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Old 04-25-2006, 10:24 PM   #11
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Re: In all fairness, it should

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Originally Posted by SVOboy
In all fairness, it should be pointed out that Lexus, I think it is (toyota senior) is building a v8 sedan with terrible gas mileage, but those hybrid engines create torque, so it's faster than otherwise. The hybrid revolution might give is better technology to solve our issues but if attitudes don't change we might as well be driving the same old big honky tonk trucks with a different brand slapped on them.
True dat. But the domestic market really banked on the SUV craze. One V-8 sedan from Lexus probably pollutes less than a Suburban.

For Future reference:

Parent Brand vs. Luxury Spin-off Brand

Honda - Acura
Toyota - Lexus
Nissan - Infiniti

RH77
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Old 04-26-2006, 12:04 AM   #12
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hybrid

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Not all hybrids are foreign. At home in Kansas City, they make the Ford Escape and Mercury Mariner Hybrids.

Yeah, but...Ford didn't come up with their own technology, they bought the patent off of Toyota. Toyota has become very 'green' in the past two years, and they are rolling out new hybrid platforms built for performance too, but...

I need to pick on Toyota for a second. I went to their Truck plant (TMMI) in Indiana, and I came with a host of questions for them concerning their new, bigger, bolder ~ Texas Styled...Toyota truck.

From what I can see, it doesn't get significantly better gas mileage than any other truck made in the United States. It has gained hundreds of pounds, more horsepower, and mpg hasn't improved from the previous model.

His answer was that as many car models age, their subsequent models have more demanded in these various fields: safety, strength, and accessories. The negative effect is of course weight. So I asked him what Toyota is doing to try and save weight in their vehicles. He didn't have an answer...(he might have had a valid excuse by being the a tour guide for the factory) So from what I get from that is Toyota has no plan on making their trucks, SUVís, and minivans any more fuel efficient than the owners accept. (Economics - going for profit)

So then a huge question popped in my head...
Does Toyota really care for the environment? This little rule from the government is pissing me off.

From the Sierra club
http://www.sierraclub.org/globalwarming/cleancars/cafe/index.asp

"CAFE is a fleet-wide average standard. It is currently set at 27.5 mpg for cars and 20.7 mpg for light trucks (the standards have been stagnant for almost a decade.) In any given model year it requires that the average for an automaker's entire fleet meet its goals. Manufacturers can still make vehicles that get less than the standards, as long as they balance them with more efficient vehicles."

So basically, what I am getting at is that Toyota can get away with selling their great Prius, and then cash in on their larger vehicles, which have been selling very well in the past years. So by selling a couple Hybrids here and there at what they call a slight gain...they can sell a Truck/SUV/Minivan at a much higher profit margin while still getting by the lax rules of the CAFE...I know Toyota can do better, that's if they wanted to.

---- I realize that most compaines' vehicles do grow by age; it is kind of like evolution I suppose. But I think that the fuel economy standards should be forced upward. It has not been growing at the rate, in fact for American Auto makers; the fuel economy is nearly as meager as it was 20-25 years ago dispite all the technology improvements...

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Old 04-26-2006, 12:36 AM   #13
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V-8

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True dat. But the domestic market really banked on the SUV craze. One V-8 sedan from Lexus probably pollutes less than a Suburban
We need to compare apples to apples...Here is a look at all SUV's and more of a "real world" mpg rating...of how people really drive. There really is no point of comparing SUV's to sedans.

Lets go to an Un-biased resource. (Consumer Reports 2006 car issue)
Please see for yourself.





It is really depressing, no automaker is really going for fuel economy in that class. Above 20 mpg combined is only acheived by the hybrids. The one that was first in the class what the lexus 330h at a cool 50k (5k more than lexus 330) you wont see any savings from 18 mpg from the lexus 330 to the 23 mpg of the hybrid version.
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Old 04-26-2006, 12:50 AM   #14
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A couple of points on the

A couple of points on the previous comments:

The only reason to drill in ANWR is North Slope depletion. The Alaskan pipeline is running way below capacity, and they want to fill it back up. Of course in the absolute sense this is a lot of oil, but relative to the problem it's tiny and mainly a distraction from real issues.

I don't think the lack of new refineries has much to do with environmental restrictions. Back in the 70's, they had these huge incentives to build refineries, so lots and lots were built. But they were cheap and inefficient, so they died off over time. BTW, this was why diesel was so cheap compared to gas... it was easy to refine, so it was attractive to quick-and-dirty tax break refineries.

As those refineries died off, the already-profitable ones upgraded to meet demand. Then the oil companies started combining, and started seeing the value in shorting the market. This really accelerated in the late 90's. For example, there are memos describing how to keep minor California refinery Powerine out of business (not that they would have come back, it's just the disturbing tactics they were gearing up for). Then there was the time Shell decided to shut its Bakersfield refinery, saying it was unprofitable. Later memos showed it was easily its most profitable refinery. Under extreme pressure they sold it to Flying J instead.

You don't need a true monopoly or explicit collusion to manipulate markets. I think big oil is set to do to the nation this summer what Enron did to Grandma Millie back in '01.
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Old 04-26-2006, 05:21 AM   #15
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Re: As usual we get idiotic

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Originally Posted by rh77
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Originally Posted by cheapybob
As usual we get idiotic ideas from Washington. Nothing like giving people tax breaks to buy more foreign cars.
Ha, "Foreign".

Not all hybrids are foreign.....
..........
big snip
..........
If we give money to GM to develop a hybrid, what will happen?
If we give money to Honda to improve their hybrids, how do you think that will solve our gas problem? We learn from our History.

RH77
Hybrids aren't the answer, IMO. I think they are a big waste of moneyy regardless of who pays the bill. GM could build a 60 mpg highway Saturn pretty easily if they felt like it just by cutting the 2.4L Ecotec in 1/2 for a 2 cyl 1.2L motor putting out 70hp. Paying $5000 or $10000 extra for a hybrid is bad enough let alone expecting me (via the government) to chip in on everybody's car, too.

Just raise the price of gasoline and diesel via tax to where the alternative fuels are profitable, and to where conservation is just common sense, and keep the pressure on for continued improvement. Consumption will drop as a result, and so will the price of oil, and the trade deficit, and the budget deficit with them. Even pollution levels would drop in time. I can't imagine a 1.2L motor putting out the same pollution per mile as a 2.4L, let alone the cars people are buying (25% V8's).
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Old 04-26-2006, 05:40 AM   #16
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Re: I thought that the real

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Originally Posted by zpiloto
I thought that the real problems lies in the fact that the oil companies stop building refiners 10 years ago because of the environmentalist and regulations. It's not that the oils not availiable it's just that the can't refine enough to keep up. Drilling in Alaska is not going to solve the problem it would take a few years to get it going.
Hasn't it been more like 30 years since the last refinery was built in the united states?

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Originally Posted by cheapybob
Hybrids aren't the answer, IMO. I think they are a big waste of moneyy regardless of who pays the bill. GM could build a 60 mpg highway Saturn pretty easily if they felt like it just by cutting the 2.4L Ecotec in 1/2 for a 2 cyl 1.2L motor putting out 70hp. Paying $5000 or $10000 extra for a hybrid is bad enough let alone expecting me (via the government) to chip in on everybody's car, too.
I totally agree with this.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cheapybob
Just raise the price of gasoline and diesel via tax to where the alternative fuels are profitable, and to where conservation is just common sense, and keep the pressure on for continued improvement. Consumption will drop as a result, and so will the price of oil, and the trade deficit, and the budget deficit with them. Even pollution levels would drop in time. I can't imagine a 1.2L motor putting out the same pollution per mile as a 2.4L, let alone the cars people are buying (25% V8's).
I just can't get on board with this line of thought. People asking for a raise in taxes? Ouch! While I commend that it would be an across-the-board tax hike instead of selective taxing (i.e. - picking on the "rich"), just saying "let's raise taxes" leaves a bad taste in my mouth. I think we should let good old free market supply and demand determine what the prices should be instead of hiking (through taxes) or dropping (through subsidies) the price of fuel.
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Old 04-26-2006, 06:37 AM   #17
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Agree/Disagree

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Originally Posted by tomauto
I need to pick on Toyota for a second. I went to their Truck plant (TMMI) in Indiana, and I came with a host of questions for them concerning their new, bigger, bolder ~ Texas Styled...Toyota truck.
The best selling vehicle in the U.S. is the Ford F-150. More of those are sold here every year than anything else, including passenger cars. It's been that way for years. So, despite their green attitude, Toyota's also a company that strives for profits. My theory is that they are trying to tap into that F-150 market.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cheapybob
Hybrids aren't the answer, IMO. I think they are a big waste of moneyy regardless of who pays the bill. GM could build a 60 mpg highway Saturn pretty easily if they felt like it just by cutting the 2.4L Ecotec in 1/2 for a 2 cyl 1.2L motor putting out 70hp. Paying $5000 or $10000 extra for a hybrid is bad enough let alone expecting me (via the government) to chip in on everybody's car, too.
There are all kinds of cars around Europe with this size of engine. The excuse for engine size was that we have long expanses of highway where higher speeds are required. In Scotland, I had no problem keeping a Ford Fiesta Ghia 1.3L up to speed on their "Interstate" equivalents. Here in the U.S., the 1.0L 3-cylinder Geo Metro was the closest thing we got, and the Ford Festiva was a competitor. Somehow they disappeared. Maybe gas prices weren't a problem then, so they don't make an engine that small here now. Honda even ticks me off with engine size - the new Fit could've easy had a smaller engine (as the rest of the world), but no, we get the plumped-up version. I think it takes a shift in thinking of the general public. But how does that happen?

The refinery answers are plausible, but how do the oil companies seem to keep up with the demand and still make BILLIONS in profit? Seems strange to me.

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Old 04-26-2006, 06:54 AM   #18
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Re: Agree/Disagree

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Originally Posted by rh77
Quote:
Originally Posted by cheapybob
Hybrids aren't the answer, IMO. I think they are a big waste of moneyy regardless of who pays the bill. GM could build a 60 mpg highway Saturn pretty easily if they felt like it just by cutting the 2.4L Ecotec in 1/2 for a 2 cyl 1.2L motor putting out 70hp. Paying $5000 or $10000 extra for a hybrid is bad enough let alone expecting me (via the government) to chip in on everybody's car, too.
There are all kinds of cars around Europe with this size of engine. The excuse for engine size was that we have long expanses of highway where higher speeds are required. In Scotland, I had no problem keeping a Ford Fiesta Ghia 1.3L up to speed on their "Interstate" equivalents. Here in the U.S., the 1.0L 3-cylinder Geo Metro was the closest thing we got, and the Ford Festiva was a competitor. Somehow they disappeared. Maybe gas prices weren't a problem then, so they don't make an engine that small here now. Honda even ticks me off with engine size - the new Fit could've easy had a smaller engine (as the rest of the world), but no, we get the plumped-up version. I think it takes a shift in thinking of the general public. But how does that happen?

The refinery answers are plausible, but how do the oil companies seem to keep up with the demand and still make BILLIONS in profit? Seems strange to me.

RH77
I had a Fiat 850 spyder (45 hp) that would do 75.
I had a Toyota Corolla with a 1136 cc motor (63 hp) that would do 90
My detuned Saturn has no problem doing 75, never tried to go faster.

I see no reason for the big motors for daily driving except as status symbols. Back then gas was expensive as compared to my income. Thats why I bought cars that didn't suck huge amounts of fuel. If gas was expensive again, people would opt for efficient cars. Why let OPEC and the oil companies collect the money. Just tax it to decrease demand. We can't borrow $800 billion more per year from China and OPEC forever. We need to eliminate the budget and trade deficits before they cause a total financial collapse.
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Old 04-26-2006, 09:07 AM   #19
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Re: I thought that the real

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Originally Posted by DaX

Quote:
Originally Posted by cheapybob
Just raise the price of gasoline and diesel via tax to where the alternative fuels are profitable, and to where conservation is just common sense, and keep the pressure on for continued improvement. Consumption will drop as a result, and so will the price of oil, and the trade deficit, and the budget deficit with them. Even pollution levels would drop in time. I can't imagine a 1.2L motor putting out the same pollution per mile as a 2.4L, let alone the cars people are buying (25% V8's).
I just can't get on board with this line of thought. People asking for a raise in taxes? Ouch! While I commend that it would be an across-the-board tax hike instead of selective taxing (i.e. - picking on the "rich"), just saying "let's raise taxes" leaves a bad taste in my mouth. I think we should let good old free market supply and demand determine what the prices should be instead of hiking (through taxes) or dropping (through subsidies) the price of fuel.
The sad thing is that while the US citizens are nto asking for a tax hike, they are also not asking for an 8 trillion dollar debt.

This may age me a bit, but I remember when I was in 8th grade and Ross Perot was running for president (the first time). His platform was balancing the budget. Back then everyone was so aghast at the fact that the national deficit was at 4 trillion dollars.

I don't know how we managed to doubt it in a little over 10 years, but we did. As a 14 year old I couldn't believe how much 4 trillion dollars was. As a 27 year old I can't begin to fathom how much 8 trillion is.

We can raise gas taxes, but if anyone expects the government to actually use the money on anything other than a new program or another war, you're out of your mind. The government has cared so little about the deficit for the last while that there is no reason to suddenly care about it now.

LOL... I just remembered something else. When I was voting in 2000 I told my friend's parents that i was voting for Al Gore. He laughed at me and said, "oh, I guess you WANT to pay $3/gallon for gasoline then, eh?" Apparently Gore wanted to pay off part of the decifit by raising gas prices.

IMHO there is no salvation for this country and it's horrible spending tactics. We keep sweeping our trash under the rug hoping that no one will see it, but the pile of trash just keeps getting bigger and bigger.

I don't know what the solution is, but I have a feeling that this oil crisis is just a symptom of the problem and not really the problem itself. Band-aiding this one issue is not going to cure the disease.
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Old 04-26-2006, 09:26 AM   #20
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The debt is now closer to $9

The debt is now closer to $9 trillion. I can't even conceptualize that much money, let alone OWEING it. Like in 1979, 20% interest rates will result and cure this country of its desire to have more and more debt. What's the interest on $9 trillion at 20%? The answer is that its triple the bloated defense budget. The rest of the world, notably China, are just setting us up for the end of the empire, when they decide not to lend us any more money, fattening us up like cows before the slaughter.
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