What type of hybrid should I buy?

john1701ajohn1701a Member Posts: 1,897
edited March 2014 in Toyota
Hybrid vehicles are about to become available in a wide variety shapes & sizes.

Each will be configured differently, to satisfy a very diverse market of consumers.

Some will emphasize emission reduction. Some efficiency. Others power & speed.

Everyone has a different need. Hopefully, this discussion will help those wanting a hybrid make a well informed purchase decision.

JOHN
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Comments

  • andre1969andre1969 Member Posts: 24,643
    for me to take a hybrid seriously, it would have to be around the size of a Malibu, Taurus, Intrepid, etc....around that general size class. And have fairly mainstream styling...nothing too off-the-wall, or that looks like it was inspired by "Mothra versus Rhodan"!

    Of the hybrids that are out there, I think the latest Prius is actually a good attempt. A friend of mine recently bought one, and a few weeks ago I had a ride in it...I was actually pretty impressed! I don't think I could live down the exterior styling of it, but as small as it is on the outside, it's pretty comfy inside, and roomy enough for me, although I'd like a bit more shoulder room, for the occasional 5th passenger in back.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesMember Posts: 18,946
    This fall, the Accord hybrid will be available. Might be just what you are looking for.
  • andre1969andre1969 Member Posts: 24,643
    I could go for!
  • usbseawolf2000usbseawolf2000 Member Posts: 759
    Since it isn't time yet to replace my 00 Celica, I can wait until they come out with a green light compact yet powerful, well weight distributed and gives more than 40 mpg hybrid.

    If I have a kid by then, my need will change though.

    Dennis
  • daysailerdaysailer Member Posts: 720
    I'll not be seeking a hybrid specifically. Rather, as always, I'll buy the car that best fullfils my automotive requirements considering performance, utility, economy, ergonomics, reliability and whatever other priorities I may have at the time. If that car is a hybrid, so be it.

    Based on current automotive examples and technology, my ideal might be something similar in concept to a Lotus Elise but made by Honda with IMA and, of course, costing less than $20k in 2004 dollars.
  • john1701ajohn1701a Member Posts: 1,897
    HSD (Hybrid Synergy Drive) is the system currently available only in Prius. Later this year, it will also be available in a SUV... due to the flexibility the design offers.

    Different size engines & motors & battery-packs can be attached to HSD, allowing for a variety of configurations.

    The 2001-2003 model Prius used a 1.5 liter engine with 33kW motor and a 274volt battery-pack.

    The 2004+ model Prius uses a 1.5 liter engine with a 50kW motor and a 204volt battery-pack, along with an inverter to increase the electricity to 500volts.

    There is a 2004 model Prius used for racing. The low-emission, fuel-efficient Atkinson-Miller type engine was replaced with a standard Otto type engine, the one used in Echo. That change increased both the available horsepower and the maximum electricity available (via the on-the-fly generator). This was accomplished without the need to alter the HSD system at all. The original motor & battery-pack continued to be used, as is. The catch was that the fuel-efficiency dropped and the emissions increased. But it worked well for racing.

    When HSD is introduced in a SUV, the configuration will put more emphasis on power and less on efficiency & emissions. This will result in a hybrid that can actually out-accelerate its traditional engine-only counterpart, yet still save some gas and reduce some emissions.

    The SUV setup uses a 120kW motor in front and a secondary 50kW motor in back. This not only supplies greater power, it also demonstrates the potential of HSD design by providing 4-wheel drive.

    JOHN
  • backybacky Twin CitiesMember Posts: 18,946
    A car like a Lotus Elise for under $20k sounds like a winner. Personally I'd like my next daily driver to have the looks, performance, and features of a BMW 330i, get over 100 mpg, PZEV emissions, and cost under $15k. I'll need a new car by the fall of '06 so I hope there's something like that available by then.
  • varmintvarmint Member Posts: 6,326
    I'm like Daysailer. I'll buy the vehicle that meets my criteria whether it's a hybrid or not. However, I'm guessing that most ICE designs in the next few years won't match the hybrids for both economy and emissions at the same time. And the "type" of hybrid doesn't mean squat. If an assist type can do the job of a full hybrid, then I'm all for it.

    As for the vehicle class, I expect my next purchases will be a compact and a mid-size utility vehicle.
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaMember Posts: 12,726
    smaller cars - usual sporty models and mainly coupes and hatchbacks. I would, however, prioritize a hybrid, even at a 5-10% price premium over the gas counterpart. But as of yet I have not seen any plans by any carmaker to bring a sporty car to the hybrid table. There have been several interesting concepts, though, including the Eclipse currently making the rounds, the Volta from Toyota, and that B-something-or-other from Subaru. Any of those that can come in around $25K in current dollars would be on my short list. The Subaru would need a hardtop version, though...do I have any other wishes? No, that is it for now! :-P

    2014 Mini Cooper (stick shift of course), 2016 Camry hybrid, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (keeping the stick alive)

  • usbseawolf2000usbseawolf2000 Member Posts: 759
    Don't count out Nissan in Hybrid. I find their Super Motor very interesting. I wonder if Toyota license Nissan HSD to get access to Super Motor technology. Here is piece from http://www.sae.org/automag/globalvehicles/12-2003/1-111-12-8.pdf

    "One is a compact lithium-ion battery employing a laminated cell in place of conventional cylindrical or rectangular cassette types. Typically, laminated cells would require larger terminals because of the battery type’s high output, and sealing would also become an issue due to the gas produced by repeated charging and discharging. Nissan reports that it has successfully solved these two major issues. Laminated cells may be stacked or laid flat. The short and tall Effis may seat up to 3.5 occupants (three adults and a child) or two adults and luggage. The thin, compact, lithium-ion battery pack is located under a flat floor.

    The other Nissan technology is the Super Motor, which employs two coaxial rotors within the single casing. A new technique of applying compound currents to the electromagnets and inner and outer rotors has been perfected, according to Nissan. One Super Motor each at the front and rear with the rotors controlled
    independently can drive all wheels. One Super Motor can also function as a propulsion motor and a generator, as in a hybrid or fuel-cell vehicle."

    Dennis
  • john1701ajohn1701a Member Posts: 1,897
    Did you know their were 2 types?

    CONE & BELT is the type of CVT in the Honda hybrids. It provides an infinite gearing ratio, allowing flexibility that fixed gears cannot. That enables the gas engine to run more efficiently, in concert with an electric propulsion-motor, which saves gas.

    That type of works well for a single motor system, and is what most people are familiar with. The other type is what is used to support two different types of motors at the same time. It is a relatively new design which features a power-split design, rather than one that supports tension adjustments.

    PLANETARY is the type of CVT in the Toyota/Lexus hybrids. It too provides an infinite gearing ratio to support gas engine and electric propulsion-motor use; however, the ability to also support a generator-motor at the same time is available. This alleviates the burden on the battery-pack, allowing electricity to be supplied on-the-fly from the engine instead. It also enables the ability to propel the vehicle without the engine at all, using nothing but electricity from the battery-pack.

    JOHN
  • usbseawolf2000usbseawolf2000 Member Posts: 759
    HSD transmission is an amazing work of art. The car is always in the top gear and lowest gear at the same time! You might be wondering how can it be? HSD can achieve this because there is only one gear ratio(permanently engaged).

    C&D Test Results:

    Prius Top-gear acceleration
    30–50 mph 5.5
    50–70 mph 7.9

    BMW 530I Top-gear acceleration
    30-50 mph: 13.3
    50-70 mph: 12.3

    Since Prius ECVT has no gear to shift, the difference is great.

    Dennis
  • john1701ajohn1701a Member Posts: 1,897
    Another amazing aspect is the size itself.

    Take a moment now to look at your hand.

    The Planetary CVT is the size (height, width, and length) of the average adults palm. That's it!

    It really surprised me to discover the heart of the hybrid system was so small.

    JOHN
  • daysailerdaysailer Member Posts: 720
    the planetary gear in the Prius is not a CVT in and of itself. The planetary gear and electric drive TOGETHER provide drive ratio adjustment between the ICE and output shaft. the size and weight of the planetary gear alone is meaningless as a comparison to other transmission types.

    And a point of clarification: the Van Doorne cone & belt CVT to which John alludes above operates with belts in COMPRESSION, not tension.
  • usbseawolf2000usbseawolf2000 Member Posts: 759
    "The planetary gear and electric drive TOGETHER provide drive ratio adjustment between the ICE and output shaft"

    You have a point there but the power of the electric drive(MG1) gets outputed to the drive shaft anyway. Therefore, MG1 isn't there just to achieve ECVT functionality.

    Dennis
  • usbseawolf2000usbseawolf2000 Member Posts: 759
    My post from up to the chore board:

    "One green leaf symbol is 50 Watts Hour. This means, it is 18KW for 10 seconds. I am guessing Prius can accelerate up to 30 MPH with 18KW in 10 seconds. It is what a green leaf can get you. I do not know how much braking it takes to generate one green leaf. Maybe a Prius owner can do a test. If a Prius can generate a green leaf from 60MPH to stop then, regenerative braking energy recyclablity efficiency would be 50%, since it can re accelerate the car back to 30MPH"

    My question to the Prius owners with experience is that, can a gentle stop from 60 MPH get you a green leaf?

    50WH can provide 18 seconds of constant 10KW power. If you stealth drive, can you get up to 30 MPH in 18 seconds? Is my estimate of what a captured 50 WH can do realistic?

    Dennis
  • midnightcowboymidnightcowboy Member Posts: 1,978
    If you are comparing a manual shift BMW530 and leaving it it 5th or 6th , yes the times will be slower.

    A person driving a manual shift would obviously downshift.

    Top gear acceleration has always been misleading for manual shift cars.

    Why not be fair and post the same acceleration times for a automatic BMW 530.

    My vote for a hybrid is the new upcoming Honda Accord Hybrid. Power, performance, handling and very good miles per gallon.
  • john1701ajohn1701a Member Posts: 1,897
    > the planetary gear in the Prius is not a CVT in and of itself.

    Actually, it isn't a transmission at all.

    There really aren't any gears and nothing ever shifts, everything is permanently engaged.

    It is nothing but a power-split device, using carriers to distribution thrust. But since virtually no one knows what a PSD is or understands the benefit of such a design, Toyota just chose to use the more familiar CVT label instead.

    JOHN
  • john1701ajohn1701a Member Posts: 1,897
    > can a gentle stop from 60 MPH get you a green leaf?

    Since gentle slowly doesn't involve using the brakes at all, that is a bit of an odd question.

    When you lift your foot off the accelerator-pedal, regenerating begin using the 10kW motor.

    When you step on the brake-pedal, regenerating switches over to using the 50kW motor.

    The most regen-symbols I've ever got with my 2004 is 3.5 in one 5-minute segment and 12.5 over a 30-minute span. More is likely possible since Summer allows greater regenerating, but the warmest I've ever driven my 2004 in is 66 F degrees... so I'm still patiently waiting to find out how much more.

    JOHN
  • seminole_kevseminole_kev Member Posts: 1,722
    how many of these duplicate Hybrid topics do we need??? Just seems like the same people cover the exact same ground as the previous day in one of the other 4 hybrid threads.
  • andre1969andre1969 Member Posts: 24,643
    acceleration numbers a little unfair? After all, if you put a stick shift into top gear and stomp on it, you're just not going to get much power out of it, because it stays in top gear. Any automatic transmission will downshift, so "top gear acceleration" is a misnomer when it comes to automatics, and I'm sure a CVT will do whatever it is that they do!
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaMember Posts: 12,726
    you definitely have to compare automatics to automatics. Whenever car mags have comparos where one or more of the cars is an auto, they also write a disclaimer into the text of the article to point out why the manual is so much slower in the top gear tests.

    Nissan has been limited in its application of CVT by the amount of power the engine develops. I take it that HSD does not have the same limitation? That is to say, they could eventually apply it to high-power vehicles like 4Runner, Sequoia (next gen), etc?

    2014 Mini Cooper (stick shift of course), 2016 Camry hybrid, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (keeping the stick alive)

  • mirthmirth Member Posts: 1,212
    Hmmm, Insight, Prius, or Civic? Decisions, decisions...

    Wake me when some other choice ACTUALLY come out...
  • john1701ajohn1701a Member Posts: 1,897
    Since a vehicle purchase is a signficant decision, studying beforehand what will be available when it's time for you to buy makes a whole lot of sense.

    Waiting until the last minute does not, especially when delivery (due to backorders) takes so long.

    JOHN
  • mirthmirth Member Posts: 1,212
    ...I haven't heard any definitive dates, or, just as importantly for those of us on budgets, prices on any of these new hybrids that are going to come by the dozens. Color me skeptical, but I'll reserve my opinions until then. My doubts are not that more hybrids will be available, my doubts are what they will actually deliver and at what price.
  • midnightcowboymidnightcowboy Member Posts: 1,978
    with just a few minor modifications :)

    From the Car and Driver article "Toyota Prius Race Car" by Peter Lyon, April 2004
    http://www.caranddriver.com/article.asp?section_id=27&article- _id=7902&page_number=1

    "The difference is under the body. First, the spring rate was upped 15 percent, and stabilizers from the Euro-spec model were employed. The shock absorbers were stiffened, and the rear-control-arm-and-bushing geometry was modified for flatter cornering with less body roll. At the front end, the steering-knuckle joint was reinforced, and special high-performance Bridgestone Potenza RE050 rubber (195/55R-16), boasting a stickier compound than on the standard model, was fitted all around.

    Inoue also knew he had to get the weight down. So his team stripped everything from inside the car—seats, carpet, power windows, air conditioning—and replaced that void with two racing seats and matching harnesses as well as a shiny six-point roll cage."

    That is all with putting the Echo engine in the Prius on the track to get 145 hp.

    Yes as I said before it was joke, that is why there were no quantitative results. No speed, slalom, braking , acceleration ,stopping or any other measures of performance or handling.

    It was purely a exercise it engineering to see if the Prius could be made to handle better. Sure it handled better, but at what expense!!!

    The Prius was the beta test of Toyota's HSD hybrid system. The test was successful abeit a little slow.

    However, this fall when the real man's hybrids start coming out : Toyota Highlander, Lexus 400H and Honda Accord Hybrid the latent demand for the prius will drop off and Toyota will be able to meet all the Prius orders that aren't subsequently being cancelled.

    Oh Yeah! I forgot someone said Car and Driver got a stopping distance from 60 mph in a normal Prius of 125 ft.(I couldn't find it) They must have been stopping on an uphill slope, becuase every other measurement I have seen is significantly higher: Edmunds 131.65 ft., another C&D figure from 70 was 184 ft. This are pretty slow times.
  • carguy1234carguy1234 Member Posts: 233
    When I ordered my Highlander Hybrid, the dealership told me they are expecting a bunch of cancellations on the Prius orders. People that order now will actually be able to get a Highlander Hybrid sooner than a Prius, so they claim.
  • stevedebistevedebi LAMember Posts: 4,098
    Since it is his opinion. The question of "supporting data" is of no importance for a future event that has never happened before.

    However, I think that the word "popular" is quite appropriate, as opposed to "real man's". I would also suspect that many people who are on the Prius waiting list will be interested in more popular vehicles with Hybrid technology when they become available, simply because there will be larger and better selling vehicles available. The Highlander and Accord are already great sellers.

    Thus I find the original post to be quite possibly correct in it's assumptions.
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaMember Posts: 12,726
    yum yum! :-)

    (Toyota, please build it, please!)

    2014 Mini Cooper (stick shift of course), 2016 Camry hybrid, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (keeping the stick alive)

  • usbseawolf2000usbseawolf2000 Member Posts: 759
    "Top gear acceleration has always been misleading for manual shift cars"

    Comparing the worst cases are unfair because HSD does not have the worst case? Doesn't sound right to me. Misleading are the 0-60 clutch drop timing. How come most people does not question those misleading manual shift 0-60 time?

    Dennis
  • usbseawolf2000usbseawolf2000 Member Posts: 759
    Hybrid racing has two objectives. They are to cross the finishing line first and to achieve highest MPG. Therefore, tuning the car needs a lot more balancing factors involve.

    Dennis
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaMember Posts: 12,726
    not "0-60", "30-50 and 50-70 in top gear". Stomp the gas in the manual and it stays in top gear. Stomp the gas in the automatic and it shifts down three gears. THAT'S the difference.

    HSD in Prius uses an automatic, in the sense you do no shifting for yourself. So the only fair comparison is among other cars in which you do not shift for yourself.

    As for clutch-drop 0-60 launches, there are some quite sophisticated automatics in the world now that can launch better than their manual counterparts...

    2014 Mini Cooper (stick shift of course), 2016 Camry hybrid, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (keeping the stick alive)

  • usbseawolf2000usbseawolf2000 Member Posts: 759
    Although I appreciate one's effort to milk the last MPG out of one's own car, there are many perspective to it. It might make others envy of one's achievement. It can also be view as a torture resistance contest; MPG dictating one's driving behaviors. Trying to achieve highest MPG might even endanger other drivers on the highway because the car isn't going with the traffic flow. Don't shoot the messenger. Either one could be in the positive or negative view.

    Dennis
  • usbseawolf2000usbseawolf2000 Member Posts: 759
    "Stomp the gas in the automatic and it shifts down three gears. THAT'S the difference."

    I know. In manual, you have to down shift yourself. Otherwise it'll stay in that gear, like a stubborn kid, thus the worst case situation. Even in automatic tranny, it takes some time to change gear and downshift, especially in the over-drive mode.

    HSD response is instantaneous. No shifting, no delay, no jerking, no power fluctuation, just smooth like a jet(sorry, got a little excited hahaha).

    Dennis
  • usbseawolf2000usbseawolf2000 Member Posts: 759
    "Yes, there is a delay from the instant you mash the accelerator and the time the HSD is providing propulsion"

    You are right. There is a 4 ms (0.004 second) drive by wire delay. The Acceleration sensation curve is superior compare to an automatic transmission. See the third graph on the following page:

    http://www.toyota.co.jp/en/tech/environment/ths2/output.html

    Dennis
    *edited*
  • xcelxcel Member Posts: 1,025
    Hi Usbseawolf2000:

    ___I have seen the third graph linked and posted in the Priusonline forums … Now look at it closely. Do you know what the instantaneous change in G’s as shown would do to the human body? It’s the same graph I was wondering about in that here is another Toyota presentation with no independent source to verify it is factual? When it says seamless, it certainly isn’t when you first step on the accelerator … It would be almost impossible to achieve the graph as shown other then from maybe a top fuel dragster because your teeth would fly out the back of your head every time you stepped on the accelerator if the Prius accelerated like that. We both know it doesn’t so there is no reason to think it does in any particular mode or under any external condition unless you were hit from behind possibly. There simply isn’t any such thing as the change in G’s in 0 time. I have heard good arguments to the contrary from the Prius posters in the other forum however.

    ___As for the timing issue, it was more like a ¼ second delay graphed somewhere but I can’t find it just yet.

    ___Good Luck

    ___Wayne R. Gerdes
  • usbseawolf2000usbseawolf2000 Member Posts: 759
    "Do you know what the instantaneous change in G’s as shown would do to the human body?"

    The Y-axis Acceleration (G) does not have any value. I assume the top of the graph is 1G. The graph shows that when you are driving at 30MPH and you hit the accelerator, you will instantaneously feel about 0.4G and increases until 0.65G in 3 seconds. I don't see any reason how a human body can be damaged by that. This would be significantly weaker(probably 1G) than clutch dropping smoke tire acceleration.

    "There simply isn’t any such thing as the change in G’s in 0 time"

    Come to NYC and take the subway(electric power). You will feel about 0.8G in 0 time. The classic subway trains(#7) would literally knock you off your foot if you are standing and reading newspaper. That is why they have handrails.

    Dennis
  • xcelxcel Member Posts: 1,025
    Hi Usbseawolf2000:

    ___An instantaneous change in G’s is the third derivative. This is called “JERK”. It doesn’t matter what the scale is, it matters what the slope is. An instantaneous change is felt like an infinite jerk and is more then likely impossible because of traction and the inability of the Prius to accelerate anything like what is shown.

    ___Thank you as the graph I remembered seeing was on the same Toyota Prius details web site! Toyota shows the accelerator depression at ~ t = .8 seconds and the vehicle speed begins to respond ~ .25 - .35 seconds later. This is a far cry from 4 ms and could only possibly be explained if the 04 Prius forced the HSD to delay launch below 35 degrees or similar just in case there was snow on the road. I doubt they did this given the poor acceleration response times you would see/feel in winter temperature use.

    ___There was a mention of this delay in a hands on review somewhere as well but I don’t have that link handy at this time.

    http://www.toyota.co.jp/en/tech/environment/ths2/system.html

    ___Good Luck

    ___Wayne R. Gerdes
  • usbseawolf2000usbseawolf2000 Member Posts: 759
    "An instantaneous change in G’s is the third derivative. This is called “JERK”. It doesn’t matter what the scale is, it matters what the slope is. An instantaneous change is felt like an infinite jerk and is more then likely impossible because of traction and the inability of the Prius to accelerate anything like what is shown"

    The scale matters here because the max you can accelerate at 30MPH should be no more than 1G(gravity). From that scale, Prius giving instantaneous acceleration of 0.4G is reasonable. So you do not consider clutch-drop acceleration as an instantaneous response?

    "Thank you as the graph I remembered seeing was on the same Toyota Prius details web site! Toyota shows the accelerator depression at ~ t = .8 seconds and the vehicle speed begins to respond ~ .25 - .35 seconds later. This is a far cry from 4 ms and could only possibly be explained if the 04 Prius forced the HSD to delay launch below 35 degrees or similar just in case there was snow on the road."

    You are welcome. I am aware of that graph. It is the traction control response time.

    Dennis
  • xcelxcel Member Posts: 1,025
    Hi Usbseawolf2000:

    The scale matters here because the max you can accelerate at 30MPH should be no more than 1G(gravity). From that scale, Prius giving instantaneous acceleration of 0.4G is reasonable. So you do not consider clutch-drop acceleration as an instantaneous response?

    ___Not at all because even dropping the clutch at max throttle w/ a stick does not achieve an instantaneous change in acceleration. There is slip in the clutch plates, gear mesh slop, all kinds of take up in every mechanical drive system between the Pistons and the tires. There is even take up between the tires contact surface and the road. On an even more microscopic scale, I can bet there is take up in the road surface itself! Instantaneous increase in G’s is simply unavailable no matter how small or large the magnitude of the G’s measured but I am not a mechanical engineer so someone else with a better handle on drivetrain jerk will have to either correct my misstatements or concur with them.

    ___Anyway, the 04 Prius doesn’t jerk like this from an initial throttle position of 0% at t=0 to any other throttle position at t=x seconds after t=0 in my 2 times behind the wheel. If it did, I believe more people would be talking about it.

    ___As for the traction control, it works under all circumstances thus leaving the lag intact. I wish I had the link handy for the reviewer that noticed it in his time behind the 04 Prius’ windscreen …

    ___Good Luck

    ___Wayne R. Gerdes
  • usbseawolf2000usbseawolf2000 Member Posts: 759
    "As for the traction control, it works under all circumstances thus leaving the lag intact"

    The Y-axis of the graph you were referring to is Speed/Accelerator depression. So, we are talking about deacceleration traction control response time "when the vehicle's driving power changes abruptly, e.g., wheel slippage on icy or other slippery surfaces and wheel locking during braking, a protection control similar to that used in conventional traction control is used to prevent abrupt voltage fluctuation and revolution increase of the planetary gear in the power split device."

    The acceleration response still give you electric power within 4ms. That is probably why Toyota carefully chose the word Acceleration "Sensation" to avoid nit picking. We, humans can not notice any microscopic delay or slippage. The bottom line is that Prius HSD does give instantaneous acceleration "sensation".

    Dennis
  • andre1969andre1969 Member Posts: 24,643
    some magazines will list two 0-60 times...one for the test course and one that they refer to as a "street start", or something similar, that's supposed to more accurately reflect real-world conditions.
  • PF_FlyerPF_Flyer Pennsylvania Furnace, PAMember Posts: 9,400
    Until I get it cleaned up and the participants decide to stick to the topic. This is NOT a discussion of the performance of hybrids vs ICE. And beating on each other is not "fun".

    Temporary timeout until I sort this out and send the appropriate emails...

    PF Flyer
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  • PF_FlyerPF_Flyer Pennsylvania Furnace, PAMember Posts: 9,400
    One of the things that cause the most problems in these online forums is trying to "prove" something to the other side. Almost never... actually I can't think of a time when that has EVER happened where someone took a position in a topic and came around to the other user's way of thinking and said, "Gosh, you're right and i was wrong all this time." The point is, you have to stop trying to PROVE things. Stop taking quotes from each other's posts and commenting on them line by line. You want to disagree, great. make YOUR point and move on. Everyone has their turf staked out and no amount of semantics is going to pry them out of it, so stop trying. Let's have a DISCUSSION here about "What type of hybrid should I buy?" We have more than enough hybrid enthusiasts here who are well informed enough that this COULD be a great source of information for someone who is considering a hybrid and is looking to find out more about them from people rather than advertising. But this keeps degrading into this personal battle between the same people, making the same points about a topic that is now history. If you have a personal beef with someone, I don't care what it's about, the message boards and topics in Town Hall are not the place to use as your battleground. Emails still come to me from new users saying they'd love to get into some of these discussions, but they don't want to walk into the middle of some of the nonsense that goes on like THIS.

    This post will no doubt move some of you into "But HE started it" mode. That really doesn't matter to me. My job is to keep things running in a relatively civil manner here. If you want to say "HE started it", I'll be more than happy to discuss that, or any other issue about how the boards are run with you in email.

    Hopefully that clears up where we stand here.

    Now... assuming I'm in the market...

    What type of hybrid SHOULD I buy???

    PF Flyer
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  • john1701ajohn1701a Member Posts: 1,897
    Honda calls their hybrid system "Assist", which uses one motor to accomplish all electrical tasks.

    The design uses an electric motor to supplement thrust when the gas engine is in an efficient state, like when accelerating. The primary source of electricity for the battery-pack is regeneration from braking. The secondary source is charging via the gas engine; this causes MPG to decrease, but fortunately it isn't needed often.

    Toyota calls their hybrid system "HSD" (Hybrid Synergy Drive), which uses two motors to accomplish the electrical tasks.

    Having a second motor available allows for the ability to both generate & consume electricity at the same time. This allows the gas engine to run at a more efficient state by using electricity generation as an offset of optimum RPM. Some of the electricity is used as power for electric thrust, the remaining is used for recharging the battery-pack. So recharging via braking is not the primary source of electricity, the engine is. This also means the battery-pack is not always need power the electric motor.

    The two motor design provides for much more electrical thrust than a single motor design, since the battery-pack charge-level typically remains near full. This, along with the power-split device that connects the motors & engine, accommodates the ability to drive exclusively using electricity. That ability, which owners call "Stealth", is the reason MPG can be so high for city driving.

    JOHN
  • carguy1234carguy1234 Member Posts: 233
    Does anybody have details on their upcoming diesel/electric hybrids?
  • backybacky Twin CitiesMember Posts: 18,946
    MT (4/04 I think) had a photo and brief story on a Mercedes concept hybrid that looked like a 5-door hatchback or wagon. I saw the same car in another magazine that said the vehicle was slated for production by the end of 2004--which seems unlikely given the concept status and the fact so little has been seen about it.
  • tempusvntempusvn Member Posts: 119
    In the continued vein of platform sharing, Mercedes is introducing what is basically a Lux version of the Chrysler Pacifica.

    The "Vision Grand Sports Tourer"

    Links:

    http://www.detnews.com/2004/autosinsider/0401/06/c08-28051.htm

    "The GST concept featured a diesel hybrid powertrain, which COULD come as an option on the U.S. model. The combination V-8 engine and electric motor delivers 314 horsepower and gets 30 miles per gallon"

    http://autoshow.edmunds.com/news/autoshow/articles/100916/page029- .html?tid=edmunds.e.autoshow..leftnav.30.*

    "the Vision is motivated by a V8 diesel hybrid that combines incredible fuel efficiency with sport sedan performance. The fuel economy goal for the Vision is 33 mpg, but numbers as high as 35 have been suggested. Not impressed by a fuel-sipping Benz? The car's performance stats should impress skeptics and enthusiasts alike. With a 0-to-60-mph time of about 6.5 seconds, the 30 mpg figure seems all the more impressive."

    http://www.thecarconnection.com/index.asp?n=156,173&sid=173&a- mp;article=6695

    "The concept is driven by a diesel-electric hybrid engine that is mated to a seven-speed automatic transmission. The new diesel-electric hybrid mill, according to Mercedes-Benz spokesman Rob Moran, is a combination of the company's diesel 4.0-liter V-8, available with S-Class models sold in Europe, and a 50-kilowatt electric motor installed to assist propulsion. The combination allows the powertrain to turn out 313 hp and 621 lb-ft of torque. Mercedes claims its diesel-electric hybrid engine will consume about 20 percent less fuel under standard driving than a conventional diesel, and if the engine is included in production plans it would be the only full-fledged hybrid in the United States with eight cylinders and diesel technology."
  • xcelxcel Member Posts: 1,025
    Hi All:

    ___Since the 04 Prius isn’t coming anywhere near what it is EPA rated for city driving, it really doesn’t matter that it has 1, 2 or even more motors. The Honda Hybrid’s are ahead in mpg task and when purchased used, are a much better overall deal.

    ___Here is what the 2 seat Honda Insight is capable of through the Chicago tollway and Interstate system on a 58 degree day with higher then rated pressure in the OEM tires.

    http://barnson.org/misc/gallery/view_photo.php?set_albumName=albu- m06&id=Small_100_3_MPG

    http://barnson.org/misc/gallery/view_photo.php?set_albumName=albu- m06&id=Small_100_3_MPG_LMPG_Odometer

    http://barnson.org/misc/gallery/view_photo.php?set_albumName=albu- m06&id=Small_100_3_MPG_Segment_Tank_Mileage_Distance

    ___I can’t link the real mileage database over at Greenhybrid or over at John1701a’s site but it is on the order of 46 - 47 mpg overall. The possible reason for Toyota’s sky high EPA estimates being missed by such a large margin are two fold.

    1. The 04 Prius is in EV mode accounts for > 50% of the EPA’s city cycle. The EPA has no way to account for a fully charged pack at the beginning of the cycle and the pack not being fully charged at the end.

    2. The std. EPA estimate disclaimer as follows for all vehicles. I included the Prius sticker since that is one most might consider … Actual mileage will vary with options, driving conditions, driving habits and vehicles condition. Results reported to the EPA indicate that the majority of vehicles with these estimates will achieve between 51 and 69 in the city and 43 and 59 on the highway.

    ___As has been posted around the net, very few are even touching EPA estimates in the 04 Prius and it cannot be explained away with the statement that most cars do not meet EPA estimates. The problem is two fold as explained above … With that, a Hybrid when purchased new won’t ever pay for itself in fuel savings alone at today’s average gas prices. This does not include an eventual pack replacement sometime down the road either. That is if we don’t hit $3.00 - $4.00/gallon or so but not where we are at today …

    ___As for the cleanliness of the 04 Prius, it depends where you live and the type of fuel you can purchase. In the clean fuel states of California and surrounding areas as well as some N.E. US states, low sulfur gasoline is available today. Within 2 years, all fuel in the US will be mandated to be low sulfur. With that comes the cleaning of America in whatever you drive … In the case of the 04 Prius, it is not cleaner then the CVT based Insight, the CVT or 5-speed based HCH, or even a much less expensive and larger Ford Focus PZEV for that matter. Only in the clean fuel states is the 04 Prius even rated as PZEV. As for GHG emissions (greenhouse gas emissions), the Prius with its apparent 45 - 47 mpg average emits ~ the same as that of a CVT based HCH and more then a 5-speed. It emits on the order of 70 - 80% more CO2 then that of a 5-speed Insight.

    ___All in all, if you can find a great deal on them used, you may have found a good value. If you pay MSRP or more, you will never recover the initial investment with the fuel savings alone and will sacrifice quite a bit in terms of generally accepted and listed performance attributes as well as the huge initial costs in comparison to many comparable std. ICE based automobiles.

    ___Good Luck

    ___Wayne R. Gerdes
  • rfruthrfruth Member Posts: 630
    What are the known problems with the '04 Prius or HCH ? More for less sounds great but I'm not sure how realistic that is. Heck if the only thing about the '05 Prius is a few hundred more dollars I'd be happy. Don't get me wrong if they come out with quicker 0-60-0 numbers, sports car like handling, higher MPG and lower emmisions & MSRP that would be fine, in fact sign me up ! But like I said that isn't very realistic so by problems I mean leaky radiators bad wheel bearings electrical problems or batteries not holding their charge, xcel mentioned the CEL with the '04 Prius but from what I could tell there was something used during assembly or shipping in the exhaust system that caused the CEL to come on but when that substance burned off the CEL went out, this IMO is not ideal but not a show stopper, same for the rubber bladder that serves as the gas tank. So what do the vehicles not do that they were designed to do ?
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