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Anyone altering their driving habits due to outrageous gas prices?

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Old 05-04-2007, 09:35 PM   #16  
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There is supposed to be a 'no pump day' on May 15th. I have doubts how much that will ever help, but like to see it happen just once.
Of course, everyone will buy even more gas on the 14th or 16th.
Those are so frickin useless that I don't know why people bother to waste their time. When you look at the length of time required to refine crude oil into their components, not buying on one day will do nothing but punish the gas station owners who contrary to popular opinion are not getting rich quick. From an Economic perspective, its absolutely useless as a reduction in demand for petrol must be effective for the long term, and not just the immediate short term.

To deal with this issue, we are simply going to need to increase the supply of crude oil available along with the refining capacity needed, or we will need to decrease demand over the long term. Just increasing crude oil may not be enough as refineries are already running at, or near capacity for what they can produce. Of course, when you've got the oil industry operating with very little competition, there is really no incentive for them to simply spend hundreds of millions of dollars into building new refineries that liberals keep trying to block anyway when they very well could decrease their gigantic profits even if they sell more gasoline and diesel. This is why I believe alternative fuels research needs to be expedited, which is why the oil industry also opposes this. They want to maintain their near monopoly over the petrol and diesel market. Of course, this is going to be a very complex problem as alternative fuels like Bio-diesel and E85 could significantly effect the agricultural sector.
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Old 05-04-2007, 09:39 PM   #17  
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An automatic transmission has more internal parasitic drag plus a high pressure oil pump.
Its pretty interesting how efficient automatics have gotten. They have gotten to the point where they very nearly offer similar fuel economy. I believe a lot of it has to do with automatics offering many more gear ratios with 5 and 6 speeds starting to become common in even regular vehicles. It will also be interesting how those new CVT's will play a role as they provide the performance of a manual, convenience of an automatic, but fuel economy that is very good.
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Old 05-04-2007, 10:09 PM   #18  
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It will also be interesting how those new CVT's will play a role as they provide the performance of a manual, convenience of an automatic, but fuel economy that is very good.
So far so good. The CVT is great, and is rated 23/32.
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Old 05-05-2007, 06:17 AM   #19  
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Thank you for the explaination. I would have thought it would be the loss of power using a clutch mechasim that a manual needs.
The force required to hold a clutch engaged is supplied by springs which are compressed by the drivers left foot only when the clutch needs to be released. No external power is required to keep the clutch engaged.
To keep clutch packs and bands engaged in an auto trans requires some fluid pressure which is generated by a pump which is driven by the motor.
As mentioned above auto's have gotten extremely efficient lately and will only get better.
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Old 05-05-2007, 12:50 PM   #20  
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I still don't think that Hybrids are practical considering their cost premium over a regular car. A $2100 income tax deduction won't make much of a difference for most people, and it would take many years for the gas savings due to the hybrid to finally break even with the price premium for buying the hybrid technology. The time required to break even has been calculated to be between 5-8 years depending on what vehicle. As we all know, a rechargable battery's ability to hold charge diminishes as it ages. By that period of time, you may be getting close to possibly needing to replace the battery to maintain the same level of efficiency from the vehicle, not to mention to added costs associated due to wear and tear on the various hybrid components.

While they may cut down on pollution and CO2 emissions, you are also adding more toxic batteries with toxic metals to society that needs to be dealt with.
The Honda Civic Hybrid does not really cost much more then the gasoline version equipped simularly so there is no real premium that is paid. The battery pack (which Honda describes simular to a pack of D cell batteries) are warrantied for 80,000 miles and even if you need to replace the entire pack it is not that expensive (nothing like the cost of the Toyota Prius which is around $4000). Since the batteries thrown away really are just like a batch of D cell batteries and not the regular car automotive battteries, the enviromental effect should be much less then the pollution put out by gasoline only engined automobiles.

There should be no additional wear and tear or cost on the various Hybrid components because they are mostly computer chips, relays, regenerative brakes, most with a CVT transmission and a electric motor. Very limited moving parts and no more then you probably have in a normal gasoline engined auto.


So if you figure in the gas savings in dollars and the federal tax deduction you could come out thousands of dollars ahead in the next few years of ownership. And since the in respect to the Honda Civic Hybrid does not really cost a premium over the gasoline verison (equipped the same) the is no time period to break even, it is starts to save you money immediately.

And I agree people have the right to drive any kind of vehicle they want. If they love to drive huge SUVs that only get 14 mpg then that is great but, stop complaining about gas prices because you picked your bed so sleep in it and shut up!

Last edited by unotis; 05-05-2007 at 01:00 PM..
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Old 05-05-2007, 12:56 PM   #21  
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Nope not at all I love to drive and will continue to do so we are at $1.03 dollars a litre in London and out in BC they are at 1.30 a litre At this price it costs me about 100 plus to fill up the van from empty so all we do is fill it when it hits a half tank and live with it. We still haul our trailer around for the wife and kids to go camping and drive to Niagara falls and Toronto a few times a month for hockey and cheerleading etc so no matter what teh price of gas we aren't changing a thing.
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Old 05-05-2007, 02:48 PM   #22  
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Not really but I will participate in the dont buy gas day on may15th.
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Old 05-05-2007, 04:59 PM   #23  
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What if you don't want a Honda Civic?

The problem with batteries is that their ability to hold a charge diminishes with age and usage. They will simply be nowhere as efficient as those cells age. Me personally, I would be much more comfortable with the extra polution considering how toxic some of those metals used in rechargable batteries can be especially if they get into water supplies. Most compact cars are already rated ULEV or SULEV in emissions anyway and produce very little smog forming emissions compared to what they would have been producing even just 5 years ago.

As for wear on parts, you've got all sorts of electronic parts that can become less effective with age. You've got increased demands being put on a starter that is constantly in use as its constantly shutting the motor on and off. Even if a part is non-mechanical, it still ages and can become less effective as it ages.

I also have to disagree with pricing on the hybrid Civic. A loaded Civic EX costs $18700 while a simlarly equipped Civic Hybrid starts at $22600. It tops at over $24k if you add navigation to it. That's a $3000 price premium right off the bat, which is a fairly percentage of the cost of the car. Also keep in mind that Hybrids are in higher demand and as a result will not be discounted as much at the time of purchase, which results in the price difference being even greater.


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Originally Posted by unotis View Post
The Honda Civic Hybrid does not really cost much more then the gasoline version equipped simularly so there is no real premium that is paid. The battery pack (which Honda describes simular to a pack of D cell batteries) are warrantied for 80,000 miles and even if you need to replace the entire pack it is not that expensive (nothing like the cost of the Toyota Prius which is around $4000). Since the batteries thrown away really are just like a batch of D cell batteries and not the regular car automotive battteries, the enviromental effect should be much less then the pollution put out by gasoline only engined automobiles.

There should be no additional wear and tear or cost on the various Hybrid components because they are mostly computer chips, relays, regenerative brakes, most with a CVT transmission and a electric motor. Very limited moving parts and no more then you probably have in a normal gasoline engined auto.


So if you figure in the gas savings in dollars and the federal tax deduction you could come out thousands of dollars ahead in the next few years of ownership. And since the in respect to the Honda Civic Hybrid does not really cost a premium over the gasoline verison (equipped the same) the is no time period to break even, it is starts to save you money immediately.

And I agree people have the right to drive any kind of vehicle they want. If they love to drive huge SUVs that only get 14 mpg then that is great but, stop complaining about gas prices because you picked your bed so sleep in it and shut up!
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Old 05-05-2007, 05:20 PM   #24  
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I am looking at cars equiped with the clean diesels that will start arriving in 2008. Very high mileage, very clean (especially if they burn biodiesel instead of oil based diesel). They will sell at a $1 - $2,000 premium over the gas based autos, but should get much higher mileage.

For example, the 2008 new diesel Volkswagen Jetta is projected to get 60+ MPG on the highway and 40+ in the city. This in a car that can seat 5 and has good acceleration. They have been selling diesels in Europe for years - 40-50% of all autos sold there are diesel.

Americans (myself included) have negative reactions to diesels based upon the crap engines dumped on us by car makers in the past, so there will some perceptions to overcome. But this is a chance to continue to sell a larger vehicle and still get decent mileage.

The 2008 cars that will be equiped with these new clean diesels will be mostly European with the Japanese joining in 2009 & 2010. No sign of our US car makers participating, despite the fact that some of the leading diesel cars in Europe are US branded.

I think the future is diesel cars and biodiesel fuel, a plus for an agricultural state like Arkansas that grows tons of soy beans.
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Old 05-05-2007, 06:34 PM   #25  
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My mother in law drives a 2002 jetta turbo diesel and it has over 300 thousand kilometers on it and it still gets well over 1000 kilometers per tank of fuel.
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Old 05-06-2007, 10:51 AM   #26  
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What if you don't want a Honda Civic?
I also have to disagree with pricing on the hybrid Civic. A loaded Civic EX costs $18700 while a simlarly equipped Civic Hybrid starts at $22600. It tops at over $24k if you add navigation to it. That's a $3000 price premium right off the bat, which is a fairly percentage of the cost of the car. Also keep in mind that Hybrids are in higher demand and as a result will not be discounted as much at the time of purchase, which results in the price difference being even greater.
If you don't like the Honda Civic for some reason, that is a matter of taste. so don't purchase one.

And you're correct about the sticker price being more for the Hybrid over the EX, it is exactly $3090 difference.

But, they do still discount the Civic Hybrid and so you could probably purchase one for around $21900 add to that the extra $1050 federal tax refund you would receive back and the aprox. $700 you would save in gas cost yearly (if you only drive average miles per year at the now $3.00 to $3.30 per gallon). those two savings would mean the actual cost of the Civic Hybrid would be $20150.

So at the rate (gas prices will probably go up) we are using right now, you would save a total of $4550 over a 5 year ownership of the car. If you drive more then average miles per year you will see a dramatic increase in savings.

And the starter is not used to restart the car during normal driving, the electric motor does it (which is why you don't notice the engine coming back on) no starter noise to tell you. so if that is the case why would your starter wear out any quicker then any other car?

Last edited by unotis; 05-06-2007 at 10:56 AM..
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Old 05-06-2007, 11:01 AM   #27  
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I am looking at cars equiped with the clean diesels that will start arriving in 2008. Very high mileage, very clean (especially if they burn biodiesel instead of oil based diesel). They will sell at a $1 - $2,000 premium over the gas based autos, but should get much higher mileage.

For example, the 2008 new diesel Volkswagen Jetta is projected to get 60+ MPG on the highway and 40+ in the city. This in a car that can seat 5 and has good acceleration. They have been selling diesels in Europe for years - 40-50% of all autos sold there are diesel.

Americans (myself included) have negative reactions to diesels based upon the crap engines dumped on us by car makers in the past, so there will some perceptions to overcome. But this is a chance to continue to sell a larger vehicle and still get decent mileage.

The 2008 cars that will be equiped with these new clean diesels will be mostly European with the Japanese joining in 2009 & 2010. No sign of our US car makers participating, despite the fact that some of the leading diesel cars in Europe are US branded.

I think the future is diesel cars and biodiesel fuel, a plus for an agricultural state like Arkansas that grows tons of soy beans.
You are correct, and the smart is suppose to have the diesel version join the line up in 2010 and that car should get up to 70 mpg average.

I've owned several Mercedes diesel, the last was a 1997 300D and that car got up to 35 mpg (and it was a huge car also).
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Old 05-06-2007, 01:10 PM   #28  
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Upcoming diesel technology is one field that does have me excited. I have always been a fan of diesels. Ford has been doing a lot of research on possibly using diesel motors that will run on the new clean diesel in the future, but i'm not sure if they have any plans for using those motors. C&D tested a Focus prototype a while back and they were able to average roughly 35mpg under spirited driving which is promising. The best thing is that while diesels today are very complex, its not like you have to worry about all of the electrical stuff like you would in a hybrid.

The good thing about biodiesel is that it is created from renewable resources(and a good one at that since soybeans don't exactly wear down the soil as quickly as other crops). I am hoping that as increased demand drives the price point for the Soybean market higher, that maybe the government can eventually stop subsidizing this industry as a lot of government spending occurrs here. The bad news from what I understand is that conventional diesel motors are not compatible with bio-diesel, although maybe someone could explain that. I do know that all of the public transit buses in Cincinnati run on bio diesel and they run incredibly clean with hardly any soot coming from the exhaust pipes.

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Originally Posted by SLedford View Post
I am looking at cars equiped with the clean diesels that will start arriving in 2008. Very high mileage, very clean (especially if they burn biodiesel instead of oil based diesel). They will sell at a $1 - $2,000 premium over the gas based autos, but should get much higher mileage.

For example, the 2008 new diesel Volkswagen Jetta is projected to get 60+ MPG on the highway and 40+ in the city. This in a car that can seat 5 and has good acceleration. They have been selling diesels in Europe for years - 40-50% of all autos sold there are diesel.

Americans (myself included) have negative reactions to diesels based upon the crap engines dumped on us by car makers in the past, so there will some perceptions to overcome. But this is a chance to continue to sell a larger vehicle and still get decent mileage.

The 2008 cars that will be equiped with these new clean diesels will be mostly European with the Japanese joining in 2009 & 2010. No sign of our US car makers participating, despite the fact that some of the leading diesel cars in Europe are US branded.

I think the future is diesel cars and biodiesel fuel, a plus for an agricultural state like Arkansas that grows tons of soy beans.
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Old 05-06-2007, 01:26 PM   #29  
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It all boils down to matter of taste, but I used the Civic as an example since that's the vehicle we are discussing. As for extra parts, you are going to have a generator, electric motor, battery, some sort of voltage regulator, and some form of power inverter if i'm not mistaken. There is also going to have to be a clutch in there somewhere that would allow for the gasoline engine to be started on and off.

Also, how does a $2100 tax deduction equal $1100 in money back? I'm not an accountant, but that sounds a little optimistic for a $2100 tax break. The other difference is that the vast majority of people do not achieve the fuel economy figures that are estimated for that vehicle. It will definately depend on what region you live in, and what accessories you will be running. If you need to run the climate control non-stop, then that won't offer you much of a benefit since the gasoline engine will be always running. I know that the new Camry Hybrid actually runs the A/C compressor off of the electric system, but something like that is going to also put a fairly heavy drain.

CR or all publications posted a fuel economy test they did on hybrids, and concluded that hybrids like the Civic average 25% lower than the EPA figures, and that the Prius also average 15% lower than the EPA figures. This was way before the new Civic Hybrid came out. The other issue with hybrids is that they rely on a very small gasoline motor that is assisted by an electric motor for boosting total output. This is fine only as long as the electric motor has charge, but can prove to be an issue if you are making a long hill climb that drains the battery. Sure it will recharge once you reach the top, but it can prove to be slightly challenging once the battery can no longer provide any assist going up a long hill.

What I think will be awesome is if they can find a cost effective way to adapt hybrid technology to some of those new clean diesel vehicles that may be coming out.

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If you don't like the Honda Civic for some reason, that is a matter of taste. so don't purchase one.

And you're correct about the sticker price being more for the Hybrid over the EX, it is exactly $3090 difference.

But, they do still discount the Civic Hybrid and so you could probably purchase one for around $21900 add to that the extra $1050 federal tax refund you would receive back and the aprox. $700 you would save in gas cost yearly (if you only drive average miles per year at the now $3.00 to $3.30 per gallon). those two savings would mean the actual cost of the Civic Hybrid would be $20150.

So at the rate (gas prices will probably go up) we are using right now, you would save a total of $4550 over a 5 year ownership of the car. If you drive more then average miles per year you will see a dramatic increase in savings.

And the starter is not used to restart the car during normal driving, the electric motor does it (which is why you don't notice the engine coming back on) no starter noise to tell you. so if that is the case why would your starter wear out any quicker then any other car?
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Old 05-06-2007, 02:05 PM   #30  
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It all boils down to matter of taste, but I used the Civic as an example since that's the vehicle we are discussing. As for extra parts, you are going to have a generator, electric motor, battery, some sort of voltage regulator, and some form of power inverter if i'm not mistaken. There is also going to have to be a clutch in there somewhere that would allow for the gasoline engine to be started on and off.

Also, how does a $2100 tax deduction equal $1100 in money back? I'm not an accountant, but that sounds a little optimistic for a $2100 tax break. The other difference is that the vast majority of people do not achieve the fuel economy figures that are estimated for that vehicle. It will definately depend on what region you live in, and what accessories you will be running. If you need to run the climate control non-stop, then that won't offer you much of a benefit since the gasoline engine will be always running. I know that the new Camry Hybrid actually runs the A/C compressor off of the electric system, but something like that is going to also put a fairly heavy drain.

CR or all publications posted a fuel economy test they did on hybrids, and concluded that hybrids like the Civic average 25% lower than the EPA figures, and that the Prius also average 15% lower than the EPA figures. This was way before the new Civic Hybrid came out. The other issue with hybrids is that they rely on a very small gasoline motor that is assisted by an electric motor for boosting total output. This is fine only as long as the electric motor has charge, but can prove to be an issue if you are making a long hill climb that drains the battery. Sure it will recharge once you reach the top, but it can prove to be slightly challenging once the battery can no longer provide any assist going up a long hill.

What I think will be awesome is if they can find a cost effective way to adapt hybrid technology to some of those new clean diesel vehicles that may be coming out.
The gas mileage for the Toyota Prius was much lower then advertised but the Civic Hybrid gets slightly better then the EPA mileage estimates (it was the Accord Hybrid that did not). And your estimates are way off anyway, 25% worse would mean the Civic Hybrid only got 36 mpg (that is the same a gas version gets). You couldn't get 36 mpg dragging an anchor around behind your Hybrid Civic.

The batteries used in the battery pack are NiMH not Lead Acid style batteries, they are 2 1/2 times more powerful for the same weight as Lead Acid and have much longer life. The Civic Hybrid helps to cause this longer life by never charging the batteries by more then 80% of total charge and they automatically start charging when they reach 40% of total charge. NiMH bateries don't pose as much of an enviromental risk because they can be totally recycled.

So because of this unlike the ill founded rumours to the same, your Honda Civic Hybrid will not stop running up a steep hill because the electric motor runs out ot juice. The engine constantly recharges the 158 volt battery pack. the 20 hp Motor/Generator has plenty of torgue to help the 110 hp gasoline engine when needed.

And as far as my $1050 extra refund estimate, you normally get back 50% (rule of thumb) of your deduction in the form of a refund. So a $2100 federal tax deduction equals $1050 refund.

I do agree diesel technology will improve things for us all, if Americans can accept the technology (we don't seem to do that very easily) evidenced by all the rumours floating around about Hybrids right now.

Last edited by unotis; 05-06-2007 at 02:20 PM..
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