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Old 02-09-2007, 11:55 AM   #21
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what baffles me is that automakers are spending money on making cars less efficent so they can sell them in the US market, the Fit is a good example, it's been in production for a number of years all over the world, but it had to be re-designed for the US market, giving it a lower gas mileage number, this was at an added cost, parts had to be re-enginered, equipment had to be retooled, electronics had to be changed, the vehicle that was being sold to the rest of the world was good enough for them, why wasn't it good enough for us? what would happen if a car like the Smart Car got 60mpg like it does in the rest of the world, insted of the projected 40mpg for the US market??
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Old 02-09-2007, 11:59 AM   #22
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Yet another example of FE creeping the wrong way: my understanding is the redesigned xB and xA replacements (xD?) both get worse fuel economy than the cars they replace.

I think we need to remember we're about as far away from the mainstream as we can get. What we think is wrong with these small cars, isn't what the average person thinks.

The proof of that is our first question about any small car is: "what's its fuel economy?", whereas everyone else is crying "is that thing SAFE???"
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Old 02-09-2007, 12:22 PM   #23
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As I said, the people who design them read the reveiws in magazines of their own products, and it's all about what someone who gets paid way to much money thinks of a car that they only spend half an hour in.
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Old 02-09-2007, 12:51 PM   #24
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The new gasoline smart (model 451) which will be sold in the US has a NEDC fuel consumption rating of 50 US MPG, about 60 on the highway....

The 451 diesel, which we will NOT get either in Canada or the USA, is rated at 69 US MPG in the NEDC test.
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Old 02-09-2007, 12:53 PM   #25
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:O Why no diesel in Canada? They already know we'll buy them??
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Old 02-09-2007, 06:28 PM   #26
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Diesel has 11% more energy per gallon. I think Diesel MPG numbers would need to be adjusted downward accordingly. You still have the advantage of very high compression ratios which I won't begrudge you.
It's 11.3%, but who's counting? There are 128,500 BTU per gallon of diesel and 115,500 in unleaded gasoline. B100 biodiesel has 117,090 BTU per gallon, or only 1.3% more energy per gallon than gasoline.

CO2 emissions are also interesting. Each 115,500 BTU of gasoline energy used adds 10,874 grams of fossil CO2 to the atmosphere. 115,500 BTU of diesel adds 10,963 grams. Each 115,500 BTU of B100 adds 2,746.
For the same energy output as a gallon of gasoline, B100 adds 1/4 the fossil CO2 to the atmosphere.
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Old 02-10-2007, 05:32 PM   #27
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And that doesn't even start to account for one of the largest consumer of grid power in the US, drum roll, you guessed it petroleum refineries. It takes a LOT of power to convert crude in to gasoline and diesel.

I think Darell once said it took more power to just make a gallon of gas then it takes to use that same power to move his RAV4 25 miles...
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Old 02-10-2007, 10:02 PM   #28
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:O Why no diesel in Canada? They already know we'll buy them??
We only got the smart fortwo cdi by a fluke.

the fluke was: Mercedes-Benz Canada was trying to certify the gasoline engine model, but the EU-spec fuel vapour recovery system was not good enough, so they would have had to redesign the entire fuel tank and charcoal canister etc....for the estimated sales of 1000 cars per year they were projecting in Canada, it wasn't worth it (actual average annual sales are more like 3500).

So they switched to certifying the diesel, because it needed no such system.

Once the smart cars are sold in both Canada AND the USA, we will get the crumbs that fall off the US table. If smart USA does not bring in a cdi diesel, we won't get one either.

The other issue is that the model 451 diesel has an open-loop particle filter, and its EU-4 emission standards are not as strict as 2007 CDN and US standards. So if the US (and we) ever do get another smart fortwo diesel, it will have Mercedes' BlueTec smission control system in it.
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Old 02-11-2007, 12:42 AM   #29
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Brock -

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And that doesn't even start to account for one of the largest consumer of grid power in the US, drum roll, you guessed it petroleum refineries. It takes a LOT of power to convert crude in to gasoline and diesel.

I think Darell once said it took more power to just make a gallon of gas then it takes to use that same power to move his RAV4 25 miles...
Oh jeez, is it really that dysfunctional? I am inclined to believe that but I want to read the article.

And that doesn't included the military cost of maintaining access to the crude, right?

CarloSW2

Addendum : This thread made me google the following :

"rocky mountain institute gas refinery"

Which led me to here :

http://www.rmi.org/images/other/Ener...rogenMyths.pdf

The thrust of this article is an argument in favor of fuel cells, but it touches on fuel conversion efficiences.

YF(uel)MV

Quote:
Taken From :
Twenty Hydrogen Myths
#E03-05
AMORY B. LOVINS, CEO, ROCKY MOUNTAIN INSTITUTE
20 June 2003, corrected and updated 17 February 2005

Myth #3. Making hydrogen uses more energy than it yields, so it?s prohibitively inefficient. Any conversion from one form of energy to another consumes more useful energy than it yields. If it could do the opposite, creating energy out of nothing, you could create a perpetual-motion machine violating the laws of physics. Conversion losses are unavoidable; the issue is whether they?re worth incurring. If they were intolerable as a matter of principle, as Myth #3 implies, then we?d have to stop making gasoline from crude oil (~73?91% efficient from wellhead to retail pump42) and electricity from fossil fuel (~29?35% efficient from coal at the power plant to retail meter). Such conversion losses are thus not specific to producing hydrogen. Hydrogen production is typically about 7243 to 8544 percent efficient in natural-gas reformers or ~70?75% efficient in electrolyzers;45 the rest is heat that may also be reusable. (These efficiency figures are all reduced by 15% because of the way hydrogen?s energy content is normally measured.46) So why incur these losses to make hydrogen? Because hydrogen?s greater end-use efficiency can more than offset the conversion losses, much as an electric heat pump or air conditioner can offset fuel-to-electricity conversion losses by using one unit of electricity to concentrate and deliver several units of heat. That is, conversion losses and costs are tolerable if the resulting form of energy is more efficiently or conveniently usable than the original form, hence justified by its greater economic value. Making hydrogen can readily achieve this goal.

Crude oil can be more efficiently converted into delivered gasoline than can natural gas into delivered hydrogen.12 But that?s a red herring: the difference is far more than offset by the hydrogen?s 2?3-fold higher efficiency in running a fuel-cell car than gasoline?s in running an engine driven car. Using Japanese round numbers from Toyota, 88% of oil at the wellhead ends up as gasoline in your tank, and then 16% of that gasoline energy reaches the wheels of your typical modern car, so the well-to-wheels efficiency is 14%. A gasoline-fueled hybrid-electric car like the 2002 Toyota Prius nearly doubles the gasoline-to-wheels efficiency from 16% to 30% and the overall well-to-wheels efficiency from 14% to 26%. But locally reforming natural gas can deliver 70% of the gas?s wellhead energy into the car?s compressed-hydrogen tank. That ?meager? conversion efficiency is then more than offset by an advanced fuel-cell drivesystem?s superior 60% efficiency in converting that hydrogen energy into traction, for an overall well-to wheels efficiency of 42%. That?s three times higher than the normal gasoline-engine car?s, or 1.5 times higher than the gasoline-hybrid-electric car?s.47 This helps explain why most automakers see today?s gasoline-hybrid cars as a stepping-stone to their ultimate goal ? direct-hydrogen fuel-cell cars.

In competitive electricity markets, it may even make good economic sense to use hydrogen as an electricity storage medium. True, the overall round-trip efficiency of using electricity to split water, making hydrogen, storing it, and then converting it back into electricity in a fuel cell is relatively low at about 45% (after 25% electrolyzer losses and 40% fuel-cell losses) plus any byproduct heat recaptured from both units for space-conditioning or water heating. But this can still be worthwhile because it uses power from an efficient baseload plant (perhaps even a combinedcycle plant converting 50?60% of its fuel to electricity) to displace a very inefficient peaking
power plant (a simple-cycle gas turbine or engine-generator, often only 15?20% efficient).

This peak-shaving value is reflected in the marketplace. When the cost of peak power for the top 50?150 hours a year is $600?900/MWh, typically 30?40 times the cost of baseload power (~$20/MWh), the economics of storage become quite interesting. Distributed generation provides not only energy and peak capacity, but also ancillary services and deferral of grid upgrades. Hydrogen storage can also save power-plant fuel by permitting more flexible operation of the utility system with fuller utilization of intermittent sources like wind. Once all the distributed benefits are accounted for, using hydrogen for peak storage may be worthwhile, particularly in cities with transmission constraints (such as Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago, New York City, and Long Island). Such applications may be able to justify capital costs upwards of $4,000/kW. Another attractive use of large-scale hydrogen storage would be in places like New Zealand or Brazil, whose hydroelectric systems have too little storage (12 weeks in NZ) to provide resilience against drought ? but whose snowmelt or rainy seasons provide cheap surplus hydropower that could be stored as hydrogen, even in old gas-fields.

Many people assume that fuel makes more electricity if burned in an efficient power plant than if converted into hydrogen and then used in a fuel cell. This is not necessarily true. For example, using gasified biomass in a high-temperature molten-carbonate fuel cell, which needs no reformer, looks economically promising, even though reforming the biomass into hydrogen would be only about 60?65% efficient ? worse than for reforming natural gas.48
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Old 02-12-2007, 10:01 AM   #30
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It's 11.3%, but who's counting?
Hey Lug, kudos certainly for doing the diesel conversion. Are you going to convert the EPA average numbers on your Camel to diesel too?
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