/4/2009 12:37:46 AM , Rating: 2
Whoooooweeeee,...*ahem* I mean, uh...RABBLE, RABBLE, RABBLE!


RE: Bah humbug
By Ammohunt on 4/3/09, Rating: -1
RE: Bah humbug
By rdeegvainl on 4/3/2009 3:33:33 PM , Rating: 3
Nope, not a Ron Paul nut case. I want my government run like a transcendentalist would, and think of people like an anti-transcendentalist would. ;)


RE: Bah humbug
By wifiwolf on 4/3/2009 7:32:46 PM , Rating: 2
I know exactly what you mean and agree. But that won't be a politician doing that. Politicians only do one of those at a time and at the wrong time, sadly.


RE: Bah humbug
By phxfreddy on 4/6/2009 1:27:07 AM , Rating: 2
Ron Paul is the only real option. The only nutcases are those that support Obama.

Mark my words. When present time is past there will be nary a man who will admit to having voted for this African style dictator in a vein of Robert Mugabe. They always think they can print money and actually change something. A truly oddly erroneous and torturously obvious point....except to them!


RE: Bah humbug
By MadMan007 on 4/5/2009 4:48:06 PM , Rating: 2
Considering each issue on its merits doesn't mean one's view sways with the wind. It's also ironic that you somehow equate that to 'Ron Paul nutcase' when his views have been very consistent over the years.


RE: Bah humbug
By Staples on 4/3/09, Rating: -1
RE: Bah humbug
By jeff834 on 4/4/09, Rating: 0
RE: Bah humbug
By Oregonian2 on 4/4/2009 2:00:04 AM , Rating: 4
A long time ago I liked listening to Rush. But that was in his earlier days when he was more principled and less a politician rah-rah team member and had a smaller headsize. A LOT of years ago. Nowdays: "ick".

That said the article above is somewhat twisted and slanted against him. The quote and the side-comment about Honda and Ford was a good example. The quote is structured fine if it's read without political glasses blurring the view. Those Ford/Honda cars were stated as an example of a category of car (HYBRIDS) which they are, and that category of car in terms of the current auto business as a whole was being commented on. Perfectly legit. Not perhaps the best example to use for political reasons, but logically adequate and proper. Hate to defend he who I now think is a duffus, but I think one should be fair even to "enemies". Sometimes they turn out not to be that.

As a side comment, a lot of Hybrids seem to have been "fake" ones but still with jacked up prices. IOW - not really providing the perceived/claimed gas efficiency (I've even a friend with a Prius who was VERY disappointed with the gas mileage actually gotten "in real life" -- and that's probably one of the very best hybrids out). So his general comments albeit purely inflammatory (what was the context of them?) may have a smidgen of truth behind them, even if a bit twisted.


RE: Bah humbug
By phxfreddy on 4/6/09, Rating: 0
RE: Bah humbug
By Googer on 4/6/2009 3:13:13 PM , Rating: 2
Read the transcript of RUSH. The Prius was a loss leader, for many Years Toyota did not make profit due to high R&D and high manufacture cost.

http://www.rushlimbaugh.com/home/daily/site_033109...


RE: Bah humbug
By jabber on 4/3/2009 12:10:46 PM , Rating: 1
I didnt know anyone still listened to that fat meds addled junkie.


RE: Bah humbug
By aftlizard on 4/3/2009 12:15:36 PM , Rating: 3
Hail the coke snorting and pot smoking Obama! Oh wait he doesn't do that anymore so he is reformed, and god bless his soul, let's praise his strength!

Yes I know Bush did it, no I am not a Bush supporter, nor a Rush supporter, just don't like idiocy.


RE: Bah humbug
By Spuke on 4/3/09, Rating: 0
RE: Bah humbug
By aftlizard on 4/3/09, Rating: 0
RE: Bah humbug
By phxfreddy on 4/6/2009 6:28:27 PM , Rating: 1
Obama and slavish worshippers no longer need to buy drugs. Their political beliefs are the equivalent of huffing spray paint out of a well wrinked brown paper bag while Larry Sinclair uses you for a lollypop.


RE: Bah humbug
By MrBungle123 on 4/3/2009 12:48:10 PM , Rating: 2
well only about 10 or 12 times the number of people driving hybrids.


RE: Bah humbug
By Moishe on 4/3/09, Rating: -1
RE: Bah humbug
By MrBungle123 on 4/3/2009 1:46:25 PM , Rating: 5
I have noticed that a lot of people that attack Limbaugh as a knee jerk reaction. Most of what he says makes a lot of sense, but as with most talk show hosts you have to listen to the show often enough to understand what it is they are actually saying.

Probably the best example of this is with Rush's "I hope Obama fails" comment. Most of the people in the media attacked this as a purely partisan stand against all things Obama simply because he has a "D" next to his name. This is simply not true. If you take the line on its own and out of context the attack sounds accurate. However if you had listened to the show 30 seconds before and after the comment was made you would know that he was saying that if Obama's agenda continues to be to nationalize the banks, take over private industry, and continue this march toward government control over every aspect of our lives that he hopes Obama fails.

The problem is the media and their blatant disregard for the truth and their tendency to report only the parts of the story that will polarize the country in the direction they want it to go all the while claiming to be neutral.


RE: Bah humbug
By sgw2n5 on 4/3/09, Rating: -1
RE: Bah humbug
By Nfarce on 4/3/09, Rating: 0
RE: Bah humbug
By Steve Guilliot on 4/4/2009 3:59:25 AM , Rating: 3
You seem to be conflating "irrelevance" with "uninfluential". No one is saying the latter. He's irrelevant because his arguments are wrong and don't coincide wiht reality. Does anyone really think he's right about hybrids? Was Toyota kowtowing to politicians when gas was $4.50 a gallon and the Prius was selling like hotcakes? No, they were emulated by other manufacturers who saw money in that market. Now that gas has fallen to $2 per gallon, Rush put his tin foil hat on to rewrite the last 2 years of history. Surprise, it reinforces his far right world view. It's sad really, especially when people defend him with assinine arguments like "you took him out of context". No, we know exactly what he meant.


RE: Bah humbug
By dever on 4/6/2009 2:51:47 PM , Rating: 2
Your argument and the article both ignore the obvious fact that conclusions about the marketability of hybrids cannot be accurate due to interference in the market via tax credits and the like. Those who by hybrids are subsidized by the rest of us to purchase those hybrids.

I've consistently considered fuel efficiency as an important purchase consideration, as do many people... so hybrids would be relevant to some portion of the market anyway. But exactly how relevant is unknown due to government interference in consumer choice.


RE: Bah humbug
By Nfarce on 4/6/2009 6:22:54 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
especially when people defend him with assinine arguments like "you took him out of context".


As someone mentioned above here, taking the comment he "wants Obama to fail" in JUST those words and leaving out the rest of the comment (he wants SOCIALISM to fail) is disingenuous at best. For the record, Bill Maher's comments about wanting Cheney dead were taken out of context as well.

I'm not blind to opinions based on where they come from. However, I will stand up for ones that are misrepresented. Call it what it is.


RE: Bah humbug
By Hawkido on 4/8/2009 12:20:59 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
the Prius was selling like hotcakes

How many fewer would have sold without the subsidies?
If the prius price tag were $8000 more per car just how many Prius cars would have sold?


RE: Bah humbug
By FITCamaro on 4/3/2009 6:24:43 PM , Rating: 1
Well said.


RE: Bah humbug
By jeff834 on 4/4/2009 12:08:48 AM , Rating: 2
Or understand that Rush Limbaugh says stuff to get people riled up, and his opinions are often beyond ridiculous. I caught his speech on CSPAN at the republican thing where he explained why he wanted Obama to fail. I almost threw up and had to change the channel after a few minutes.


RE: Bah humbug
By ffakr on 4/6/09, Rating: 0
RE: Bah humbug
By Moishe on 4/6/2009 10:38:53 AM , Rating: 1
God forbid I ask for clarification... :)


RE: Bah humbug
By Steve Guilliot on 4/4/2009 3:37:43 AM , Rating: 5
Listening Rush requires turning on your radio and tuning to the appropriate channel, while owning a hybrid requires laying out $20k+. Yeah, glad you pointed out those "comparable" facts to illustrate how much more popular Rush is.

BTW, love how you were rated up. It appears sufficient AT readers have analytical skills to match yours.


RE: Bah humbug
By Hawkido on 4/8/2009 12:16:15 PM , Rating: 2
And those hybrids are bought with tax payers money... $ubsidies are paid for by me, the taxpayer.


RE: Bah humbug
By Moishe on 4/3/2009 1:19:25 PM , Rating: 5
This may invoke the negative ratings but I have to say it anyway. Just like the other poster (above) said, this kind of comment is ridiculous.

So let us use a tiny shred of logic and common sense for just one second and stop thinking with our emotions.

1. Does someone's body fat have any bearing on their intellect or ability to reason?
2. Can anyone who's ever made a mistake possibly ever be correct about anything?

If I have to answer these for you and apply them to this topic or any other then you're simply too blind and/or stupid for your own good.

So for pete's sake *THINK* about the idiocy of your comment! If you want to choose a side, FINE, but debate based on reason and leave the ad-hominem attacks where they belong; in pre-school.

Like others are saying there are plenty of us here who are not extreme. There are plenty of us intelligent people who have opinions on issues and to whom politics is not a religion where we kowtow to our "leaders" just because they are on our side.

There are those of us who think that both right-wing and leftists can both hold valid position and have valid ideas at some point. Someone's general political position to me only means that I will agree or disagree with that person more or less often, but very, very rarely will I completely disagree with anyone.

< / rant >


RE: Bah humbug
By jabber on 4/3/09, Rating: -1
RE: Bah humbug
By Nfarce on 4/3/2009 3:49:35 PM , Rating: 4
quote:
He is fat.


So is Rosie O'Donnell.

quote:
He is/was addicted to meds.


So was Brett Favre - on nearly the same pain killers.

quote:
A lot of folks dont like him.


A lot of folks don't like Al Franken.


RE: Bah humbug
By jabber on 4/3/09, Rating: -1
RE: Bah humbug
By jeff834 on 4/4/2009 12:10:35 AM , Rating: 4
You are fat, addicted to meds, and no one likes you. I win.


RE: Bah humbug
By Reclaimer77 on 4/4/2009 11:28:48 AM , Rating: 3
quote:
Sorry was just stating some facts. He is fat. He is/was addicted to meds. A lot of folks dont like him. Thats all.


You really shouldn't talk about Elvis like that. It's just not polite.


RE: Bah humbug
By Hiawa23 on 4/3/2009 1:47:28 PM , Rating: 2
I didnt know anyone still listened to that fat meds addled junkie

I don't like Rush, Hannity, Glen, or the cast of Fox News other than Bill O'reilly, which I love his show, but apparently there are alot of Americans who worship Rush & the others & hang onto their every word, like he is the new leader of something. He & the others don't appeal to me but they have a huge following. Not sure I agree with Rush on GM, but everyone is entitled to their opinion.


RE: Bah humbug
By cubby1223 on 4/3/2009 5:26:36 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Does anyone actually respect this douche as an intellectual thinker? I mean besides right wing devotists?

The better question is, "Why do so many form opinions of Rush based on someone else's slanted recaps?"


RE: Bah humbug
By sgw2n5 on 4/3/09, Rating: -1
RE: Bah humbug
By MrBungle123 on 4/3/2009 5:42:56 PM , Rating: 2
perhaps your comments would carry more weight if instead of just saying he is a "delusional idiot" you could point to something he said that would lead you to such a conclusion.


RE: Bah humbug
By Oregonian2 on 4/4/2009 2:06:11 AM , Rating: 2
Intellectual thinker? I haven't listened to Rush in quite a while (I liked him in his much earlier years but stopped liking him later on), but he at least used to say that his objective was to be an entertainer (or is that what intellectual and political thinkers are?).


RE: Bah humbug
By FITCamaro on 4/3/09, Rating: 0
RE: Bah humbug
By Oregonian2 on 4/4/2009 2:09:20 AM , Rating: 2
Actually I think the gas mileage stuff is very important (or to eliminate the gas totally) for oil issue related things (which includes derivative political side effects).

The problem with hybrids is to have them actually be "real" and actually provide cost effective improvement in actual lowering of gas consumption.


RE: Bah humbug
By FPP on 4/3/09, Rating: 0
OOOOkay then.
By MrBungle123 on 4/3/2009 12:24:30 PM , Rating: 5
quote:
"The Ford and Honda hybrids due out this month are among dozens planned for the coming years as automakers try to meet new fuel-efficiency standards and please politicians overseeing the industry's multibillion-dollar bailout."
-Limbaugh

quote:
While fuel efficiency standards are definitely a hot topic here at DailyTech, there's something strange about his comments -- perhaps the fact that Ford did not accept any bailouts and that Honda, a foreign automaker cannot qualify for them? But never mind that little slip, according to Mr. Limbaugh, environmentalists and the president are in a big conspiracy to sell more efficient cars and "trick" consumers.
-Mick

If you actually listened to Limbaugh instead of skimming over material you could cherry pick and attack him on you would know that he is attacking the Government for medaling in the auto industry. He credits automakers for doing as well as they do despite government bureaucrats who know nothing about designing, building, or marketing cars trying to run the entire system and dictate the future direction of the auto industry.

quote:
For the record, by nobody Rush Limbaugh actually means "only 1.3 million drivers" -- as that's how many have bought hybrid vehicles since they hit the U.S. market in 1999 with the Honda Insight. However, Limbaugh does have the current market trend right -- industry wide hybrid sales have dropped 44 percent, slightly worse than the general industry drop of 37 percent in total vehicle sales.


So here you try and say that Limbaugh is wrong because there are 1.3 million hybrid cars in the US. However According to the US Bureau of Transit Statistics for 2006 there are 250,851,833 registered passenger vehicles in the US. Which means that 1/2 of 1% are hybrids... any reasonable person would say that comparatively that is nobody.

quote:
While he fails to explain why "big car" sales -- like those of GM's Hummer brand -- are way down, he does explain what he thinks is wrong with the auto industry. What "killed" the auto industry? Limbaugh states, "Politics. Politics. Politics outta Washington and Sacramento and other state capitals, politics killed the auto industry. Politics is why you can't get a car you really, really like or why they don't make as many as you really, really like 'cause they're being forced to keep the Gestapo off their back."


Let me guess you must be from Rio Linda. Ok, politics dictates the mileage standards, politics restricts the production of oil and drives up prices, politics mandates things that the free market would otherwise not do. SUV's and Pickup trucks sold very will in the late 90's and early 2000's because that’s what people wanted to drive, small cars were available at the time but people with the money bought big expensive SUV's and Trucks because that’s what they wanted to drive. The current government trends will make it impossible for these vehicles to be made or sold either through emission standards which are not achievable with large vehicles or by pricing them out of reach through oppressive taxes on "pollution" or "carbon emissions".

Congratulations Mick, you've managed to stoop to the level of MSNBC, CNN, and the like. Taking things out of context and arguing against straw men to form the opinions of those that don't really pay attention.




RE: OOOOkay then.
By AMDJunkie on 4/3/2009 2:39:52 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
despite government bureaucrats who know nothing about designing, building, or marketing cars trying to run the entire system and dictate the future direction of the auto industry.


The auto industry depends on government roads for their vehicles to be used on. I think it's fair to say that private companies are going to have to agree to the public governance of road use. Sorry.

quote:
However According to the US Bureau of Transit Statistics for 2006 there are 250,851,833 registered passenger vehicles in the US. Which means that 1/2 of 1% are hybrids... any reasonable person would say that comparatively that is nobody.


How long have there been vehicles with combustion powered engines on the road? So in seven scant years, they have a half percent of market claim? I would say that's pretty good for such a short time, for what's apparently a niche vehicle.

quote:
Ok, politics dictates the mileage standards, politics restricts the production of oil and drives up prices, politics mandates things that the free market would otherwise not do.


Too bad the rise in prices at the pump was due to a speculative market. A free market. Because when your "sure thing" of home mortgages stops paying off, you ask yourself, "Hey, what does everyone else need?" Oil was the answer, and we padded out someone's wallet every time we filled up. For no reason. A completely artificial demand. The very hybrid cars that Limbaugh et al. rally against are the product of the automotive market reacting to the climbing price of gas in the oil market. Of course, free markets are only convenient when they let you drive a truck.

quote:
people with the money bought big expensive SUV's and Trucks because that’s what they wanted to drive. The current government trends will make it impossible for these vehicles to be made or sold either through emission standards which are not achievable with large vehicles or by pricing them out of reach through oppressive taxes on "pollution" or "carbon emissions".


SUVs and trucks are not an unalienable right of an American either. I see absolutely nothing wrong with charging more for one. Hey, you were willing to pay $40K+ for your "King Ranch Lariat F-150" that had a tow hitch that never saw its chrome endangered once. What's another $5K on top of that? If we hadn't a credit crunch, I'm sure the market could just suck that up as the demand would still be there. And then that extra dough can go into the roads that the truck would spend its entire life upon. Also, you said it yourself: people with the money got it. People with the money will still get it, regardless.


RE: OOOOkay then.
By MrBungle123 on 4/3/2009 3:10:02 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
The auto industry depends on government roads for their vehicles to be used on. I think it's fair to say that private companies are going to have to agree to the public governance of road use. Sorry.


Oh you mean the roads paid for by gas taxes; the same taxes for which less fuel efficent vehicles namely SUV's and trucks pay a disproportionately high percentage of per mile traveled?

quote:
How long have there been vehicles with combustion powered engines on the road? So in seven scant years, they have a half percent of market claim? I would say that's pretty good for such a short time, for what's apparently a niche vehicle.


It might be if the life expectancy of a vehicle weren't 10 to 14 years.

quote:
Oil was the answer, and we padded out someone's wallet every time we filled up.


Yup, ours, it went right into our 401K's until the politicians demonizing success and prosperity regulated the sale of houses too expensive for the buyer into the cornerstone of the housing market, and the whole thing came crashing down taking our retirement funds with it.


RE: OOOOkay then.
By AMDJunkie on 4/3/09, Rating: -1
RE: OOOOkay then.
By MrBungle123 on 4/3/2009 5:30:20 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
Are you suggesting that the gas tax is unfair?


Not at all. You are suggesting that the auto companies’ successes are made possible by the government because of the road system. I am telling you that you have it backwards. The road system is made possible by the auto companies. Without the tax revenue from fuel sales there would be no roads as we know them today.

quote:
I'm not quite sure what the purpose of this comment is. Such a statistic would mean that, at the time of this 2006 measure, there are cars from three to seven years before the first hybrid even appeared?


What does a vehicle life span of 10 – 14 years have to do with the number of hybrids on the road? Everything. The root of the whole argument stems from Mick’s claim that Rush Limbaugh was wrong to say that no one was buying hybrids. Half of the 250 Million cars on the road today were sold after the availability of hybrids, and yet there are only 1.3 million of them or about 0.5% of all cars on the road. If we do the math about 1 in every 100 cars sold is a hybrid. Which in the grand scheme of things means that effectively nobody is buying them. Rush Limbaugh is right.


RE: OOOOkay then.
By AMDJunkie on 4/3/2009 5:50:44 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
Not at all. You are suggesting that the auto companies’ successes are made possible by the government because of the road system. I am telling you that you have it backwards. The road system is made possible by the auto companies. Without the tax revenue from fuel sales there would be no roads as we know them today.
Let me clarify that my position is not some chicken-egg question. But the fact of the matter is, that automobiles are meant to be used on roads. The roads are created and owned by the government. If the private automotive companies purchased land in between popular locations, paved them, and subsidized the cost in the price of their vehicles, then I can imagine a country that would not have regulatory oversight of automobiles because it would be used on private property. But they're not. They must conform to government regulations.

quote:
If we do the math about 1 in every 100 cars sold is a hybrid. Which in the grand scheme of things means that effectively nobody is buying them. Rush Limbaugh is right.
No offense, but I would check your math. Since the original figure you provide is 250 million passenger cars, just one percent would mean there are 2.5 million hybrids on the road. If that's nobody, I bet there's a company gleefully proving you wrong (Toyota). Besides, I thought the free market ideal is companies know what the markets want and will provide accordingly. Why are we listening to Rush Limbaugh telling Ford, Toyota, and friends how to run their business? I would think Rush has as much car credentials as the government officials he criticizes.

(Holding back jab that right-wingers don't care about minorities.)


RE: OOOOkay then.
By MrBungle123 on 4/3/2009 6:01:36 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
No offense, but I would check your math. Since the original figure you provide is 250 million passenger cars, just one percent would mean there are 2.5 million hybrids on the road.


Cars on the road now: 250M
Cars sold since the introduction of the hybrid 7 years ago: 125M (assumption)
The first half mean nothing with regard to the sales rate of hybrids because they were sold before the hybrids were available, so 1.3M / 125M ~ 1%
1% = 1 in a 100


RE: OOOOkay then.
By AMDJunkie on 4/3/2009 6:29:16 PM , Rating: 1
OK, that makes much more sense now and brings the figures all together. I wasn't sure how you were arriving at one in one hundred cars. Thank you.

Still, it ignores the main point: it's still one in a hundred cars, and that's still a market that companies feel is worth chasing after. You can't say that if you subtracted those cars from the market, Toyota wouldn't feel the hit. The Prius especially has bought them cultural relevancy, free mindshare whenever one is seen on the road, lampooned in the media, caricatured by... radio host pundits. Put a figure on that.

Limbaugh would also have more of an argument if hybrids prevented people from buying trucks. But that's ridiculous; trucks and SUVs have been in the gutter with hybrids and just about every other car segment. He can crow about CAFE regulations keeping them from introducing more SUVs and trucks, but if a hybrid gets 70+ MPG (like some of the auto blogs have noticed the Prius can), doesn't that mean that the companies who make hybrids do it precisely so they can keep more profligate vehicles in production? If hybrids are a loss leader for automotive companies, I've yet to see the proof for it either; hybrids have fallen relatively in proportion with the credit crunch, and it's only recently that you didn't have to be on a waiting list for the most popular ones.

In summary, this is just whining. You got sick of it when smug bastards in the cars I am defending called your big rig unnecessary, gloating at how miserly their fuel consumption is when their purchases were justified by the price of gas. Now that sales of all cars suck, Rush is just getting to call hybrid drivers wasteful, trying to prove a link between being green as sacrificing economy for ecology. Don't buy it.


RE: OOOOkay then.
By bodar on 4/3/2009 6:51:29 PM , Rating: 1
Is it possible to get the actual numbers on cars sold in the US in the last 7 years? That would be more solid than a guesstimate, though I have a feeling that you're correct in your assertion that 1.3 million hybrids is a pretty small percentage overall.


RE: OOOOkay then.
By ffakr on 4/6/2009 1:07:57 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Not at all. You are suggesting that the auto companies’ successes are made possible by the government because of the road system. I am telling you that you have it backwards. The road system is made possible by the auto companies. Without the tax revenue from fuel sales there would be no roads as we know them today.


The highway system was really started as one of those evul Librul things, created as part of the new Deal. The big bad government figured that it might help to put people to work on 'pork projects' like building tangible infrastructure which is required for a modern economy.

You see, they didn't tax the auto companies in the Depression to build the highways. They built the highways to create jobs and build infrastructure so that Car companies and other industries could leverage that infrastructure to grow (and exist).

funny that.


RE: OOOOkay then.
By Jim28 on 4/6/2009 11:44:37 AM , Rating: 2
Yeah funny that.

This time around not near as much tangible infrastructure will be built. Thus the affect won't be the same. You can't equate spending most of the so called "stimulus" in entitlement programs, bailouts, and junk not needed(water parks) anywhere close to the same thing as building tangible infrastructure such as roads, bridges, power plants etc.etc. Most everyone I know had given up on the stimulus not passing but what we all agreed on is if they have to spend the money do it in a politically neutral way on things that the country could USE, not to fullfill a liberal political agenda. (Or any political agenda for that matter.)


RE: OOOOkay then.
By Reclaimer77 on 4/3/2009 5:22:11 PM , Rating: 2
+6 MrBungle. +6


RE: OOOOkay then.
By sgw2n5 on 4/3/09, Rating: 0
RE: OOOOkay then.
By jabber on 4/4/09, Rating: -1
RE: OOOOkay then.
By FITCamaro on 4/3/2009 6:30:12 PM , Rating: 2
Need people like you in the media and politics.


RE: OOOOkay then.
By FaaR on 4/3/2009 6:47:25 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
However According to the US Bureau of Transit Statistics for 2006 there are 250,851,833 registered passenger vehicles in the US. Which means that 1/2 of 1% are hybrids... any reasonable person would say that comparatively that is nobody.

Righto. So for argument's sake, we have a country with 251 million people. We SHOOT half a percent of all of those. Any reasonable person would say we shot nobody!

No?

Or is half a percent nothing only when it suits your purposes? :P


RE: OOOOkay then.
By Duwelon on 4/3/2009 6:51:05 PM , Rating: 3
This article is an example of a blind liberal fool trying to lead others into his own folly.

First, Rush's sentiments about hybrids are a purely emotional pullstring for the left because if you are an AGW believing, hybrid driving left wing liberal, the one thing you are intolerant of is other people telling you that your life is a sham and your feel good choices are in vain. Mick's batty rant is nothing but a left wing loon who is abusing his media credentials much like most left wing loons do, by masquarading his opinions and slanted tidbits of information as facts.

Lets take one of the things Rush insutated: If you step back from all the Daily Show and CNN talking points and actually think for yourself, you might come to realize that any responsible parent would never want to send their kid out on the road in a small tin can when they can choose a much more safer SUV or pickup.

The only reason anyone would actualy WANT to drive a Hybrid, given their price even with those insane government subsidies aka tax credits, is that they are somehow better for the enviornment. If you believe in AGW, obviously this will pull your heartstrings and frankly piss you off if someone tells you that your feel good choice of driving a hybrid is a bunch of crap.

Mick i'm sure either drives a hybrid or admires those who do, and as is the staple of any "good" liberal, they go into the media any way they can with their stories that present some facts while telling a lie, with no other goal than to drum up the same lame brain logically devoid emotions from readers as they can.

Rush is an easy target, but what he says about Hybrids is dead on accurate. Nobody wants to drive them, nobody wants to let their children drive them, unless they have bought into the fact-less, emotionally charged notion that the planet is in peril and their kid's saftey is of less concern. If the planet was actually in Peril i'd agree, but aside from curbing POLUTION, there is nothing good that comes from Hybrids, none what so ever.


RE: OOOOkay then.
By Solandri on 4/4/2009 6:30:18 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
you might come to realize that any responsible parent would never want to send their kid out on the road in a small tin can when they can choose a much more safer SUV or pickup.

The small pickups and SUVs parents usually get kids aren't really safer than subcompact cars. Their higher tendency to roll over increases their fatality rate about as much as the additional vehicle mass lowers it, giving them about the same net fatality rate as the subcompacts.

http://www-nrd.nhtsa.dot.gov/Pubs/809979.PDF

If you want your kid to be safe, buy them a minivan. Of course that'll probably kill their social lives...

quote:
The only reason anyone would actualy WANT to drive a Hybrid, given their price even with those insane government subsidies aka tax credits, is that they are somehow better for the enviornment. If you believe in AGW, obviously this will pull your heartstrings and frankly piss you off if someone tells you that your feel good choice of driving a hybrid is a bunch of crap.

Actually, when hybrids were first announced, the environmentalists hated them. They weren't electric, and still got all their energy from fossil fuels. I remember reading a couple articles in the L.A. Times ranting about how they were a distraction created by the car companies to sidetrack electric car development. It was only when regular folks started buying hybrids at much higher rates than all-electric vehicles that environmentalists finally got the message - that perfect idealism which almost nobody wants to follow yields fewer benefits than a practical compromise that many people will buy and use. At least they got it with automobiles. I'm still working on them to "get it" with nuclear power...

I'm conservative, but I've always supported hybrids because converting your car's kinetic energy into waste heat when braking instead of capturing it for later use is a huge inefficiency I'd like to see go away. There are also engineering problems concerning engine size, RPM, and efficiency which I don't want to get into in detail, but which hybrids solve pretty neatly. Once we're over the initial R&D cost hump, pretty much every vehicle is going to be hybrid simply because it's more efficient to use, cheaper to build, and provides better performance. To that effect, I just see environmentalists as convenient first adopters who will willingly pay the price premium to help fund that R&D cost hump.


RE: OOOOkay then.
By jeff834 on 4/4/2009 12:17:43 AM , Rating: 2
You can't compare how many registered hybrid cars there are to registered cars to say no one is buying them. You have to A: compare how many cars were purchased since 1999 to how many hybrids were purchased, B: compare how many models of hybrid there are compared to how many models of other cars, and C: compare prices of cars. Fact is someone may really want a prius but if they only can spend $13,000 they're not going to get one.


Sponser
By ICBM on 4/3/2009 11:54:21 AM , Rating: 2
Isn't GM a sponsor on Rush's show right now? Kind of makes it a conflict of interest for him to comment on the situation at all.

The reason sales of hybrids have gone down, is because gas prices have gone down. Americans forget quickly! For some reason, they like big vehicles, my wife included. For the life of me, I can't understand why she likes driving her SUV and refuses to look at a car.




RE: Sponser
By SignoR on 4/3/09, Rating: -1
RE: Sponser
By PhoenixKnight on 4/3/2009 1:31:27 PM , Rating: 5
If you almost never do things that require a large vehicle, doesn't it make more sense to merely rent one in the rare event that you do need to, for example, pull a Uhaul?


RE: Sponser
By MrBungle123 on 4/3/09, Rating: 0
RE: Sponser
By Fozzie on 4/3/2009 4:37:48 PM , Rating: 2
Seems like a more appropriate analogy is the light switch. Driving a car that CAN go 300 miles even if you hardly even need it is like leaving your lights on 24/7 no matter if you need them or not. Because your using that extra gas ALL THE TIME, not just for those few trips a year.

Ideally if electric cars were similiar in initial cost, you could easily rent a gas vehicle or truck for hauling for those few times a year that warant their use and still save more money on gas the rest of the year. Obviously some people have a need for a truck all year round, but they are in the minority!

Besides, who doesn't have two cars these days? I would love to have an electric minivan for hauling the family around town. My wife and I have looked at our usage and I would say that 98% of our daily usage is well under 50 miles in a day. Most days are less then 20!

You know on a barely related tanget, I have found that truck rentals can be quite convenient. Home Depot and the like will rent you a F250/350 type truck for a bargain, something like $20 for a few hours.


RE: Sponser
By MrBungle123 on 4/3/2009 5:07:03 PM , Rating: 5
Its not about making sense. There are lots of things we have in our modern lives that we don't *NEED*. Too many people get caught up in some sort of automobile class envy argument.

Part of why we get up and goto work is so that we can afford luxuries and if for you that luxury is a large vehicle then fine go ahead! Good for you you got what you wanted!

I'm sure that many people on this site have comptuers that are very fast and consequently power hungry.

How many of the people arguing against someone else driving a truck when they don't *NEED* one use a Quad core computer with 4+ Gigs of RAM and a video card that can almost render Shrek in real time to argue their point online? Do they really *NEED* that computer? They say they game but do you really *NEED* to game? you could get by with a $400 walmart computer that uses 1/5 the electricity and do everything you *NEED* to do with a computer couldn't you? Same concept different topic.

What the western world *NEEDS* to stop doing is buying into this crap. IF we go and tax away some rich guys escalade away does that make your life any better? No it doesn't.

Does taxing away the escalade make things more fair? No it doesn't. If anything it makes things less fair. You are taking away the incentive to be successful, you are saying that exceptionalism deserves no celebration that if you push yourself harder than the average joe you deserve to have the benefits of your effort taken away.

Does taxing away the escalade help anybody? No it doesn't. It destroys the industry that created and takes the livelyhood of all the "little people" that build the thing away.

So why do we do this? We do it because so many of us have been duped by propaganda into believing that the rich all have ill gotten gains, that the only reason anyone is more than average is because they cheated. This mentality is self destructive, averaging out everyone is only going to lead us to communism. The rich should be looked up to, look at all the average joes that benefit from the companies they have created. the rich should be admired, the creativity and drive and ambition required to build a company from the ground up that employs thousands is often a great story of human triumph.

Have you noticed that most of the people that advocate taking away the big cars, the private jets, and the like only want to bring the rich down? they almost never try to bring the poor up. Oh sure they wan't to redistribute the rich guys money but they are not interested in creating situtions where the poor can take care of themselves, they only want to create more dependence on the government which will work only until there are no more rich people to confiscate wealth from anymore.


RE: Sponser
By FITCamaro on 4/3/2009 6:36:28 PM , Rating: 3
But da gubament is sposed ta take cares of ma.


RE: Sponser
By Solandri on 4/4/2009 6:38:46 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Does taxing away the escalade make things more fair? No it doesn't. If anything it makes things less fair. You are taking away the incentive to be successful, you are saying that exceptionalism deserves no celebration that if you push yourself harder than the average joe you deserve to have the benefits of your effort taken away.

Actually, the guy who uses the Escalade to haul around his family of 5 is burning fewer gallons of gas per person-mile than the guy who drives his Prius hybrid to work alone. I know very few people who buy these large vehicles to drive around in them alone.


RE: Sponser
By mindless1 on 4/9/2009 1:45:18 AM , Rating: 2
... and you know even fewer people that always/only drive with the whole family of 5 inside!

I'd guesstimate that the average # of occupants in an SUV was somewhere between 1.5 and 2.5 and that the often-claimed reasons for them, hauling things is even less frequent.

However there is still the factor of being able to hold more people or haul things, in American our goals are not to always have only barely enough of anything, so many things in our modern culture are about convenience or self-image.


RE: Sponser
By FITCamaro on 4/3/2009 6:32:24 PM , Rating: 2
That's why I love driving a V8 powered sports car. Wait I'm evil and stupid for that too. Forgot.


RE: Sponser
By Reclaimer77 on 4/3/2009 5:39:16 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
For the life of me, I can't understand why she likes driving her SUV and refuses to look at a car.


Typical husband.

I'm assuming you asked her why, and she told you. But instead of being honest, you grandstand on Daily Tech and pretend her opinions and concerns about what vehicle she drives is a non issue because they don't match yours.


RE: Sponser
By FITCamaro on 4/3/2009 6:38:34 PM , Rating: 1
So divorce her and go marry some lady with 16 kids who lives off of welfare while highlighting on the news. I hear there's one of those available.

If she's under 30 and hot, send your wife to me.


Drivel in opposition to drivel
By Jalek on 4/3/2009 12:02:00 PM , Rating: 4
I'm amazed at this article. They pit Limbaugh against Brooks. A radio caricature versus a newspaper columnist.
I think I'm now slightly dumber.

Brooks' counter focusing on specialization leads to the question, what industry are politicians in? Where do they "know best" how to drive companies to profitability?

Apparently politicians think they're experts in every industry.




RE: Drivel in opposition to drivel
By mofo3k on 4/3/2009 12:13:02 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
Apparently politicians think they're experts in every industry.


Last time I checked, the "Expert" auto execs came to D.C. to ask for govt. intervention. I agree that politicians may not be well versed in running a car company, but apparently neither are the ones that are running them.


RE: Drivel in opposition to drivel
By jabber on 4/3/2009 12:17:51 PM , Rating: 5
If the past 18 months of world history has proven if nothing else -

There is no such thing as 'an expert'.

Only morons who's luck is yet to fail.


RE: Drivel in opposition to drivel
By mofo3k on 4/3/2009 12:22:43 PM , Rating: 2
Good call, I'm just glad I've managed to slip under the radar. For now.


RE: Drivel in opposition to drivel
By nafhan on 4/3/2009 2:04:45 PM , Rating: 1
To me it's proved that when people are having trouble they:
A) Blame other people for their problems.
B) Ask for handouts


Profitability and practicality
By DrKlahn on 4/3/2009 3:47:18 PM , Rating: 3
I find it interesting that the linked article is used to prove the Prius is profitable. What it states is that they can sell the car for more than what it costs to produce. It does not touch on the long term costs to the manufacturer for it's upkeep while under warranty. The batteries alone will be a tremendous cost on the manufacturer. If I sell you something for a $50 profit and there is a $200 fee 2 years later, I would not call that profitable. The Prius may well be profitable, but that article has so little information it can hardly be consider conclusive proof.

Practically I'm just not seeing the hybrid viability. The battery costs, longevity and replacement when compared to a diesel IC engine just don't add up. This technology simply just isn't quite ready. If the current administration really wants to make a positive impact on things, quit trying to make gasoline powered vehicles more efficient through things like hybrid technology, by instead working with automakers to get funds to universities to make actual strides in a viable replacement technologies. Forcing higher fuel economy on vehicles that get heavier every year from increased safety standards results in expensive, more complex, hybrid systems that while saving on fuel will likely not make up the initial cost difference in fuel savings. Or will force people into smaller vehicles they don't want or are impractical for their needs.

Here's a quick example:

Chevy Cobalt XFE
$16k
37MPG

Toyota Prius
$24k
48MPG

Cost to fuel 100,000 miles @ $3/gal
Cobalt $8,108
Prius $6,250

It would take roughly 400,000 miles for the Prius to have made it's initial cost difference back with fuel savings with $3gal gas. Going to $5/gal drops this gap by 100,000 miles or so, but remember we are not talking about battery replacements for the Prius. Add in that cost, which would be around $4k out of warranty and the car would likely be scrapped before ever saving the owner any money.




RE: Profitability and practicality
By ffakr on 4/6/2009 12:58:15 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Chevy Cobalt XFE
$16k
37MPG

Toyota Prius
$24k
48MPG


You should note the city/highway rating.
Cobalt 25/37
Prius 45/48
That changes the perspective a lot.

Anecdotally I know, first-hand and second-hand, a lot of people with Prius. They uniformly love it. They uniformly claim they see over 50MPG in mixed driving when they drive properly (as Toyota recommends).

I hate for this to be dismissed as political, but Rush is always talking crap. Reality isn't nearly interesting enough to justify hundreds of millions worth of Salary contracts.

Hybrid sales are falling because people look at the bottom line during a severe recession.
I would have driven one, and seriously considered buying one if a) there were any available on any Toyota lot (it takes 3 months to get one because they sell so fast) and b) because I wasn't willing to spend that much. I ended up with Hyundai Elantra instead.. Great gas mileage compared to my Infiniti M35X :-)
To me, and to a lot of people these days, that last 5K makes a big difference.

I should have driven Chevy but I've got a pretty poor impression of GM. Their interiors just look like crap. I did test drive the new Saturns and they are embarrassingly crappy. The small Saturn car may be the slowest car I've ever driven. I was able to put the pedal down on the floor and my wife barely noticed I was speeding up.
Ford was out of the running from the start because our previous Ford was a lemon and Chrysler fuel economy is terrible.
Those are the issues that real people care about.. quality and gas mileage. I bought a Hyundai.

Why are Hybrid sales falling marginally faster?
- up-front cost in a bad economy
- limited choice

Unfortunately, Diesel isn't an option in the US though I wish it were. Americans (me included) have strong memories of crappy old Diesel cars with smoky black bumpers. Diesel is taxed too heavily in the US making the gas mileage in modern motors less attractive.. Diesel is also not great for quite a bit of the upper mid-west. I'm not going to deal with Diesel when it's 20 below out.


RE: Profitability and practicality
By DrKlahn on 4/6/2009 11:19:17 AM , Rating: 2
So tipping it to pure city driving does this:

Cost 100,000 miles @$3
Cobalt $12,000
Prius $6670

So at roughly 150,000 the Prius would break even in strictly city driving. Until you add in the batteries.

I have 2 GM cars. One is 16 years old the other is 10. I do my own maintenance and both have been very reliable. I will always consider the support of the manufacturing infrastructure of my country to be a greater factor than whether the plastics on the dash feel nicer. Though that's certainly your choice.


By mindless1 on 4/9/2009 1:56:57 AM , Rating: 2
Prius will never break even in city-only driving because the car will not last long enough to drive 150K city miles or will have had so many repairs plus battery replacement to achieve that, that it stays more expensive perpetually.


This isn't news. It's opinion and FUD.
By Fanon on 4/3/2009 12:08:34 PM , Rating: 5
Jason,

You do realize that Rush was quoting the LA Times when he said:
quote:
The Ford and Honda hybrids due out this month are among dozens planned for the coming years as automakers try to meet new fuel-efficiency standards and please politicians overseeing the industry's multibillion-dollar bailout.


The article he quoted is located at http://www.latimes.com/news/science/environment/la... It's the first sentence of the story.

If you're going to take opinion and try to pass it off as news, which you did poorly, I suggest at least doing your own research instead of gobbling up whatever crap you read elsewhere. If you actually did research and checked Rush's site, you'd see that he was quoting the article. Found at http://www.rushlimbaugh.com/home/daily/site_033109... :
quote:
RUSH: You remember this story? This story is from two weeks ago, two weeks ago we had this story on this program. It's from the Los Angeles Times. The headline: "'Hybrid Car Sales Go From 60 To Zero At Breakneck Speed' -- The gas-electric vehicles are piling up on dealers' lots as anxiety over gasoline prices evaporates. But more hybrid models are on the way. The Ford and Honda hybrids due out this month are among dozens planned for the coming years as automakers try to meet new fuel-efficiency standards and please politicians overseeing the industry's multibillion-dollar bailout." Nobody's buying 'em! Nobody wants them! The manufacturers are making them in droves to satisfy Obama! Sorry for yelling. Nobody wants them! The Prius is supported by the Toyota Tundra and the whole Lexus division 'cause it loses money. Nobody wants them! The only people that have them -- well, I'm not going to characterize them -- but there aren't that many.


Shameful "reporting".




By shin0bi272 on 4/5/2009 6:01:50 AM , Rating: 2
Thank you Fanon


This is a blog post
By Proteusza on 4/3/2009 12:32:53 PM , Rating: 3
What is such blatant opinion doing in the news column? This should be in Jason Mick's blog, not in the main news. This isnt news at all, its offering an opinion on someone else's opinion.

Yeah, Limbaugh is misguided and perhaps somewhat blind to the truth that GM/Chrysler have been failing not because of politics but because they suck. That doesnt change the fact that this isnt news.




RE: This is a blog post
By mmcdonalataocdotgov on 4/3/2009 3:22:41 PM , Rating: 2
It is here because he gets paid by the post, and this sort of vitriol gets the posters rangled, at the article, and especially at each other. Ooops, we just bumped Mick's paycheck.


RE: This is a blog post
By Reclaimer77 on 4/3/2009 5:16:41 PM , Rating: 2
Looks like Mick waited for Asher to dissapear before REALLY going to the radical left side.

This article is a joke lol. Meant to do nothing but incite hate on both sides, while providing for no educational and informative value.

So let me get this right. In a country with over 200 million registered drivers, and who KNOWS how many vehicles on the road, 1.3 million hybrids have been sold over the past TEN YEARS. Does that sound like a serious consumer demand to you ?

Clearly Rush is out of his mind. /sarcasm


Hmm
By Ranari on 4/3/2009 1:26:57 PM , Rating: 2
I had an interesting comment with my dad while driving him home from the airport the other week. He looked over to me and he asked, "So when are you going to get rid of this thing?" I bought this 1995 Mustang GT 5.0 back in 2002 right before I graduated high school. It's an old car, still fun to drive, still runs fine, but doesn't quite get great gas mileage. Even still, it works, and it's paid for. And that's what I told him.

I don't drive all that much, moreso on the weekends, but there are days where the car doesn't even move. I work out of my own bedroom, so I just need something that will take me from point A to point B, not work commuting. The cost to purchase a used/new car, pay premium insurance, all for gas savings isn't really worth it to me. I'd be cheaper to simply rebuild the motor in my Stang and drive it for another 3-4 years than it would to buy a whole brand new car.

And that's the thing. Cars cost a lot of money. Although we depend on them for our lifestyle, when the money gets tough, going out and buying a brand new car doesn't make sense when you already have one that does the job.

Also, no one buys hybrids cause they're the ugliest cars on the road. I know their intention is to be aerodynamic, which plays a huge role as to why they get better fuel mileage (ever wonder why a 500hp Corvette gets 30mpg?), but sheesh, at least make them visually appealing.




RE: Hmm
By Belard on 4/5/2009 2:11:52 AM , Rating: 1
But most hybrids looks like any other car. The Chevy Volt is a nice looking car... so hybrid is not so much the issue.

The thing about electric/hybrid cars is that THEY still cause pollution. Not from the gas, but from the electric company that has to burn COAL to generate the power to charge up the cars... ugh.

Solution to lower pollution.
1 - all homes and buildings get advanced solar power (its getting better every year, some new stuff is around the corner)
2 - As we all migrate to future electical cars, our homes will then Charge up the cars.
3 - we need combo of wind and solar power.

We need to develop these things becase WE WILL RUN OUT OF OIL. And the thing is, we NEED OIL for lubercation anyways. So we need to move off of OIL for our combustion engines (hopefully even somehow including aircraft) so we'll have centuries of oil supplies for gears, motors, etc.

And yea, whats wrong with your car? It runs good, keep it... so what if YOU sold it, someone else would be driving it. Buying a NEW car creates pollution as well (people buying a NEW car every 2~5 years). You should get 200,000+ miles from your car. Mine is at 135,000. I'm about to spend about $400 to get some engine work on the seals which should get me another 50~75,000 miles out of the car.

I like how it drives, how it sound. I get about 25~30mpg, not bad for a 10 year old car... that doesn't look that old.


RE: Hmm
By shin0bi272 on 4/5/2009 5:57:56 AM , Rating: 2
your ideas are not really new and you made some good points but you are forgetting that solar cells cost an arm and a leg, the electric car has been around for almost 100 years now, and we already have wind and solar and they dont work 100% of the time. Wind doesnt always blow at ground level (or the 100 ft that these things stand), the sun doesnt always shine either. coal and oil (once refined) will always burn.

Apart from that the technology that could make solar cells cheaper has been around since 2005 and no one has put them into mass production. lead-selenium nanocrystal solar cells are much cheaper than silicon solar cells and they can be sprayed onto a plastic substrate in a machining process that takes minutes (vs hours) to make. But no one has jumped on this technology (which is also twice as efficient at around 30%) and mass marketed it as a cheaper more powerful solar cell. Why? dont know. But to say everyone needs to go put these on their house is a sort of utopian view as if everyone who has a place to live can do this. What about those people who live in a high rise apartment building? they dont own the building and the entire building covered in solar cells wouldnt power the entire place.

The issue here is that the federal government is forcing companies to go green in accordance with junk science designed pretty much only to change the way we live our lives and line the pockets of the environmentalist lobbyists and the congressmen/women in their pockets. When a company cant comply with the regulations that the congress makes up to cow tow to the greenies they are either forced out of business or they are subsidized with tax payer dollars. If the technology was as great as the environmentalists want us to think it is then the government wouldnt need to spend federal tax dollars on subsidizing its research and development... it would be brought to market naturally and would succeed on its own merits. But the problem is its not as good as what we have now so people dont want to use it. When the oil runs out we will switch to a solar or battery or hydrogen car... till then they will be a niche market. sorry.


RE: Hmm
By Belard on 4/9/2009 4:12:32 AM , Rating: 2
I am aware that nothing is perfect.

But like with computers, LCD displays and other "electronics" - as manufacturing goes UP, the cost goes down and the advancements take place. Competition from various companies can and will help drive technology.

Your statement about apartment buildings, theres not many high-rise Apartment buildings in the USA for one. But every little thing does help. We also need to reflect sunlight back out - so painting roofs white is a benifit considering how much WHITE were losing from artic ice.

There is still wind-power (yes again, room for improvements which are coming) - but the thing about so-called "cheap coal" is that material needs to be dug out of ground - transported to an electric plant and the waste sits in a giant pool. Same with Nuclear... stockpiles of waste materials.

Solar and Wind power is always there as long as the Sun shines and the clouds blow.


By shin0bi272 on 4/4/2009 2:49:34 AM , Rating: 2
The number of cars, vans, suvs, and light trucks totaled 207.8 million and there were another 42.8 million motorcycles on the road...in 2001. The first hybrids debuted in 1999 (the honda insight). So even if there were that same number of cars on the road since 2001 (which I'm sure isnt the case) the 1.02 million hybrids is 0.405% of all cars on the road. Which yes is quite a jump from 0% but in the grand scheme of things theyve been out for 10 years and theyve only sold a million of them. In 2004 ford sold a record number of f-150's ... 939,511. Thats almost a million in 1 year. If you go to the wiki for the ford f-150 you will see the sales since 1999.... over 8 million. So even compared to 1 truck, all hybrid sales are lack luster.

I will reiterate what I said in the last thread about hybrids. A prius costs 25k or so and there are several non hybrid cars that cost significantly less than that and get 25city 35highway. So if you get a car for say 15k and gas costs you 20 dollars to drive for a week (like it does for me personally) you will spend 1,040 dollars per year to drive. which means you have to drive for over 9 years to have spent the extra 10,000 dollars in gas (not including maintenance though) that you would have spent day 1 of buying a prius. Even if the prius used no gas and no grid electricity and ran on sunshine and hugs youd still spend more money on it for the longevity of the vehicle than other people who didnt get hybrids all for the erroneous idea that you are somehow saving the planet by decreasing your emissions of co2 (you know the stuff you breathe out and plants breathe in?) by 25-50%.

I will also ask this question again. If a hybrid's engine only runs when it needs more power than the batteries can give (or however it runs) wouldnt that be causing more pollution? I ask because the catalytic converter has to reach 600+ degrees F to have the titanium in the thing to begin doing its job and it cant do that until 6 miles into your trip. So if the hybrid's gas engine turns off and on while driving (especially in the city) wouldnt that pollute more in the long run?




By Solandri on 4/4/2009 7:09:20 PM , Rating: 2
Don't have much time to go into this in much detail. But engines naturally operate most efficiently at one RPM. For most engines, that RPM is moderately high (about 3500-4500 RPM, it's lower for diesels).

The problem is car engines need to fulfill two primary purposes - provide power at cruise, and provide power during acceleration. The latter requires a lot more power (150+ hp seems popular these days). The former only requires a little power (about 20-40 hp). Horsepower is RPM * torque, so the engine will be running at low RPM in the former case, and at high RPM in the latter case.

So now you're stuck trying to optimize your engine to operate efficiently at two vastly different RPMs. It's basically an impossible engineering problem, and the best you can do is come up with a halfway decent compromise.

The electric motor assist from a hybrid solves that problem. You design the gas engine to operate most efficiently at (say) 3500 RPM putting out a moderate amount of power (say 40 hp). Then you design the car so the gas engine always runs at that RPM. Doesn't matter if you're idling, cruising, or accelerating, it always runs at that RPM. If the car needs more power (accelerating), the electric motor draws from the batteries to provide it. If the car needs less power (cruising), the excess is converted into electricity and stored in the batteries for later use. If the battery is full, you shut the engine off and run off the battery until the battery has depleted enough charge that it can be recharged.

So one of the reasons hybrids are more efficient is simply because you can design the engine to operate more efficiently than in a non-hybrid. Dunno about your catalytic converter question. I assume they found a solution to it to meet emissions regulations, since the emissions requirements are measured in parts per billion, not over time. i.e. A super-efficient motorcycle that sips gas has no advantage over the heaviest SUV.


By shin0bi272 on 4/5/2009 6:16:22 AM , Rating: 2
ok so that didnt answer any of my questions or really respond to any of my statements but thanks for the info. I understand that they get better gas mileage thats not the problem. The gas mileage of a 4cyl 150hp engine being 25/35 isnt as good as the mileage from a hybrid and I understand that. But the hybrid is cost prohibitive when you factor in the price of upkeep and gas. Which is what I was getting at in my post about the cost of driving my saturn. I can drive my saturn (i get free oil changes and maintenance for 5 years) for over 9 years and still have spent less money on my car than a 25,000 prius hybrid. Thats before the hybrid even fills its tank once. Granted it will take much less money to operate it over the long term but if my car lasts 10 years before I get a new one I'll have spent considerably less money than a hybrid driver. Thats what I was getting at with that part of my post.

On the emissions part, I think they have different standards for different classes of vehicles. I know a classic car (any car over 25 years old) doesnt even have to take an emissions test though. I tried to find information on this but the only state I could find it for was caulefornea and they are about as fascist as you can get when it comes to being green so I dont really take their regulations seriously.


I think
By Kefner on 4/3/2009 11:37:13 AM , Rating: 5
I think he's great, loved everything I have ever seen Fred Savage do. Greatest Actor Ever!




Another terrible bit of "journalism" by Mick
By porkpie on 4/3/2009 2:30:03 PM , Rating: 4
The whole point of writing a news story is to keep your own opinion out of it, Mick. Here you don't even try. Worse, you mislead the reader badly. Limbaugh didn't say anything about any sort of "conspiracy" to bring down the auto industry. He just thinks spending tens of billions on hybrids is a bad move.

Why not try to be a good reporter for a change, instead of slamming us all over the head with your personal political beliefs?




By phxfreddy on 4/6/2009 6:32:42 PM , Rating: 1
Good point. Interesting how Limbaugh has touted DT ( not deep throat ) and all Mick can do is smear feces on the guy. Typical liberal approach towards life. No grace. No class. And you can not turn your back on them because they are either knifing you in the back or stealing what is not nailed down.


It was the government silly
By homerdog on 4/3/2009 12:14:35 PM , Rating: 3
But before we go there it's important to point out that this isn't the news article ;)

When American auto manufacturers are forced to pay exorbitant union wages and benefits it puts them at a distinct disadvantage to their Japanese competitors. So they must either compensate by selling their cars at higher prices or cutting costs in other places (making crappier cars). So your claim that they can't make good cars may be true, but that's not because they don't know how. It's a wonder they were able to last this long.




RE: It was the government silly
By Penti on 4/4/2009 10:01:56 AM , Rating: 1
They have unions in Japan too, besides most of them are made in American factories. The employees salaries are only a small cost for the car manufacturer any way, most parts also come from other suppliers. GM and Ford wouldn't work even if the workers worked for free, they are in such a bad shape.


You ALL need to do a little more research
By BPB on 4/3/2009 2:05:43 PM , Rating: 2
I know, folks here on balance like to bash anybody right of Obama, but that doesn't make the people to the right of him wrong (and it's very, very easy to be to the right of the man). Maybe folks here can start reading about a little thing called the 1935 Wagner Act. And maybe you can start thinking about the fact that our auto industry has been around a very long time, and has been stradled with things like the Wagner Act, whereas much of the competition, ie. Japanese autos, are not nearly as old and do not have the same government entervention as the "Big 3" have. Heck, after WWII we REBUILT JAPAN and helped them restart their industries. And they were able to restart without the "help" of a government like ours because we obviously didn't have the power to force them to obey our laws. They passed better ones as far as industry was concerned. The Japanese simply haven't had to deal with the same issues as GM, Ford, and Chrysler. Anybody who denies that is not facing up to reality. Amoung other things the Wagner Act makes it impossible for the Big 3 to properly deal with the unions, the government simply won't allow for it because the unions support the Democrats, and the Democrats have held the bulk of the power since prior to 1935.

Now I'll go put on my asbestos fire suit for the obviously coming flames.




By shin0bi272 on 4/4/2009 1:27:52 PM , Rating: 2
After they do that they should also research "the new deal" and see how FDR threatened to put an additional 9 judges on the supreme court so he could get his social programs passed. The supreme court used to strike down presidential programs that were unconstitutional but now they just roll over and let the other 2 branches do whatever they want.


No one wants them?
By AlmostExAMD on 4/3/2009 8:19:09 PM , Rating: 2
Maybe cause they are so damn ugly, They need a trade off between aerodynamics and good looks and at the moment it's all about aerodynamics,In my opinion a lot of people out there don't just buy a car cause it goes fast or is fuel efficient,They buy based on looks to suit their personality type.




RE: No one wants them?
By shin0bi272 on 4/4/2009 2:56:11 AM , Rating: 2
How does that saying go? "you eat with your eyes first"? Of course that is talking about food but its the same thing with anything... if you cant stand to look at your car you wont buy it.


Hybrids are a Joke (just not a funny one)
By sprocket3d on 4/3/2009 12:49:52 PM , Rating: 2
With Hybrids barely reaching the mileage of the early 90's ie. crx hf and the stylish Geo's (lol) they realistically make no sence. A efficient K-car motor would be more than enough to drive a generator for the volt. 600cc @ 60+ hp. It just seems that the "Green" movement is stopping us from exploring things that could be very beneficial. If Edelbrock can get 20-22 mpg out of a push rod LT1 V8, Honda can get 50 mpg out of a old fuel injected 1.3l, and a 505hp corvette gets 20-25 mpg then today's compact and sub-compact cars should be well above that. Some sort of Mad-Lev system is what we should be going for but they are very expensive and could present a whole new set of problems for vehicles. Reducing the weight while still keeping the mass is the way to get better cars that get better mileage.

quote:
So to show American Government intervention with the auto industry (of America) you show a Japanese car? I think Rush is too annoyed with how we are handling american Cars to bother giving a crap about foreign cars. Back on the subject... our government should not have given money to any auto or bank or insurance company. Make money or fail, those are your options. So in that effect Rush is correct. Also it isn't right wing or left wing stupidity it is stupidity on both sides allowing this to happen.


First off, if you think that Japanese and American Toyota are the same company you are sorely mistaken. Toyota's are made in the USA and Toyota of USA is associated only by name to their parent company in Japan. Toyota being the number one sold car in the US makes it high on people's priority list for how they are doing right now. Also you couldn't be more right. It is a total cluster bomb on what happened right now but with one side controlling the whole government with a very charismatic leader that's what happens. Dem, Rep, or WWII Germany.




By DrKlahn on 4/3/2009 4:10:00 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
First off, if you think that Japanese and American Toyota are the same company you are sorely mistaken. Toyota's are made in the USA and Toyota of USA is associated only by name to their parent company in Japan. Toyota being the number one sold car in the US makes it high on people's priority list for how they are doing right now. Also you couldn't be more right. It is a total cluster bomb on what happened right now but with one side controlling the whole government with a very charismatic leader that's what happens. Dem, Rep, or WWII Germany.


Toyota has American operations, but it's all owned by Japan. One important thing to look at is that their American plants are using parts produced elsewhere. If you look at the domestic content (parts produced here)of their cars it's much less than the big 3. And consequently the amount of profit that stays in the U.S. is much less.

Let's look at this scenario. China decides that it wants Taiwan (which they still consider merely a rogue province). The U.S. decides that it will help Taiwan and a war develops. Do you really think Toyota will be there to build the U.S. the needed equipment when it could bring Japan into the conflict?


What conspiracy?
By nbourbaki on 4/3/2009 10:03:05 PM , Rating: 3
I disagree with Limbaugh. You don't need to look for conspiracies, the simple fact is that Detroit made an inferior product for too many years. Planned obsolescence was an invention of Detroit and the big three.

In the 70's, after the '73 oil embargo, Americans were looking for fuel efficient vehicles and a large number of Americans bought Toyotas, Hondas, and Datsuns. Those companies reinvested their new found riches on building better vehicles. U.S. auto makers sold as many Chevrolet Vegas and Ford Pintos as they could, but those cars were inferior to their foreign competitors. The aluminum block on the Chevy Vega required a rebuild every 50K miles. The Ford Pinto had a nasty habit of self destructing on a rear end collision.

One of my favorite quotes about GM came from then GM board member Ross Perot, "As a result of that meeting, I went out and talked to Cadillac mechanics. I said, ''What's going on with those gaskets? What happens when you fix them?'' They said, ''Well, we put a new gasket in, and they leak again.'' I went to an independent mechanic, a high school graduate, and asked, ''Do you have a lot of General Motors cars coming in here with bad gaskets?'' He says, ''All the time, Ross.'' I said, ''Can you fix them?'' ''Yep.'' I said, ''Do they come back?'' ''Nope.'' I said, ''How do you fix them?'' He winked at me and says, ''Come back here.'' He had all the General Motors gaskets. Then he had a good piece of gasket material, and he would lay the GM gaskets there and draw a picture with a pencil. Then he would take an X-Acto knife and cut out a good gasket from the gasket material, and he'd put that on the car. He says, ''They don't ever come back.'' He said, ''Ross, the problem is, some accountant at General Motors is probably saving 3 cents a gasket.'' Somebody probably got a bonus out of that, because 3 cents times millions of gaskets is a big number. I say put the best material in the world on the cars. Mark it up and charge customers a profit for it -- and tell them what you did. People will rush to buy it."




GM Killed itself
By lparkin on 4/3/2009 11:42:43 AM , Rating: 2
The final part of the story got it right. GM is so dysfunctional and has no clue how to get anything done that its own inertia and weight killed it.

To fix GM, all the management needs to go, the silos need to be wiped out and the fiefdoms inside the company need to be obliterated.

There is some talent there but they aren't allowed to shine by the continual dysfunction of the company.




Toyota != American Car
By fatedtodie on 4/3/2009 11:43:54 AM , Rating: 2
So to show American Government intervention with the auto industry (of America) you show a Japanese car? I think Rush is too annoyed with how we are handling american Cars to bother giving a crap about foreign cars.

Back on the subject... our government should not have given money to any auto or bank or insurance company. Make money or fail, those are your options. So in that effect Rush is correct. Also it isn't right wing or left wing stupidity it is stupidity on both sides allowing this to happen.




Hybrids are not popular...
By drebo on 4/3/2009 11:53:32 AM , Rating: 2
So, your argument is that because 1.3 million hybrids have sold in 10 years (this is a quote from your own post) and that because hybrid sales ARE falling faster than general auto sales that people must not like big cars and trucks as much?

That doesn't seem to make sense given the total number of cars sold each year and the fact that hybrids are a tiny percentage that is starting to fall.




Just now heard of Rush dude?
By Spuke on 4/3/2009 11:55:11 AM , Rating: 2
I used to listen to Rush back in the late 80's. He was more interesting back then. Now he's just a staunch Republican with no room to listen or even consider the opposite view.




im confused
By invidious on 4/3/2009 12:00:17 PM , Rating: 2
So is the point of this blog to talk about problems in the auto industry or problems with Limbaugh? Because the latter doesnt belong on this website.




Laughable
By Insomniator on 4/3/09, Rating: 0
RE: Laughable
By Moishe on 4/3/2009 1:44:31 PM , Rating: 2
But you're expecting people to *think* and that's where you're going wrong.

It doesn't matter how smart he is or if something he says can be backed up by facts... what matters (apparently) is that he is A. Fat, B. Got addicted to drugs at one point, or C. anything else that people disagree with.

Nevermind that some people who will bash him for being fat are also fat, which means we can't trust their judgment because by their own argument, they are stupid.

Nevermind that some people who will bash him for at one time being addicted to drugs have also been or are currently addicted to drugs in some form (cigs, alcohol, or the nasty stuff), which means we can't trust their judgment because by their own argument, they are stupid.

Ad-hominem. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ad_hominem

People who can't debate facts don't listen and learn, they try to cover up the fact that they have no clue by making a lot of noise. It's a shame because there are plenty of intelligent people from all points of view that have good things to say but won't be heard because people automatically dismiss their arguments. We're all worse off for it.


By michal1980 on 4/3/2009 3:16:56 PM , Rating: 2
so from 1999, to now, we sold 1.3 million hybrids.

But have averaged over 15million cars a year.

so 9 x 15 million = 135 million. So hybrids are about 1% of the sold car market for the past 9 years.




Article is a waste
By depravedone on 4/3/2009 3:44:12 PM , Rating: 2
The only reason most are reading this article is because it mentions Rush Limbaugh. The hybrids are all a joke as far as I'm concerned and certainly exist to please the politicians. There are plenty of cars out there that get 40+ MPG and don't rely on hybrid tech to achieve it.




What a joke
By geokilla on 4/3/2009 3:50:42 PM , Rating: 2
This guy is a joke




Clean out Your Desk
By clovell on 4/3/2009 5:09:35 PM , Rating: 2
Jason, I would have excpected you to know that one of the rites of passage into journalism these days is being able to make Limbaugh into a douchebag using his own quotes.

You didn't do that. If anyone else had used these quotes, there would have been no story. Your article relies on pre-existing bias against the man, and doesn't even formally contradict his quotes.

This is a blog, at best; I fail to see the connection to technology, too - this is purely politics.




The new Daily Tech
By kyleb2112 on 4/3/2009 7:17:15 PM , Rating: 2
Thinly veiled leftist attack pieces dressed up as tech news.




Love this Website
By Dorkyman on 4/3/2009 7:20:13 PM , Rating: 2
Gotta say, I only started reading DailyTech a few months ago, but I've been coming back to it because it seems to have, for the most part, intelligent discussion taking place in the comments section, as opposed to the Kool-Aide Drinkers inhabiting other contemporary sites.

I've listened to Limbaugh for years and agree with him probably 75% of the time. Even when he's wrong, he's entertaining, and at least he makes you think. To those commenters here who bash and insult the guy without addressing the merits of his comments, you need to realize you are making yourselves look like fools in the eyes of thoughtful persons.

As for hybrids, I can appreciate the cars just for technology's sake (my college degree was in EE). I don't have one at present, but would not be philosophically opposed to driving one; to me it would be mostly about the driving experience and secondly about economy of operation. Some of the energy losses involved in moving people from point A to point B are from air resistance, some are from friction and shear resistance in lubricants. Some losses are from the one-way exchange from potential to kinetic energy. You consume energy accelerating to speed, only to dissipate that energy to heat when you brake to a stop at the next light. It seems obvious that to be able to "brake" in a regenerative manner and recover that energy makes sense. But maybe the gains are so small as to be not worth the effort. What kind of mileage would a Prius get if the battery pack were never used?




Rush is Cool..He uses a Mac
By hiscross on 4/4/2009 4:32:44 PM , Rating: 2
and so did this guy: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Uau0aIbrzkQ at onetime
and so did Bill Clinton, Al Gore, George W Bush, Bono, public schools, private schools, universites, and many more adorable people the world over.




bad rep
By supergarr on 4/4/2009 8:13:22 PM , Rating: 2
ford, gm and chrysler had a bad rep in the 80s with craptastic quality vehicles. It's really difficult to shed that image as all the people who bought them in the 80s are older and tell their children the same thing. So the image and rep gets passed down! Not to mention, not all the cars are as appeasing in visual appearance as Japanese and European counter parts.




pointless
By RoberTx on 4/7/2009 10:39:56 AM , Rating: 2
This whole article was simply a tantrum and quite pointless.




By Hawkido on 4/8/2009 12:11:09 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
While fuel efficiency standards are definitely a hot topic here at DailyTech, there's something strange about his comments -- perhaps the fact that Ford did not accept any bailouts and that Honda, a foreign automaker cannot qualify for them? But never mind that little slip,


You fall into the same trap every time... you don't actually listen to Rush... you select snippets and quote him out of context.

Nowhere in this quote does he actually say that Ford or Honda take any bailout money. He just stated that they bent over and lubed up for the Elected officials, who now own not only a huge stake in the banking industry, but now the auto industry. Without the subsidies and harsh fuel efficiency standards, no auto maker would be making them.

You need to talk/type less and listen more, and when you listen to someone halt your Political machine long enough to actually hear what they say... then you can turn your machine back on and process it.

I believe last time I checked Rush's accuracy it was at 98.6% (Rush Limbaugh's accuracy rating is determined each month by an official audit conducted by The Sullivan Group in Sacramento, California) Compare that to any of your sources.




Compared to a dirty diaper?
By Belard on 4/3/09, Rating: 0
An answer to your questions:
By Belard on 4/3/09, Rating: 0
Self-Identifying
By Motoman on 4/3/09, Rating: -1
RE: Self-Identifying
By drebo on 4/3/2009 11:58:26 AM , Rating: 2
I hope you plan on including Al Gore, Michael Moore, and Nancy Pelosi, among a whole host of other left-wing nutjobs, in your list.

Or maybe you conveniently "forgot" about them.


RE: Self-Identifying
By dubldwn on 4/3/2009 12:11:52 PM , Rating: 4
No, you can include them, too. They're all polarizing spin-doctors.


RE: Self-Identifying
By Chaser on 4/3/2009 12:53:13 PM , Rating: 2
Props


RE: Self-Identifying
By itzmec on 4/3/2009 3:11:52 PM , Rating: 2
this is true with any source of information.


Hybrids make no sense...
By chrisld on 4/3/09, Rating: -1
RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By Lord 666 on 4/3/2009 11:36:32 AM , Rating: 2
Don't forget;

1. Mini Cooper D - rated in mid 60's
2. VW Jetta TDI - observed 50's
3. Toureg TDI - observed 30's

However, the real sizzle on the steak would be diesel hybrids or put a diesel inside the Volt instead.

But because of [insert conspiracy theory here or lame excuse], diesels have not taken off too well in the US.

Disclaimer: Lord 666 is a proud owner of a 2006 US Spec TDI Jetta


RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By Doormat on 4/3/2009 11:58:21 AM , Rating: 2
During a recent online chat with the Volt folks at GM, when they were asked about a diesel in a Volt as the generator, they said that they require "a mini-chemistry set" to meet the necessary emissions standards...

quote:
No, not extensively. First, in the U.S. a diesel fuel infrastructure (fueling spots) is a tiny fraction of 170,000 fueling stations currently. Secondly, the cost of a diesel engine is far greater than a gas engine. Recognizing most people will drive their daily commute (78%) using only electricity, we didn't think it made a lot of sense for consumers to incur the additional cost and inconvenience of a diesel range extender. You're right though, the efficiency of a diesel would be better than a gas engine, but remember, the U.S. emissions standards (Bin 5, Tier 2) also require a "mini-chemistry set" to meet emissions and this hurts their theoretical thermodynamic efficiency compared to a gas engine.


http://jalopnik.com/5174000/jalopnikautoblogkickin...

Though on a personal observation note, many of the refueling stations built in the past few years around my neighborhood sell diesel in addition to unleaded gasoline.


RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By Lord 666 on 4/3/2009 12:32:45 PM , Rating: 2
And yet Honda and VW engineered (patented separately) a catalyst system that does not require using urea on their smaller power plants.

For such a low volume vehicle as the Volt, GM could have ponied up and paid some licensing fees to Honda or VW.


RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By djc208 on 4/3/2009 1:49:55 PM , Rating: 2
You missed the cost component. Those catalyst systems are expensive, on top of an already expensive car. If GM really wanted to do it they would have. They have all those options from their Opel division that wouldn't require much modification.

But regardless of how you get there, the emissions standards are expensive to implement, in addition to an already expensive base diesel engine (your's cost more than a standard VW didn't it), that's going into a car that already priced above it's competition.

Remember the company needs to MAKE money from selling these. I'm sure if you can line up a few hundred thousand people willing to pay $50k for the diesel version instead of $40K for the gas one GM might be willing to listen.


RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By Starcub on 4/3/2009 3:34:20 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
They have all those options from their Opel division that wouldn't require much modification.

His explanation sounded bogus to me. They've been running on clean deisel in europe for some time now. They could do it here too now that we have better standards for deisel fuel. The TDI is that much more expensive when you consider the efficiency gain. You'd also have the option of making your own biofuel if you really wanted to.

This really is why the auto industry is failing, they aren't providing what the market wants. GM seems to be the first American company to offer a hybrid electric car and it's taken them until now to do so. The problem is, they will be competing with Toyota who will offer their own plug-in hybrid that will be 4 revisions ahead of GM.

Even three revs old, the foreign hybrids are still being sold here at a hefty premium which is probably one reason why they are not selling well, that and gas prices, and the fact that people are probably holding out for plug-in's which were supposed to be available this year.


RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By VaultDweller on 4/3/09, Rating: 0
RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By menace on 4/3/2009 1:42:11 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
But because of [insert conspiracy theory here or lame excuse], diesels have not taken off too well in the US.


If there is a conspiracy it is on the part of the Euro-car makers.

Truth is environmental regulation of diesels is one of the big reasons you don't see Euro-diesel imports. There is significant cost to modify the engine design to meet US standards which has to be passed on in the price. In addition these modifications will undoubtedly result in poorer fuel economy - a US Mini Cooper D will probably only get 60 mpg not 70 mpg (actually it probably will get closer to 50 mpg due to EPA's conservative mileage ratings).

http://www.autoblog.com/2009/02/10/mini-considers-...

"Tight federal emissions regulations and the high price of diesel have kept MINI from bringing the D over from Europe"

One may ask why US, which is perceived as an ecologically unfriendly country, has far stricter emission standards than "green" Europe. Answer of course is EPA out of control. Clean is never clean enough for them. Diesel emissions have gone unregulated forever with no significant health problems identified. Now all of the sudden we have to have unprecedented stringent restrictions with no reasonable "fade-in" period?

Diesel is subject to seasonal fluctuation in US due to tens of millions of NE folks burning diesel fuel to heat homes. But for past several years there has been an unprecedented high price for diesel when compared to gasoline. It seemed to start after Katrina but was exacerbated by problems refiners were having to meet new clean diesel fuel requirements. For US consumers, there is no economically sound argument to spend an extra couple thou' to buy a diesel vehicle that burns 25% less fuel when the fuel costs 50% more than gasoline.

I notice recently the price gap between gasoline and diesel has fallen back to a small margin. Hopefully this will remain stable, then Americans will go for diesels.


RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By tallcool1 on 4/3/2009 11:46:31 AM , Rating: 1
chrisld's comments are spot on.

The point being there are cars that can already achieve "as good or better" MPG than most hybrids.

I think what Rush's point is that "global warming caused by man" lie, which is a political agenda, is pushing these products to market.


RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By tallcool1 on 4/3/2009 11:50:35 AM , Rating: 1
One other comment...
The role of the US government is not to tell consumers what products to buy or demand companies put out certain products either.


RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By Murst on 4/3/2009 12:04:48 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
or demand companies put out certain products either

What products does the US government demand are made? I wasn't aware of any such demands. However, it is perfectly reasonable for the goverment to state that if you create a product, it must meet certain requirements. Do you really think that the goverment is wrong in stating that lead should not be in paint? Or that toys for 1 yr olds are not a choking hazard?

What exactly is so unreasonable about improving gas mileage? Current gas consumption is causing a massive transfer of wealth out of the USA. I think it is perfectly reasonable for the goverment to implement policies that are indended to preserve the wealth of this country.


RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By Staples on 4/3/2009 11:49:46 AM , Rating: 2
First point agreed.

But you are dead wrong on the second. I am glad that mashner or whatever has convinced everyone of this. This guy actually deserves a real job as a spin news reporter.


RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By Spuke on 4/3/09, Rating: 0
RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By aftlizard on 4/3/09, Rating: 0
RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By Spuke on 4/3/09, Rating: 0
RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By Murst on 4/3/2009 12:30:23 PM , Rating: 2
However, even M. Asher would disagree with you. He'd never say that global warming does not exist - in fact, he has been pretty clear that global warming is taking place. You should try to understand Michael Asher's position before you try to argue it, because the thing you're arguing now has nothing to do with the position he's taken.


RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By Spuke on 4/3/2009 6:37:36 PM , Rating: 2
Good God, I didn't say Masher didn't believe in global warming nor did I say I didn't believe in it!!!!! So how would Masher disagree when I said nothing that he would have to agree or disagree with? Go back and read my post because you obviously did not.


RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By aftlizard on 4/3/2009 1:12:58 PM , Rating: 2
I didn't say the sources are interpretation the interpretation comes from coming to your own conclusion based off of the facts. The very simplest way I can explain it is to take a weather report that says tomorrow will be 50% cloudy with a chance for rain and I tell you that tomorrow will be 50% sunny with a chance of no rain. See that? Neither one is factually wrong but the end result is spun differently.

This is from wikipedia:

The techniques of "spin"s include selectively presenting facts and quotes that support one's position (cherry picking), the so-called "non-denial denial," phrasing in a way that assumes unproven truths, euphemisms for drawing attention away from items considered distasteful, and ambiguity in public statements.


RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By Spuke on 4/3/2009 6:47:16 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
I didn't say the sources are interpretation the interpretation comes from coming to your own conclusion based off of the facts.
If one would simply read what was actually written in an article or listen to what was actually said, there would be no interpretation. But people bring an expectation with them when reading or listening so they only half read or half hear. It happens all of the time here on DT.


RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By Murst on 4/3/2009 11:49:51 AM , Rating: 2
70 MPG while still meeting the US emission / safety guidelines? Didn't think so...

quote:
On top of that most scientists don't believ in global warming so the whole CO2 reduction premise is faulty too.

Don't believe in global warming? There's nothing much to "believe", as you just need to look at the numbers. Global warming certainly exists. Whether it is man-made is completely up for debate. And even if it turned out that car CO2 emissions had absolutely no impact on the environment, it would still be very desirable to limit our gasoline usage. Every day, we're sending a huge amount of money out of this country to pay for oil.


RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By jabber on 4/3/2009 12:15:24 PM , Rating: 3
Planet has been getting steadily warmer since the iceage.

It will get colder again then it will get warmer...colder...warmer....

We just think and react in terms of living human memory. We need to stop doing that. When you look long (planetary) terms its nothing out of the ordinary.

If its the polar bears time to go its time to go.


RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By Murst on 4/3/2009 12:18:48 PM , Rating: 1
I guess I'm not exactly clear on your point. So you do agree that global warming is taking place right now.

Great, so do 100% of scientists.


RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By Spuke on 4/3/2009 12:27:06 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
So you do agree that global warming is taking place right now.
There you go!!!! Ignore the context of his post! LOL!


RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By Murst on 4/3/2009 12:33:53 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
There you go!!!! Ignore the context of his post! LOL!

Exactly what context am I ignoring? He was replying to my comment, which I assume is within the context of that comment.


RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By TSS on 4/4/2009 2:07:27 PM , Rating: 2
you said he agreed to global warming. he didn't.

he agreed to climate change, which has naturally occurred from before humans existed and will occur long after we are gone.

it's a cycle. heating up until an ice age cools it down after which global warming heats it up again.

and wether we humans have any effect on this cycle, be it speeding it up slowing it down or general disruption, is still very much up for debate.


RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By jabber on 4/3/2009 12:53:43 PM , Rating: 2
My point is and I dont know if I can make it any simpler to understand than this is -

The planet Earth over its long existance has gotten cooler, then warmer, then cooler and so on.

Its normal. It happens. Its the cycle of how planetary bodies change. Its just us dumb humans that are panicking cos the weather has changed slightly over the past 50 years and "summers aint what they used to be when I was a kid!"

I just wish folks would stop arguing about it and get on with their lives. Nothing you can do to stop it either way.

By all means drive cleaner cars and run cleaner factories as its nice to live in a clean home/planet but that wont stop the ever changing climate.


RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By Murst on 4/3/2009 1:00:46 PM , Rating: 3
That comment is too reasonable. You're not allowed to post reasonable thoughts on DT :)


RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By jabber on 4/3/2009 1:03:30 PM , Rating: 2
Yes you are right, silly me.

Sorry everyone.

lol


RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By mofo3k on 4/3/2009 12:28:11 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
We just think and react in terms of living human memory.


Personally, I think that's a good idea. I'm not so worried about the planet, it's us and everything on it I'm concerned with. Those major ups and downs weren't very conducive to human existence. I'd like to avoid that for as long a possible, until we get good at terraforming planets.


RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By Spuke on 4/3/2009 6:49:56 PM , Rating: 2
There's nothing we can do. The planet does this all on its own. If we all die sometime in the future, so be it. Nothing is meant to last.


RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By jabber on 4/4/2009 7:14:33 AM , Rating: 2
Exactly, what will be will be. But I'm always amazed at the number of folks that believe humans will be the dominant species for the rest of time and get highly offended when you point out that chances are homo-sapiens wont exist in maybe another 5 million years.

I bet dinosaurs, mammoths and sabre-tooth tigers felt pretty cocky about their future at one time.

Things change.


RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By Starcub on 4/3/2009 3:44:16 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Whether it is man-made is completely up for debate.

I thought the debate on that ended when the IPPC review increased it's confidence to about 90% a few years ago. The debate now is in how much have we affected the environment and how much can we do to change it.


RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By chrisld on 4/3/2009 6:14:03 PM , Rating: 2
Read about the lack of global warming in these articles. Even the experts agree there is presently cooling. Yet, because they can get funding by scaring everyone about warming, they still insist that the warming will come in a couple of decades.

What scientists are now realing is that our temperature depends more on that glowing orange circle in the sky than anything else. When there are fewer sunspots like now, we cool down.

NASA and others have been changing the data to make us think there's warming.

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2008/06/05/goddard_na...

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2008/05/02/a_tale_of_...


RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By nbourbaki on 4/4/2009 2:28:39 PM , Rating: 2
Wrong, solar activity only accounts for around 25% of global warming.

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/03/09032...

It's fascinating that first there were arguments that the planet was warming. When that became a fact beyond reproach, the argument shifted to whether the change was man made. What happens when solar activity rises back to more normal levels?


RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By invidious on 4/3/2009 12:13:15 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
The improved efficiency of diesel engines can also help reduce oil consumption. It should be noted, however, that it takes about 25% more oil to make a gallon of diesel fuel than a gallon of gasoline, so we should really look at how a vehicle does on fuel efficiency in terms of "oil equivalents." Thus, we need to adjust the mileage claims for diesel vehicles downward by about 20% when comparing them to gasoline-powered vehicles.


Also diesel is much worse for the environment, maybe not in a global warming POV (not that it exists anyway) but from a soot/ air quality POV.


RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By OoklaTheMok on 4/3/2009 1:09:35 PM , Rating: 2
One word, bio-diesel.

Literally homegrown energy. Just think, we could finally put an end to the farm subsidies.


RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By surt on 4/3/2009 12:17:37 PM , Rating: 2
Most scientists don't believe in global warming because belief is a matter of faith, while global warming is a matter of fact.
http://www.ucsusa.org/global_warming/


RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By AntiM on 4/3/2009 12:24:04 PM , Rating: 1
Hybrids don't make a whole lot of sense now. But they are a stepping stone to alternative fuels. Is the goal to reduce our dependence on fossil fuels, or to eliminate them all together ? I say that at some point, we should eliminate them. You may not think that automobile exhaust is contributing to global warming, but do you like to breathe clean air, or would you rather have a toxic cloud of smog hanging over your city like Beijing does?

Limbaugh is nothing but a big, fat bag of hot air. He's probably responsible for spewing more CO2 into the atmosphere than all the automobiles on the planet combined. If Obama had eased fuel economy requirements then Limbaugh would be screaming about how Obama is helping the terrorists and killing our children with air pollution.


RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By Spuke on 4/3/2009 12:29:09 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
You may not think that automobile exhaust is contributing to global warming
Car exhaust is super clean nowadays. We Californians joke that the air coming out of a cars exhaust is cleaner than the air going into the engine.


RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By AntiM on 4/3/2009 2:03:39 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Car exhaust is super clean nowadays. We Californians joke that the air coming out of a cars exhaust is cleaner than the air going into the engine


Exactly my point, do you suppose that had anything to do with federal mandates? Do you think we should relax our air quality standards?
Whether or not automobile exhaust is contributing to global warming is irrelevant. Cleaner exhaust means cleaner air.


RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By Spuke on 4/3/2009 6:58:00 PM , Rating: 2
I think we could keep them at present levels for a longer period of time. I don't think we need to work this in a state of panic. I personally think it's important to make sure that car companies can actually afford to make these changes. No need to break their collective balls getting this done.


RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By FaaR on 4/3/2009 7:05:13 PM , Rating: 2
Car exhaust is NOT "super clean". Every major US metropolitan area has severely polluted air, leading to early death for thousands of people yearly, as well as lung disease, asthma in children and so on.

The exhaust from gas engine contains hundreds, if not thousands of different harmful chemical compounds (many known to be powerful carcinogens), as well as particulates that also are known to be carcinogenic.


RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By Reclaimer77 on 4/3/2009 7:09:34 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Car exhaust is NOT "super clean". Every major US metropolitan area has severely polluted air, leading to early death for thousands of people yearly, as well as lung disease, asthma in children and so on.


That's such a load of crap...


RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By surt on 4/4/2009 1:24:23 PM , Rating: 1
RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By Spuke on 4/3/2009 7:10:05 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Every major US metropolitan area has severely polluted air
Cite your source on this info.


RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By Reclaimer77 on 4/4/2009 6:17:06 PM , Rating: 2
lol his source is the EPA. A government run organization responsible for the highest levels of FUD on this issue there is.

Ask yourself, what would happen to the EPA's funding if nobody believed in Climate Change and a host of other self serving "crisis's" regarding the environment ?


RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By surt on 4/6/2009 11:18:32 AM , Rating: 2
It would be higher, like it was before they started warning about politically inconvenient co2 levels? I think the EPA's non-FUD scientific credentials are pretty solidly established. If you can't place reasonable trust in the EPA, then your brain has turned to partisan mush.


RE: Hybrids make no sense...
By SirKronan on 4/3/2009 12:57:16 PM , Rating: 2
The new standards are gentler on the struggling auto industry than those President Bush had proposed in 2007. The Bush administration passed the 2007 Energy Law which will require automakers to reach a 35 mpg average fuel economy by 2020, a 40 percent increase over the current standard of about 25 mpg. President Bush wanted to front-load much of this change, proposing the standards in 2011 be raised to a combined 27.8 mpg -- 31.2 mpg for passenger cars and 25 mpg for small trucks.

He sort of did ... at least didn't set them as high as what Bush had intended. It explains later in the article that he wanted to make it easier on the auto industry during these hard times because it costs quite a bit R&D wise to raise fuel economy across a broad line of vehicles.


What about small cars in general?
By Nfarce on 4/3/09, Rating: -1
Who is this clown? Why his BS is news?
By Roy2001 on 4/3/09, Rating: -1
By Steve1981 on 4/3/2009 12:35:52 PM , Rating: 2
Here is a real world test:

http://www.popularmechanics.com/automotive/new_car...

quote:
Diesel car still need a electric motor to improve city drive mpg and reduce pollution.


I'd settle for a better source of diesel, ala algae based bio-diesel on a mass production scale.


Mick, you are right but...
By derwin on 4/3/09, Rating: -1
"We shipped it on Saturday. Then on Sunday, we rested." -- Steve Jobs on the iPad launch














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