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An electric version of the car will follow

A former Formula One engineer has developed an ultra-compact city car, called the T.25, that is even smaller than a Smart car and averages about 74 mpg. The T.25 was designed by Gordon Murray and his team in Shalford, south east England. It took them three years to complete the design, and many features on the tiny vehicle reflect those used on one of the most famous “supercars” ever built: the McLaren F1

Murray's T.25 has a top speed of 80 mph, s only four-feet-wide by eight-feet-long, and has a turning radius of six feet. The vehicle features a central driving position and central instrumentation/controls, much like the McLaren F1, and offers a customizable interior that can set up six different ways to either seat two people in the rear or use it for cargo space.

Weighing in at only 550 kilograms (1,200 pounds), the T.25 is an easily maneuverable car that was developed with Formula One technology, materials, and philosophy, which makes the vehicle parts easy to replace in case of an accident. Also, the side mirrors are placed within the overall width of the car making it more difficult to lose them, and the fuel caps are on both sides of the vehicle for convenience. The sale price for a T.25 is set at $9,000.

In addition to the T.25, Murray has also developed two other new concepts: the T.27 and iStream. The T.27 is the T.25's electric relative with a range of 80-100 miles and has a price tag of $18,000. Currently, this is the only information available on this model.

According to Murray, iStream completely changes the way the manufacturing process is designed by simplifying the auto assembly line. The iStream will "allow all major components to be fitted directly on to the chassis prior to the body panels," which are pre-painted as well, and this streamlining could ultimately lead to smaller and more efficient auto plants that will reduce carbon emissions with the vehicles they're producing. 

The iStream was analyzed by Holger Erker, managing director of the German engineering consultancy IPE Engineering, and showed plenty of interest in the new idea.

"It is the most radical change in, let's say, the last 100 years of car body making," Erker said. "With iStream, one of the most cost intensive production steps -- body panel press shop -- is completely eliminated." 

Murray worked as a Formula One designer from 1969-2006. In 2007, he opened the Gordon Murray Design consultancy. He won the "Idea of the Year" award in November 2008 at Autocar Magazine's annual awards ceremony for his proposed manufacturing process (iStream) for the T.25.



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RE: MPG is misleading
By Yawgm0th on 7/12/2010 11:51:53 AM , Rating: 0
The problem is that a "small" MPG improvement seems meager and worthless in comparison to a large one. A 10mpg to 11mpg upgrade will save more money than a 30MPG to a 40MPG will, for example. MPG doesn't effectively allow one to gauge cost improvement between vehicles. Of course it allows you to gauge fuel savings, but more math is involved and the initial numbers are very misleading, especially to the average Joe.


RE: MPG is misleading
By fic2 on 7/12/2010 2:51:57 PM , Rating: 2
So a 10% improvement (10mpg->11mpg) will save more money than a 33% improvement (30mpg->40mpg)? I don't know how you get that.


RE: MPG is misleading
By Solandri on 7/12/2010 3:13:33 PM , Rating: 2
This is why MPG is such a horrible way to measure fuel economy. Because people like you make seemingly logical conclusions which are just plain wrong. GPM or liters per 100 km is a much better way.

When you drive, you don't typically drive until you use a set amount of fuel. You drive until you've reached a destination, which is a fixed distance. MPG, with gallons in the denominator, yields a linear comparison scale for the same amount of fuel burned. It does not produce a linear comparison scale for same amount of miles driven. So when you compare 10 MPG to 40 MPG, to compare them over the same distance, you have to compare 1/MPG1 to 1/MPG2, which is beyond most people's intuition as your post clearly demonstrates.

Say your daily commute is 50 miles round trip. At 10 MPG you burn 5 gallons a day. At 11 MPG you burn 4.54 gallons a day, for a net savings of 0.46 gallons a day.

At 30 MPG you burn 1.67 gallons a day. At 40 MPG you burn 1.25 gallons a day, for a net savings of only 0.42 gallons a day. So yes, your 33% improvement saves less money than the 10% improvement.

Essentially, using MPG instead of GPM means you downplay the amount of fuel wasted by low MPG vehicles, and exaggerate the amount of fuel saved by high MPG vehicles. If you list the above vehicles in GPM (or GP100M), then it's plainly obvious that the savings from the higher fuel consumption vehicle is better:

First case: 10 GP100M -> 9.09 GP100M
Second case: 3.33 GP100M -> 2.5 GP100M

So if both vehicles are driven 100 miles, you can plainly see that the first upgrade saves you more fuel than the second upgrade, even though as a percentage the second upgrade is much bigger. The primary consequence of this is that we shouldn't be concentrating on improving the mileage of econoboxes. We should be concentrating on improving the mileage of the trucks hauling stuff on our freeways, and getting single-occupant commuters to switch from SUVs to econoboxes.


RE: MPG is misleading
By Spuke on 7/12/2010 3:46:06 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
We should be concentrating on improving the mileage of the trucks hauling stuff on our freeways, and getting single-occupant commuters to switch from SUVs to econoboxes.
I agree but I will say that anyone that wants to drive a different car will have already done so. I don't believe in forcing people to do things against their will (not saying you do).


RE: MPG is misleading
By EricMartello on 7/12/2010 4:50:58 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Say your daily commute is 50 miles round trip. At 10 MPG you burn 5 gallons a day. At 11 MPG you burn 4.54 gallons a day, for a net savings of 0.46 gallons a day.

At 30 MPG you burn 1.67 gallons a day. At 40 MPG you burn 1.25 gallons a day, for a net savings of only 0.42 gallons a day. So yes, your 33% improvement saves less money than the 10% improvement.


50 mile round trip
--------------------
10 MPG = 5 gallons
11 MPG = 4.55 gallons
0.45 Gallons Saved = 9% Improvement

50 mile round trip
--------------------
30 MPG = 1.67 gallons
40 MPG = 1.25 gallons
0.42 Gallons Saved = 25% Improvement

It seems to be a simple case of diminishing returns...and while the financial difference between the two above examples is close to zero, the difference between 11 MPG and 40 MPG is quite substantial - you'd be able to complete 360% more 50 mile round trips at 40 MPG than you would at 11 MPG. The point being that MPG isn't necessarily downplaying or exaggerating anything one way or the other.

It's still a fairly linear comparison between 10 MPG and 40 MPG:

You're paying 4 times more with the 10 MPG car.

You're getting 4 times more range for the same quantity of fuel with the 40 MPG car.

Knowing the MPG allows you to estimate the range of the car, so if both had a 10 gallon tank the 10 MPG car could only go 100 miles while the 40 MPG car can do 400 miles.


RE: MPG is misleading
By Spuke on 7/12/2010 7:37:04 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
You're getting 4 times more range for the same quantity of fuel with the 40 MPG car.
Are you talking range per gallon or range per tank?

quote:
Knowing the MPG allows you to estimate the range of the car, so if both had a 10 gallon tank the 10 MPG car could only go 100 miles while the 40 MPG car can do 400 miles.
I see what you're saying and agree with diminishing returns but most fuel inefficient cars have larger gas tanks. You pay more to fill a larger tank but usually get more range.

Example:
My car: 28 mpg hwy per hand calculation, 13 gallon tank, 264 mile range
My truck: 19 mpg hwy per hand calculation, 29 gallon tank, 551 mile range

I compared hand calculations because there are no EPA figures for trucks over a certain weight.

Cost per tank for my car: CA 91 octane, $43
Cost per tank for my truck: CA diesel, $95

Notice that the cost of filling my truck is essentially the same as filling my car. I just do it less often (more upfront cost) in the truck. I would compare city driving but I have no city figures for my car (live and commute in rural area). Maybe someone can fill in that gap with their own figures.


RE: MPG is misleading
By Fritzr on 7/13/2010 1:44:58 AM , Rating: 2
Using the DOE national average prices posted 7.12.2010
http://www.eia.doe.gov/oog/info/gdu/gasdiesel.asp
Gasoline $2.718 USGal
Diesel $2.903 USGal

Car=$13.384 per 100 miles
Truck=$15.279 per 100 miles

So the almost 20 cents extra and 9 mpg less in fueling the truck is less than a 2 cent per mile difference ... hmmm really need to run the numbers when comparing the mileage rating and purchase cost differences.


RE: MPG is misleading
By Spuke on 7/13/2010 2:32:01 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
mmm really need to run the numbers when comparing the mileage rating and purchase cost differences.
I would appreciate that. Thanks. I really expected a huge difference. Unless my numbers are off or I'm leaving something out.


RE: MPG is misleading
By DominionSeraph on 7/15/2010 9:26:11 AM , Rating: 2
Gallons per mile is unwieldy. To figure out how many gallons over a trip you're looking at a large multiplication of a fraction, and gas is sold by the gallon not by the fractional gallon per mile.

Even to figure out the absolute dollar amount is a mess of a calculation where you have to plug in an exact number to start off with. With MPG you can just multiply by 1000 as in 30MPGx1000=30,000 miles = 1000 gallons x gas price (say $2.65)= cost over 30k miles. ($2,650) Easy calculation.

Compare to .033 gpm. What are you going to multiply this by? 50,000 gives you... uhhh... let's see... 15, plus 1 so 16, 5, move decimal over, uhhh... 5 places; but it's really 0.033333333 so that'd be.... 166666666666, but decimal goes where? I'd say 1666.666 gallons just becuase that looks right. Now multiply by gas @ $2.65/gal...
Right, like I'm gonna do that in my head.

MPG is still best because fuel costs are a significant portion of car ownership regardless of whether you have a truck that gets 15mpg or a car that gets 35, so the percentage reduction still tells you the percentage in felt costs. If we were talking about 300MPG cars it'd be a different story -- fuel costs can be ignored at that level.


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