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

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Comments

  • "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."

    They used aluminum to reduce the weight further. Everything else was cut as much as possible and meet the safety requirements. If they use steel, it'll weight close to the Civic. 0-60 acceleration will be closer to 15 seconds. Passing power on highway will be lower also due to the lack of electric supercharger. Not to mention MPG hit in the City driving conditions.

    Dennis
  • xcelxcel Posts: 1,025
    Hi Usbseawolf2000:

    ___You might have missed the underlying tone to the article as it relates to many of our previous discussions … You have a Civic EX that does 0 - 60 in ~ 8.8/9.8 seconds with a stick/automatic and a Civic Hybrid that does 0 - 60 in ~ 11/12.8 seconds w/ a stick/CVT. We are talking ~ 30% more acceleration at any time under any condition. The Hybrid not only costs more, it doesn&#146;t handle as well then the already overpriced but better equipped EX (powered moonroof for one), and only pays off at 144,000 miles when paying retail MSRP for both vehicles. This does not include any finance or opportunity costs of the additional $1,440 initial outlay if you were to be foolish enough to pay MSRP for an EX. Even the slightly less powerful Civic LX outperforms the HCH under every condition and can be had for < $15K easily. As for performance, once the EX&#146;s or LX&#146;s VTEC comes into play, it doesn&#146;t need any type of electrical assist. It would continually walk away from any Hybrid including the Prius, HCH, or Insight without so much as an afterthought.

    ___When you are speaking of generating electricity on the fly while climbing or when the pack needs to be recharged, you are not supplying a single ounce of propulsion from the pack itself. That means you are relying on the totally anemic 76 HP Atkinson-ized 1.5 L engine in the 04 Prius to provide propulsion and create electricity on the fly. Once the battery is drained in a Hybrid including the 04 Prius, the ICE of the hybrid has to generate electricity and supply forward propulsion. The 76 HP motor of the 04 Prius given all she&#146;s got including generating electricity on the fly is about as anemic as … well even worse then a 67 HP Insight motor in a 2,900 # Prius without assist and that is pathetic given the Insight engine while on the cam can only accelerate the 1,850 # Insight to 60 in 12.5 seconds with no electrical assist whatsoever.

    ___It appears to me that if Honda wanted to push the EX&#146;s or LX&#146;s hwy fuel economy, they could detune the EX or LX&#146;s ICE (why not install a 1.5 L VTEC or simply add a taller top gear?) to match the acceleration and overall performance of the HCH and receive ~ the same fuel economy in the process. This comes without the overly expensive Hybrid drivetrain once again.

    ___Good Luck

    ___Wayne R. Gerdes
  • xcelxcel Posts: 1,025
    Hi Usbseawolf2000:

    They used aluminum to reduce the weight further. Everything else was cut as much as possible and meet the safety requirements. If they use steel, it'll weight close to the Civic.

    ___If they dropped the Hybrid HW, they lose ~ 150 #&#146;s. If they went to an all-steel structure, they gain ~ the same back. The Insight is not nearly the size of a Civic and wouldn&#146;t weigh nearly as much. The Honda Civic VX with an all steel construction weighed within a few #&#146;s of the Insight. Even the lowly 4 seat Toyota Echo 2-Door weighs just a touch over 2,000 #&#146;s.

    ___The problem with removing the Hybrid drivetrain in an Insight is that the Insight&#146;s IMA acts as a quasi balance shaft so as to remove that fuel economy robbing structure from the ICE. I don&#146;t know how many mpg it is worth but it shouldn&#146;t be much? The Alternator can be dealt with since I believe the VX&#146;s would only engage when the 12 V batter reached a predetermined minimum voltage and disengage when it reached a predetermined maximum. Something like that anyway???

    ___Good Luck

    ___Wayne R. Gerdes
  • Since Prius can generate and supply forward propulsion at the same time, it will almost never run out of the battery, exception of being in the race track. In the Honda's case, you will run out of battery if you don't hit the brake.

    Let's say, even IF the Prius run out of battery, the efficient Atkinson 76HP engine has to power both electric motor and drive the car. Prius MG1(Motor/Generator) can generate about 20KW-25KW of electricity by splitting 25HP-38HP from the ICE. MG2 can push out about 150 lbs-ft torque from 25KW of electricity! So, the car is transformed into 150 lbs-ft torque with the remaining 38 HP from the ICE(Ideal for climbing hills when torque is more important). Performance will probably be better than 1975 lbs Insight with 89 ft-lbs of torque.

    Prius HSD has the ability to use the energy in the most efficient form on-the-fly where Honda hybrid design can not.

    As for Civic EX, LX or any other ICE only car..
    "Power and efficiency are inseparable at any time and under any circumstances. Sacrifice either; and you do not have a practical power source." - Jack Yamaguchi

    The only way to escape from that law of physics is to use two power sources that shines in opposite situations of each other and open a path for energy to flow between the two. This is how HSD get out of the smaller box, into a bigger box.

    Dennis
  • "The Honda Civic VX with an all steel construction weighed within a few #&#146;s of the Insight"

    1993 Honda Civic VX did not have to meet strict safety standards of today.

    Dennis
  • xcelxcel Posts: 1,025
    Hi Usbseawolf2000:

    Let's say, even if the Prius run out of battery, the efficient Atkinson 76HP engine has to power both electric motor and drive the car. Prius MG1(Motor/Generator) can generate about 20KW-25KW of electricity by splitting 25HP-38HP from the ICE. MG2 can push out about 150 lbs-ft torque from 25KW of electricity! So, the car is transformed into 150 lbs-ft torque with the remaining 38 HP from the ICE(Ideal for climbing hills when torque is more important).

    ___You might be missing the point here? It matters when the Prius runs out of electrical power supplied from the pack. The &#147;climbing the hill while charging&#148; scenario is one of them. That means the pack is not supplying the power for propulsion in any way shape or form. When that happens, you have the ICE supplying the propulsion irregardless if it&#146;s from the ICE directly or from the second MG Set&#146;s electricity on the fly. It is still only worth 76 HP MAXMUM not including what the pack is being recharged with. With that entire 76 HP at the 04 Prius&#146; disposal (probably less if it is re-supplying the pack with electrical power) comes the atrocious ability to accelerate any automobile let alone one that weighs 2,900 #&#146;s. We have already been through the terrible 0 - 30 times of the 04 Prius using all of its wonderful 295 Ft.-lb&#146;s of torque available from 0 - 1,200 RPM with a fully charged pack. You do remember the ~ 3.4 seconds to 30 mph with a fully charged pack, right? Take away the packs propulsion ability and watch this kind of number soar! The non-hybrid Civic EX in the article always has 127 HP available no matter if it&#146;s climbing a mountain or dashing around on the highway or city. It is simply available at all times no matter what condition it is in.

    ___As for the VX&#146;s weight, the Toyota Echo is larger then the Honda Insight and it meets today&#146;s safety requirements? The Insight with the loss of all of the Hybrid drivetrain components using an all steel constructed frame and body panels that are not plastic already would weigh less then 2,000 #&#146;s. This is no where near the ~ 2,450 - 2,650 #&#146;s of a Civic of various trims. Over the last 10 years, the automobile industry has improved its ability to pack more HW and yet keep an automobiles weight close to the same or even less in some cases … If there was a way to install a balance shaft without robbing the smaller ICE of its barely adequate acceleration rates without assist, there is really no need for the Hybrid drivetrain nor the all aluminum and exotic material structure for the $5 - $7K or more extra cost. Again, this would be strictly for a commuter automobile as I use it for myself.

    ___Good Luck

    ___Wayne R. Gerdes
  • "The non-hybrid Civic EX in the article always has 127 HP available no matter if it&#146;s climbing a mountain or dashing around on the highway or city.

    Prius is faster than 2.4 liter Camry in 30MPH-50MPH acceleration. So, Prius will leave Civic EX behind for sure. Prius' 76HP engine can get you top speed of 100MPH. How much more power and speed do you need? Sure we all like to have more.

    The point is not the power but how you use it!

    Dennis
  • xcelxcel Posts: 1,025
    Hi Usbseawolf2000:

    Prius is faster than 2.4 liter Camry in 30MPH-50MPH acceleration. So, Prius will leave Civic EX behind for sure. 76HP Prius has top speed of 100MPH. How much more power and speed do you need? Sure we all like to have more.

    ___That is about the only item I have ever read where the 04 Prius can beat a comparable std. ICE and that isn&#146;t saying much. This factoid was also supplied by TMC and they didn&#146;t give the specifics as to which year Camry this was, did they? The latest Camry 4 banger has 157 HP/162 Ft.-lb&#146;s of torque driving 3,100 # automobile. The 127 HP EX&#146;s ICE would knock the hell out of the 4 banger Camry because the weight of the Civic is so much less (~ 2,600 #&#146;s w/ a stick). It would also leave the 04 Prius in the dust in any and all conditions as well.

    ___I am a big fan of the 4 banger Camry given its rather surprising highway fuel economy in such a large and comfortable automobile. We were actually within a few days of purchasing a loaded XLE w/ the 4 early last year until the wife decided on the MDX ...

    ___Good Luck

    ___Wayne R. Gerdes
  • john1701ajohn1701a Posts: 1,897
    > Once the battery is drained in a Hybrid including the
    > 04 Prius, the ICE of the hybrid has to generate electricity
    > and supply forward propulsion. The 76 HP motor of the 04
    > Prius given all she&#146;s got including generating electricity
    > on the fly is about as anemic as

    You either don't understand how the system works or are intentionally misrepresenting it.

    When climbing a hill, the engine usually recharges the battery-pack. If pushed harder, some of the electricity is routed to the motor. If pushed even harder, the motor uses all of it. If pushed beyond even that, the battery-pack is drawn from.

    So it is extremely rare for the battery-pack to unable to supply electricity, as you imply.

    And in my 70,000 miles of driving Prius, I certainly haven't ever come close to that situation. It just isn't a realistic scenario.

    JOHN
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 3,786
    >>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.

    Thank you for acknowledging that the Prius isn't big enough for family tasks. Or at least, that is how I interpret your attempt to make my need for a family sized car into some kind of monster SUV.

    I am not talking about an large SUV or huge vehicle, just something that can handle the daily commute and still go on vacations with my family of four.

    It would appear that you would prefer that I change my needs to suit the size of the Prius. Sorry, can't be done. Nice commuter, but too small for the primary family car.
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 21,847
    saying that a Prius has 16 cubic feet of cargo space. I've owned a few cars with about 16 cubic feet of cargo space (1980 Malibu, 1982 Cutlass Supreme, 1986 Monte Carlo, 1989 Gran Fury), and just from eyeballing it, the Prius's cargo area is considerably smaller than any of those cars. Unless maybe they're counting cargo area with the back seats down? But then you either have a 4-passenger car with limited trunk space, or a 2-passenger car with a decent trunk. So which is it?

    And yeah, I know about the storage compartment under the trunk!

    Now don't get me wrong, I'm actually impressed wtih the Prius. A buddy of mine has one, and I've ridden in it a couple of times. I'd say it's probably the most useable of the hybrids currently out there now. A Hybrid Civic is still a Civic, and a Civic is too cramped for me. And an Insight is just too limited in versatility. I'd definitely say the Prius is a good alternative to cars the size of the Neon, Cavalier, and Focus. EPA be damned, the thing just doesn't "feel" like a mid-sized car to me! They're getting there, though.
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 3,786
    Ah, but is the space waterproof with a picnic table over it? (CR-V has this, just joking - these are two very different vehicles for different purposes)

    Seriously, the calculated volume includes everything up to the roofline. I suspect your 1980's cars had a larger floor area and smaller height. It still adds up to 16 CU feet, but is quite different in the size of the floor space.
  • john1701ajohn1701a Posts: 1,897
    Remove the false floor in the Prius hatch area. Doing that provides another 6.5 inches of depth.

    JOHN
  • john1701ajohn1701a Posts: 1,897
    Don't gloss over the fact that there is a HUGE difference between a sensible-size and a monster-size SUV.

    JOHN
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 3,786
    No offense meant, I just don't like being lumped in with the monster SUV crowd. I have to deal with inconsiderate monster drivers daily. Honestly, people think just because they have 6000 lbs of vehicle under them, they own the road...

    What is really interesting is that the CR-V interior size is actually comparable (or larger) in many dimensions (rear seat legroom, cargo room) than many larger SUVs that get, literally, 10 MPG less than the Honda. Of course, the Honda isn't as luxurious as the other models, or as expensive.
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 21,847
    a lot of those bigger SUV's aren't as big inside as you might think. And I have yet to find an SUV with a back seat that's as comfortable as the back seat on a decent mid- or full-sized car. They're usually too flat and thinly padded (even if they're leather), and since they're designed to be removeable or fold-able, compromises in comfort are usually made in the name of versatility.

    I sat in a new Durango when I first saw one at the dealership. It was nice up front, but I found the back seat to be almost uninhabitable. And I'm just talking the middle row here, not all the way in back!

    The Prius does probably have some SUV's whipped, when it comes to back seat comfort!
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,687
    to me, and that is such a rare occurrence! :-)

    I have never really understood exactly what makes the Civic HX so efficient that it gets, like, 38/44 EPA rating. It has 117 hp, which is only 10 off the other VTEC Civic, the EX. And the mileage is about 20% better. In the debate of ICE versus hybrid, perhaps this is a point to consider?

    I mean, why not just HX-ize all the ICE Honda offerings and improve the fleet fuel economy instantly by 20%? This seems a much simpler approach to fuel savings than the complexity of hybrids, on the face of it. And it can't even be that expensive, as the HX actually sells for LESS than the EX.

    Maybe then Honda could license the HX technology to the domestics, and they could "HX-ize" their V-8s, even the Hemi, for a nationwide 20% fuel economy increase almost overnight! :-P

    Perhaps someone could enlighten me as to exactly what it is that enables the HX to get such good mileage...

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

  • Well, HX is lighter than EX in weight. HX also has a lean burn engine, I believe. Lean burn engines suffer from some delay in the power it outputs. Just a trade-off in a small box of ICE only car design.

    Dennis
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 21,847
    they do something like changing the gearing in the tranny and differential, and put on smaller, lower-resistance tires? Just taking wild stabs here. Does the HX have air conditioning?
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,687
    has A/C, and as far as I know it has the same body construction as the rest of the Civic gang. It has the same engine size too. LRR tires couldn't possibly account for all that difference, and besides, I was not aware it used different tires.

    Ford is pulling more power, better gas mileage, and much better emissions out of its PZEV Focus this year, despite its having a larger engine. Some of that has to do with expensive extra cats installed closer to the engine, but the larger point here is that the domestics are really doing very little to try and improve emissions and fuel economy. Yet when they try, they make some good advances.

    I think the reason they don't most of the time is because it is hard to sell to consumers. Look at the Nissan Sentra CA - one of the cleanest and most efficient cars out there, ICE-only, finally discontinued for lack of sales.

    Look how hard Toyota has tried to paint itself as the "green company". They had to do it to sell those Priuses - put enough hype out there and you will get people interested. But in the process it has drawn fire from people who say "green? Look at all those huge trucks it sells!". Meanwhile, the domestics spend a lot less selling horsepower, which sells itself to Americans.

    This is going to be another one of those "define the chore" type of threads. What does "winning" really mean here? Just strictly sales and nothing else? If so, you can't credit Prius with Toyota's advancing stand in global sales. It makes up a tiny fraction. Credit all those SUVs (poor fuel economy and midpack emissions, for the most part) and Camrys (midpack fuel economy and emissions) instead.

    Or is it something else, like saving the environment for our grandkids or something? Toyota might be advancing alt-fuel and gas-saving power technologies a little faster than some others, but there is certainly no clear winner there.

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

This discussion has been closed.