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Toyota Camry SE V6

Dodge Charger SRT-8
The auto industry says that a proposed Senate bill has requirement that are unattainable

It seems that while traffic congestion has gotten progressively worse over the past ten years, Americans have had a hankering for going nowhere faster. Fuel economy numbers haven't increased nearly as much as horsepower has in today's vehicles.

Your garden variety family sedans are now considered underpowered if they don't have at least a 250HP engine available on the option sheet. The Toyota Camry, America's best-selling car, is available with a 3.5 liter V6 engine putting out 263HP and can blast 0-60 in the low six second range. The V6-powered Camry is rated at 19/28 (highway/city), under the new 2008 EPA mileage ratings.

Chrysler is no stranger to high horsepower sedans, either. The company's Chrysler 300C and Dodge Charger R/T come equipped with 5.7 liter 340HP Hemi V8 engines (15/23) -- if that isn't enough, the 6.1 liter 300 SRT-8 and Charger SRT-8 pump out 425HP (13/18).

America's thirst for speed and auto manufacturers' propensity to quench that thirst may be coming to an end if a proposed Senate bill introduced by Daniel Inouye (D-Hawaii) passes. The new bill would require fleetwide CAFE standards for auto manufacturers to increase dramatically over the next 13 years. Fuel economy would have to rise from 27.5MPG for cars to 28.5MPG by 2015. That number would then jump to 35MPG by the year 2020 with 4% annual increases thereafter.

The 27.5MPG standard has held steady for nearly 20 years due to lobbying by auto manufacturers.

Not surprisingly, auto manufacturers aren't too happy with the proposed bill. "Basically, it is unattainable up until 2020 and unattainable afterward," said Gloria Bergquist, a spokeswoman for the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers. "We think this is still going to be a big burden on Americans who need work vehicles."

The auto manufacturers, however, aren't the only ones against the new bill. Fellow democratic senator Carl Levin represents Michigan and thinks that the bill is misguided. "More progress can be made in reducing oil consumption and greenhouse gas emissions if we focus our resources on leap-ahead technologies instead of forcing companies to make incremental improvements to meet an arbitrary standard," said Levin.

In early April, President Bush called for the United States to reduce its gasoline usage 20 percent by the year 2017. Bush noted that the move would cost the industry roughly $114 billion USD between 2010 and 2017 to comply.

Updated 5/8/2007: The U.S. Senate Commerce Committee today approved the bill.



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By mmcdonalataocdotgov on 5/7/2007 12:56:46 PM , Rating: 4
They only "push" on us what we want to buy. Do you think that all there is to buy in the US are SUV's and pick ups? There are plenty of fuel efficient cars out there but WE won't buy them. So the only thing left is to legislate out the cars the WE want. Do you think GM would make vehicles if it thought it couldn't sell them? Well, in fact, GM lost market share to Toyota based on pick up sales, not pass car sales... so let me eat my words. It has taken GM a few years to ramp up its truck plants.

Anyway, if we all bought fuel efficient cars and demanded fuel efficient cars, then that is what any sane auto maker would deliver. The oil companies can't force GM into making gas hogs. Not when there are more profits to be made selling what your primary market demands. Did anyone take economics? Help me out here.

Buy the right cars, and only the right cars, and that is what they will make. YOU stop buying the pick ups and SUV's.

(For the record, I own a Camry Hybrid [39 mpg], and a Toyota 4Runner [???]. Well, my wife bought that before we were married, but she only commutes 10 miles per day.)




RE: It is US to blame, not the auto manufacturers
By Xenoid on 5/7/2007 1:15:25 PM , Rating: 2
Exactly. Everyone wants their 5.0+L V8 that gets terrible mileage because everyone needs a 1-ton truck to go grocery shopping on the weekend, especially here in Canada it seems.

People buy what they want. If they want a Honda Fit, they will buy it. If they want a V12, they will buy it. Nobody forces you to get the 3.5L Camry. I'm sure there is an econo (2.0L~) version as well, and it sells better.

And no, family sedans are not 'underpowered' if they don't pack at least 250hp, what a joke. A family sedan needs around 150hp, and thats assuming it's going to suffer loss due to an automatic, fwd drivetrain, while carrying 4 adults and suitcases in the trunk. Why? Because it's not a roadster, it's a family sedan! You just need some space, a cheap price tag, good fuel economy, and good safety features.


RE: It is US to blame, not the auto manufacturers
By OxBow on 5/7/2007 1:27:27 PM , Rating: 2
The choices aren't there for the average car buyer. The typical dealership has mulitple versions of SUV's, trucks, etc. but your choice for economy cars is limited to suck, suckier or suckiest among the Big 3. I live in the country, so a hybrid would give me hardly any savings (all highway driving). If they put as much effort into fuel efficiency as they do into designing the plush interiors of their SUV's and trucks, we wouldn't have nearly as much trouble.

Just give me a four seater that gets 45-50 mpg highway with adequate airbags, ac and antilock brakes (I live in Texas, AC is a must).


By masher2 (blog) on 5/7/2007 1:46:03 PM , Rating: 3
> "The choices aren't there for the average car buyer..."

The choices are there. GM and Ford both make a staggering variety of small economy cars. But by and large, consumers prefer the larger, more powerful vehicles. Toyota recently passed GM for the #1 spot...but that was primarily on strong growth in the SUV/pickup market segment (up 30.5% from a year ago). Their passenger car sales are actually down slightly.


By theapparition on 5/7/2007 2:06:38 PM , Rating: 5
quote:
But by and large, consumers prefer the larger, more powerful vehicles

Completely correct.

That goes for Europe too. Euopeans with money don't drive Mini's. They drive big, heavy, Mercedes and BMW's. If gas was cheaper there, they'd all drive heavier, more powerful cars. Just consumer preference.


RE: It is US to blame, not the auto manufacturers
By BZDTemp on 5/7/2007 2:26:02 PM , Rating: 2
Not so. Sure it may be so for some but many people prefer smaller sportier fun cars that sofas on wheels.

Also even the big/fast European cars offer better mileage that the similar US ones. Of course there really isn't any European cars as big as the Escalades and Excursions since they make even Audi Q7's and MB M-class look medium size.


By masher2 (blog) on 5/7/2007 2:56:25 PM , Rating: 3
> "so. Sure it may be so for some but many people prefer smaller sportier fun cars..."

When driven hard, my "smaller, sportier" two-seater ragtop gets worse mileage than my SUV. Of course, thats pretty much the only way I drive it.

> "even the big/fast European cars offer better mileage that the similar US ones."

2007 Mercedes Maybach -- 11 MPG city.
2007 Bentley Continental -- 11 MPG city.
2007 BMW M5 6-speed -- 12 MPG city.
2007 Mercedes GL500 SUV -- 13 MPG city.

I won't even mention that Europe is home to the Bugatti Veyron, a car capable of draining its 25 gallon fuel tank in less than 12 minutes.

Sure, you can point to many European cars that get better mileage. But again, thats because of the market to which they cater.


By FITCamaro on 5/7/2007 4:43:21 PM , Rating: 1
400hp 2007 Chevy Corvette - 19 MPG city/29 highway (many see better on both numbers)
505hp 2007 Chevy Corvette Z06 - 16 MPG city/26 highway
400hp 2006 Pontiac GTO - 18 mpg city/27 highway (many see better on both numbers)
My dads 3800lb 330hp 2002 Trans Am WS6 6-speed - 17 mpg city/27 highway


By theapparition on 5/8/2007 7:23:20 AM , Rating: 2
The GTO is ~3800lbs
The TransAm is ~3450lbs

But your point is spot on. With the TransAm, that inferior 10 year old pushrod V8 technology is getting almost the same economy as a 2007 Camry, with ~90hp more (330 was vastly underrated). People should worry less about technology and more about end results.


By hubajube on 5/7/2007 6:35:33 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
When driven hard, my "smaller, sportier" two-seater ragtop gets worse mileage than my SUV. Of course, thats pretty much the only way I drive it.
You need to get yourself a direct injection motor. I get 26 mpg when I drive hard and 29-30 when I drive normally (which is occasional periods of foot to the floor). The non-DI motor in this same car gets 25 mpg driven "normally" and under 20 mpg when driven hard.


By KristopherKubicki (blog) on 5/7/2007 7:18:17 PM , Rating: 3
If you can afford any of those cars, the last thing on your mind is the MPG!


By AntDX316 on 5/8/2007 2:45:06 AM , Rating: 2
true


By theapparition on 5/8/2007 7:17:04 AM , Rating: 4
quote:
If you can afford any of those cars, the last thing on your mind is the MPG!

But isn't that the point. Gas is cheap in America (very cheap-inflation adjusted) compared to Europe. So Americans don't care that much about fuel economy. They care alot more than 10 years ago, but still not that much. So the preference is to get the nicest car they can afford. If gas were to go to $10/gal, you'd see that purchase decision based more on efficiency.

The same applies to Europe. If gas suddenly dropped to $1/gal there, you'd see a lot more people drop their econo-boxes and get more car. I just don't like the notion that many of our Euopean friends here at Daily Tech claim they are doing it for the enviroment, or for the good of the country. Give 'em the money, and they'll spend it just like us Americans.


By Lonyo on 5/8/2007 7:11:16 PM , Rating: 2
I would disagree. I would stick with a small car, as would a lot of people.
Small roads mean small cars are better, not just for fuel economy, but also things like fitting down narrow lanes, or getting into parking spots :P


RE: It is US to blame, not the auto manufacturers
By madoka on 5/8/2007 2:09:36 AM , Rating: 1
quote:
I won't even mention that Europe is home to the Bugatti Veyron, a car capable of draining its 25 gallon fuel tank in less than 12 minutes.


Masher2, are you just retarded or do you just play one on the net?

First off, you're only using some of the rarest/most extreme European cars as your rebuttal. The Maybach, the Bentley, the M5?!?! How many of those are even on the road?

Second, I've had a chance to be in the Veyron. It gets 10MPG on the road. The 12 minutes to drain is if you hypothetically drive it at 253 MPH the entire time. Again, that's so extreme that it is not going to happen/matter in this discussion.


By AntDX316 on 5/8/2007 2:45:52 AM , Rating: 2
but its capable


RE: It is US to blame, not the auto manufacturers
By Cygni on 5/8/2007 6:42:02 AM , Rating: 2
any normal DT reader is now laughing at you. Masher2 is about as opposite as retarded as you can get.


By TheGreek on 5/10/2007 4:55:39 PM , Rating: 2
No actually the statement that "Europe is home to the Bugatti Veyron, a car capable of draining its 25 gallon fuel tank in less than 12 minutes." is the laughable and meaningless statement.


RE: It is US to blame, not the auto manufacturers
By BZDTemp on 5/8/2007 12:27:32 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
When driven hard, my "smaller, sportier" two-seater ragtop gets worse mileage than my SUV. Of course, thats pretty much the only way I drive it.


Unless you drive your SUV in a similar fashion I can't see how that is a valid point. Also I'm betting than if you trash the SUV around it get's even worse.

Also the four cars you list are not really normal cars but rather super fancy ones not really being representative of the big European cars. It is if did a list of US cars putting the CXT, the Hummmer and similar - except of course the Hummer is actually being sold in not so small numbers :-)

An now that you mention the Bugatti Veyron maybe we should make a note of it being even further away from normal than anything. Firstly it's the worlds most expensive car, by a nice margin, and secondly the 25 gallons you talk about is at full speed meaning it's going something like 250 MPH+ so tell me how this is relevant?

quote:
Sure, you can point to many European cars that get better mileage. But again, thats because of the market to which they cater.


So in fact you're saying the US big 3 could do the same? If so why aren't they? Surely it would be interesting for them to compete over here since they are loosing on the home turf.


By masher2 (blog) on 5/8/2007 2:22:29 PM , Rating: 1
> "Unless you drive your SUV in a similar fashion I can't see how that is a valid point"

Its a valid point because I don't drive my SUV in similar fashion. Driving style is an important factor in mileage...a factor the EPA figures don't take into account. Distance driven is an even more important figure, and again the EPA ratings don't reflect this.

The point is that people can be wasteful, but vehicles cannot. My two seater has higher EPA figures...but due to my driving style, and the fact I take far more pleasure trips in it, is in reality far worse.

> "the four cars you list [are] super fancy ones [not] really being representative of the big European cars"

That's the point. They're made by European automakers, but they're not common. Why not? Because of the price. Few can afford them...but those that can, buy them.

What's an SUV called in England? A Chelsea Tractor. Why? Because in London's affluent district of Chelsea, SUVs clog the roads. In the poorer districts, people can't afford to buy them...and even if could, they can't afford the gasoline for them.

> "So in fact you're saying the US big 3 could do the same?"

The US Big 3 ARE doing the same. They have plenty of small, fuel-efficient cars for sale. Such models sell poorly, though.


By theapparition on 5/8/2007 3:00:29 PM , Rating: 2
I couldn't agree more.
It seems everyone takes the EPA numbers as fact, and think they will get the same milage. EPA numbers are just a baseline to compare models.
Driving habits, distance, improper maintenance, and stoplight warriors affect that milage tremendously.
Many of those efficient cars get worse gas milage than even their lowest city rating. Take hybrids for example. They had to change the testing because NONE of them lived up to their claims.
I get scoffed at when I tell people I can get over 30mpg in my corvettes. That's if I drive it miserly, which I rarely do ;-)


By TheGreek on 5/10/2007 5:04:52 PM , Rating: 2
I average 3 mpg above the highway rating of my car.


By sdsdv10 on 5/8/2007 6:46:27 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
The US Big 3 ARE doing the same. They have plenty of small, fuel-efficient cars for sale. Such models sell poorly, though.


Not exactly true for Ford. See link for April 2007 sales figures [The same is true for March 2007.]

http://media.ford.com/article_display.cfm?article_...

The Focus was the 2nd best selling vehicle with 16,626 sold. The only thing that beat it was the overall F-series pick-up sales at 56,692 (this includes F-150, F-250, F-350, F-450, etc). 3rd was the Econoline/Club wagon van at 15,740. (I would suspect many of these are work units, just like the F-series.) 4th was the cute-ute Escape with 14,788. Small fuel efficient vehichles sell quite well for Ford, however they don't have nearly the profit margin of the larger, heavier, gas using SUV and sedans.


By GI2K on 5/10/2007 4:54:16 PM , Rating: 2
Why should EPA take into account the driving style? since everyone has a different one how would they

"Few can afford them...but those that can, buy them."
That's not true, most people won't buy those types of cars even if they had the money, simply cause of the troubles to park them or cause of the bad image they give of them.

Besides there's currently a movement to ban them completely from the city, so you can’t be more wrong to think that they are like some kind of status icon... I wouldn’t be too surprised if in a few years they made a law with it.


By crazydrummer4562 on 5/8/2007 5:36:41 PM , Rating: 2
That market is very minuscule, I would imagine it causes a very minimal impact, ESPECIALLY the veyron, i mean, how many are even in existence?


By skarbd on 5/9/2007 4:12:57 AM , Rating: 2
2007 Mercedes Maybach -- 11 MPG city.
2007 Bentley Continental -- 11 MPG city.
2007 BMW M5 6-speed -- 12 MPG city.
2007 Mercedes GL500 SUV -- 13 MPG city.

I hate to be point this out, but these are not even close to being normal cars. Their price tags are all in the $100K + bracket. For instance the Maybach 62 is in the $400 - $500,000 range.


By theapparition on 5/7/2007 3:06:44 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Sure it may be so for most but some people prefer smaller sportier fun cars that sofas on wheels.

Fixed it for you.
I prefer sports cars myself, but the buying public has a different opinion.


RE: It is US to blame, not the auto manufacturers
By Lord 666 on 5/7/2007 2:20:32 PM , Rating: 2
Does the DT logo mean your an employee now of DT or is it honary?

Welcome back, you've been gone a while.


By masher2 (blog) on 5/7/2007 2:58:06 PM , Rating: 2
Thanks.

I believe the logo just identifies contributors, though you'd have to ping Kris for the actual detalis.


By KristopherKubicki (blog) on 5/7/2007 7:16:48 PM , Rating: 3
It signifies that he has a blog on DT


By marvdmartian on 5/7/2007 4:06:55 PM , Rating: 4
On the same token, they really have nothing that can match their competition for quality, price, mileage and warranty, can they?

I'm in the "window shopping" mode of looking at buying a new vehicle, to replace a 9 year old Nissan Frontier 4x4 that's currently getting me ~20mpg average mileage (mostly city driving). While I'd love to buy another truck (either the Nissan Frontier again, or the Titan), I really don't utilize a truck often enough to be able to justify getting another one, especially when gas prices seem to have permanently stabilized over $2 a gallon. Definitely, gas mileage will play an important factor in my next vehicle purchase, whether it be new or used.

However, I have been severely underwhelmed with the choices that we have out there! I'm no Honda fan, and don't buy into the whole "best resale value" schtick they've sold so many people on (my thought being that if it cost more to start with, it ought to be worth more down the road, shouldn't it?), and really don't care for Toyotas either. I'm open to most anything else......but really don't consider the choices to be much worth looking at!

Of course, it doesn't help that anything I think I'd like to drive, costs $25K+!! ;)

I realize that new cars don't come out overnight, and that it takes at least a few years to develop them and get them ready to produce. But aren't we already a couple years gone from Katrina, when gas prices really started skyrocketing?? And what have we seen the US automakers do in the past two years? Status quo, that's what. Keep pushing the SUV's and pickup trucks, the big engined vehicles that will pass everything but the gas station!

I believe that the automakers are equally to blame for their problems. Yes, US drivers fell in love with their big vehicles, but that was only after some pretty heavy advertising campaigns by US automakers, to extoll on the advantages of their larger than life vehicles. And it's not as though this problem with high gas prices is something brand new, either. Anyone here old enough to remember the OPEC oil embargo of the early 70's?? I recall gas prices going up so fast during the 70's that gas station owners weren't ready for it when gasoline hit $1/gallon, since their dispensers were only built to go up to ninety-nine cents! They finally had to set the dispensers at 1/2 the cost of gas, then charge people twice what the dispenser read when they were done pumping, until they got new dispenser meters!!!

The US automakers have had 30+ years to come up with higher mileage vehicles, and when they were unwilling to do so on their own, they were legislated to do so......and have only done it by kicking and screaming their way to it! If the EPA didn't mandate higher average gas mileage for vehicles every year, the "Big 3" would happily continue making vehicles that got 6mpg, and STILL would wonder why they were being outsold by every other automaker on the planet!!

Bottom line: is the consumer to blame? Yes, for blindly following along with the advertising scheme of US auto makers, and buying into the whole "bigger is better" idea. Are the US auto makers equally to blame? You betcha! And since no one wants to be the adult in this situation, maybe it is time that someone forces both the auto makers and the consumers to grow up and face reality. It's a bitch, isn't it??


By theapparition on 5/8/2007 7:44:01 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Bottom line: is the consumer to blame? Yes, for blindly following along with the advertising scheme of US auto makers, and buying into the whole "bigger is better" idea.

Wrong. The notion that consumers are swayed by automobile marketing decisions is just stupid (<-sorry, but it is). Throw out your own decision making process, and try and think for Average Joe/Jane.
Since I have some intimate knowledge of the auto industry, let me try and explain how it works as quick as possible.

Your now an Automobile manufacturer.
You need to design a new vehicule.
You get a focus group together of your target audience. You ask them, the consumer, what they want.
You design around their needs.
You unveil prototypes at auto shows to them.
If their intrest is high enough, you go into production.
If they buy it, it stays in production, if they don't, you stop making it.

See, pretty simple, no force-fed marketing required. Some cars are hits, others fade into obscurity, because people choose to buy them (or not). There are so many factors to consider. That bigger is better mentality is something universal, a competitive spirit that drives us to improve and is not just related to the automobile industry. People want bigger houses than their neighboor, too. They want faster computers (the same type of person complaining about the "car" or "house" people), or bigger televisions. I could go on and on. But the fact remains that for most consumers, they are driven to upgrade.

So, are people to blame. Absoultely, but not because auto makers are forcing them to buy something, rather, they have spoken with their wallets to force the automakers to build what they want.


By Proteusza on 5/8/2007 11:29:38 AM , Rating: 3
quote:
Wrong. The notion that consumers are swayed by automobile marketing decisions is just stupid


MTV tells people what they want all the time, and they listen.

Its called marketing, and it can work amazing well sometimes. Some products have been utter failures, before they were marketed better. Marketing often makes or breaks products.

An automobile manufacturer could make a car with an idea of the target market the car will fit into. Then they tell the audience why they need this car - it looks good, people will like if you have this car, you can have happy memories in this car - and they gloss over the negatives, such as fuel economy and expense.

Marketing is a really, really powerful tool. Dont underestimate it.


RE: It is US to blame, not the auto manufacturers
By Kuroyama on 5/8/2007 10:34:15 AM , Rating: 3
Only around a quarter of Toyota's vehicle sales are in the US, and I imagine the 30.5% figure is for US sales, so I rather doubt that SUV / truck sales are the reason why Toyota is #1.


By masher2 (blog) on 5/8/2007 11:51:32 AM , Rating: 2
> "so I rather doubt that SUV / truck sales are the reason why Toyota is #1. "

The figures I quoted were from North American sales only, current as of April 2007. Toyota's domestic car sales were down slightly; their truck sales up sharply.


By Lord 666 on 5/7/2007 2:18:39 PM , Rating: 2
Its called the Mercedes Benz E320 Bluetec or the coming C220 Bluetec.


By primerump on 5/7/2007 2:25:16 PM , Rating: 2
I have such a car.. VW Jetta TDI.. like most Euro diesels, you do get economy and performance.. the American V8 disease is the problem here, promulgated by oil companies and other corporate greed.. Take away greed and replace with common sense.. you will have efficiency


By Lord 666 on 5/7/2007 2:33:22 PM , Rating: 2
I have a 2006 Jetta TDI as well.

Love my car, but not sure it has the kind of A/C he needs down in Texas.

Also, when the new VW TDI is released in the US in March of 2008, the 0-60 performance is cut down by about 3 seconds. Until then, its a bit slow for the general public and farm roads in Texas.


By theapparition on 5/7/2007 3:12:25 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Take away greed and replace with common sense.. you will have efficiency

Good point. Let's first start with computers. Next year, you will only be able to buy a computer at the same (or higher) price, yet half the power. But it takes less energy, so feel good inside.

If you take away a consumers source for something they have been buying forever and have a passion for, they will just find another source. And nothing stirs more passion in a product than automobiles.


By jrb531 on 5/8/2007 2:15:11 PM , Rating: 2
And "most" people would never tell the difference because all they do is surf the net, pay the bills, play solitaire etc...

much like "most" people do not need 200+ HP vehicles.

Sure "some" people need fast computers and "some" people need large cars/trucks with lots of HP but to a good portion of the country it's nothing more than "keeping up with the jones" - if they have a large SUV with 10000 HP then "I" need the same or better.

-JB


By FITCamaro on 5/7/2007 4:55:50 PM , Rating: 1
I can build a Jetta that gets 10 mpg if I want.

Yes....greed is what's making us buy V8s.....those damn oil companies are forcing us to. No. We WANT to.

I drive a Chevy Cobalt 2.4L SS. I could've gotten the 2.2L. But the 2.4L offered more horsepower and the same mileage. Every one of my cars prior to this, was a V8 Camaro. Did the oil companies come to my house and threaten me to buy one? No. I wanted to. And in a year or two, I plan to be driving a V8 again. I don't drive far every day, so I can afford to drive a 400 hp V8 car that gets 18-19 mpg city and 27-29 mpg highway.

The only reason I bought my Cobalt is because I was driving 750 miles a week for 8 months when I got out of college. Now though, I wish I hadn't as I no longer need a 4 banger and desire a V8 again. No. I can't always go fast. But I love hitting the pedal and getting pushed back in my seat.

You can think your TDI Jetta has performance all you want too. Will it ever match a V8 (without thousands of dollars spent in a turbo, intercooler, boost controller, etc but then your mileage is gone as well)? No.


RE: It is US to blame, not the auto manufacturers
By walk2k on 5/7/07, Rating: 0
RE: It is US to blame, not the auto manufacturers
By hubajube on 5/7/2007 6:45:36 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
because Americans are by in large too selfish and ignorant to do the Right Thing.
Nah. He's just exercising his freedom. He can buy want he wants and drive what he wants. The Right Thing is to preserve our freedoms and right to choose. Freedom DOES come at a cost and it's everyone of our rights to choose how much we want to pay. Quite frankly it is your right to call him selfish and ignorant and he might be such. But it is also his right to buy his V8 car pursue his happiness.


By TheGreek on 5/10/2007 4:52:44 PM , Rating: 2
The average American is no more happy today that he was in the 50's. Once I spent an effortless Saturday afternoon on the deck of a bar watching some "I gotta have it" mentality jerk as he tried to put his speedboat into the river. I just laughed at him, but regardless of that he still wasted 50+ gallons of gas in an afternoon, in a vehicle with zero pollution devices, to drive in circles. My energy use was the making of 2 glasses of ice for my drink and the energy to cook a burger. Duh.

The doesn't change the fact he lowers the standard of living for everyone else. Most people who subscribe to the freedom of choice theory are merely looking at it like there is no responsibility involved, that's their version of freedom, and it really doesn't exist.


RE: It is US to blame, not the auto manufacturers
By Munkles on 5/7/2007 6:47:35 PM , Rating: 2
"....do the right thing" WOW this isnt a case of morals, or even ethics. This is simply about preference. I PREFER a faster, stronger, vehicle to travel with. One that feels secure going over 70mph on the freeway.

I PREFER something that I know is likely to not turn into an accordian if heaven forbid should I ever be in an accident.

Fuel effeciency is all well and good, but ill be damned if someone is going to tell me not only have to buy a fuel effecient car but thats its also a moral/ethical decision.


RE: It is US to blame, not the auto manufacturers
By yawnbox on 5/8/2007 12:30:01 PM , Rating: 2
Preference invades ethics when your heavier vehicle runs over my lighter vehicle. Your slipery-slope decision is unethical. If everyone had a mini, no one would need a hummer to feel safe.


RE: It is US to blame, not the auto manufacturers
By Munkles on 5/8/2007 2:25:38 PM , Rating: 2
Except, that there is more to safety than simply the other cars that maybe on the roads. You have to figure out how well they will hold up at varying speeds. Which do YOU think will fare better in a collision with a concrete highway divider; A Charger or a Prius?

You also have to figure in semi's and even if you put two small cars in a head on collision at 70MPH id put my money on the driver of two big cars walking away a lot more often the the drivers of two little cars.

You STILL aren't thinking critically when you say that preference invades ethics when my charger will run over your smart car because "ethics" is the application of morals into your world view, and your every day practices.

WHEN YOU THINK ABOUT THAT you cannot say that buying a big or little car has ANY ethical standing.

If I buy a big car BECAUSE I want to crash it into little cars, then you'd have a case but the preference of big - to - little has NO ethical or moral position.

Also I don't drive SUV's and I wouldn't want to. I like larger sedans myself with low centers of gravity.


By TheGreek on 5/10/2007 5:07:45 PM , Rating: 2
The question then is if the driver of the Hummer feels safer will he be paying less attention to what he's doing, increasing the odds of having your (or my) face print in his front bumper?


RE: It is US to blame, not the auto manufacturers
By irev210 on 5/7/2007 10:02:55 PM , Rating: 4
quote:
Idiots like you Mr. "I need a V8 to feel like a man" are exactly the reason we need these kinds of laws - because Americans are by in large too selfish and ignorant to do the Right Thing.


Who are you to decide what I can and cant drive?

Idiots like you Mr. "I need to tell everyone else what to do to feel like a man."

I suggest you stop trying to play other peoples positions. Don't judge people and what you presume they need/dont need.

I also suggest you be an advocate of what you believe in. Show the advantages/disadvantages of each case, explaining your position.

Calling people idiots is no answer to any problem.

People who want excellent fuel economy have the CHOICE to buy a car that allows them to get 40+MPG. They only have to pay >5 cents a mile for fuel.

People who want a larger vehicle have a CHOICE to pay <40 cents a mile.

I personally take the subway and dont even have a car, but I would never have the nerve to say:

quote:
because Americans are by in large too selfish and ignorant to do the Right Thing.


Again, the only ignorant person is yourself. Who are you to say what the right thing is when it comes to vehicle choice? How would you like it if I told you you could only drive 1 car, and one car only because I decided it was best for you, and you hated it? I suggest you reflect on a time where someone ELSE made a CHOICE that they thought was BEST for everyone else, even though you didn't agree with it.

I agree with the fact that we should be spending $ on research on things like hydrogen or other alternative fuels that have the potential to be cheaper and cleaner than current fuels.


By P4blo on 5/8/2007 10:49:31 AM , Rating: 2
Over consumption is often accompanied by under pricing. If something is good fun and much too cheap it will be abused in some way. Americans have discovered this with junk food, the 'eat all you want for $5' era has certainly done its damage to those lacking nutritional self control. Cheaper doesn't always mean better.

Just like any other people on earth Americans will happily buy gas drinking monster SUV penis extensions (Chrysler SUV add make me laugh), if they can run them at a sensible price. Europeans would be the same. The glaring difference is that fuel costs more here, mostly due to heavier direct taxation. That taxation is there for very good reasons. Reasons like trying to influence fuel consumption, the sheer number of cars jamming up our overcrowded roads, and of course cleaning up the environmental damage!

Here it is 'folks' - American leadership inspires me with little or no confidence that the politicians can ever stick to their guns (oops pardon the unfortunate but obvious pun). Combined, the vehicle and oil companies just squeeze political necks until they choke and back down. The same happens with military influence over policy. Too many lies fed to the people, not enough presidents doing the right thing for the right reasons.

A REAL leader would phase in an incremental increase in US fuel taxation forcing vehicle manufacturers to start bringing in sensible models that take this into consideration over the next 10 or so years.

My perception is that American politics only seems to give a hoot about jobs and industry – the key vote winners. It's economic power at all costs, screw the environment.

It's time you elected a leader with the ability to think for him self. With his minimal intelligence, it's pretty obvious from a decision making standpoint that good ol' Bush Jr. was hardly doing anything to actually 'run' the country. So much so I almost feel SORRY for the guy. He couldn't run a Subway outlet. Noooo, he's just a finger puppet that stands on the podium and grins / cracks bad jokes / makes like a Christian for Middle American votes and generally shows us all his total lack of knowledge / intellect.

Summary: Petrol is too cheap. Politicians are too wined and dined / paid off by industry to force change. Corruption rears its ugly head as usual in the land of the free (to take a dump on the planet).

I hope I get flamed, I need a good laugh!

Pablo


By Proteusza on 5/8/2007 11:37:57 AM , Rating: 2
If you hadnt bought american you could have got a car with more power for the same engine configuration and fuel economy.

Take the TVR Cerbera vs the Corvette:

Cerbera: 4.5 Liter V8. Power 420 hp.
Corvette 6 liter V8. Power 400 hp.


By theapparition on 5/8/2007 2:01:33 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
If you hadnt bought american you could have got a car with more power for the same engine configuration and fuel economy.

Take the TVR Cerbera vs the Corvette:

Not made since 2003.
Not available in US
Not Safety qualified for US (US restrictions are higher than Europe)
10/15mpg
Price: 2003 (used) ~$70,000-80,000 USD

Not much of a comparison


By Proteusza on 5/9/2007 4:46:02 AM , Rating: 1
Even so, shows what decent engineers can do. bigger isnt always better.


RE: It is US to blame, not the auto manufacturers
By mcnabney on 5/7/2007 5:31:19 PM , Rating: 5
quote:
Just give me a four seater that gets 45-50 mpg highway with adequate airbags, ac and antilock brakes


Toyota Corolla: 42MPG highway. Seats five. ABS available. A decently equipped model will cost you $15k.


By Fenixgoon on 5/7/2007 6:42:55 PM , Rating: 2
"seats five" :laugh;

but does it seat 5 comfortably? =D


By marvdmartian on 5/8/2007 9:29:13 AM , Rating: 3
More importantly, does it seat 5 big-assed Americans?? ;)


By TheGreek on 5/10/2007 4:44:00 PM , Rating: 2
As well as 5 big assed "any other county"-ans.

Seriously though, I could drive a smaller car if the average oblivious to everything around him American had just one brain cell that could grasp the simple laws of physics.


RE: It is US to blame, not the auto manufacturers
By hubajube on 5/7/2007 6:47:30 PM , Rating: 4
quote:
Toyota Corolla: 42MPG highway. Seats four and a monkey . ABS available. A decently equipped model will cost you $15k.
Corrected it for you.


RE: It is US to blame, not the auto manufacturers
By ira176 on 5/8/2007 1:26:58 AM , Rating: 2
A monkey in the trunk that is...


By TheGreek on 5/10/2007 4:45:19 PM , Rating: 2
Better place than the White House.


By Hoser McMoose on 5/8/2007 2:48:44 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
etc. but your choice for economy cars is limited to suck, suckier or suckiest among the Big 3

In my mind one of the biggest problems is that for ANY small car from the Big-3 you're limited to 'suck, suckier or suckiest', even if you're willing to pay more than economy car prices.

GM just doesn't make a luxury small or midsized car. If you want luxury features from GM you NEED to buy either a large car or an SUV. The only exception to this rule is the mid-sized 9-3 from their Saab division, though this is still somewhat larger than a BMW 3-series.

GM isn't alone here, the old Chrysler brands are in the same boat (though, to be fair, Mercedes is current filling this role in DaimlerChrysler). Ford is only saved by their Volvo division.

When you look at the Big-3 companies for something to compare to a BMW 3-series, a Lexus IS series, Acura TSX, Audi A4, etc., the American makes are really lacking. This is especially true if you ignore the European makes owned by the Big-3 (ie Saab and Volvo). It's even worse if you want something like a BMW 1-series (not available in North America yet), Audi A3, Acura CSX (only available in Canada), Mercedes B-series, etc.

The American car companies are stuck on this idea that size and market segments must be intrinsically linked. "If it's small it's gotta be crap" seems to be the motto.


By Oregonian2 on 5/7/2007 3:30:26 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
Exactly. Everyone wants their 5.0+L V8 that gets terrible mileage because everyone needs a 1-ton truck to go grocery shopping on the weekend, especially here in Canada it seems.


If one needs a truck sometimes (say, you use it for work but still have to go grocery shopping on weekends), what do you do? Or even if you only need it once in a while to haul one's large kayak to the dock. Buy a Camry and fill the trunk with concrete the few times a year one needs to? Point being that a truck can be used as a car more easily than vice versa. So unless "everybody" can buy multiple vehicles in order to select what they're going to be doing at the moment, the vehicle that is more universal is more practical, and that may have a pickup being used to buy a gallon of milk.


RE: It is US to blame, not the auto manufacturers
By walk2k on 5/7/07, Rating: 0
RE: It is US to blame, not the auto manufacturers
By Hawkido on 5/7/2007 6:05:35 PM , Rating: 1
Young Man! Get your head outta your butt! Now!

You have no idea how the rest of the country lives. Let me guess you live in surburbia or the concrete jungle...

I live out here in the country, its nice. You can do all sorts of things out here, like run blindfolded for 5 seconds and NOT break your nose on a building! I'm sure from where you sit you can't even imagine why people have trucks. You don't know where the corn on your plate comes from. Question: What kind of tree does milk grow on?

I suggest you give up food for 3 months (except what YOU can grow where you live) before you go talking about passing any laws about trucks. There is not a single thing you eat that didn't spend some of its growth cycle in a pickup truck (seed, feed grain, plants, saplings). You have narrow vision. You see no need for trucks so you want to ban them. I want to ban YOU for making use of any product that a pickup truck was involved in producing.

Think about the full complications of your flimsy "I mean well!" thoughts, before speaking them.

Enviralmentalism is a disease. (No, it's not mispelled)


RE: It is US to blame, not the auto manufacturers
By walk2k on 5/7/07, Rating: 0
RE: It is US to blame, not the auto manufacturers
By hubajube on 5/7/2007 6:51:42 PM , Rating: 4
I wish my wife and I could afford to buy a third car so she wouldn't have to drive her truck everyday but another car payment and the associated maintenance costs are not worth it just to save a few bucks in gas.


By TheGreek on 5/10/2007 5:03:12 PM , Rating: 2
IE She could have bought the vehicle she requires, not the dream vehicle, and then the lower payments would allow you to rent a truck whenever you need it. Financially you'd be well ahead.

I'd could buy a Corvette and more today if I wanted, and if it ever reached that point I'd rent one for a week to get it out of my system. To own one is a waste of resources. People want thrills? Go to an amusement park.


RE: It is US to blame, not the auto manufacturers
By Hawkido on 5/8/2007 9:48:42 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
why don't you not live in a building for 3 months, jagoff.


4 years military, proudly served and honorably discharged. Only 3 months?

SUV's are needed... the precursor to the SUV was the Ford Bronco and the Older Chevy Blazer, and before that Camper cover tops for pickups. So the automakers didn't have a vehicle that met the wants and needs of the market, so another market was created to modify what the auto industry made (the Pickup) with a camper shell and Viola! The first SUV. I believe the first of these were seen in the 60's.

Okay, you can put your head back in your butt now. I am done with you.


RE: It is US to blame, not the auto manufacturers
By jrb531 on 5/8/2007 2:10:59 PM , Rating: 1
But does a SUV "need" 300+ HP or could 200 do?

The point is not as much size but HP.

-JB


RE: It is US to blame, not the auto manufacturers
By Hawkido on 5/8/2007 3:38:03 PM , Rating: 2
You ever try to pull a trailer with a load through the Ozark Mountains?


RE: It is US to blame, not the auto manufacturers
By jrb531 on 5/9/2007 1:15:29 PM , Rating: 1
And if you are pulling a trailer then yes you need more HP.

Having said this... what percentage of the population pulls trailers???

-JB


By Hawkido on 5/9/2007 4:00:04 PM , Rating: 3
Most people in the country have trailers for hauling farm and Rec equipment. Which, if you check, the non-urban areas are where truck and SUV sales are the greatest. Ban them in the city if you want. But if you harm the farmer, You starve first.


By masher2 (blog) on 5/7/2007 7:22:17 PM , Rating: 1
> "You could always RENT a truck and drive a normal car the other 364 days of the year"

One more non-SUV owner who doesn't see a need for SUVs. Imagine that.

Well, its usually a self-correcting problem. Once you get a little older, have your own home and a large family, you'll probably change your mind.


RE: It is US to blame, not the auto manufacturers
By walk2k on 5/7/2007 7:55:25 PM , Rating: 1
Well aren't we smarmy. For your records I'm 37 and own my own home. No kids yet, but that's old enough to remember the times before SUVs even existed, waaay back in the 1970s, when our family got along JUST FINE with 2 adults 2 kids and a DOG in the back of the family STATION WAGON.

There is no need for SUVs. None at all. Just suck it up and admit that you don't NEED a SUV, you simply WANT one.

But, would you want one if it cost $80,000?


By Amiga500 on 5/8/2007 4:22:33 AM , Rating: 3
I hope you lot are aware that SUVs are involved in a disproportionate amount of accidents?

Mostly due to the fact they handle like sh_t!

Elk test anyone?


By TheGreek on 5/11/2007 10:59:55 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Your family in the 1970s got along just fine without a computer and cable TV too, didn't they? A few decades before that, they got along fine without a telephone or air conditioning as well.


You could learn a lot from a Corona Beer commercial, or perhaps a vacation. Within weeks normal people are fine without those items.


By theapparition on 5/8/2007 7:52:24 AM , Rating: 1
quote:
No kids yet

Lucky for them!


By MonkeyPaw on 5/8/2007 9:52:33 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
when our family got along JUST FINE with 2 adults 2 kids and a DOG in the back of the family STATION WAGON.


What kind of gas mileage did that 3 ton wagon get back in the day? When promoting fuel economy, I wouldn't use the 1970s as a reference point. Besides, who's to say what your family would have owned had the minivan and SUV been in existence back then (both were a product of the '80s)? You act like they made a choice when there wasn't one in the first place.


By SmokeRngs on 5/9/2007 3:33:20 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
waaay back in the 1970s, when our family got along JUST FINE with 2 adults 2 kids and a DOG in the back of the family STATION WAGON.


You do realize that the station wagon probably had a V8 and got rather lousy gas mileage? If it didn't have a V8 or a strong straight six that car wouldn't go anywhere due to it's size and weight. They also handled terribly.

Are you also aware that the CAFE standards are what killed the station wagon? There was no way to actually make a station wagon productive with the constraints put on it for mileage.

This was one of the reasons for the explosion of the SUV. Vans filled part of the roll of the old station wagon for hauling large numbers of people around. But they did nothing for hauling and pulling requirements. SUVs were able to take the place of the old station wagon. They have the room to seat a lot of people and gear while able to pull a trailer or haul a load.


By Oregonian2 on 5/9/2007 6:38:11 PM , Rating: 1
My first car was a '69 model (GM). A family "boat", not a youngster hot racing car. It had a 472 engine rated 375 HP (just before the clean air stuff ruined performance, a PCV valve was about it for that year). Tank held 26 gallons of premium leaded gas.

Wish my cars and minivan nowadays were anywhere near the power of the family car I drove in the 70's.


By TheGreek on 5/10/2007 5:13:24 PM , Rating: 2
"when our family got along JUST FINE with 2 adults 2 kids and a DOG in the back of the family STATION WAGON."

Yeah, I have a friend who couldn't control his kids so he went from a station wagon to an SUV. It was easier that making his kids settle down for 30 minute drives.

And suddenly that's a need? Yeah right.


By MightyAA on 5/8/2007 1:56:35 PM , Rating: 2
I disagree. You want space, low cost, good mpg, and good safety in a sedan. I want space, performance, reasonable gas mileage and safety in a sedan. Everyone's wants and needs are going to be different. And judging from sales, a lot of America is like me.

But sales are also picking up on hybrids and the green movement. More and more manufacturer's are offering those kinds of cars (they'll sell what we'll buy). Senators are just jumping on the green bandwagon to secure votes... This shouldn't be regulated to extreme measures that would economically hurt those most unable to afford "the price of green". Technologies like hybrids cost... Your lowest paid folks also tend to carpool, own fewer cars, take mass transit, and drive work vehicles (like those in the construction trade). A good percentage of the population aren't middle & upper class. But they'll still always need a car for daily living, and have to scrape to buy a new car (which can also mean self-esteem since it's a sign of prosperity and the American dream). I can't see anything like this keeping vehicle cost down. I'd actually giggle to see a carload of mason's pile out of a Toyota hybrid prius..


By HVAC on 5/9/2007 10:39:40 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
People buy what they want.


I don't want to own a 12 passenger van. I have 7 kids and must own one. It gets 15mpg. I am unhappy with that.

I commute to work in a Ford Focus. It has a manual transmission and gets 30mpg. I am happy with that. (It is also light enough that the engine provides enough torque to spin the wheels, but I STILL get 30mpg even doing that occasionally).

Not every purchase is "want based". I am a buyer that will put up with an ugly color or inexact feature list match to get a lower price or to get the feature that I think I need.


RE: It is US to blame, not the auto manufacturers
By walk2k on 5/7/2007 1:20:39 PM , Rating: 1
The problem is that trucks and SUVs are not classifed as "passenger" vehicles.

If trucks and SUVs had to pass all the safety, emmissions and fuel-economy standards that passenger vehicles do, they would cost $80,000. Hence, nobody would "want" them.

They are kept cheap because of loopholes in the law (SUVs classified as "work trucks" even though 99.9% of them are used as such every day of their lifespan).

These loopholes need to be closed.

And anyway... ONE WHOLE MPG?! That's what they are saying is "unobtainable"?? ONE MPG??

Someone needs to start chopping off heads. These companies may be in the red, but the CEOs sure make a lot of money - it's always the little guys, the factory workers, who take it in the @ss.


By masher2 (blog) on 5/7/2007 1:53:04 PM , Rating: 4
> "And anyway... ONE WHOLE MPG?! That's what they are saying is "unobtainable"?? "

One MPG now. 7.5 MPG by 2020. 15 MPG by 2025. And steadily increasing (4%/year) beyond that.

And that's on top of constantly increasing safety and emissions standards, which continually add weight and reduce efficiency, even if nothing else was changing.


RE: It is US to blame, not the auto manufacturers
By Souka on 5/7/2007 2:11:57 PM , Rating: 2
Can't wait till E85 becomes popular... heh.. worse fuel economy per/gallon compared to E0 gas (no ethonal).

Even cars that are >designed< for E85 get less miles per gallon on E85 than regular gas... pity..

anyhow... here's an idea... STOP making our freeways bigger!!

Damn freeways keep getting more and more lanes...and traffic is still getting worse... why? because US infrastructure and mindset is everyone must drive... So pathetic...


By Chernobyl68 on 5/7/2007 7:06:59 PM , Rating: 2
right...because the population of the US is actually stagnant...


By darkpaw on 5/8/2007 6:05:14 PM , Rating: 2
Yah, thats the answer sure.

I just moved to the DC area last year and I take mass transit everyday, but when I have to drive on the freeways they are absolutely atroucious and busy beyond belief. I moved here from Phoenix, which has no mass transit and lots of freeways and big thouroughfares and guess what? The traffic way much much better! They are always building more much needed freeways in Phoenix and really not fast enough.

There hasn't been major investment in new freeways in the DC metro area in years and the congestion is abysmal. The mass transit systems are rather crowded too so its not like no one is using them. Even though in distance I live about 5 miles from work in the DC area, it takes me as long to use public transit as it did to drive the 30 miles to work in Phoenix.

The solution to traffic is many more freeways with mass transit as an option.


RE: It is US to blame, not the auto manufacturers
By walk2k on 5/7/07, Rating: 0
By hubajube on 5/7/2007 6:54:47 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
So they have 13 years to get +7.5 MPG, boo hoo, real tragedy.
Not a tragedy but pretty expensive not to mention WE haven't demonstrated that WE would actually buy these cars IF they were produced. The 1% of the market hybrids are NOT enough to make it economically feasible for the auto manufacturers to start mass producing these things. Although, I think they can meet the requirements in the short term.


By Hawkido on 5/8/2007 9:56:00 AM , Rating: 2
Masher, I really appreciate the fact that you look beyond the initial statement. So few do.

"The Wizard's Second Rule is 'Life's greatest tragedies are caused by people with the best of intentions, and the worst of forsight'" --Terry Goodkind (not an exact quote but close enough)

"Any Idea that includes 'Pass a Law' is a bad idea" --Hawkido


By fic2 on 5/8/2007 1:46:45 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
One MPG now


One MPG by 2015 - 7.5 years isn't exactly now.


By GoatMonkey on 5/7/2007 2:02:04 PM , Rating: 2
1 MPG may be unattainable in 1 year. It takes a pretty long time to develop a new engine. Or even just taking one of their existing small engines and putting it in a larger vehicle would probably take them more than a year. Cutting significant weight from a vehicle to reduce fuel usage takes a lot of time also. Probably their easiest route is to change the final drive ratios. Then you end up with cars that are slow off the line and you lose sales to your existing used cars.


By theapparition on 5/7/2007 2:02:10 PM , Rating: 2
Please let me know what safety, emissions, and fuel-economy standards trucks and SUV's get an exemption for.

None exist as far as I know.


By RogueSpear on 5/7/2007 2:18:21 PM , Rating: 1
http://www.ucsusa.org/clean_vehicles/vehicles_heal...

quote:
The market share of light trucks (pickups, minivans, and SUVs) increased from 15% to 40% between 1970 and 1995. These light trucks have less stringent emission standards than passenger cars, especially for nitrogen oxides. In addition, the number of miles light trucks drive has increased at a much faster rate than the number of miles cars drive: 5.9 times for light trucks versus 2.2 times for cars.


By theapparition on 5/7/2007 3:26:14 PM , Rating: 2
I never thought an enviromental group with a clear agenda would be biased....Wow!

First paragraph, they bash AC use. Where study after study has shown that there is a slight increase in fuel effiency when using the AC, vs. the windows rolled down.

But since you like the links, try this:

http://www.epa.gov/emissweb//faq.htm#my

From the Q&A section:

"Some heavier passenger vehicles like the largest vans, pickup trucks, and sport utility vehicles are officially classified as heavy-duty trucks because they are heavier than their light-duty counterparts. Heavy-duty trucks have different emission standards which are not included in this guide. EPA's new emission regulations include more of these larger vehicles beginning in model year 2004."

Most passenger trucks fall into the light duty catagory. There are some execptions (Hummer H1), but the majority are under 6000lbs.


By theapparition on 5/8/2007 8:04:02 AM , Rating: 2
Name calling, nice.
Isn't there a technical term for that debating style?

If you bother to read the report from the epa, the same car can fall under different standards depending on location in the country, and several light trucks/suvs share the same standard as passenger cars.


By Gentleman on 5/7/2007 5:41:47 PM , Rating: 2
The AC thing is not true according to MythBusters. AC uses more gas than rolling down the window.


By Chernobyl68 on 5/7/2007 7:10:05 PM , Rating: 2
yeah, mythbusters don't always get it right.
I've had a soda blow up in my car. They said it can't happen, I saw this episode about a year after one blew up in my car. no, I didn't try to prove them wrong :)
it wasn't even a hot day, it didn't get much above 70 degrees.


By Hawkido on 5/8/2007 3:43:31 PM , Rating: 2
If I had a nickel for every time a soda blow up in my car I'd have $0.15 LOL!

Yeah it happens.

I had a Cola stain on the back seat for the rest of the life of my car. Syrup, once sun-dried, doesn't really come out even with a wet vac.


By Ajax9000 on 5/7/2007 7:26:30 PM , Rating: 2
That was probably one of the worst (i.e. least scientific/systematic/rigorous) Mythbusters I have seen. They realise the test will be too long so they hand pump out the tank and guestimate that the two vehicles have the same volume of fuel. Also I don't remember them doing identical tune-ups and weigh-ins at the start. Total rubbish.


By Hoser McMoose on 5/7/2007 11:10:21 PM , Rating: 4
I like MythBusters as much as the next guy, but keep in mind that they are Special FX guys, not scientists. Their methods of study often leave more than a bit to be desired.

The fact of the matter is that it's not easy to give a flat-out answer to whether it's more fuel efficient to use AC or to roll down the windows. It depends on the ambient air temperature, engine and compressor being used, the aerodynamics of the vehicle and especially the speed at which the vehicle is traveling.

Aerodynamic drag increases with the square of speed, while the load on the engine from AC is basically a fixed figure (for a given ambient temperature) with little to no change based on vehicle speed. As such, anything you do to increase your co-efficient of drag (and rolling down windows DOES do this) will inevitably result in SOME speed beyond which your fuel efficiency drops bellow that of a fixed load on the engine. The question is really just WHAT that speed is.


By theapparition on 5/8/2007 8:08:37 AM , Rating: 2
Correct,
Speed plays the biggest factor. The most complete test I've seen averaged driving styles for a typical american suburban commute of ~40min. There was a 2mpg improvement with the AC than without.

Now, if you just go around town and never get above 35mph, then I'll grant that you have to lose some efficiency, but if you do any highway driving, you'll loose a signifigant amount of efficiency.


RE: It is US to blame, not the auto manufacturers
By Samus on 5/7/2007 2:25:44 PM , Rating: 2
Every other country has already achieved this goal. Even Canada had a 1.3l option on the BMW 1 series (not sold in USA) and a wide range of sub- 2 litre engines in a variety of automobiles, not sold here. Europe, Asia and Australia are just the same.

I think the general population of those countries isn't as stupid as we are when it comes to purchasing a car for its economy over its 0-60 spec.


By GoatMonkey on 5/7/2007 2:59:12 PM , Rating: 2
Most of them just have more expensive gas.


By Oregonian2 on 5/7/2007 3:20:52 PM , Rating: 1
Do very many people actually take that option?


By Hoser McMoose on 5/8/2007 12:37:58 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Even Canada had a 1.3l option on the BMW 1 series (not sold in USA)

Not sold in Canada either (though there's rumors it might get here soon).

There are VERY few vehicles sold in Canada and not in the US. For BMW the only model is the 323i Sedan with a 2.5L V6 engine. The smallest engine in any BMW sold in the US is the 3.0L V6 in their 328i

I know of only ONE car model (rather than a trim within a model) that is sold in Canada and not the US, the Acura CSX. This car, which is exclusive to Canada, is essentially a luxury Honda Civic.

quote:
I think the general population of those countries isn't as stupid as we are when it comes to purchasing a car for its economy over its 0-60 spec.

Look at gasoline taxes vs. fuel economy and I think you'll find a VERY noticeable trend. The table about 2/3rds of the way down the following page shows what's going on here:

http://www.fin.gc.ca/toce/2006/gas_tax-e.html

The ~$0.20/liter difference in gasoline tax/final price is the main difference why average fuel economy is better in Canada vs. the US. As mentioned above, we have essentially the same vehicles sold (there are a few models available in the US and not Canada, but that's more the exception than the norm), we have similar economic levels and standards of living, similar geography and levels of urbanization, etc.

If the US government were REALLY seriously about reducing their dependence on foreign oil and improving fuel economy they would raise gasoline taxes. Plain and simple. Given that the US federal and most state governments are operating with budget deficits, the extra revenue would be a welcome bonus, though if governments don't want the money they could offset it with a drop in personal and corporate income taxes.

Of course, such a move would be political suicide.


RE: It is US to blame, not the auto manufacturers
By Hawkido on 5/8/2007 10:29:26 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
they would raise gasoline taxes. Plain and simple. Given that the US federal and most state governments are operating with budget deficits, the extra revenue would be a welcome bonus


Nice, Look ahead. Raise Taxes, get lower tax revenue. What you say? They set us up the Bomb?

That's right you heard me, Raise taxes get lower Tax revenue. Check out the Laffer Curve. Have an economist (not a blogger) explain it to you. Ask the Economist where we are right now on the curve.

Here's how it will work out. You add $0.20 per galon in tax. Gas sales drop by 5%. Cheaper more effecient cars are bought, sales tax revenue drops. people won't travel as much tourist industry sees less customers, jobs get cut, causeing less income tax revenue.

I believe your idea just cost the government billions of dollars in tax revenue, by raising gas taxes.

Here's an idea. Offer Tax breaks for fuel efficient cars. No sales tax (for those states that have sales tax on cars). No Manufacturing tax on fuel efficient cars, plus a tax incentive to the companies that sell more of the Fuel effecient cars. This way the customer is financially encouraged to buy a FE car, and the Manufacturer is rewarded for selling the FE car.

This is a Capitalist society, you HAVE to use rewards in a capitalist society. Now if you prefer punishments to rewards, then a Socialist, Communist, Totalitarian, Despot, or Monarchy is what you want.

quote:
Of course, such a move would be political suicide.

No Politician's go victem hunting and say the tax will benefit the victems. Those who feel that society OWNS them something will vote for the tax, because "I don't have a car! Why should I care if Richie-Rich-Rich has to pay more taxes!" Then they stand in line for a hand out of food and toilet paper, because "Richie-Rich-Rich" can't afford to open another location to employ this dreg because of all the taxes Richie has to pay. It wouldn't be political suicide, it would actually get them more votes because it would create more victems. Financial suicide it would be.

Nice logic you just put alot of people out of work. BTW US buys most of it's oil from Canada. Ah well it is a Socialist country anyway, they are used to hand-outs.


By Hoser McMoose on 5/9/2007 3:25:07 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Ask the Economist where we are right now on the curve.

Better yet, ask 10 economists so that you can get 10 TOTALLY different answers and then see how wildly they vary. One of the problems with this sort of economic theory is that it tries to take about a gazillion variables and represent them as a simple 'money-in, money-out' equation. The concept is sound in principle, but in terms of actually applying it to a specific situation it breaks down badly.

quote:
Here's how it will work out. You add $0.20 per gallon in tax. Gas sales drop by 5%. Cheaper more efficient cars are bought, sales tax revenue drops

Eventually yes, pushing up price will decrease demand. Actually in this case it's more likely to limit the growth of demand (ie Gas sales won't exactly drop by 5% but rather will be 5% lower than where they would be without such a tax increase). So hopefully governments wouldn't be looking to depend on this extra revenue for the long term but rather as a short-term fix to the dismal fiscal shape in which most state and the US federal government have found themselves in.

quote:
Here's an idea. Offer Tax breaks for fuel efficient cars.

As an effort to reduce fuel consumption this has generally failed every time it's been tried (and yes, it's been tried a lot). The biggest problem, in my mind, is that you end up spending lots of time and money setting up this elaborate scheme, full of red-tape, to encourage fuel saving but totally ignore the root cause of the problem, ie how much gas is actually being used. Put quite simply, a Toyota Prius being driven 50,000km/year will use more gas than a Hummer being driven 5,000km/year.

quote:
It wouldn't be political suicide, it would actually get them more votes because it would create more victems.

Try suggesting raising gas prices some time. Trust me, it IS political suicide. I don't know where all these socialist 'victims' you're looking for exist in the US, but they certainly aren't the ones that vote.

As for Richie Rich opening a new location, if you want to encourage him to do so it's corporate taxes that you need to look at, not fuel taxes. 20 years ago the US had one of the lowest corporate tax rates in the world. Now they are pretty much even with those 'socialist' countries in Europe. If you increase tax on gasoline and offset it by a corresponding decrease in personal and corporate income taxes than you will tend to increase the chances of expanding business, not decrease (the obvious exception being those corporations for whom gasoline costs play a dominant role in their expenses, ie trucking companies, taxis, etc.).

quote:
Nice logic you just put alot of people out of work. BTW US buys most of it's oil from Canada. Ah well it is a Socialist country anyway, they are used to hand-outs.

I really doubt that a slowed rate of increase on fossil fuels will cause any big problems for any oil exporting countries. If any of these counties (Canada included) are having trouble making money when oil prices have jumped 200% in five years than a small drop in U.S. consumption is the least of their worries!


RE: It is US to blame, not the auto manufacturers
By mattyj on 5/7/2007 2:31:00 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
It is US to blame, not the auto manufacturers


So the US needs to fix the problem. Not only is it good environmental policy (and long overdue), but it's good domestic enforcement of foreign policy. There is such a disconnect between paying at the pump and the vast government resources that go into securing oil for the US market. The consumer can't do this on their own.


By mattyj on 5/7/2007 2:32:49 PM , Rating: 2
* The consumer WON'T do this on their own.


When Will They Learn
By creathir on 5/7/07, Rating: 0
RE: When Will They Learn
By JeffDM on 5/7/2007 12:23:34 PM , Rating: 5
Up until last year's price hike, there wasn't much incentive to make a fuel efficient car. Buyers were happy to buy gas guzzlers because gas was cheap and they paid for that short-sightedness. Gas is still relatively cheap, but I don't think it will remain so for long.

This legislation is meant for the long term because the typical auto buyer doesn't think that way. Increasing fuel mileage is not unrealistic, nor is it unattainable. Europe has something like 45mpg standards.

As it is, the Big Three spent so much time and money fighting off increases in fuel mileage in the mean time, imports are eating their lunch in terms of innovation.

Innovation can be forced, it's happened numerous times in regards to emissions many times in the last half century and we are all better off for it with better air quality.

I don't think this is necessarily a partisan issue either, Democrats have a heavy pro-union bent that prevented them from increasing fuel mileage when they were in power up to ~1993.


RE: When Will They Learn
By tdawg on 5/7/2007 12:33:35 PM , Rating: 2
Well said


RE: When Will They Learn
By OxBow on 5/7/07, Rating: 0
RE: When Will They Learn
By SigmaHyperion on 5/7/2007 3:08:22 PM , Rating: 2
Let's get one thing straight here...

It ain't just "the Big Three" that are fighting against this bill. Does anyone here have a friggin' clue about cars or the automotive industry? The idea that American manufacturers build gas-guzzling cars FLIES IN THE FACE OF REALITY.

Prior to the widespread sales of the Prius in the last couple years, Toyota's average mileage for passenger cars sold in the US was LOWER than General Motors'. Removing hybrids from the equation (since many people simply dont' want them or they don't suit their needs) General Motors can (and does today) build a MORE fuel-efficient passenger car than Toyota can.

In fact, in gas mileage rankings of major manufacturers in the US, the order is Japanese, American, Japanese, American, Japanese, American, Japanese. You don't get any more balanced than that. Yes, that's why Hybrids removed, but add them in, and you simply swap #2 and #3 (Toyota moves up, GM down).

This isn't just a "Big Three"/American problem. There are as many Japanese manufacturers negatively effected by this legislation as American.

Toyota, in fact, has seen its' mileage fall considerably outside of its' hybrids. Between 2000 and 2003, Toyota's average MPG on a passenger car went down by more than 5mpg. Why? Because Americans have demanded ever larger motors in their passenger vehicles. And the presence of those models alone doesn't make the average go down -- it's the SALE of those cars that has made their average go down. At the end of the day, a very large percentage of the population don't really give a damn about gas mileage.

There's already a multitude of vehicles to choose from that meet these new requirements. If people really wanted them THEY'D BUY THEM. They can today if they want. All this legislation does is force manufacturers to produce cars that no one wants.

If you think the Big Three isn't building the car that you desire, I gotta wonder what that car is. And what manufacturer outside of them is building it.


RE: When Will They Learn
By Kuroyama on 5/9/2007 8:40:42 AM , Rating: 2
> Toyota's average mileage for passenger cars sold in
> the US was LOWER than General Motors'

I call your bluff. Tell me where you got those figures, because I don't believe them.

> Toyota's average MPG on a passenger car went down by
> more than 5mpg.

Quite likely for their fleet average, as their SUV and truck sales went up a lot. I have my doubts about passenger cars though.

> General Motors can (and does today) build a MORE
> fuel-efficient passenger car than Toyota can.

Which GM car gets the same fuel efficiency as a Corolla?


RE: When Will They Learn
By masher2 (blog) on 5/9/2007 9:21:51 AM , Rating: 2
> "I call your bluff. Tell me where you got those figures, because I don't believe them."

According to the DOT's 2006 data, his statement is incorrect-- for GM vs. Toyota. Comparing all domestic cars vs. all imports though, the domestic cars win (30.0 mpg vs. 29.4).

However, there's an even more telling statistic. In 1977, imports averaged 28.2 MPG. By 2004, it was 28.7...an increase of only 0.5 MPG. For domestic automakers, their 1977 average was 17.6 MPG. By 2004, it was 29.9...a whopping 12.3 MPG increase.

I'd say the domestic automakers are doing pretty good in mpg. Starting from a huge deficit, they've come back to beat foreign automakers on mileage, four years out of the last five.

(data: http://dmses.dot.gov/docimages/pdf99/426721_web.pd... )


RE: When Will They Learn
By Kuroyama on 5/9/2007 10:40:48 AM , Rating: 3
I don't doubt that domestics beat German cars on fuel economy. However, I rather doubt any US company beating Honda and Toyota. It is possible that if you throw in the luxury brands (Acura and Lexus respectively) then those drag down the fuel economy enough to give domestics a fighting chance, but I don't think it'd be enough.

Certainly US companies have made big improvements in quality and fuel economy since the 1970s. However, your comparison is a bit unfair because Japanese cars in 1977 were tiny things, so to have improved fuel economy while also drastically increasing vehicle size is not as bad as the 0.5 mpg figure makes it look.


RE: When Will They Learn
By masher2 (blog) on 5/9/2007 10:52:24 AM , Rating: 1
> "However, your comparison is a bit unfair."

I'm comparing efficiency and corporate philosophy, not innate technology. In the past 30 years, foreign automakers have rushed to increased vehicle size and weight, to the point they've made essentially zero progress in fleet mileage. Meanwhile, domestic automakers have been paring down the size of weight of their vehicles, and making tremendous strides in efficiency as a result.


RE: When Will They Learn
By masher2 (blog) on 5/7/2007 1:27:19 PM , Rating: 1
There are already many cars with fuel economy well above even these new, higher standards. If the "will of the people" is that we drive such cars, then they're available to buy today.

This legislation isn't about making more fuel-efficient cars available for you. It's about forcing other people to drive a smaller and/or less powerful vehicle than they otherwise would.


RE: When Will They Learn
By RogueSpear on 5/7/2007 2:03:23 PM , Rating: 5
I don't remember where I read this recently, but a guy said something to the effect of "when fuel efficiency standards were raised in the 70's the Japanese hired more engineers. The Americans hired more lobbyists".

Kind of sums it up I'd say.


RE: When Will They Learn
By creathir on 5/7/07, Rating: -1
RE: When Will They Learn
By hubajube on 5/7/2007 7:05:42 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
The Europeans also drive tin cans for cars. Ever been over there? The cars are SMALL. The point with this legislation, is to take away a luxury. If I want to drive a vehicle that gets 15 MPG (I do... it is a Quad cab Dodge Truck) then I also get to buy more gas. Simple as that. If I can afford it, then I should have the right to drive a massive vehicle like that. This legislation would REMOVE that option for me...
Reposting so people can read this.


RE: When Will They Learn
By Regs on 5/8/2007 8:31:31 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Europe has something like 45mpg standards.


And their gas is 8.00+ dollars a gallon. Taxes and I guess "shortages".


RE: When Will They Learn
By shadow300z on 5/7/2007 12:25:04 PM , Rating: 4
Your corporate masters have obviously trained you well Creathir.


RE: When Will They Learn
By hubajube on 5/7/2007 7:07:21 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Your corporate masters have obviously trained you well Creathir.
It's called freedom of choice. No training involved as this occurs naturally.


RE: When Will They Learn
By walk2k on 5/7/07, Rating: -1
RE: When Will They Learn
By creathir on 5/7/2007 7:36:39 PM , Rating: 1
You have the right to breath clean air. Just because you FORCE yourself into a place that is dense in population does not mean my right to drive the vehicle I want should be restricted.

Go out 20 miles outside of ANY US city, and so goes the "dirty air".

You are right about the price of oil, it is amazing how supply & demand works. It also means that me, the consumer of this oil, pays more due to my increased consumption.

Do you honestly believe that insane assertion you are espousing? If the war on terror was about oil, it really worked, didn't it? Last I checked oil prices were at record lows, and the oil companies are just stealing all of the Iraqi oil... yup... you are right...

- Creathir


RE: When Will They Learn
By masher2 (blog) on 5/7/2007 10:35:12 PM , Rating: 1
> "What about my freedom to breath clean air?"

Don't try to pass this off as a clean-air issue; it won't work. The air *is* clean...far cleaner than it was 30 years ago, despite the fact that we have many more cars on the road, burning many more gallons of gas. And getting cleaner all the time. In fact, that cleanliness has, by and large, come at the expense of increased MPG, as new emissions and fuel standards often reduce efficiency.

Secondly, a person driving a compact car 60 miles/day is polluting more than a person driving an SUV 20 miles/day. Some people drive 100+ miles/day. But you're happy to see them do it...as long as they're driving a small car. Whereas the person in the SUV you consider to be evil, even if they're using much less fuel than the national average?

Rather illogical, don't you think?

> "If people use more oil, that...drives up the price, for EVERYONE."

That's true for every commodity on the planet. The more who want to buy it, the more expensive it is. That doesn't justify passing laws to restrict freedom, simply so you can save a little money.


RE: When Will They Learn
By TheGreek on 5/10/2007 4:40:51 PM , Rating: 2
"far cleaner than it was 30 years ago"

What a ridiculous statement. Air quality was awful back then. Just because it's better now doesn't make it good.

But then what's point? You address only what you want to address and nothing beyond that - the same tiny Matrix logic that got us in this mess in the first place - hyperindividuality.

Me, me, me.


RE: When Will They Learn
By tdawg on 5/7/2007 12:32:10 PM , Rating: 2
It took legislation to get car companies to install seat belts and airbags. The industry won't change by itself, so it needs external pressure to make it change, hence new federal regulations and mandates.

It also doesn't help that the economic stimulus package passed during Bush's first term gave "small business" owners the incentive to buy huge, gas guzzling, SUVs through the $100,000 tax credit. The tax credit for hybrid or electric vehicles was $4000 up until last year; that's dropped to around $2000 now. This is basically a mail-in rebate on large SUVs; the tax credit more than pays for the car; it's basically a government subsidy for the auto industry.

As for the rest of your post, I will not respond as it's just sensationalistic talking points.


RE: When Will They Learn
By masher2 (blog) on 5/7/2007 1:29:58 PM , Rating: 2
> "It took legislation to get car companies to install seat belts and airbags"

On the contrary, both were available as options long before they were mandated by the government. All legislation did was speed somewhat their introduction as standard features.


RE: When Will They Learn
By Motley on 5/7/2007 1:52:27 PM , Rating: 2
It did not take legislation to get car companies to install seat belts and airbags. Perhaps, it forced every car to have them, but by the time the legislation for seat belts passed, every car I had been in had seat belts, and the good ones had air bags.


RE: When Will They Learn
By theapparition on 5/7/2007 1:57:05 PM , Rating: 2
If you are refering to the tax credit for 6000lb+ vehicules, that was not specifically passed for SUVs. It was passed to give credit to business for buying heavy vehicules (like farmers for buying tractors or stores buying box trucks). Some people discoverd the loophole and exploited it.
Don't imply that it was passed for SUV's though.


RE: When Will They Learn
By creathir on 5/7/07, Rating: -1
RE: When Will They Learn
By hubajube on 5/7/2007 7:08:41 PM , Rating: 2
You don't get tax credits for SUV's.


RE: When Will They Learn
By Chernobyl68 on 5/7/2007 7:18:51 PM , Rating: 2
what you got a few years ago was a tax credit intended for the use of trucks on small farms. however, when it came to legally defining the truck on small farm, what you got was vehicles classified as trucks (which SUV are categorized as) owned by small businesses.
Which is why you see the Hummer H2's going around advertising the Nail Salons. It didn't help at all the press constantly reporting the story over and over, so all the idiots would learn of the loophole.
I don't know if the loophole is still around, but whoever wrote that law should be shot.


RE: When Will They Learn
By andrinoaa on 5/8/07, Rating: 0
RE: When Will They Learn
By creathir on 5/8/2007 10:20:12 AM , Rating: 2
I believe you need to take a dose of your own medicine.

You ask us to use logic, yet you fail to do so. Our logic is this:

I have money.
I can afford an expensive car.
Big cars can be made.
I would like a big car.
I live in a country where my freedom cannot be trampled on.
Therefore, I should have the right to own that big car.

By you interjecting what you feel is right, by forcing me to drive a small car "for the good of everyone" takes away my freedom. I find it quite humorous that the same people that SLAM the war on terror (you just did), scream bloody murder about how our government is taking away our privacy (NSA anyone) yet when it comes to the environment, we all need to give up our rights?

This has nothing to do with the environment, our dependency on oil, or our freedom of speech. This is blind allegiance to socialism.

The purpose of the modern green movement, unfortunately, is to undermine capitalism. You even alluded to your lack of understanding of how capitalism works by implying that these companies will not "bend unless forced".

I love my environment, is the only one God has given us. We are supposed to take care of our planet. But to blindly follow the hysteria associated with global warming and just about every other piece of the environmental movement is just insane. My life is just that, my life. Your life, is just that, your life. If you want to drive a Prius and used recycled toilet paper and pay some company $200 a year for "carbon credits", more power to you.

But if I do not want to drive a small little car, and I want to use NEW toilet paper, and I don't want to pay some company $200 a year for a “credit”, that is my right. If I can afford to do so, I should be able to do so.

As for those less fortunate, I care about them, and I really hope they can pull themselves up and succeed in life just as I have. I have worked my rear off to be able to do what I am doing, and they could do the same. They could leave their poverty if they really wanted to, but usually they do not. Why on earth would they work and work and work when people such as yourself will give them food, shelter, and healthcare? What incentive is there for them to pull themselves up out of whatever metaphorical gutter they are in? There is none in the social world in which you yearn for. It may not be purposefully, but yearning nonetheless.

I'll stick with my capitalism.

- Creathir


RE: When Will They Learn
By jrb531 on 5/8/2007 1:46:39 PM , Rating: 2
I think you should be able to do anything you want as long as it does not impact others.

Having said this you buying that "boat" does impact me because the more demand for gas due to people owning these "boats" makes the price go up for everyone.

Tell you what.... how about having two gas prices at the pump... you (who apparently do not care what things cost, conservation, the planet and all that other libby do-gooder crap LOL) pay $3.50 a gallon and those who pull up in the greenmobiles can pay $2.50

That fare? This way you can take advantage of your right to do anything you want without impacting the rest of us who do not need to drive a "boat" to the local pub to grab a beer :)

-JB


RE: When Will They Learn
By creathir on 5/8/2007 7:03:36 PM , Rating: 2
The same goes for you buying a computer you don't need and increasing the cost for the rest of us, or you buying more oranges and increasing the cost.

Your point is rediculous.

- Creathir


RE: When Will They Learn
By jrb531 on 5/9/2007 1:39:52 PM , Rating: 2
Why? Because you do not agree with it?

If their is a shortage of oranges the price goes up.
If their is a shortage of computer parts the price goes up.

Supply and demand 101

If their is a shortage of gas (for whatever reason) the price goes up.

Now the difference here is "why" there is such a shortage. In the case of oranges it may be a temporary weather related issue... IE beyond our control.

In teh case of gas it is because the demand is too high. Lower demand and the price drops plain and simple.

Now "you" and others who feel that they should be able to buy "boats" and drive them around and so what... well "your" actions are not just affecting you but everyone else.

So as long a good number of the population does not give a rat's backside about conservation then you force the rest of us in paying for expensive gas.

Would you accept two prices at the pump?

1. $1.99 for vehicles that obtain 25+ MPG
2. $3.99 for vehicles that obtain under 25 MPG

Seems fair... after all "you" don't care what gas costs because it's your "right" to buy and do anything you want... correct?

People are not allowed to smoke indoors because it affects those who do not smoke. This seems to have passed the test although this most certainly takes away your right to smoke anytime you want.

Same difference here. Your actions is causing a shortage and as such impacting everyone. Since "you" will not police yourself the government has to step in to force what should be common sense.

20 years ago this contry did just fine with 150HP and under vehicles. Today the cars are lighter and the HP is way way up. Why?

Because more is better... bigger cars, more HP, bugger engines big big big big.

At what point do they reach the limit and say enough is enough? The US auto industry wonders why they cannot compete...

4 years ago I went to Ford to by a new car. I did not have alot of $$$ so I wanted a model with less features (IE not $5000 over base price!) so they looked around and basically told me that I needed to wait a few months and special order it. Of course they had tons of expensive gas guzzlers in stock with the big engines and 10,000 speacial features. They lost my sale. I was shopping and they did not have product I wanted to buy.

Perhaps if we were all not caught up in bigger is better, more is better yadda yadda then I would have had a selection to buy the car I wanted.

I'm really wasting my time here... keep buying those huge gas burners and keep justifying your purchase by saying "it's your right" or I pull a trailer once a year... once a month I drive 8 people to the park...

"some" people need large vehicles... "most" people do not.

-JB


RE: When Will They Learn
By masher2 (blog) on 5/9/2007 2:05:15 PM , Rating: 2
> "If their is a shortage of oranges the price goes up.
If their is a shortage of computer parts the price goes up...Supply and demand 101"


So you support a federal law that bans people from buying more than a certain amount of oranges or computer parts?

> "Your actions is causing a shortage and as such impacting everyone"

A person who burns 1000 gallons a year in a compact car is causing more of an impact than a person burning 500 g/yr in an SUV. How about we pass a law banning people from driving more than 10,000 miles annually? Surely that should be enough for anyone. If you live too far from work to make this feasible-- move closer.

> ""most" people do not [need a large vehicle]...

Do you "need" a computer? How about a private room? Do you "need" to waste energy taking vacations, or going to sporting events, movies, or concerts? Not really. Why not ban all this as well?


RE: When Will They Learn
By jrb531 on 5/10/2007 12:36:01 PM , Rating: 2
Do you "need" a SUV to drive to work? No
Do you "want" a SUV to drive to work? Maybe

I fully understand that some people pull trailers and some people have specialized needs that warrant them to own or use large vehicles with large engines.

My point is that most of us do not need this and 15 years ago we bought the very same cars with smaller HP engines and were able to do the very same things we do today.

Today we are caught up in the "more is better" and when certain people see the ads touting "more power is good" they fall for it.

Why if 150HP is good then 200 is better! How about 300hp? When does it stop?

Now here is the issue... 15 years ago I had a choice to buy a 150 or 200HP engine. If peoples silly egos and "more is better" causes "my" choice to be elminated then it affects me not only indirectly when gas prices rise for "all" because of "needless" shortages that we would not have if people were not driving boats.

The US Auto industry is going to pay dearly for offering crap small engines and concentrating on the large "more is better" HP wars.

Everything around us is a modified form of "freedom" in which we lose certain freedoms for the good of all. Ask the smokers, those who do not want to wear helmets, seatbelts or carry auto insurance. All the time we are forced to do things we do not want to do because of the supposed greater good.

This is no different.

-JB


RE: When Will They Learn
By tjr508 on 5/8/2007 2:18:18 AM , Rating: 2
I dont see anything wrong with allowing someone to purchase a car without seatbelts or airbags. It's called freedom.


RE: When Will They Learn
By Kuroyama on 5/8/2007 10:26:29 AM , Rating: 2
What if children ride in those seats without seatbelts? If Governor Corzine is an idiot and nearly gets himself killed by not wearing a seatbelt then that's fine with me, but I would prefer mandatory seatbelts and seatbelt laws primarily because I think many children won't use them unless forced to.

PS. A little known fact is that about half of seatbelt laws do not cover people in the back seat, and hence wouldn't apply to said children.


RE: When Will They Learn
By GoatMonkey on 5/8/2007 11:27:32 AM , Rating: 2
There is usually a separate child safety seat law though, where children under a certain age are required to be in safety seats.


RE: When Will They Learn
By jrb531 on 5/9/2007 1:43:46 PM , Rating: 2
As long as you stipulate that when that person gets into an accident and "needlessly" gets hurt because they did not want their "freedon" impeeded by wearing a seatbelt... well as long as "I" do not have to pay via higher insurance rates, taxes etc...

Then I say GO FOR IT!

So you get into an accident and go through the windshield because of no seatbelt... cool by me. Pay 100% for your own hospital bills!

Fair is fair

Right?

-JB


RE: When Will They Learn
By TheGreek on 5/10/2007 6:56:16 PM , Rating: 2
"As long as you stipulate that when that person gets into an accident and "needlessly" gets hurt because they did not want their "freedon" impeeded by wearing a seatbelt... well as long as "I" do not have to pay via higher insurance rates, taxes etc..."

And if you don't want to buy anti-pollution devices that's OK to, as long as your exhaust it routed back into your cabin with no chance of getting out.


RE: When Will They Learn
By BMFPitt on 5/7/2007 12:41:01 PM , Rating: 2
I don't like this idea as it will impede the demise of the Big 3. We'll all be better off when they just go bankrupt and create a vacuum for some new, innovative US automakers to be created in.


RE: When Will They Learn
By SavagePotato on 5/8/07, Rating: 0
Unattainable my arse
By Amiga500 on 5/7/2007 12:10:03 PM , Rating: 3
Biggest load of BS ever from the car makers.

Since they already do make machines that can beat the MPG ratings, how on earth is it "unattainable"?!?

It only means that their big v8s will need reworking - about time.

Another way the government could achieve this is by taxing fuel much more... If the Americans had to pay nearly $10 a gallon (which is broadly the price in the UK) you'd soon see the onus put on more fuel efficient cars.




RE: Unattainable my arse
By AlexWade on 5/7/2007 12:19:01 PM , Rating: 1
Unattainable to GM, perhaps. That is because GM is still stuck in the ideal that people want to overpay for Hummers, Suburbans, and other SUV's. GM is bleeding money because they are still trying to tell us what we want instead of giving us what we want. SUV's aren't "in" anymore. Stop pushing them GM.

The same goes for Chrysler and Ford, but Ford isn't pushing SUV's and trucks as much as GM.


RE: Unattainable my arse
By stromgald on 5/7/2007 4:19:54 PM , Rating: 3
Not counting the many varieties of the same vehicle that GM, Ford, and Chrysler put out, I think Toyota has the largest lineup of SUVs on the market. Claiming it's GM pushing for SUVs is bull. It's the American public who want bigger, beefier SUVs.


RE: Unattainable my arse
By NaughtyGeek on 5/7/2007 1:00:03 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
If the Americans had to pay nearly $10 a gallon


So you think that if you raised my weekly gas bill from $54 to $180 that would put pressure on automakers? While that may be the cost in the UK, it got there gradually over many years. If we just bumped the tax on gas to that level over a couple years, you'd put a large percentage of American working families on welfare. Even if the automakers released a 100 MPG car tomorrow, most of those families couldn't afford to pay the $25,000 to $30,000 it would cost.

The pressure needs to be put on the automakers to improve. But, the average American family needs to take accountability as well. We are all becoming more "energy conscious" every day and if we continue to improve, everything will eventually work itself out. The only question is will we get there before we run out of oil or the oil industry adapts to new technologies preventing a global economic collapse.


RE: Unattainable my arse
By OxBow on 5/7/2007 1:17:36 PM , Rating: 2
Actually, the price jumped to $10 a gallon through a special tax they levied in order to promote conservation. It was incremental, but still a pretty steep jump. NPR had a story on this just last week.


RE: Unattainable my arse
By Amiga500 on 5/7/2007 2:44:02 PM , Rating: 2
Obviously I'm not advocating a shock introduction of taxes to raise fuel prices to $10/gallon at the pumps.

The resulting effects on the economy would be disasterous. However, a stepped introduction to spread the tax raise over 10 years or so would do the trick.

Also, tax credits/breaks (or whatever you guys call them could be given to families buying more efficent cars).

If you knew your weekly fuel prices were gonna rise from $54 to $180 inside of 5/10 years if you kept your current motor, you'd see about getting rid, yes?


RE: Unattainable my arse
By martinw on 5/7/2007 1:21:57 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
If the Americans had to pay nearly $10 a gallon (which is broadly the price in the UK) you'd soon see the onus put on more fuel efficient cars.


Funny thing is, American's do actually pay around $10 a gallon. It's just that most of the cost is externalized, so is paid through taxes rather than at the pump:

http://www.evworld.com/article.cfm?storyid=1018

And the "unattainable" comments are just too funny, you'd think the auto industry was staffed by idiots given the way they say every single mandate (pollution, efficiency, safety) is unattainable. Strangely, once it's the law, they seem to have no problem attaining the unattainable...


RE: Unattainable my arse
By Amiga500 on 5/7/2007 2:45:37 PM , Rating: 2
I see what your saying - but by the same measure, you could add the taxes that are being spent by the UK in Iraq and get the fuel price over here. I actually would like to remain blissfully ignorant, so won't be calculating it! :-D


RE: Unattainable my arse
By theapparition on 5/7/2007 2:26:11 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
It only means that their big v8s will need reworking - about time.

Considering the Camry example in the article gets 19/28, while that "V8" in the corvette gets 16/26 (new epa numbers) and the even larger, more powerful V8 in the 2008 vette gets 19/29. I'd say your off base.
There are many 4cyl cars that do worse than that.

quote:
If the Americans had to pay nearly $10 a gallon (which is broadly the price in the UK) you'd soon see the onus put on more fuel efficient cars.

Completely agree with that. For almost every purchase decision, the consumer mind goes through a cost-benefit analysis. Was the Playstation 3 worth $2000 on opening day. For some it was, just to have the first units. It's no difference with autos.
Back in the 90's, not many cared about fuel economy. When gas prices trippled, you saw how quickly the US automakers were affected. Some more people switched to fuel efficient cars. Still, the vast majority have decided its worth the extra cost to buy what they want, which has been big, heavy, luxorious cars/trucks/SUV's.


RE: Unattainable my arse
By walk2k on 5/7/2007 4:59:19 PM , Rating: 1
Vette is a bad example because of it's light weight. Try one of the many of examples of stupid-big V8s being used in all the ever-larger and heavier trucks and SUVs.

"that thang gots a HEMI??" - why yes it does have a 50-year old obsolete automotive technology, you ignorant redneck.

"There are many 4cyl cars that do worse than that"

LOL. Name ONE. My 4cyl has 100hp per liter (2.0l / 200hp) gets 26/34mpg and probably weighs more than your Vette.


RE: Unattainable my arse
By Chernobyl68 on 5/7/2007 7:04:33 PM , Rating: 2
as I understand it, the new Hemi's are Hemi in name only, they don't actually have truly hemispherical combustion chambers.


RE: Unattainable my arse
By hubajube on 5/7/2007 7:16:19 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
they don't actually have truly hemispherical combustion chambers.
ALL cars have hemispherical combustion chambers nowadays. Back in the 60's it was new tech, today, hemi is just a marketing term.


RE: Unattainable my arse
By ChronoReverse on 5/7/2007 9:45:44 PM , Rating: 2
All? What about the Japanese cars that I'm fairly sure uses a penthouse configuration?


RE: Unattainable my arse
By djc208 on 5/8/2007 7:33:15 AM , Rating: 2
It's called a pent-roof configuration, and that's only in multi-valve/cylinder engines (3, 4, 5, etc.), mostly because that's about the only design you can use. The pent-roof design is actually very close to hemispherical and uses similar component placement.
Fact is the original Chrysler hemi was used in the 50's and died off because they were more expensive to manufacture than a "normal" wedge head design. To this day most top fuel dragsters, monster trucks, and similar super-high performance engines use a hemispherical head. They make amazing power/displacement, the problem is that their emisions aren't very good due to the way the fuel burns.
Chrysler had to do lots of work to get the current HEMI to meet emisions regs, which is part of why they're not truely hemispherical any more, but is is close. Ironically they went back to the design because it's cheaper now to build a pushrod motor, even a hemi, then a high-tech OHC engine.
The real reason they can call it a hemi is that it uses the hemi valve placement facing each other as opposed to a normal head design where the valves are side by side.


RE: Unattainable my arse
By mxzrider2 on 5/8/2007 12:16:34 AM , Rating: 2
the vette is not a poor example because its not light wight by any means 3100 pounds to be exact. according to:http://www.rsportscars.com/eng/cars/corvette_z06.a...
thats only 100 pounds less than my 73 mustang that makes more horsepower and get 30mpg, with a fricking carb.( too be honest it doesn't get that good very often cuz my foots too heavy) hell i just filled up my escort (modified near 200hp) with a 1.9 liter. at 28 mpg mixed. you are the redneck who is ignorant. all the tech minus hybrids it 50 year old tech, used in todays cars. we had fuel injection and overdrive transmissions in the 50. learn about something before u post ignorant statements. plus the HEMI in new cars has nothing to do with the HEMIspherical combustion ports of early Chrysler's. its just a marketing gimmick now while it used to make horsepower
and heres your list of less than 30mph four bangers
mazdaspeed 3
EPA City: 20 mpg
EPA Highway: 28 mpg
mazdaspeed 6
EPA City: 20 mpg
EPA Highway: 27 mpg
Subaru Impreza WRX STI
19city/25highway
Chevrolet Cobalt SS Supercharged
23city/29highway
Dodge Caliber SRT4
22city/28highway

all of these cars have lower than 30mpg highway and make more than 200horsepower plus have four pistons. i can find more if u still don't believe me


RE: Unattainable my arse
By Hoser McMoose on 5/8/2007 1:33:58 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
the vette is not a poor example because its not light wight by any means 3100 pounds to be exact. according to:http://www.rsportscars.com/eng/cars/corvette_z06.a... only 100 pounds less than my 73 mustang

Just as a FWIW, here's a comparison of the curb weights for the Corvette vs. some of it's competition, all 2007 models, coupes, manual transmission and base models:

Chevy Corvette V8: 3179lbs
Ferrari F430 V8: 3197lbs
Ford Mustang V6: 3300lbs
Ford Mustang V8: 3450lbs
Nissan 350Z V6: 3339lbs
Audi RS4 V8: 3957lbs
BMW M3 I6 (2006): 3415lbs

Long story short, the Corvette IS a fairly light car, though the difference isn't huge. It's also pretty much identical to it's closest competitor (the Ferrari F430), while the Corvette gets MUCH better fuel economy than that car (11/16mpg for the Ferrari vs. 16/26mpg for the Corvette, using new EPA numbers).

Perhaps a better explanation is simply that the Corvette is perhaps the best made vehicle of anything that the Big-3 produce. Still, 16/26mpg is hardly what I would call "good" fuel economy, even if it is VERY good for the level of performance it offers.


RE: Unattainable my arse
By theapparition on 5/8/2007 8:40:48 AM , Rating: 2
The vette is rather light for its class, but when comparing it to vehicules (for epa mpg purposes) such as the honda civic, it is 500lbs heavier. Most econoboxes are under 3Klbs, so the vette is actually heavier.


RE: Unattainable my arse
By Hoser McMoose on 5/8/2007 1:53:09 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Vette is a bad example because of it's light weight.

For a comparison of fuel economy and curb weights:

Toyota Camry V6 Automatic: 3461lbs, 19/28mpg
Chevy Corvette V8 Automatic: ????, 15/25mpg
Chevy Corvette V8 Manual: 3179lbs, 16/26mpg

The Toyota is not available in the US with a V6 and manual transmission. I could find a curb weight for a Corvette with an automatic transmission (who the hell would want such a thing anyway?!), but I would guess that it's probably around 3250lbs.

In any case, the Carmy does end up getting ~20% better fuel economy than the Corvette (automatic vs. automatic). That might not be much if you consider the difference in performance, but it does add up to a $489/year price savings on gas (EPA's estimates).


RE: Unattainable my arse
By theapparition on 5/8/2007 8:34:04 AM , Rating: 2
The vettes curb weight is 3199lbs compared to the Camry's ~3450lbs. 250lbs is not that much. But if you want a more apt comparison, 2006 Pontiac GTO >3800lbs with 130+hp over the Camry, 350+lbs weight, gets 17/25mpg (automatic). Still not bad for the trade-off in power and pure enjoyment.

quote:
"that thang gots a HEMI??" - why yes it does have a 50-year old obsolete automotive technology, you ignorant redneck.

Every internal combustion engine uses 100-year old technology, only slight tweaks to make it better. You might be a redneck if you have no clue about the history of engines ;-)

quote:
LOL. Name ONE. My 4cyl has 100hp per liter (2.0l / 200hp) gets 26/34mpg and probably weighs more than your Vette.


Here are two, that are rather price competitive, and have some performance.
Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX 18/24 (average reviewer milage 8.7mpg)
Subaru Impressa WRX 19/25 (average reviewer milage 11.5mpg)

Since you didn't list what kind of car you have, I'll just list a weight of a honda civic, ~2700 fully loaded. That's 500lbs under the vette. The vette is a light car, for being a sports car with big engine, big tires, brakes, etc, but is fairly heavy when comparing to most cars on the road. Trucks are way heavier.


RE: Unattainable my arse
By Oregonian2 on 5/7/2007 3:22:18 PM , Rating: 1
It means that they'll have to make working pickup trucks that look like smartcars. Should be interesting.


RE: Unattainable my arse
By raildogg on 5/8/2007 10:41:07 PM , Rating: 2
The line of SUVs is increasing, even if this means smaller SUVs. Audi just introduced the Q7, GMC has the Acadia. Even Mazda, a company that is known for small, fun cars is now making huge SUVs. Have you seen the CX-7 and CX-9? I think they are trying to stay in the same ballpark as the other manufacturers by offering big SUVs.

By the way, Honda was voted the most greenest company out of all of them by Union of Concerned Scientists. I like Honda in that they do not offer a V-8 just because seemingly every other car manufacturer offers one.


RE: Unattainable my arse
By raildogg on 5/8/2007 10:42:35 PM , Rating: 2
Its more of a mentality issue
By fsardis on 5/7/07, Rating: 0
RE: Its more of a mentality issue
By masher2 (blog) on 5/7/2007 3:12:50 PM , Rating: 2
> "Your average grandma in EU is driving a 1.3lt and possibly even less..."

Because thats all that grandmother in the EU can afford. Give her a few thousand extra Euros a month, and you'll soon see her tooling around in a big gas guzzler.

> "Your mentality has brought you to this state. If you wanna blame anyone you should blame your mindset"

I think the real problem here is the "mindset" that believes there's a problem in the first place. We've been using oil for well over a century, and yet today, our oil reserves are larger than they've ever been in history. Oil is cheaper per gallon that bottled water or (in most locations) milk from the local cow. And, despite sky-is-falling predictions from doomsayers, there is no proof of long-term environmental damage from our use of oil.

Efficiency is always good, but just because a few sensationalists are convinced there's a "problem with our mindset", it doesn't mean there is. Bigger, faster cars *are* better. They're more comfortable and they get you to your destination faster. By any reasonable standard of living metric, that's a good thing.

Anyone who can easily afford a large, powerful car-- buys one. No matter what country they live in. Europe's rich are all driving gas-guzzling vehicles...if they drive at all. Some of them using planes, helicopters, or even private yachts, with fuel consumption ten or a hundred times worse than even a Hummer. Why? Because they can afford it.


RE: Its more of a mentality issue
By Amiga500 on 5/7/2007 4:44:04 PM , Rating: 2
Because thats all that grandmother in the EU can afford. Give her a few thousand extra Euros a month, and you'll soon see her tooling around in a big gas guzzler.

Sorry, not true.

Alot of people in cities buy small cars because they are nimble, easier to park and much more stylish as well as being cheaper to run.

Anyone who can easily afford a large, powerful car-- buys one.

Again, simply not true. Many don't bother for the reasons mentioned above, and its for these reasons that a bigger, faster car is not always better.


RE: Its more of a mentality issue
By fsardis on 5/7/07, Rating: -1
RE: Its more of a mentality issue
By fsardis on 5/7/07, Rating: -1
RE: Its more of a mentality issue
By masher2 (blog) on 5/7/2007 8:04:29 PM , Rating: 2
> "First of all your average grandma here can buy a much bigger car if she wanted"

Sorry, you can't hide from the facts so easily. The per-capita GDP in the EU is roughly half that of the US, and gas prices are nearly double. That means the real cost of driving a car in the EU is 3-4 times higher than it is in the US.

If there was any doubt-- just look at what the wealthy in Europe drive. Large, powerful, gas-guzzling vehicles. End of proof.

> "Buying a Hummer and driving it around all the time will burn alot more of excess energy than the yacht you will use once a year or the helicopter or the jet..."

Wrong again. A large yacht can easily use several gallons per mile. (not miles/gallon). Use it just once for a weekend trip, and you'll burn more gas than even an SUV will burn in an entire year.

How about a helicopter? Normal consumption is in the range of 40-60 gallons/hour. Let's say 3 MPG. Most people who own private helo's use them on at least a semi-regular basis-- the wife of 'eco-warrior' Sting, for instance, regularly uses hers for personal trips, and even for shopping. At even one trip a week, thats more fuel than a car driven daily consumes, Sting himself owns a private jet, that uses even more fuel.

But lets not pick on him in particular. Rich Europeans are no different than the rich anywhere else in the world. If they can afford to use vast amounts of energy-- they do.

> "it is no secret either that because of that mentality americans tend to go for overkill solutions to their small problems or if you will for bragging rights even."

Oops, your pants are down. You've just exposed your real motivation behind your postings.


RE: Its more of a mentality issue
By Amiga500 on 5/8/2007 4:31:47 AM , Rating: 1
If there was any doubt-- just look at what the wealthy in Europe drive. Large, powerful, gas-guzzling vehicles. End of proof.

Masher, you are really wrong on this one. I will say that many of those that can afford, do, but an awful lot do not.

Also, the amount that can afford a bigger, "better" car as you term it and don't is massive.


RE: Its more of a mentality issue
By TheGreek on 5/10/2007 6:51:36 PM , Rating: 2
Well this is what he does. He spews out so many facts that gullible people fall for the opinions that are hidden in them.

But be careful, for now if you so much as get one irrelevent useless fact wrong his loyal subjects will pounce on you and claim victory, because you said the emperor has no clothes on.

Me? I'm waiting for the day Masher passes out the green Kool-Aid to his loyal subjects.


RE: Its more of a mentality issue
By fsardis on 5/8/07, Rating: -1
RE: Its more of a mentality issue
By Hawkido on 5/8/2007 4:45:57 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
lets not be childish... this is common sense stuff.


common sense = US Senate Bill Proposed, European mindset ignored because they are irrelevant to the issue at hand.

quote:
regarding yachts etc is that you dont take them to go shopping every day.


No, the Wealthy in europe send their servants to go shopping or have groceries delivered in large vehicles.

Why are we discussing this when the point is why is this bill being proposed? Either Congress is being duped, or is trying to dupe the voters.

DoomSayers have been claiming the world would exhaust all oil supplies by the mid 80's. Oops! 90's! Oops! 00's! Oops! 2015! Yep, its all done by then! Oops!

Why do you listen to someone who has a track record of being proven wrong 100% of the time.

Global warming? Yep, it's happening. Is any part of it caused by human activities? Yep! What percentage? ~1%. Oh, well guess we better cut Fossil Fuel consumption.

go read this: www.lsbu.ac.uk/water/anmlies.html

It's not so scientific, that someone with a standard High School Diploma couldn't read and understand a good portion of it. Now, use this info about the 63 anomalies of water whenever you hear an Enviralmentalist (not misspelled) open their mouth. Enviralmentalists are not scientists, they shirk away from it. They don't want to hear it. Scientists are not touchy feel-good fuzzy humanists. They are a cold lot that crunch the numbers, do the math, and draw and base their knowledge on the proven facts in a way that can be measured and reproduced. That is science. The last times science was judged on concensus (Human impact on Global Warming is judged on a Concensus) they determined that (in reverse order) man could not fly, the earth was the center of the Universe and the Solar System, and the earth was flat. In the face of concensus flys the fact that indeed the earth will not flood by global warming. The Ice Cap is melting due to pressure of it's own weight, not increased temperatures. The thickness actually increased over the last ten years Global Warming makes more ICE? Funny how Global warming will lead to far greater hurricanes right after Katrina, then there were next to none the next year and the story was changed to GW causes fewer hurricanes and this was further bad for the enviroment! I am waiting for them to say the Kansas Tornado is a result of GW, when my grandparents told me tornadoes used to rip through this area like stampeding cattle in one night. They would watch them go by 10 or 12 of them in one night. Sounds like a shyster is claiming the sky is falling, put your money in his magic sky-proof safe and he'll protect it for you while you run to safety!

Anytime someone wants you to believe something and uses fear as a reason. Doubt them! Doubt everything about them! Fear is not a part of science, nor is it proof of anything but ignorance.

Some of my favorite Anomalies of water:

The thermal conductivity of ice reduces with increasing pressure.

Liquid water exists at very low temperatures and freezes on heating.

Hot water may freeze faster than cold water; the Mpemba effect.

Water shrinks on melting.

Pressure reduces ice's melting point.

Liquid water has a high density that increases on heating up to 3.984°C. (This is an important one, water will continue to shrink up to about 40 degrees F.)

Under high pressure water molecules move further away from each other with increasing pressure.

Water has over twice the specific heat capacity of ice or steam.

Water has unusually high surface tension and can bounce.

(These are just some of my favorites, not all concerning Enviromental Mechanics, just great facts. You can read the explanation written at the college level on the web site.)


RE: Its more of a mentality issue
By masher2 (blog) on 5/8/2007 6:41:20 PM , Rating: 4
> "DoomSayers have been claiming the world would exhaust all oil supplies by the mid 80's. Oops! 90's! Oops! 00's! Oops! 2015! Yep, its all done by then! Oops!"

Actually, there was a special congressional panel convened all the back in 1924 , to look for solutions for the "oil crisis". The claim was made that we'd be entirely out of oil as soon as 1930.


RE: Its more of a mentality issue
By Hawkido on 5/9/2007 3:55:30 PM , Rating: 2
Masher, You are in the info anaylist business. What do you think the Oil is almost gone panic cry thet popps up once a decade is caused by?

My thoughts are that there is a Commodities Tycoon or two who, when the oil market is low buy into the oil market, then claim "We're almost out of oil!" Which drives up the price. Then they sell off the inflated price. Then they hire gore to say "Pollutions are bad UmmKay!" to drive the price of oil back down, so the cycle can repeat it once again. Ever notice that people never cry both at the same time? They blast one to make a shift in the market then once the price deviates enough for them they make the trade, then they switch gears in the other direction until they can trade the other way for more profit. They probably use Options trading so they can make money off both Puts and Calls.

But what does a stupid Country boy from Arkansas know?


RE: Its more of a mentality issue
By TheGreek on 5/10/2007 6:45:32 PM , Rating: 2
"Actually, there was a special congressional panel convened all the back in 1924 , to look for solutions for the "oil crisis". The claim was made that we'd be entirely out of oil as soon as 1930. "

And for many that's a totally solid reason to pooh-pooh what's going on today.


RE: Its more of a mentality issue
By exdeath on 5/7/2007 4:14:43 PM , Rating: 2
I get about 180 HP/L is that efficient enough for you?

Good because I also have 4.6L :D


Gotta love the math
By peldor on 5/7/2007 12:13:06 PM , Rating: 2
4% annually? For how long?

113 MPG at 2050 is pretty good, but the 800+ MPG at the turn of the next century is REALLY impressive!




RE: Gotta love the math
By GlassHouse69 on 5/7/2007 12:16:43 PM , Rating: 2
strangely of note, that 800mpg is attainable for a two seater car that drives 45 mph at this present time. One seater could get 55mph with around 500mpg. hm.

it would suck to drive though, it would look like ass, and you could stop the car by punching it into a crumpled bag of plastic. aside from that, it is attainable by the end of the century.


RE: Gotta love the math
By peldor on 5/7/2007 12:40:51 PM , Rating: 2
That deviates quite significantly from any meaningful definition of the word 'car'. IOW, it's pointless.


Unreasonable???
By CupCak3 on 5/7/2007 12:21:17 PM , Rating: 2
Huh, I guess that must have been an imaginary VW I drove when in Germany which got over 50 MPG…

I do think something a bit more reasonable would to not have a “fleetwide” standard but one for cars and another for a company’s truck lineup. I think decoupling these would give opportunities for great advances in car efficiency while giving a bit more room with trucks which will take a bit longer to attain appreciable results.

I think almost as difficult will be to have the general public become accepting of driving a 50-75HP car as opposed to a 250HP one.




RE: Unreasonable???
By Kuroyama on 5/7/2007 12:33:27 PM , Rating: 2
Car and truck fuel economy are already decoupled. However, SUVs are "trucks" and even the Subaru Legacy Outback is a "truck" (Subaru raised its height just enough to qualify as a truck). Moreover, making a vehicle flex-fuel counts as improving MPG, even though it doesn't actually raise fuel economy and hardly anyone uses E85. In short, there are loopholes galore, but technically speaking cars and trucks are classified separately.


RE: Unreasonable???
By jak3676 on 5/7/2007 2:49:02 PM , Rating: 2
Man - who downgraded you? You are totally correct, they are already decoupled.

For the above poster, check out the VW Jetta TDI. I don't believe there are any model year 2007 models (don't meet the new diesel requirements), but there are a few 2006's left out there and they should be back in 2008. Unfortunately EPA rules try to fit all cars into the same requirements, so even though the VW TDI's put off much less total polutants than other cars, they did not meet the 2007 nox requirement. (as previously stated trucks and SUV's do not have to meet this requirement)


Americans
By Mudvillager on 5/7/2007 12:56:44 PM , Rating: 4
What you really need to do is stop this "bigger the better" way of thinking because that's what keeps the car manufacturers from doing something about the pollutioning. By "you" I'm of course generalizing.

-1 rating here I come.




RE: Americans
By TheGreek on 5/10/2007 6:42:17 PM , Rating: 2
Stopping it? It's getting worse. Soon every home will have at least a 42 inch plasma TV and the American household will use 500 watts just to watch the evening news.


By dryloch on 5/7/2007 1:07:29 PM , Rating: 2
Car and Driver tested a Diesel BMW 3 Series from Europe that did 0-60 in 6 seconds and got 40 MPG.We can't have it here because even though it is very low emissions for a Diesel it still isn't good enough for the US Govt. I would love to see a bunch of Diesels like this that don't sacrifice speed for economy. I would buy one tommorow.




By jak3676 on 5/7/2007 2:43:54 PM , Rating: 2
Go pick up a VW Jetta TDI, I did and have loved it ever since (~49 MPG - better on the highway, lower in town)


By fic2 on 5/8/2007 4:08:42 PM , Rating: 2
I have wanted a TDI VW with 4motion. Anybody have any idea why VW doesn't do TDI on the Passat or conversly 4Motion on the Jetta? If they did I would move from my Subaru to a VW in a heartbeat. BTW, I live in CO and go snowboarding every weekend so I want 4Motion for the winter road conditions.


Barack Obama
By Brandon Hill (blog) on 5/7/2007 9:31:09 PM , Rating: 2
Barack Obama just threw in this tidbit:

quote:
“For years, while foreign competitors were investing in more fuel-efficient technology for their vehicles, American automakers were spending their time investing in bigger, faster cars,” he said, according to a text of his remarks. “And whenever an attempt was made to raise our fuel efficiency standards, the auto companies would lobby furiously against it, spending millions to prevent the very reform that could’ve saved their industry.”


http://www.nytimes.com/2007/05/07/us/politics/07cn...




RE: Barack Obama
By Lord 666 on 5/7/2007 9:42:19 PM , Rating: 2
Funny how European divisions of these same companies have done quiet well with diesels across the pond. Granted they do not meet Euro 5 standards yet (Euro 5 meet the US standards are also commonly known as 2010 specs) Make the Saturn Aura in diesel with these powertrains and it will sell very well over here.

Vauxhall 3.0 (Opel/Saturn) http://www.vauxhall.co.uk/vx/configurator/continue...

Vauxhall 1.9 (Opel/Saturn)
http://www.vauxhall.co.uk/vx/configurator/continue...


RE: Barack Obama
By Lord 666 on 5/7/2007 9:58:47 PM , Rating: 2
Sorry about the bad links, this working link to the sales brochure for the Vectra. Within the specs you will find the performance of not one, not two, but three different diesels for sale with combined averages over 40mpg

http://www.vauxhall.co.uk/vx/static/content/pdf/br...


20% less cost 30% more.
By Mitch101 on 5/7/2007 12:07:56 PM , Rating: 3
What good does using 20% less do if the oil industry will just charge us 30% more and claim they just dont have the manufacturing capacity to keep up with the demand excuse they use every time. It just increases thier reserves for X number more years.

The only statement I think someone can make is to buy the car with better gas mileage over the one with more horsepower. When demand is high for fuel efficient cars and the guzzlers dont sell only then will the auto companies start making cars that are more efficient. As long as Hummer sales are up and they are tax deductable what is the incentive for car companies to produce fuel efficient vehicles.

The only reason GM is producing a hybrid and trying to bring up fuel efficiency is because of the Toyota and Nissan hybrid sales increases. Otherwise they could care
less.

I really wish we ran out of oil this way we would be forced to find alternatives and less pollution would occur that is of course unless we started using Coal or some other non efficient source. Arent we smart enough to get past fossil fuels already?




RE: 20% less cost 30% more.
By Mudvillager on 5/7/2007 12:48:33 PM , Rating: 2
Thing is though that they always seem to find new sources for oil so I guess decreasing the overall usage by a certain percentage each year would still be better than trying to get rid of it all as soon as possible.


By SiliconAddict on 5/7/2007 1:21:38 PM , Rating: 1
The problem with letting the market balance itself out is that it will either take a fuck long time to do it or won’t happen at all. Its like a child. If you expect them to do the right thing it may very well never happen. If you start pushing them in the direction you want them to go eventually they will get a clue. I personally welcome this and as for the death of the professional vehicle that needs OMG! HP and torque. If you think there won’t be exemptions to this get a clue.




By masher2 (blog) on 5/7/2007 7:24:21 PM , Rating: 2
> "its like a child....If you start pushing them in the direction you want them to go eventually they will get a clue..."

Yes, but many of us prefer to live in a free country, rather than one in which a paternal government treats us like children, and directs our every move.


By TheGreek on 5/10/2007 6:38:23 PM , Rating: 2
Yeah we should all be allowed to drive V8's not with one but with 2 4-barrel carbs. No cats, no FI, no O2 sensors, all a waste of MY money.

And the neighbors kids with asthma? The hell with him too.

That's why we have so many loud Harleys, because what's the sense of having freedom if you're limited by responsibilities?

(They're not called the ugly Americans for nothing ya know.)


The crucial point
By masher2 (blog) on 5/7/2007 1:49:47 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
More progress can be made in reducing oil consumption and greenhouse gas emissions if we focus our resources on leap-ahead technologies instead of forcing companies to make incremental improvements to meet an arbitrary standard
I couldn't agree more. Forcing automakers to spend vast sums to keep gasoline technology alive is a poor use of resources. It just detracts from the R&D going into better alternatives.




RE: The crucial point
By GI2K on 5/7/2007 5:27:35 PM , Rating: 2
Improvements can be done as we speak... while the alternatives aren’t that fast to come by, let along better ones. Sure we can all hope that eventually a good one will see the light but my little finger tells me that it won't happen on the next 10 years at least not to the point of replacing the Oil.


So how much does this guy from Hawaii drive?
By bkiserx7 on 5/7/2007 5:27:37 PM , Rating: 2
thats all