28 March 2007

Drive Electric

We've talked before about oil concerns, about fuel mileage, and about energy alternatives.
I'm still drivin' the same old car (a '95 model with 208,000 miles on it), that I was driving when I discussed driving techniques to get the
best gas mileage in your own car.

Mike's comment to this post is an indication that like so many alternatives available to us today, nothing comes without cost, including the new Hybrid cars.
I'd like nothing better than to tell Hugo Chavez to "drink your oil!",
but there just aren't any really good alternatives for us right now.
(Oddly, the only Service Station that sells the new E85 ethanol fuel anywhere near me is one of loonie Hugo's "Citgo" stations!)

I'd love to drive one of these, but although it's a great first step and a wonderful "proof of concept" vehicle that I hope will open doors to more practical alternatives in the future, it presently comes with a price tag that only Warren Buffet or Bill Gates or their peers can handle.

I really like what I see here. With the power-to-weight ratio of a sports car, and the claim of 45 miles per gallon on the highway from the 2.3 liter engine, I'm tempted, in spite of the $30,000 entry cost.
Still, with the open cockpit the Stallion would be an uncomfortable ride during rain or snow, even though it has heat and air-conditioning for its occupants. Why doesn't someone produce something similar with an enclosed cabin?

Unfortunately, I can get similar fuel mileage with something like this, while carrying four people and their luggage in a heated/air conditioned environment, protected from the rain, snow, and road spray, for about half the cost of the Stallion, and one tenth the cost of the Tesla.

Oh well.
Do you know a better alternative?


garrett said...

One thing I can tell you with absolute certainty is that you can not carry four adults in a Chevy Aveo in any sort of reasonable way. The Aveo is in nearly every way the very worst vehicle for sale on the US market...by some pretty huge margins.

But really, the "better alternative" to the Aveo would be to go out and buy pretty much any other small car on the market just off a lease, or if you really want something as small as an Aveo, you can buy a brand new Fit/Yaris/Versa which are all 100x better cars.

There has been so little demand for efficient cars in America that the marketplace killed them. The Civic HX, CRX HF, Metro XFi, etc. Until very, very recently, fleet fuel economy had been falling in the US for more than a decade.

But like I said, I'm unusually cheap. I like cool cars, but my daily-driver is always going to be something I buy for a grand and feed junkyard parts and recycled antifreeze...I even use recycled oils. Thats my own little contribution to recycling. And why not? My beaters get great mileage, don't attract attention from thieves, cost little to insure, and are surprisingly reliable.

Jim Howard said...

What you want is a Chevy Volt, their proposed plug in hybird.

If your commute is less than 20 miles, you might get infinate miles per gallon.

I sure hope GM actually produces this car.


John said...

A diesel Volkswagen powered by used fryer oil. Been doing it for over a year!

$1 a gallon and 40+ mpg.