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The Future of Hybrid Technology



  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 31,178
    Most certainly this kind of thing will void any warranty on the parts

    I would think you would want to buy a used Prius with over 100k miles to do your experimenting. It would be good for an autoshop class project.
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 31,178
    How will the Prius compete with the larger Avensis? They come in many configurations and engine choices including 3 diesel engines. Four gas engines, 2dr, 4dr, 5dr & wagons.

    The new 2.2 D-4D Clean Power engine uses the revolutionary Toyota D-CAT system, which renders the high-performance engine the cleanest diesel power unit in the world in terms of combined nitrogen oxides (NOx) and particulate matter (PM) emissions.

    D-CAT features a Diesel Particulate NOx Reduction (DPNR) four-way catalyst, the only system in the world which simultaneously reduces NOx and PM via the combination of a NOx-reduction catalyst and a particulate filter.

    If we had those choices I don't believe you would see the hybrids around for long.
  • kernickkernick Posts: 4,072
    you: what if lots of people started saying, "we want our cars to be better,"

    me: I think Honda and especially Toyota have listened to a lot of consumers and made better vehicles; but probably not the "better" you mean. Look at all the SUV and truck models they've come out with.
    Now "better" to me means it would have more power, be amphibious, and maybe takeoff and fly like a Harrier.

    you: produce these cars for reasons of energy security (reduce use of imported gasoline)

    me: gasoline usage is dependent on 230M cars in this country, and an evergrowing global fleet. Hybrids will only slow the growth of gasoline usage, not reverse it. Countries which are wealthy enough to drive ICE vehicles, but not wealthy enough to afford hybrids, would surely use it. And if oil isn't converted to gasoline, it could be used in the electric generating plants to charge those Priuses.

    you: Recharging is as simple as what people do with their phones, a 110 plug in garage.

    me: which isn't very feasible, if many people did so. Areas of the country have electricity shortages at manytimes of the year.

    you: global warming (cut CO2 emissions and move to biofueled hybrids).

    me: first you assume that global warming is a negative. Since the Earth is just coming out of an Ice Age, I am all for it. The average temp. of the Earth is only about 60F, a temp. that cause us to use energy to heat our homes.

    you: move to biofueled hybrids).

    me: you do know know that anything "bio" has carbon in it? And if CO2 isn't produced from burning biofuels, what would you like to see the carbon bonded to in the exhaust?
  • kernickkernick Posts: 4,072
    If you want to understand where a lot of your air pollution comes from, read this report. Hybrids won't aggravate the problem, but they do not necessarily make it better. Hybrids won't stop energy usage from increasing or pollution or CO2 from going higher, on their own. Our lifestyle is the main issue.
  • yerth10yerth10 Posts: 428
    May be if we go to Europe/Africa, we can find an article which says that pollution from USA comes to their cities. No use in blaming others when USA has the maximum pollution per capita.

    When USA moved to Automobile / Airplane based lifestyle, everyone followed, similarly if this country moves to cleaner fuels like Nat-gas, Ethanol, Bio-Diesel, etc, again everyone will follow.
  • yerth10yerth10 Posts: 428
    This company is selling a micro turbine which generates 30 KW of power using different type of fuel like Nat-gas, propane, Diesel, Kerosene, etc.

    Is it possible to run the vehicles using this turbine. Similarly is it possible to extract the waste heat from automotive exhaust and feed into an even smaller turbine like 1-2 KW for a hybrid vehicle to feed the battery.
  • yerth10yerth10 Posts: 428

    "aiming to sell 100,000 eco-friendly, gasoline-electric Camrys a year

    Analysts said that Toyota, Japan's largest auto maker, would probably be able to reduce costs by 2006 and sell a hybrid Camry at a price attractive to consumers."

    Hopefully they will introduce a V4 Camry or even ideally a V3 camry with Motor doing the job of 1 Cylinder.
  • mistermemisterme Posts: 407
    You're right, USA has proved itself the leader in almost all technologies and the invention of products. No wonder we pollute so much.
    But also, no other country than US have spent so much time and energy trying to curb pollution.

    Our West coast routinely recieves pollution from China drifting across "the pond", and is right on our heels in this regards:

    "Ten most polluted cities in the world, seven can be found in China"

    The U.S. is also assisting Asian countries in their pollution problems:

    "second place in world pollution after the US"

    I'm not surpised that China signed on to the Kyoto treaty while it does almost nothing to clean its own problems...under Kyoto blessings?

    And some say the U.S. is the bad guy?
    It's always easy & popular to dump on the U.S. but let's look at what else is going on around us.

    The U.S. Army is also getting hybrid vehicles:

    Well, maybe the Army is not doing this in the name of preventing pollution, but if hybrids are good enough for the military it's good enough for me!
  • yerth10yerth10 Posts: 428
    More than a year ago, I read an article in Popular Science about a Hybrid Armored Vehicle for US Army. It has 6 wheels with motor in each wheel. Seems their fuel costs $ 15 / gallon in the battlefield, since it has to be transported in shielded tankers.

    Fixing motor in a wheel and removing transmission is getting popular and Toyota has 1 such model with 4 motors in 4 wheels.
  • kernickkernick Posts: 4,072
    We generate a lot of trash, which we do a fairly good controlling via landfills and such. And we certainly generate a lot of CO2.

    But if you want to consider polluted areas, the U.S. is not even close to being near the top. Read up on what 45 years of Soviet rule did to Russia and Eastern Europe. Read up on what the typical Chinese's lifestyle is - maybe recycling (smelting metals) off of disposed circuit boards in a make-shift factory in a village. Go to countries outside of Europe, Japan, Canada, and such, and see what sort of emissions equipment they have on their vehicles.
  • yerth10yerth10 Posts: 428
    Earlier J.D.Power and Associates said that Hybrid sales will not exceed beyond 3 % market share.

    Now they are saying that high gas prices are affecting sales of big SUV's.

    Does it mean that the same high gas prices will push more people towards hybrids thereby breaking the 3 % market share.
  • "A (OPTIONALLY) plug-in full hybrid that will run on ELECTRIC ONLY for somewhere between 20 and 40 miles before the gas engine kicks in. "



  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 31,178
    Does it mean that the same high gas prices will push more people towards hybrids thereby breaking the 3 % market share.

    I would think that the hybrids would have to reach 1% of total sales first, then 2%.
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    I bet he's talking about the JD Powers "3%" prediction......
  • "2) If there is no affect on battery longevity or other electrical, software, or mechanical systems, why wouldn't the Toyota engineers have done this "+" originally?"


    No one knows for sure how long a NiMH battery will last, because it's a relatively new technology.

    By limiting the drain to 40%-80%, Toyota designed the car to avoid under-or-overcharging, and thereby extend battery life to >200,000 miles. In contrast, the Prius+Plus routinely under-and-overcharges battery #2 to 0% and 100%, and that *will* shorten its life. It might die at 100,000 miles and cost the owner ~$3000 to replace.

    The Toyota engineers decided they didn't want owners to have that huge battery bill, so that's why they said "no" to the Prius+ design.


    As for the website, remember: Corbin Motors' Website once claimed their Sparrow EVs were "well-designed" and "safe". As it turned out, neither claim was true... Sparrows routinely rolled over, and literally dozens of them were sitting in the shop due to dead batteries or faulty DC/DC modules.

    Corbin eventually became the target of class-action lawsuits, government investigation, and bankruptcy.

    Relevance to the Prius+ Project? The people behind the project can CLAIM anything (like the battery will last forever), but that doesn't make it true. 5 years from now, we might see Prius+ in the same position as Corbin.


    Yes, I'm a pessimist. After losing thousands of dollars in Equinox, and Corbin, and other companies making outstanding claims, I've learned to be skeptical. Claims like "the battery longevity won't be affected" are no good when those claims are not backed-up by anything except guesses.

    Toyota verified that the Prius battery will last >200,000 miles by actually *driving* the Prius 200,000 miles, monitoring the results, and sharing the data with its customers. I trust Toyota's claim.

    The Prius+ folks have not done the same. They have no evidence to back-up their claims. They have an experiment, and their customers get to be the testers.

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  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    "Gas prices to reach record highs soon" 141CA2

    I'd say all you "on the fence" Hybrid shoppers should take the plunge, before we hit $2.50 soon !! (Oil hit $56 a barrel today too)
  • yerth10yerth10 Posts: 428
    Yes, I am talking about the 3 % market share predicted by JD Power earlier.

    Today (2005-03-16), 5 things happened
    * OPEC increased Oil Production by 2 % (500,000 barrels / day)
    * Senate approved drilling in Alaska
    * Oil prices hit a record of $ 56.6 / barrel
    * Oil prices closed at record high $ 56.46 / barrel
    * GM's shares tumbled below $ 30 for the 1st time in a decade.

    Its time for all governments (US, EU, Japan, China, India) to frankly tell their people to move to hybrids/alternatives.

    No more blaming on OPEC as they are doing their best. Its the increase in consumption coupled with decrease with production that contributed to these ugly prices.

    If things go this way, even Toyota will end up in loss.
  • yerth10yerth10 Posts: 428
    For those who say No to Hybrids and yes to Gas Guzzlers, you can better go to

    They provide more genuine info than IEA which has given wrong predictions that is causing havoc today.
  • I tend to agree with most of what you say EXCEPT the last point about Toyota. Why would you say that? Toyota has been on the positive up swing for quite some time. They are a leader (especially in hybrids) and have done so when no one seemed to consider it necessary as long as gas prices were in the usual price range.
    All I see from Toyota is leadership in this hybrid technology world.
    Culliganman(Gas prices making people rethink their next car)
  • yerth10yerth10 Posts: 428

    Toyota will certainly get the leadership title. But in Jan-Feb 2005, the sales of most of the vehicles (cars, vans, suv's, pickups) have declined and pretty soon this trend may bring in a decline in Toyota's profits also. More Oil prices means more money actually goes out of people's pocket.

    They got to be careful by introducing more hybrids like Prius to reduce the fuel consumption.
  • yerth10yerth10 Posts: 428
    At around $ 48 / barrel, the sales of all vehicles have tumbled in Jan-Feb, now with this sky high prices, I dont know what will be the picture by the end of the year.

    Unless hybrid sales go high enough to reduce the oil prices, the topic may be
    The future of Vehicles
    instead of
    The future of Hybrid Vehicles
  • OPEC is running out of oil.

    That's why they can't meet demand, and prices are skyrocketing.

  • I disagree with that. OPEC is just not able to quench the ravenous thirst of a world gone out of control. Auto makers keep making vehicles that are mostly indifferent to today's needs.
    Buyers will dictate the next era of transportation. I just don't get it though. Why are Americans so indifferent to where this is all going. I drive a Prius (04) and I'm already seeing a difference in my fuel costs. Wow!! Just imagine what those SUV owners must be feeling when they have to kill a C-note each and every time they fill up to keep their monsters thirst supplied. Now a band-aid solution by BUSH is to ruin the Alaskan Wilderness in a rush to get more oil to the gas hogs. I can't wait to see what other solutions are on deck.
    Culliganman( Free Us Prius)
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 31,178
    Now a band-aid solution by BUSH is to ruin the Alaskan Wilderness in a rush to get more oil to the gas hogs.

    When was the last time you visited ANWR? I am less than 75 miles from there this very minute. I was here When Carter came up and went fishing after he added it to his list of non accomplishments. It is no different than the NPR that is currently being put into production. The truth is the American public are gullible when listening to the environmentalists. It is better to use our own resources and try to get our balance of trade in line than to buy foreign vehicles and fuel them with foreign oil. Overpriced hybrids are NOT the answer to the oil problem. We need more capacity to refine the oil so we don't have to be tied to countries like Venezuela that are causing most of the current unrest in the oil industry.
  • yerth10yerth10 Posts: 428
    For the time being, OPEC could not bring more, may be they will in 3 years time. But by that time, demand will also increase and the supply (from importing countries) will fall and again the price will be high.

    At present, I think people are scared to buy any vehicle. A person who may like to trade his Camry-1995 for Camry-2005 may back off as the current model will be giving lesser mileage because of its increased lenght, width & height.

    Not only we should move quickly to hybrids, but also to 5-door vehicles which offer more space for their dimensions like Prius, Vibe, PT-Cruiser, etc.
  • yerth10yerth10 Posts: 428
    Ford gives a Free Dell PC on purchase of some models.
    Instead they can give a Free Electric Scooter.

    It seats 1 person, has 30 mile range, 20 mph speed and costs only $500 and can be used for short city rides.

    Not only does it cut the gasoline usage, but also helps reduce the battery cost and improve the tech.

    Something like this has to be done, otherwise Oil prices will rise even further.
  • kernickkernick Posts: 4,072
    you: A person who may like to trade his Camry-1995 for Camry-2005 may back off as the current model will be giving lesser mileage because of its increased lenght, width & height.

    me: you have a point there, as there's a study on the DOE website that showed vehicle weight increasing by 20% over the last 20 years, and hp nearly doubling. People don't need that, they want it - and as long as people have the money that is where the manufacturers are headed. When people decide they don't want larger vehcicles the size and power will gradually decrease.

    But there is a lot of inertia to changing the average vehicle on-the-road; as the vehicles being built today will be around for 10-15 years on average; and the models can't be redesigned quickly.

    The other factor is that despite what you and I think of gas prices, there are a lot of people with money in this country and around the world, who really aren't affected by the price of gas. There are probably 10-20 million people in this country who are either worth over a $1M (property, collectibles, stocks) or who earn over $100K/yr. These are the people who (can afford and buy new vehicles, especially the larger and more powerful vehicles.

    So you have people who really don't care financially about the cost of gas, who drive a lot of the market of what gets built.
  • kernickkernick Posts: 4,072
    you: It seats 1 person, has 30 mile range, 20 mph speed and costs only $500 and can be used for short city rides.

    me: If it's meant to drive on streets with 3000+lb vehicles it is a bad idea. People getting killed or maimed is a bad trade-off to save a little gas. Anything that decreases safety in the name of economy is a bad idea.

    Decreasing safety is like saying my life is the tripling of the proability of being killed by an automobile (about $500/year?). As far as I know you can't spend the money in the bank when you're dead.
  • yerth10yerth10 Posts: 428
    So you have people who really don't care financially about the cost of gas,

    Yes: 60-70 % of the people dont care about the cost of the gas, but the other 30-40 % do calculate and this may hit the automakers badly.

    That is why the sales of big suv's went down in 1st 2 months.

    Decreasing vehicle's weight: Looks sensible as the iron-ore prices are also increasing. But smaller vehicle may not be acceptable, so its better to make it a 5-door vehicle.

    For ex- Malibu Maxx is 1/2 inch shorter than Malibu, but offers 6 cubic feet more space.
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