Re: A Very Light Car

On Mon, 25 Mar 2013 15:05:09 -0700 (PDT), jon_banquer


This one has it by over 100 lb. (900 lb.)
http://tinyurl.com/c8mfsw2
Lotus 6. 1952. Nice aluminum work, too.
--
Ed Huntress

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On Mon, 25 Mar 2013 18:30:11 -0400, Ed Huntress

Both LOOK nice. No competition for the Volt though.
I have to chuckle at all these impractical and or pie in the sky vehicles, most of them 2 seaters that are being touted as lighter than a Volt, which is a 4 seat series hybrid hatchback with serious utility that one can actually buy here in the present reality. AKA reality. Duh. We might as well add this as well http://www.autoblog.com/2011/07/12/2012-morgan-3-wheeler-first-drive-review/ Apples to oranges, and lots of unobtainium and impractical layouts. How many years was the Aptera touted as being the next new thing? 2 seats, 3 wheels, licensed as a motorcycle and could haul about as much cargo as a bike. Yet it still ended up at nearly a ton and its main claim to fame was being on magazine covers and burning up investment cash. Both the projected weight and the price kept creeping up with every new revelation until bankruptcy. Never did prove that it was safe enough to compete in the market as a real car. Of course the backers said it absolutely could. The very same people who kept claiming perennially that it was soon to be available, and that they could sell a vehicle with $20k of EV components for $20k. At some point it appears they were going to 4 wheels and 4 seats, which I bet they figured out was the only route to mass market and funding.
The VW XL1 is headed down a similar road. 2 seats, small interior volume, expensive materials, and bound to be hundreds heavier the closer it gets to market, which it is now another year overdue for even the projected handful of samples. So long as anything can maintain its vaporware status its promoters might as well say it only weights 1000 pounds, can go 1000 miles, and costs $1000.
Meanwhile, here in reality, I had a nice sunny drive in the Volt yesterday afternoon. About 35 miles to destination, came up about a mile short on the battery. But only because the last 4 miles climbed 1100'. On the return trip the engine only ran briefly on the downhill section. All the rest was regen or battery. Then went another 3 miles on the level before the engine started again. Sweet tech. In engine mode it still goes nearly as far past a corner on battery as it spent decelerating and braking. I fill up so seldom that last time I briefly forgot which side the tank was on. I'm surprised how many people recognize the car and want to talk about it. I even got a thumbs up from a usually morose construction flagman the other day. I'm more satisfied with the Volt than I've been with any of my new vehicles for quite a while, which is something considering I swore I'd never buy another domestic model. And I'm not alone. http://www.autoblog.com/2012/11/29/chevy-volt-again-tops-consumer-reports-owner-satisfacti/ http://gas2.org/2011/11/21/jay-leno-drives-chevy-volt-11000-miles-without-gas-nets-2365-mpg/
Yeah I could be finding fault with the Volt and pining for a flying car or whatever instead, but then I'd be taking work from backseat drivers. Fuck, not even backseat drivers, full time chair drivers like Bonkers.
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wrote:

http://www.autoblog.com/2012/11/29/chevy-volt-again-tops-consumer-reports-owner-satisfacti/

http://gas2.org/2011/11/21/jay-leno-drives-chevy-volt-11000-miles-without-gas-nets-2365-mpg/

Dude, get a fukn life, ferchrissakes.
Funny, Ed H's 6 word reply (and jb's op) had about 10x the value of your addle-brained verbiage -- shades of Entropy, eh? Here, ponder this for, oh, the next 10 years..... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Entropy Or better: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Entropy_ (information_theory)
The latter explains, ultimately, why talking to you is about as informative as flipping a fair coin. lol
Oh, Jay moon-chin Leno loves his volt.... Oh, yeah, and dat flagman's thumbsup.... OK, now, run along and giz yerself on one of yer Volt's tires....
--
EA




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On Tue, 26 Mar 2013 12:21:29 -0400, "Existential Angst"

Whereizn yer sermin on the munt splainin how tu bild flywait EVs? Izin dere a rehab for rantoholics dat cant cum up wit reality based argamints?
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On Tue, 26 Mar 2013 08:44:02 -0700, whoyakidding's ghost

because of the "very light car" subject line. They make an interesting contrast with today's crop of superlights.
Those club racers had *horrible* drag coefficients, but low frontal area. The Cd on a Lotus 7 is around 0.70; the same as a bicycle with rider. The Cd for a Hummer H2 is 0.57. For a Volt, around 0.28. A paving brick is 2.1. <g>
They were not designed for economy, nor for top speed. They were designed for acceleration and fast cornering on short road-racing tracks. For the hardy weekend hero-driver, they could be driven to work or school all week. That's the service my 1967 MG Midget performed; it was one of the last of the club racers.

The Volt is on the right track, given the batteries we have to work with. It's still a car for enthusiasts who want to be the first on their block. But so were the Lotus 6 and 7, in a different way.
--
Ed Huntress

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On Tue, 26 Mar 2013 12:22:09 -0400, Ed Huntress

In the Morgan article the author lovingly refers to those as "thoroughly useless" IIRC. :) I disagree, but then I think motorcycles are useful.

The Volt is aimed at the center mass of the market. It's a car that anyone from granny to enthusiast can enjoy, and it can replace any Camry, Accord, etc. 5 year cost of ownership will beat a lot of competitors. http://www.kbb.com/car-news/all-the-latest/2012-total-cost-of-ownership-awards/2000007814/ It could be that it appeals more to techies, but you don't have to know a damned thing to own one. Put the fob in your pocket, unplug the charge cord, press the button on the door handle to unlock the car, hit the start button and you're ready to roll. Anybody who's driven a keyless car could drive one away without a word of instruction. Eventually you have to figure out where the buttons for the charge cord door and the filler door are but they're easy to find. The car has two display screens and a bunch of flush control buttons, but there's no need to touch any of it except to change the auto climate temp or diddle with the radio. If you get a chance, hop in one and take it for a spin. The silence and smoothness are a little weird at first, so is the instant torque. But dead easy to drive and obviously designed for the bulk of the tech to be low profile. You can navigate to the powerflow display but there's little interesting to see there unless you're in engine mode and want to monitor the transitions from regen etc.
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On Tue, 26 Mar 2013 10:00:48 -0700, whoyakidding's ghost

Well, the original Morgan 3-wheelers, from the 1910s, were known as "cyclecars," and soon became some of the original club racers. They gave hell to some highly-touted race cars all over Europe during the '20s and '30s
There was one from the 1930s in Princeton when I was in high school. It had a Matchless V-twin motorcycle engine. Those were the hot ones.
I'm told that they were a little nerve-wracking to drive. The throttle was a lever pivoted in the middle of the steeting wheel, with no spring return, and you had to remember whether to push the lever up or down, depending on which way the steering wheel was turned. Yikes.

I wold like to try one sometime, but I'll tell you frankly: I do so little driving today that it would never pay off. I work at home, and my 2004 Focus ZX-3 has only 75,000 miles on it.
Still, it sounds interesting. As I listen to you, I'm tempted to explain how practical a '67 MG Midget could be for driving back and forth between Michigan and New Jersey. All you had to do was to swap out the 4.22 ring and pinion for the 3.727; remember to replace the heater in October; make sure you put the muffler back on; and have your rainsuit handy. Convertible tops stayed in the garage; they were too much weight. And they were for wimps, anyway. d8-)
--
Ed Huntress

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The problems I see with the Volt, Leaf and other electric autos is that they don't fit my life style. I drive, on any given day, somewhere around 50-100 miles. Most places I stop don't have a facility to charge the battery and if they did, I'm sure in time they'll charge you to use their charging station (nobody does anything for free). With that, and the $40K price tag to purchase, the unknown battery life and replacement costs and the costs to charge the battery at home, I don't feel like I can afford anything like a battery only automobile. A hybrid maybe but even they have a lot of the same problems for me, costs. I know YOU say that they have the same or cheaper 5 year cost but it has NOT been proven to my satisfaction because of the battery replacement costs. I'm still driving the same automobile after 12 years and it's cost the same now and it did when I bought it. It's got about 90K miles on it. Nothing major has gone wrong or needed replacement. Who, which an electric, can say the same? I don't see GM or Nissan replacing the batteries for free and I haven't heard a real life expectancy or cost. I just don't think the electrics are ready for prime time. They may be aimed at the middle of the buying public but the whole electric automobile business is the same now as it was in the '20's only now the government is pressing the issue for political reasons. There will always be some who want to be on the bleeding edge and then there are the rest of us that look at the real world costs in terms of real return on our dollar. R. Wink
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The Volt, in very simple terms, gives your first gallon of "fuel" for the price of a dozen kwhs. Call it a $3 saving each charge. After that it gets about 40mpg.
Compared to a 30mpg ICE sedan, $4 per gallon, and 10 cent per kwh: at 50 miles a day you'd be at about 70% EV, and saving about $3.50. That would pay reasonably although you could do as well with a regular econobox if you're OK comparing apples to oranges.
At 100 miles a day, 35% EV, and the saving is $5 per day.
Once you figure that part out then you take fuel and electric price increases into account for as long as you intend to own the car, and insurance as well especially if you're comparing to other new cars. Plus all the usual stuff like depreciation and interest cost or whatever. And of course you'd do similar calculations with other EVs and hybrids.

"Feelings" like yours don't hold much sway with me.

There is no need to take my word for anything, because _I_ only referenced what independent sources have calculated. Those calculations can be highly variable but anybody with grade school math skills, with or without a calculator, can work out their own projected costs.

It will NEVER be proven to the satisfaction of people who feel their way around issues. The rest can go by the details of the manufacturer's warranty.

Probably somebody with an EV with 90k on it. Considering that the hybrids have been around for 10 years, and the Volt for 3, what do think the odds are that somebody has driven 90k and reported their experience on the intertubes?

Then you simply haven't read the warranty, which would have taken less time than you spent writing up an ill informed rationalization. Putting opinion before research is illogical, therefore I doubt that anything I or anyone could say will make you objective.

No, you said it correctly at the beginning. You're not thinking, you're feeling.

I live in the real world and I have a proven history of making good financial decisions. Feel free to pretend that I'm just some bleeding edge fanatic if it helps you feel better about your feelings.
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Ok. Maybe you have a point or two but what is the replacement cost of a set of batteries and how often do then need to be replace? Cite hard facts, your or someone else's replacement cost experience, when and where so they can be verified. Your feeling on the subject as unimportant as you say mine are. Cite facts from real life, not government or auto company propaganda. I haven't been able to find anyone that has the data except for government or auto company propaganda. R. Wink
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You already mentioned some kind of government propaganda which I consider crazy talk. Can you give me any reason I should do research for someone who's irrational? Clearly you still haven't read the warranty replacement details which are readily available and would give you an excellent idea of what to expect in terms of lifetime and degradation.
I had a conversation a few days ago with a guy who's thinking about doing an EV conversion. Assuming he was talking lead acid, I mentioned the cost of frequently replacing those. No he said, he wants to use lithium which he said are something like $5k IIRC. So not only are battery prices surely in your dealer's parts book (and bound to be similar to the price of a complete engine, which dealers are known to replace when necessary), but they're apparently available aftermarket, which means they're not any kind of boogeyman.
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Well, the lead acids in my Fiat conversion lasted 2 years - froze over the winter when someone stole the cord to the trickle charger.
A friend put 400,000km on a first gen Prius with no measurable loss of battery capacity. I believe he sold it a few months ago.
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wrote:

I see you are winning friends and influencing people all over the place. What a dick.
R wink, if it doesn't weigh 3800#, jerkoff is not innerested. KiddingHimself actually thinks planetary gears and a transmission are necessary in a gas generator setup. If he's right, and that's actually what's in the Volt, GM needs a little schooling as well. They should mebbe ride Amtrack now and then, see how diesel locomotives do it.
Other industry savvy critics have pegged the Volt: Overpriced, over-engineered. Planetary gears.... give me a fukn break....
--
EA



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On Fri, 29 Mar 2013 16:48:22 -0400, "Existential Angst"
I take it that you don't know anything about any of the Prius drivetrains either.
"Toyota's familiar Hybrid Synergy Drive system. A planetary "electronic CVT" gearset blends electric and combustion power as and when it's needed." http://www.greencarreports.com/news/1065189_2012-toyota-prius-plug-in-hybrid-ultimate-guide
Yeah, Toyota is as stupid as GM according to you, right? How is it that you're here typing out horseshit instead of heading one of their engineering departments?
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On Sat, 30 Mar 2013 00:34:57 -0400, "Existential Angst"

Wrong again. From my previous link:
"the motor/generator again couples to the ring gear but nowin "charge-sustaining" modethe smaller electric motor is also affixed to the running gas engine. In effect, the gas engine supplies power directly to the transmission, which is just like a parallel hybrid."http://www.popularmechanics.com/cars/alternative-fuel/cells/chevy-volt-hybrid-drive-system
"The engine is used to partially drive the wheels when the car calculates that it will be a more efficient use of the engine's power." http://www.plugincars.com/exclusive-chevrolet-volt-chief-engineer-explains-volt-drivetrain-says-volt-electric-vehicle-90758.ht
I am no longer astonished at how little you bother to research a subject before pretending to know more about it than the manufacturer. That is a hallmark of a crank.
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OK, let me re-phrase it: The fundamental design of the Volt does not REQUIRE it to blend energy mechanically.
From my previous link:

Which is stupid on it's face. It totally defeats the elegance of gas-generator premise.
Oh I see yer into popular mechanics. So was I, when I was 13.
http://www.popularmechanics.com/cars/alternative-fuel/cells/chevy-volt-hybrid-drive-system

http://www.plugincars.com/exclusive-chevrolet-volt-chief-engineer-explains-volt-drivetrain-says-volt-electric-vehicle-90758.ht

You're right, I didn't research it, cuz I just assumed chevy woulda designed it the right way. Now that you're in web research mode, look at the energy trail of a diesel-electric locomotive, and you'll see that,, at least in the locomotives I'm familiar with, you gots a diesel generator and traction motors.... none of that parallel hybrid planetary gear transmission bullshit.
So not only did you buy an over-priced, over-engineered bullshit car, you bought one that was POINTLESSLY overengineered. And you still haven't asked why Volt overcomplicated the fundamental premise of the gas-generator-traction motor concept. Oh, I know why you don't ask.... cuz you couldn't find the answer pre-packaged for you on a website.
So now you have shown me that the Volt has NO redeeming qualities. It took a great idea and shot 8 out of 10 toes off that idea. I didn't know that, and I appreciate your pointing alladat out for me.
--
EA




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nergy

ned

ise

took

at,

The justification for buying a Chevy Volt for those that aren't blowhards like KiddingNoOne is quite simple:
I like the car and I decided to buy it.
For KiddingNoOne the justification is:
I purchased a Chevy Volt because it's a great investment.
I have lots of money and you don't.
I'm smarter than you, etc.
If you disagree with my logic your acting just like like Mark Wieber.
Anyone who questions my logic is broke and on welfare, too poor to afford it, stupid, "bonkers".... new reasons that I'll continue to invent.
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On Sat, 30 Mar 2013 12:41:52 -0400, "Existential Angst"

Yes, it does. Both Toyota and GM have determined that it takes 2 electric motors and an ICE, and multiple modes of operation to get best efficiency. Your saying "locomotive" over and over doesn't change the reality.

It's not stupid, it's actual award winning engineering http://green.autoblog.com/2011/04/14/chevy-volt-grabs-aeis-best-engineered-vehicle-of-2011-award/ as opposed to your idiotic ranting.

IOW, as I've been telling you from the start, you don't know what you're talking about and continue to put your conclusions before your research.

Everybody knows the basics of how locomotives work. It doesn't translate to vehicles no matter how times you keep saying it.

... that works perfectly well on the Prius C for example that you touted, although you'll never grasp the contradiction.
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On Sat, 30 Mar 2013 12:41:52 -0400, "Existential Angst"

JESUS! Will you guys knock it off? A Volt is NOT a "gas-generator-traction-motor" design. Those locomotives are NOT plug-ins. They use that configuration because it's proven to be a better way to couple an IC engine to the very different operating conditions of a railroad locomotives. There have been a few straight-diesel locomotives, in the US and in the UK. They were failures because of inflexibility in diesels of those sizes, and because of the enormous difficulty of coupling them to the wheels through a mechanical transmission.
The Volt is a plug-in serial hybrid with some parallel-hybrid features -- 'way complicated, but because of limitations in current technology, not because GM's engineers like to pretend they're Mercedes-Benz engineers, using three parts when two parts will do. <g>
Like all of the various hybrids so far, it's a glimpse into the future. There are some owners for whom it makes reasonable sense. Like all EVs of all types, it makes no economic sense for most of us. But it's a step in a direction that will make sense for more people, in more circumstances, as the concept is tested in the field and refined.
But neither does a Cadillac or Porsche SUV make any sense. Or any Cadillac or Porsche, for that matter. Sports Car Graphic ran a spoof many decades ago, in which they showed a MG-TD pickup truck and a Ferrari GTO halftrack. Little did they suspect that Porsche would build a half-assed truck for yuppies some day. I'm waiting for a Maserati RV or an Aston Martin dump truck next...
So all electric vehicles are interim steps, which appeal to people who like the concept and like to try new ideas. Assuming that we may have cheap electricity from alternative sources some day, they're one way to deal with the distribution problem. Right now, the efficiencies don't work out. But they may well do so.
Anyone who thinks that hydrogen fuel cells are a better prospect isn't paying much attention. Almost all hydrogen now is produced from reformed natural gas. Talk about hack jobs! And the prices, and failures due to contamination...Jesus. There isn't a significant pipeline in America that will carry hydrogen without being completely rebuilt. Good luck with that.
As for the likelihood that we'll be able to use alternative electric sources, versus other sources of liquid fuels in IC, consider that all of the liquid fuel promises have failed. Every one. Not that we don't have some cellulosic ethanol in the pipeline some day, or something derived from another source, but, so far, those options don't look any better than EVs. And natural gas IC -- well, if you don't want to go very far and if you don't need a trunk. Like EVs, they make sense for some people.
The Li-ion battery is the biggest problem. There is some promise for aluminum-air and some of the nano-structure carbon batteries, but they're in the lab, along with algae-derived liquid fuels and controlled nuclear fusion. In fact, they're ahead of fusion.
Somebody has to take the first step, in every technology. Sometimes it works, and sometimes it doesn't. Gunner was wondering why the Doble steam car isn't around today. It worked great -- very reliable and set all kinds of records. But it cost 40 times as much as a Ford and much more than a Duesenberg or Rolls Royce. Nice try, Doble. It ain't for us peons.
The Volt is highly subsidized and the economics of operating it are all skewed out of shape. That's what we do with new technologies in a lot of cases. That's what it takes. It doesn't bother me at all. Without it, we wouldn't have jet planes, rural electrification, or hydroelectric power. None of them made any economic sense at first. Some of them still don't. The market isn't up to the job.
I haven't followed all of your arguments, but you're arguing over engineering details that are largely cutting-edge stuff that is hardly known. You won't need the parallel-hybrid complications when there's a cost-effective battery or battery/capacitor system that will handle the necessary discharge rates. You won't have cost efficiency until the capacity is large enough to run on electricity almost all the time, and the IC engine size can be further reduced. These are engineering projects that are being developed as we speak.
Meantime, we have the Volt -- the first effort by any manufacturer to make a serious plug-in serial hybrid that almost makes it, and that seems to work out for quite a few users.
What is there to argue about? Do you think you have the engineering problems worked out better than GM? Or do you think we should all just forget it, and stick with what we have? The Model T was pretty good at getting us around. Maybe we should have stuck with it, eh?
--
Ed Huntress








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c
energy

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gned

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hat,

The Chevy Volt is way too heavy.
There is a reason I named this thread: A Very Light Car
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