All I can say is that the American "Values" are ruining Hybrid design. Compared to the FE of the GS 350 it does get 5 mpg better city economy but only 1 mpg better economy on the highway. It almost seems like it's a fad that you "have" to have a "Hybrid". It doesn't need to get even remotely good FE just has to be a hybrid vehicle. A FE conscious driver could get the same, if not, better economy out of the GS 350 and spend less on the vehicle. Granted, you might not have the same 0-60 speed.
Ugh, I guess I should [/rant]. I'm just compelled to put "Quit yer Whinin' and drive smarter!" and "Because I get 50+MPG doing it!" on the back of my hatchback. Of course the "Quit yer whinin!'" part is referring to all the whining I hear from people complaining that gas prices are so high here in the U.S. The reality is that Americans pay relatively low prices per gallon when compared to the world. There are a few countries that pay less such as Venezuela and Iraq. But the majority of the developed countries pay through the nose when compared to the U.S. And then there are the people that refuse to say the pledge of allegiance here at school, even though they are citizens of the United States now...but that is a whole other story.
Ok, I'm done Ranting, just needed to blow off some steam after hearing a fellow staff member, that just bought a brand new Denali and only drives around two people at most at a time, complain about the gas prices being so high.
If they can get the technology all ironed out at the expense of fatcats, and then let it trickle down to normal cars, I guess that would be okay...
This is one of the things that drives me nuts about the Saturn Vue "Green Line". The same mild-Hybrid tech could have been put into an Ion coupe, and I can imagine better than 35/45 (old school) MPG from that. I know it would cost a chunk of trunk space, but build it in small numbers, toot your environmental horn, and see what happens.
Instead, the SUVs get the hybrid drivetrains first because the profit margin (not the MPG!) will be bigger, .
Instead, the SUVs get the hybrid drive trains first because the profit margin (not the MPG!) will be bigger, .
Think of it this way - and someone else hit the nail on the head with trickle down... The technology is EXPENSIVE. That's why the Prius was sold at a loss originally (not so much anymore). The cost of R&D Toyota invested was huge, and that entire cost fell onto one vehicle (originally). But now Toyota is sharing tech so more vehicles share the burden of future R&D and return on investment
If, for right now, these projects can get more funding immediatly - think of how much better the technology will be in just a few years... And capable of being implemented into smaller vehicles...
But, that's an ideal situation.... You can't depend on trickle down [anything] to happen - you can only show that it did happen after the fact.
Now - if the masses wanted these fuel sipping cars... Well, it wouldn't be larger vehicles getting these systems. But as you know, it's easy to change the minds of auto mfr's - just change the minds of the people... Err, wait - that's the hard part, changing the minds of the majority (especially when it's embedded in culture)
But yes, follow the money.... I'll eat my shorts when I see any business - even a "green business" do something that will put them out of business :P After all, if they do - that's not a business at all, it's a charity Something I won't eat my shorts to :P
Time is the best teacher. Unfortunately it kills all its students.