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Top 10 Hybrid Myths

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posted on Feb, 1 2006 @ 10:57 PM
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www.businessweek.com...

1. You need to plug in your hybrid.

Actually you don't but there are mods that let you do just that potentially increasing your MPG to over 100. Also another myth is that this would create more pollution, incorrect as large power plants have a much higher efficiency then car engines and are centralised and thusly can be dealt with much easier and cheaper.

2. Hybrid Batteries need to be replaced frequently.

Actually the standard warrenty on parts in Hybrid cars average around 80,000 to 100,000 miles.



The Energy Dept. stopped its tests of hybrid batteries -- when the capacity remained almost like new -- after 160,000 miles. A taxi driver in Vancouver drove his Toyota Prius over 200,000 miles in 25 months, and the batteries remained strong (see BW Online, 12/28/05, "Taxicabs Start to Turn Green").


3. Hybrids are bleeding edge "new" technology

Actually Hybrids have been around for roughly a century.

4. People buy Hybrids to save money on Gas

Actually most people do it for more egalitarian reasons like to reduce our impact on the environment and to reduce our addiction to oil.

5. Hybrids are Expensive

Actually they range from 20 to 53 thousand. The Prius is well below 30,000.

6. Hybrids are more underpowered then a Firefly



The Honda (HMC) Accord hybrid is the fastest family sedan on the market. The Lexus Rx400h and Toyota Highlander Hybrid share the same 270 horsepower system. The Lexus GS 450h hybrid sedan, expected later in 2006, will exceed 300 horsepower with 0-to-60 performance below six seconds. And the Toyota Volta concept is a 408-horsepower scream machine. (See Hybrids for more information).


7. Only liberals buy Hybrids

This is a new one on me




The long list of celebrity hybrid drivers includes Leonardo DiCaprio, Cameron Diaz, and Larry David. They zip around Hollywood in their Priuses and appear on talk shows extolling the virtues of hybrid vehicles. These celebrities, and other early adopters of hybrid technology, were primarily motivated by the environmental benefits. As a result, they created an easy target for naysayers to brand all hybrid drivers as tree-huggers.

In the ensuing years, Americans of all political stripes have become more aware of the economic and political costs of oil dependency. Conservative pundits claim that our petrodollars end up in the hands of repressive Middle East regimes and their patrons. As a result, we fund both sides of the war on terror. In addition, auto workers have grown more interested in fuel-saving technologies, recognizing that they bear the brunt of Detroit's reluctance to abandon once-profitable SUVs.

Conserving fuel is now being championed as a way to tackle national security, jobs, and climate change, all at the same time. Frank Gaffney, President Reagan's Under Secretary of Defense, supports bipartisan legislation introduced in Congress to promote the use of alternative fuels and hybrids.

In an interview in National Review Online, he said: "It would stimulate far greater production of such fuels as biodiesel, methanol, and ethanol, preferably in 'plug-in hybrid' vehicles that will permit electricity also to be used as a relatively cheap transportation fuel."


8. Hybrids are more hazordous to EMS then their conventional counterparts



Turns out that a good amount of training -- and, in case of fire, lots of water -- should be most of what a first responder needs upon arriving at an accident involving a hybrid.

Knowing a few basic things about hybrids -- the location and construction of battery compartments, the color (orange) used to designate high voltage cables, and the location of fuses that will isolate the electrical system -- is enough to help first responders save lives and remain safe in the process.


9. Hybrids will solve all our transportation, energy, and environmental problems



The numbers are encouraging but must be viewed in the context of the overall car market. The 200,000 hybrid car sales in 2005 represent 1.2% of the 17 million new cars sold last year. If every new hybrid driver doubled fuel economy from 20 mpg to 40 mpg for 40 miles of daily driving -- an optimistic estimate -- then a gallon per hybrid car would be saved every day. That's a whopping 100,000 gallons per day chalked up to hybrid car drivers. But we've only reduced our daily U.S. consumption from 400 million gallons to 399,900,000 gallons.


10. Hybrid technology is only a fad



Hybrid technology is often pitted against fuel cells, diesel engines, and/or hydrogen as the silver bullet approach to sustainable mobility. The greatest hope and investment has been placed in hydrogen fuel cells. Yet on Dec. 1, 2005, the International Energy Agency (IEA) concluded that even under the most favorable conditions, hydrogen vehicles would represent 30% of the global fleet by 2050. The failure of hydrogen-powered cars to materialize rapidly underscores the risk of focusing on a single solution.

The debate over the future of automotive technology has now turned toward finding the best ways to combine systems and fuels in a single hybrid vehicle. The experience of mass-producing hybrid gas-electric vehicles has given engineers the insight needed to develop complex systems needed to combine multiple sources of power.


I thought that this was important to post as I've seen numours "beliefs" in myths posted on these boards by anti-green tech pundits.

Mods if this is the wrong place to post please move


[edit on 1-2-2006 by sardion2000]




posted on Feb, 1 2006 @ 11:27 PM
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Interesting find. Esp. on the battery data. We have a ton of hybrids here in Palo Alto (4 on our block alone) so It will be interesting to see how they do. many are getting close to the battery warrenty.



posted on Feb, 2 2006 @ 12:06 AM
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Makes you wonder who would be anti-hybrid other than those with a vested interest in fossil fuels.

Didn't realize the batteries would last so long though. In my area the typical lead-acid battery last about 2 years due to the extreme heat of the Sonoran desert.

Here's a couple you might have not seen yet:
Mazda's Hydrogen RX-8 rotary engine
Escape Hybrid E85 ethanol electric

I currently run on propane, and have been eyeing the hybrids.






[edit on 2-2-2006 by Regenmacher]



posted on Feb, 2 2006 @ 12:13 AM
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Originally posted by Regenmacher
Mazda's Hydrogen RX-8 rotary engine


Yeah I love the rotary engine! It can burn virtually anything and I believe it is more efficient then conventional engines. Combine this with Hybrid technology and I see a potential World Changer!



Escape Hybrid E85 ethanol electric


Thanks for the link, I didn't catch that on www.worldchanging.com... weekly transportation roundup(posted every sunday sometimes along with a sustainable design feature) I love Flexi-Fuel systems.

Though I'm a bit wary of using ethonol as topsoil erosion is proving to be a serious problem. If they were to use this technology to solely produce the ethonol right in the Suburbs and Industrial areas of major population centers then I will be all for it!

www.organitech.com...

www.rotogro.com...

Hydroponics not just for Jay and Silent Bob anymore


[edit on 2-2-2006 by sardion2000]



posted on Feb, 2 2006 @ 12:28 AM
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nice thread.


I've never heard the plug-in one...I really doubt the 100 mpg though.

The only thing stopping hybrids from going completely mainstream is the price tag...Which is somewhere around 4-8 thousand dollars more, versus the same non hybrid vehicle.

The thing thats kinda funny/wierd is that when talking about hybrids, the City mpg, is better then the highway mpg.



posted on Feb, 2 2006 @ 12:30 AM
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I've never heard the plug-in one...I really doubt the 100 mpg though.


Well if you charge on off hours like between 6pm and 6am then it would push a 50 mpg hybrid(city) up by quite a bit. Maybe not to 100 but with some driving habit changes it could easily exceed 100 mpg as if you travel under 35 mph it drives purely on the electric motor.

[edit on 2-2-2006 by sardion2000]



posted on Feb, 2 2006 @ 12:46 AM
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Sardion
Though I'm a bit wary of using ethonol as topsoil erosion is proving to be a serious problem.

E-85 is from corn......not sure where topsoil came from...


As the saying goes...
"Why not grow our fuel in the Midwest, rather than import it from the Mid-East"



posted on Feb, 2 2006 @ 12:53 AM
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Corn needs to be grown right? It is illigal to leave fields fallow right(which contributes to topsoil growth)? Do you know how many acres it takes to sustain a population the size of the US(roughly 25% the landmass of N. America)? Now add in the extra amount needed to sustain an ethonol based infrastructure and you'll see it's not entirely sustainable. Topsoil used to be above 20 feet in the 19th century. Now it's barely a meter on average and in some places it can be measured in inches.

Topsoil is basically fertile soil that is necessary for our current agriculture technology which despite widespread technology proliferation is still primarily stuck in the Victorian age when it comes to the method of farming. Composting can help remediate this problem but not completely. Conservation of energy and such.

[edit on 2-2-2006 by sardion2000]



posted on Feb, 2 2006 @ 12:59 AM
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ok...now i'm no farm wiss, but I though that you planted corn in a field for a few years, and then change it to...beans, or something, for a couple years. And you keep changing it up, which helps keep the nutrients in the soil (aka: topsoil.)

[edit on 2-2-2006 by Murcielago]



posted on Feb, 2 2006 @ 01:14 AM
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Originally posted by Murcielago
ok...now i'm no farm wiss, but I though that you planted corn in a field for a few years, and then change it so ...beans or something, for a couple years. And you keep changing it up which helps keep the nutrients in the soil (aka: topsoil.)


No you're right, but unfortunately in alot of States and Provinces in N. America such a practice is prohibited by law for some stupid reason. Such a practice has contributed to Desertification in the US and China for the past 50 years...(and contrary to popular belief Desertification is primarily due to Agriculture and not Global Warming(regarless of wether it's a Natural or Artificial problem))

Okay now back on topic


I've recently conviced my Card Carrying Conservative Economist/Banker Cousin(by law) to buy a Hybrid woohoo
Actually this very article is the one that sold him on the idea.

[edit on 2-2-2006 by sardion2000]

[edit on 2-2-2006 by sardion2000]

[edit on 2-2-2006 by sardion2000]



posted on Feb, 2 2006 @ 01:18 AM
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Wind, snow, and rain washes and blows the top soil away if it has no ground cover which can severely effect top soil quality too. But you can use no-till methods to prevent erosion.

www.pennridge.org...

The main drawback with ethanol is the amount of ariable land in a changing climate, since we don't have enough of it to support the infrastructure and feed ourselves. That is, if we all converted to alcohol fueled transportation like Brazil.









[edit on 2-2-2006 by Regenmacher]



posted on Feb, 2 2006 @ 01:39 AM
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Oh yeah here is that story about Organic Hydroponic Skyscraper technology

Extreme Urban Organic Farming

[edit on 2-2-2006 by sardion2000]



posted on Feb, 2 2006 @ 02:20 AM
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the only problem I have ever found about the Hybrid is the fact that when you exceed the speed of 40 miles per hour the powerplant switches from battery power to gas. Which I am supprised to not see that on the top 10 list seeing as that is the only reason that i have not purchased a hybrid myself. As long as you do not exceed that speed it is well worth the money IMO.



posted on Feb, 2 2006 @ 02:35 AM
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Originally posted by dirty_underground
the only problem I have ever found about the Hybrid is the fact that when you exceed the speed of 40 miles per hour the powerplant switches from battery power to gas. Which I am supprised to not see that on the top 10 list seeing as that is the only reason that i have not purchased a hybrid myself. As long as you do not exceed that speed it is well worth the money IMO.


Yeah, that is kind of the point of Hybrids. You want a Full Electric vehicle which we are still a ways from developing to the point where it's ready for the mass market. You cannot charge the batteries(that much, it does have regenerative braking) without going to Gasoline at some point if you don't have the Plug-In modification installed. Also it's not as if it switches completely, I believe in alot of models they use both the electric and combustion engines in tandem above a certain speed.

The point of Hybrids is to increase milage not supplant gasoline(or whatever) alltogether. It's a stepping stone technology towards full Electric cars.

[edit on 2-2-2006 by sardion2000]



posted on Feb, 2 2006 @ 04:30 AM
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If every new hybrid driver doubled fuel economy from 20 mpg to 40 mpg for 40 miles of daily driving -- an optimistic estimate -- then a gallon per hybrid car would be saved every day. That's a whopping 100,000 gallons per day chalked up to hybrid car drivers. But we've only reduced our daily U.S. consumption from 400 million gallons to 399,900,000 gallons.


that is a reduction of 100,000 gallons! i'm assuming that this reduction isn't just due to hybrid cars though, right?

thanks fr this thread thogh, i was a bit uneasy about hybrids, i didn't think that they were that great coz they still half run on petrol (which the oil companys profit from thank you very much). I still think that cars that run on water are the way forward!!



posted on Feb, 2 2006 @ 05:14 AM
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Eh...I see a few iffy topics in this article.

First off, yeah the batteries are supposed to last for however many miles under warranty, but god help you if you have to buy a new one for whatever reason. You might as well buy a new car. Maintenance cost are extremely expensive as well. Very few people are qualified to work on these vehicles, you cant just jump into them and try to figure them out, you could end up killing yourself quite easily.

And where did they get their idea that most people buy these cars mainly for reasons other than gas? Did they ask every single person that owns a hybrid why they bought it? Everyone Ive talked to that owns one bought it solely to save money on gas and nothing else. But of course I havnt went around asking the majority either, so I guess I have no argument here.


Hybrids are underpowered. This is a fact. Yes they are coming out with new models that claim to have 200+HP but they just arnt around yet. Try taking any mass produced hybrid thats out right now (such as a prius) up any sort of hill, its gonna be a long ride.

Yes hybrids are expensive. Look at that range they give in the article. Up to $53 thousand dollars. Thats not expensive to you guys? Granted most arnt that high but even the "basic" hybrid will cost you more than many modern cars. For the average driver it would take quite awhile to see your savings in gas.

I dont agree with the article on hazards to EMS workers either. If it takes special training to be able to safely remove a person from these vehicles without killing both of you, doesn't that make it more hazardous then a normal car?

These issues aside, I think hybrids are an awesome technology. I cant wait to see future advancements with these cars.



posted on Feb, 5 2006 @ 03:31 PM
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  • batteries are heavy, costly and often contain heavy metals or other poisonous materials
  • current hybrid concepts add an electric drivetrain to a mechanical one, if you elimited the latter, weight economy would improve, but no dice so far
  • battery charging converts electric energy to heat, thereby decreasing overall efficiency
  • so does discharging batteries
  • optional - in case of home charging: power plant efficiency is nice but you need to go all the way to the consomer, factoring in transfer losses will not significantly mar your efficiency, but it needs to be considered
  • anything you put in your car needs to be manufactured, consuming energy in the process, which is not taken into account



I think hybrids are a natural development which is currently misdirected: simplification is paramount, all electric transmission, condenser batteries for short term use, combined with a carefully dimensioned (conventional rechargable) battery are the way to go, the primary engine is a matter of choice actually, depending what's currently available.


side note on energy management: a computer system relies on many storage mechanisms, with very different properties, on-die cache, RAM and HDDs, an elaborate machinery is in place to make good use of the available resources, the same logic needs to be applied to hybrids wrt determining the required amount of batteries, condensers, main engine and drive motor horsepower and so on.



posted on Feb, 5 2006 @ 05:23 PM
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Interesting information, I didn't know some of these things, like they have been around for almost a century.



posted on Feb, 5 2006 @ 07:29 PM
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A couple of those facts were new to me. Quite interesting stuff. I don't own a car right now, but if I could get a good deal on a hybrid, I think that would be the way to go. Of course, that assumes I had the money to afford ANY sort of car right now.


Not sure what it says about my thinking patterns, but when I saw the subject title, I thought this thread was going to be about genetically modified life forms, like the glowing green pigs that made the news recently. Good thread nonetheless


MBF

posted on Feb, 5 2006 @ 10:30 PM
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Corn isn't the only crop that can be used for ethanol production and I don't think that it would yield the highest amount of ethanol per acre either. Around here, we have a lot of crops that ruin in the fields that could be used for ethanol production. For example, a yield of 150 bu./acre of corn is 8,400 lbs./acre and around here watermelon yields are around 60,000 lbs./acre. I don't know just what the ethanol yield for each crop would be, but many crops could be used for it's production.




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