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Hemi vs. Hybrid! Japan goes Tech, US goes ICE! Who's really winning??



  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Echo basically bombed, FWIW. That's why Toyota created Scion.

  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,687
    the '04 non-LRR tires....


    2013 Civic SI, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (stick)

  • evboevbo Posts: 6
    >What next? Comparing bicycles to minivans?

    Am I mistaken on the reason to purchase and drive a hybrid? Isn't the motivation to use less gas and pollute less. Or is it to pollute the same and not use more gas in a more refined ride?

    And John, the original Prius hit the market in late 1997, and was upgraded in 2003 as a 2004 model. I drove one in 1997. That's only 1 upgrade in 6 years.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    * HOV lane access in states like VA
    * no state sales tax in states like MD
    * peak torque at zero rpm and lots of it
    * increased range
    * ultra-silent at low speeds
    * increased fuel efficiency over *similar* cars

    Note that you could remove that last one and you'd still have an appealing package.

    Let's look at fuel sippers like the Echo:

    * DNQ for special HOV lane access
    * DNQ for MD tax credit
    * no torque at all at any rpm (LOL)
    * range pretty good given small tank
    * regular noises at idle and low speeds
    * average fuel efficiency in its class

  • john1701ajohn1701a Posts: 1,897
    > That's only 1 upgrade in 6 years.

    You are mistaken.

    There were several major changes made for the US release... more powerful engine... smaller & lighter, yet more powerful battery-pack... Multi-Display changed to touch-sensitive... a bunch of cosmetic changes... refitting for US specs... and of course, ECU updates.

  • evboevbo Posts: 6
    You all enjoy driving your hybrids! And if you really care about saving gas, how about actually carpooling, in addition to buying a hybrid so you don't have too.

    I obviously have not been properly indoctrinated. If you are curious to truly understand what hybrid vehicles are, read the book "Common Sense Not Required" (available at Amazon) written by an engineer which holds several patents for hybrid technology.

    The rest of you, stop and go!
  • drfilldrfill Posts: 2,484
    Of the 2003 Prius, 2004 Prius, the Insight and the Civic Hybrid.

       The "real-world tested" economy tests runs, on an 18 mile city/highway loop in California, with all four cars driven over two days, NOSE TO TAIL, came out as follows:

       Name City/Hwy/Combined
       Insight - 55/67/60
       2004 Prius - 52/54/53
       2003 Prius - 50/54/52
       Civic Hybrid 43/50/46

       MT seemed to like the new Prius as the best car overall, siting superior acceleration times, smoother ride, and the aforementioned mileage advantage compared to the Civic hybrid.

       Basically the test was set up as how far Hybrids have come over the past few years, in room, refinement, economy, and value.

       They also brought out the fact that the Toyotas lost more performance than the Hondas when the batteries lose power.

       About this new Hybrid expert we have here, it is pretty obvious (to most people) that at least Toyota wants to iron out Hybrid Tech on a new nameplate (Prius) before rushing a new powerplant onto established names like Highlander and Camry that are worth hundreds of millions of dollars! I THOUGHT that was pretty clear.

       Now that the Prius is a certified blue-chipper, with no real recalls or other reliability issues that affect many (non-Honda/Toyota) new vehicles, and a track record of quality, now they can DIVIDE AND CONQUER!

       In conclusion, yes, Hybrids ARE so great! Not entirely on there own, but what new abilities they afford cars, trucks, and SUV's.

       This NEW technology will allow us to have 300HP SUV's with 25 MPG, or even more power while delivering the same MPG. Makers could make cars MUCH more fuel efficient, but the cars would lose TOO MUCH HP, which buyers love AND BUY more, so efficiency will rise moderately in the more mainstream vehicles that will employ Hybrid tech.

       Buyers want power and features, no one brags that their car gets 35 MPG! Now if it did it while going to 60 in 6 seconds.....then you have something to tell you friends.

       The future is coming faster than you think.

       And I'll be the first to thank Honda/Toyota for bringing it here while I'm still young enough to enjoy it! As long as it doesn't make stick-shifts obsolete!
       Thank you!

       And to GM, hows that OHV engine coming along? I hear you've actaully toyed with Variable Valve Timing? Congratulations!

  • "Why are only two automakers selling them to the public?"

    Because Supercar project was killed by the Bush administration. The reason? People are buying more SUV but 80MPG Supercar project was geared toward family car type. For detail documentary about Supercar project that Clinton administration jump started, check it out here: p-special.special

    You'll need to register but trust me, it is worth it! There are three parts to it and each part has 6-7 pages.

  • "Throw away the batteries and electric motor on an Insight and it weighs 1300 lbs."

    Which common sense did you use to come up with 1300lbs ICE only Insight? I'll suggest another way to do the math. Look at Civic EX auto (2,668 lbs) and Civic Hybrid CVT (2,736 lbs). The difference is only 68 lbs.

  • "Maybe hybrids are just a fraud"

    Woooo stop! Care to explain such a inflammatory statement?

    "You can believe me, or write me off as some kook. "

    I am not going to write you off as some kook and I don't believe you. I strongly disagree with the statements that you made.

  • Because it is how cars should be made. Hybrid Synergy Drive simplifies the whole car mechanically. HSD has advantages of both gasoline and electric worlds. Going further in detail of hybrids, HSD even has the best of both Series and Parallel hybrid designs.

    I am not aware of any other mid-size car with about 2,900 lbs weight and equipped with 76 horse power internal combustion engine that can do 0-60 in about 10 seconds. BTW, I just described a 2004 Prius.

  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 3,788
    >>I am not aware of any other mid-size car with about 2,900 lbs weight and equipped with 76 horse power internal combustion engine that can do 0-60 in about 10 seconds. BTW, I just described a 2004 Prius.

    One has to consider the entire package. I couldn't pack for a weeks vacation with only 16 cu feet of cargo space. The size of the prius is the limiting factor. I will be interested in the real world performance of the larger hybrids when they arrive.

    The current size is useful for around town and as a commuter, but not a multi purpose family car that I can use for all conditions.
  • john1701ajohn1701a Posts: 1,897
    Since when must a vehicle fulfill every possible need?

    That's the kind of mindset that got us into the monster-sized SUV mess in the first place.

    Owning a massive vehicle for the rare chance that you might actually need that much internal space or towing power is quite a waste.

    Years ago, people used to have "the other vehicle" for special uses, like vacations. For my family, it was a full-size conversion van. And before that could be afforded, we would just strap a roof-top carrier onto the family car. We didn't try to make excuses like some do now. It was no big deal. It worked just fine.

  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,687
    there's no discussion of hemis here? They are in the title, for goodness' sake! :-)

    While very cool, the hemi is actually the exception to the rule right now...a lot of the new GM and Ford entries to arrive in the next year or two are midpack at best in their segments, in terms of power.

    From what I have seen, "hemi" has more cachet than "hybrid" does, to their respective audiences (sales are jumping up faster for models with the hemi available, than for hybrids). And neither is well understood by more than half of the people who flock to them and buy them.

    2013 Civic SI, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (stick)

  • PF_FlyerPF_Flyer Pennsylvania Furnace, PAPosts: 5,854
    To widen the focus of this topic, I've made a small change to the title. Kept the "hemi" up there for the cachet value, but now the title reflects a more general ICE/hybrid comparison topic.

    Carry on!

    PF Flyer
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  • xcelxcel Posts: 1,025
    Hi All:

    ___Pretty good comparison between a Hybrid and non-Hybrid (Civic vs. Civic) in this Popular Mechanics article entitled “Hybrid vs. Gas Cross Country” here: /hybrid_vs_gas/

    ___Good Luck

    ___Wayne R. Gerdes
  • maxx4memaxx4me Posts: 1,340
    Terrific article Wayne. Thanks for posting it. My hope is that gas prices will go to $3-$4 per gallon in the US, forcing the engineers to get us all in hydrogen powered vehicles within 10 years. Oil has got to go.
  • At 80MPH, HCH engine was running at 3,000RPM vs. 4,000 RPM HC. HCH can afford to have 1,000 RPM lower because of the 10KW electric supercharger available on demand. The classic Prius can afford to stay at low 1,500 RPM at 50MPH with the available 50KW electric supercharger. Sorry, I don't have the data for 80MPH.

    HCH battery runs out in long uphill conditions. It is the weakness of a mild parallel hybrid design. A full hybrid design like HSD can recharge and climb hills on-the-fly.

  • xcelxcel Posts: 1,025
    Hi Maxx4me:

    ___You really do not want to see $3 and $4.00/gallon fuel. The Domestic car industry is one of the last industries supporting high paying blue collar jobs. They not only support the families of millions of employees in the automotive and sub assembly industries but in turn help keep just about every other industry you can imagine rolling and afloat. Imagine the demand for RV’s and that industries demise, Arctic Cat ATV’s, Polaris Jet Ski’s, Mercury outboards, imagine the landscape industry, the home improvement industry, tourism industry, transportation, and that includes trucking … It goes on and on. The US can absorb small increases over a period of time but it cannot absorb a large increase in a short period of time. Too many jobs in related and non-related peripheral industries are harmed with that type of price spike and the willowing consumer demand for good and services that follow.

    ___After reading Usbseawolf2000’s link into the Chicago Tribune Super Car article, spikes are sometimes needed to clear the way for advancement but in this case, the Japanese OEM’s (Toyota/Honda) already have a huge foothold and they didn’t do it all on their own earnings in reality either. There is a self serving industrial machine called MITI in Japan that acts similar to the way Government helped fund the Super Car project or DARPA from the days of the cold war act to advance future weapon(s) development and technology. Whether incentives come from direct tax credits or simply here is your money, develop a car, the Japanese followed through because they were forced too. They have basically no natural resources to speak of and simply had too use their mighty engineering prowess or die with the threat of US’ Super Car project looming.

    ___It is almost sad in fact. The average American cannot afford an ~ $32,000 72 mpg Ford Prodigy Supercar (estimated Ford MY 2000 $’s) yet Toyota is selling the smaller 04 Prius which achieves even less fuel economy for darn near $26,000 and can not or will not supply enough of the small vehicles to supply demand. We have the technology and it appears as if only Ford (of the domestic manufacturers) is making headway into the vast unknown with PZEV based Focus’ and Hybrid SUV’s in terms of the Escape HEV. I sure hope Ford makes a good one given the PZEV Focus is now starting to shine in reliability circles and the Escape HEV will use the same 2.3 L PZEV motor with just a few intake modifications …

    ___Someone a few pages back was speaking of losing 600 lb’s in an Insight w/ the loss of the Hybrid HW. It would be more along the lines of maybe 150 #’s I believe but here is the kicker. Drop the Hybrid tech and all aluminum structure so it weighs ~ the same yet costs just $13 - $14,000. It won’t do 0 - 60 in 10.5 seconds as it does currently but it would do 0 - 60 in 12.5. It might even still receive 65 mpg on the hwy given the addition of the Civic VX’s alternator and balance shafts. Was the additional $5 - $7,000 worth it to the end user for the hybrid tech? I say no since consumers have already voted no with their pocket books on the lightweight 2 seater to meet their needs. I am guesstimating since in all actuality, it has been estimated it costs Honda ~ $30 - $50,000 a piece to produce the Insight given the low volumes and specialty materials used throughout. Knock back the going $20K to $13 - $14K however and you have yourself a reliable 2 seat commuter that would do wonders for our balance of trade and dependence on foreign oil directly.

    ___We have quite a future ahead of us in regards to technological advances in our own personal transportation but what we don’t need is a price spike to $3 and $4.00/gallon over the period of a year or two to kill off the very industry that places the food on the table of quite a large percentage of our countries men and woman before the advances have a chance to bear fruit. Let’s just hope Detroit’s top exec’s are actually seeing every $0.10 rise in price at the pump on a month over month basis. That alone should scare the bejesus out of them if not for their own well being since $4.00/gallon will not affect their lifestyle (CEO’s and other highly paid executives) one iota, but for the sake of their employees, there company, and our country!

    ___Good Luck

    ___Wayne R. Gerdes
  • "It is almost sad in fact. The average American cannot afford an ~ $32,000 72 mpg Ford Prodigy Supercar..."

    It is sad indeed but obviously not a fact. The "research" that the big 3 did about Hybrids were not true. The prove is here today, when Americans are waiting on the 6-8 months list to get hands on the Prius. Remember, Ford Prodigy(2,387lbs) was much lighter than the Prius due to the use of exotic materials. The acceleration was about the same as the classic Prius(2,800lbs), 0-60 in 12 seconds.

    Ford Prodigy, GM Precept, and ESX3 used diesel to achieve 72 MPG to 80 MPG. Since Diesel contains more energy than gasoline, Prius efficiency is up there with those Super Cars. Prius also shines in the extremely low emission department. The fact that Toyota can mass produce Prius at 20K and still make money is what differentiated from the big 3 and the Japanese from my point of view.

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