Free Republic
Browse · Search
General/Chat
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

‘Green’ cars still a giant waste of money
driving.ca ^ | May 16, 2014 | David Booth

Posted on 05/16/2014 12:37:47 PM PDT by rickmichaels

The only thing environmentalists revel in — more than predicting a fiery doom for our planet — is gloating over the successful replacement of the infernal combustion engine with good, clean electricity. So, it is, then, that there’s been much trumpeting of the news from Norway and, more recently, the Netherlands, where plug-in vehicles have seemingly achieved the enviroweenie’s holy grail: mainstream acceptance.

The numbers are startling. While North Americans remain devoted to their internal combustion dinosaurs drinking, well, dinosaur juice — Toyota sold barely 200 plug-in versions of its Prius hybrid last year in Canada and Nissan only 470 Leafs — both the Netherlands and Norway boast that plug-in vehicles represent more than 5% of their total car market.

Even those impressive numbers don’t reflect the 42-point, above-the-fold headlines that EV sales were generating in Holland last year. In December, PHEVs accounted for an incredible 23.8% of Dutch new-car registrations. Yes, almost one in four cars sold in Holland in December was some form of plug-in electric vehicle, either the plug-in hybrid version of Toyota’s Prius, a battery-powered electric vehicle like the Nissan Leaf or an extended-range EV such as Opel’s Ampera (Chevrolet’s Volt in a slinkier dress). Indeed, four out of the top five selling passenger cars in the Netherlands plugged into the electrical grid. Surely, it is the green car revolution we have all been told is imminent.

Or is it?

What’s driving or, more accurately now that updated figures are available, was driving the Dutch EV boom was incentives. A recent study by the International Council on Clean Transportation (ICCT) revealed that Holland, along with Norway, is throwing money around like Justin Bieber at a Miami strip club. Taxes and registration fees are waived, electricity is subsidized as are the stations, and parking fees, seemingly an issue in overcrowded Europe, are often waived.

The totality of the incentives is staggering. According to the ICCT, Norwegian subsidies are worth up to 11,500 euros, equivalent to 55% of the cost of a new car. Holland’s numbers are even more generous: Depending on the exact propulsion system and the carbon emissions the government deems it may save (the Netherlands subsidizes plug-in hybrids more favourably than EVs, while Norway promotes pure, battery-powered electric vehicles), going electric in Holland could save you as much as 75% of the purchase price of a Volvo V60 plug-in hybrid.

Also lost in all the hype is that the Dutch subsidies greatly favour corporations and private business. Private purchasers are, according to Peter Monk and Zifei Yang, authors of the ICCT’s Driving Electrification white paper, eligible for much less (1,800 euros for a privately bought Renault Zoe versus 6,100 euros for a company car, and 20,900 euros for a privately owned plug-in Volvo V60 versus 38,300 euros — out of a purchase price of 51,571 euros — for the company-leased alternative). Small wonder that, depending on the exact nature of your vehicle, up to three quarters of Dutch plug-in sales are to corporations and private businesses. Yes, Holland’s green car revolution is really just a corporate tax dodge.

And the Dutch really have been following the money. As of Jan. 1, the government has reduced its corporate welfare program, and sales of anything that requires an electrical umbilical cord have plummeted. EV and PHEV sales in December were 9,309; in January they were 404. Sales of best-selling models were particularly hard hit; Mitsubishi’s hybrid Outlander dropped to 83 in January compared with 4,988 just the month before. This drop was made all the more calamitous for Mitsu’s electrification prospects since, of the 8,197 Outlander PHEVs sold in Europe last year, 8,009 were to Holland. Other marques saw equally precipitous losses; BMW’s i3 from 225 to 15 units, Tesla’s Model S from 578 to seven and Nissan’s Leaf from … well, you get the idea.

But, you’re thinking, at least they got some of those horrible fuel-sucking pigs off the road with a commensurate reduction in tailpipe emissions and fuel consumption.

Not so fast. According to autobloggreen.com, “Fleet owners in the Netherlands are finding out that you can overshoot the mark by 80% in fuel consumption with plug-in hybrid electric vehicles.” Arval, a leading leasing company, told Dutch Nos television that the 60 corporately driven Opel Ampera, Chevrolet Volt and Toyota Plug-in Prius vehicles it surveyed were consuming 80% more fuel than their government rating (2.2 L/100 km for the Prius; 1.6 L/100 km for the Ampera/Volt) — the worst case, an extended-range Opel, consuming as much as 7.8 L/100 km.

It seems that while the corporations like the write-offs the tax exemptions bring, the people actually diving these plug-in write-offs aren’t bothering to, well, plug them in, instead often driving them as if they were gasoline powered only (where the Ampera/Volt is particularly inefficient). Indeed, Arval director Dick Bakker told the broadcaster, “Most people don’t use the car properly. If someone with an Ampera or Prius plug-in hybrid is using the same amount of petrol as you in your old (Renault) Clio (subcompact), then we have made few advances over the past few years.”

So here’s another take on Holland’s green car revolution. The Dutch government offered massive tax incentives to promote “green” cars. Corporations welcomed the huge write-offs. The resultant emissions reduction in no way warranted the vast amounts of public monies spent. It’s funny how we haven’t seen that headline.


TOPICS: Miscellaneous
KEYWORDS: efv; energy
Navigation: use the links below to view more comments.
first 1-5051-58 next last

1 posted on 05/16/2014 12:37:47 PM PDT by rickmichaels
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: rickmichaels

Why can’t we be more like Europe. Land of welfare, free health care, 45% income tax, 19% VAT, tax, and have another country pick up the tab for national defense? They have trains!!!


2 posted on 05/16/2014 12:46:28 PM PDT by Organic Panic
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: rickmichaels

There was a program on solar panels. Said the same thing about the panels. And also that they will always have to be subsidized.


3 posted on 05/16/2014 12:51:47 PM PDT by Sacajaweau
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Organic Panic

“Why can’t we be more like Europe.”

I used to hear that from my Israeli friends all the time. Their ignorance made me slightly nauseous. They’d extol the virtues of their “free” medical system. Then, in the next breath they’d say, “Well, if you want good service, you slip a few bucks under the table.” The worst thing is, you can’t argue with them. It’s as if they figuratively poke their fingers in their ears and scream, “La la la la la!”


4 posted on 05/16/2014 12:57:58 PM PDT by Gen.Blather
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: rickmichaels

Well, it only takes 15 minutes to drive from one end of Holland to the other, right?


5 posted on 05/16/2014 12:59:47 PM PDT by Dr. Bogus Pachysandra ( Ya can't pick up a turd by the clean end!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: rickmichaels; All


Help FR Continue the Conservative Fight!
Your Monthly and Quarterly Donations
Help Keep FR In the Battle!

Sponsoring FReepers are contributing
$10 Each time a New Monthly Donor signs up!
Get more bang for your FR buck!
Click Here To Sign Up Now!


6 posted on 05/16/2014 12:59:52 PM PDT by musicman (Until I see the REAL Long Form Vault BC, he's just "PRES__ENT" Obama = Without "ID")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Gen.Blather

Many Europeans believe in the old adage: “You can pay now or you can pay later,” however, the vast majority of them seem only to pay attention to the latter half of that statement.


7 posted on 05/16/2014 1:02:34 PM PDT by rickmichaels
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies]

To: Red Badger

Ping.


8 posted on 05/16/2014 1:05:06 PM PDT by Army Air Corps (Four Fried Chickens and a Coke)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Army Air Corps

I have had several green cars.

A green Oldsmobile Cutlass.
A green Chevy Malibu.
A green Chrysler Cricket.
A green Ford F-100.
A green Ford Aspire.............


9 posted on 05/16/2014 1:08:50 PM PDT by Red Badger (Soon there will be another American Civil War. Will make the first one seem like a Tea Party........)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 8 | View Replies]

To: Army Air Corps

10 posted on 05/16/2014 1:11:28 PM PDT by Red Badger (Soon there will be another American Civil War. Will make the first one seem like a Tea Party........)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 8 | View Replies]

To: Red Badger

seriously, a car named the Cricket?


11 posted on 05/16/2014 1:12:39 PM PDT by GeronL (Vote for Conservatives not for Republicans!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | View Replies]

To: rickmichaels

12 posted on 05/16/2014 1:13:58 PM PDT by dfwgator
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Red Badger
I got you a brand new Mustang Cricket, a 1965 1972.
13 posted on 05/16/2014 1:15:38 PM PDT by MUDDOG
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | View Replies]

To: GeronL

Yes, it was called the Hillman Avenger in the UK where it was made, hence the name, Cricket. It was a great little car, had a 1250 CC engine and a side draft carburetor.................


14 posted on 05/16/2014 1:15:46 PM PDT by Red Badger (Soon there will be another American Civil War. Will make the first one seem like a Tea Party........)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 11 | View Replies]

To: MUDDOG

I would love to have either of those now.......................


15 posted on 05/16/2014 1:16:44 PM PDT by Red Badger (Soon there will be another American Civil War. Will make the first one seem like a Tea Party........)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 13 | View Replies]

To: GeronL

You must be a youngster.
The Plymouth Cricket was sold in the early 70s.
It was from Britain where it was the Hilman Avenger.


16 posted on 05/16/2014 1:17:00 PM PDT by nascarnation (Toxic Baraq Syndrome: hopefully infecting a Dem candidate near you)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 11 | View Replies]

To: Organic Panic

WSJ had a story this week that the high sulfur coal from here in Indiana (that the EPA says can’t be used in the US) is barged down the Mississippi, then freightered across the Atlantic, and is burned for power in Germany - and it’s still cheaper than their domestic coal.


17 posted on 05/16/2014 1:19:28 PM PDT by nascarnation (Toxic Baraq Syndrome: hopefully infecting a Dem candidate near you)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: GeronL

I had it for several years and then sold it privately. A few years later I spotted it thru the fence at a local junk yard. It had been wrecked. It’s kinda sad to see and old friend like that......................


18 posted on 05/16/2014 1:21:33 PM PDT by Red Badger (Soon there will be another American Civil War. Will make the first one seem like a Tea Party........)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 11 | View Replies]

To: nascarnation

I was born in the early 70’s


19 posted on 05/16/2014 1:23:43 PM PDT by GeronL (Vote for Conservatives not for Republicans!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 16 | View Replies]

To: rickmichaels

My sister lives in the Netherlands and she bikes or takes city transit everywhere — she has no car. So it’s not surprising in a small, urban setting where distances aren’t so great that you can’t walk/bike that an electric car makes sense. In the USA & Canada it’s a far different story. Commute distances are just too far and re-charging while at work is not a real option.


20 posted on 05/16/2014 1:23:56 PM PDT by Tallguy
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: nascarnation
The coal companies have to export because the market here is being regulated out of existence (that and nat gas is incredibly cheap). Despite that coal still produces the majority of our electric power:


21 posted on 05/16/2014 1:25:58 PM PDT by Wyatt's Torch
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 17 | View Replies]

To: nascarnation

Right next door in France they have nearly 100% clean affordable energy. The greenies gasp. It’s NUCLEAR. They do, however, plant a few stupid awful eyesore windmills to keep up appearances.


22 posted on 05/16/2014 1:26:19 PM PDT by Organic Panic
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 17 | View Replies]

To: Red Badger

That ad wouldn’t fly these days. The “fat agenda” lobby would be up in arms. Using a fat family to promote the spaciousness of a car just isn’t PC.


23 posted on 05/16/2014 1:26:44 PM PDT by rickmichaels
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | View Replies]

To: GeronL

You didn’t miss much on the Cricket, it was widely regarded as a typical British problem vehicle.


24 posted on 05/16/2014 1:27:36 PM PDT by nascarnation (Toxic Baraq Syndrome: hopefully infecting a Dem candidate near you)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 19 | View Replies]

To: Red Badger

Ah yes, the rebadged Hillman Avenger.


25 posted on 05/16/2014 1:29:40 PM PDT by Army Air Corps (Four Fried Chickens and a Coke)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | View Replies]

To: rickmichaels

Oh, I dunno about that. Maybe they could get Kirstie Alley to hawk it.................


26 posted on 05/16/2014 1:30:00 PM PDT by Red Badger (Soon there will be another American Civil War. Will make the first one seem like a Tea Party........)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 23 | View Replies]

To: rickmichaels

Well, OK. I mean, normally I wouldn't but if it's gonna save the penguin-eating baby polar bears from drowning and the planet too I guess I'll get my next Lambo in green. The dealer says sure, OK, but I dunno - they acted like they'd never heard the words "trailer hitch" before...

27 posted on 05/16/2014 1:31:22 PM PDT by Billthedrill
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: rickmichaels

The humor is that back then, people of that girth were fairly uncommon and today they are ubiquitous.


28 posted on 05/16/2014 1:31:49 PM PDT by nascarnation (Toxic Baraq Syndrome: hopefully infecting a Dem candidate near you)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 23 | View Replies]

To: nascarnation; GeronL

I had very little trouble out of mine.
Oh there was that time I was coming back to Florida on I-95 in Fredericksburg, VA when the Automatic Transmission fell out and it had to be towed back to Florida behind my mom’s van who had to drive all the way up to get us, after me and my wife spent the night in the local jail for having a stolen car that wasn’t stolen at all.........................


29 posted on 05/16/2014 1:34:01 PM PDT by Red Badger (Soon there will be another American Civil War. Will make the first one seem like a Tea Party........)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 24 | View Replies]

To: nascarnation

At least it wasn’t a Morris Marina.


30 posted on 05/16/2014 1:34:05 PM PDT by Army Air Corps (Four Fried Chickens and a Coke)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 24 | View Replies]

To: Red Badger

lolz


31 posted on 05/16/2014 1:34:52 PM PDT by GeronL (Vote for Conservatives not for Republicans!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 29 | View Replies]

To: Army Air Corps
Wikipedia: "the Morris Marina has been described as one of the worst cars of all time" LOL


32 posted on 05/16/2014 1:39:31 PM PDT by nascarnation (Toxic Baraq Syndrome: hopefully infecting a Dem candidate near you)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 30 | View Replies]

To: nascarnation

Many have been destroyed on Top Gear. :-)


33 posted on 05/16/2014 1:41:11 PM PDT by Army Air Corps (Four Fried Chickens and a Coke)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 32 | View Replies]

To: Red Badger

dropping rather big pieces of the motor doesn’t sound so great


34 posted on 05/16/2014 1:43:36 PM PDT by GeronL (Vote for Conservatives not for Republicans!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 29 | View Replies]

To: GeronL

When we got it back to FL, I bought a manual transmission and associated parts from a junk yard and converted it. It ran fine until the gear shift came out of the floor on a busy downtown bridge in Jacksonville. Had to drive 30 miles in 2nd gear all the way home..........................


35 posted on 05/16/2014 1:48:41 PM PDT by Red Badger (Soon there will be another American Civil War. Will make the first one seem like a Tea Party........)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 34 | View Replies]

To: Red Badger

Some cars should come with a spare


36 posted on 05/16/2014 1:50:41 PM PDT by GeronL (Vote for Conservatives not for Republicans!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 35 | View Replies]

To: nascarnation

I can vouch for that..............


37 posted on 05/16/2014 1:51:56 PM PDT by Red Badger (Soon there will be another American Civil War. Will make the first one seem like a Tea Party........)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 32 | View Replies]

To: GeronL; nascarnation

The cops said, “This car is stolen!”
I said, “Who in their right mind would steal this car?”.....................


38 posted on 05/16/2014 1:53:08 PM PDT by Red Badger (Soon there will be another American Civil War. Will make the first one seem like a Tea Party........)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 31 | View Replies]

To: Red Badger

Awesome! Not a bad looking rig for its era, just bad mechanicals and electricals.


39 posted on 05/16/2014 1:53:52 PM PDT by nascarnation (Toxic Baraq Syndrome: hopefully infecting a Dem candidate near you)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 38 | View Replies]

To: Red Badger

lol


40 posted on 05/16/2014 1:54:28 PM PDT by GeronL (Vote for Conservatives not for Republicans!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 38 | View Replies]

To: Billthedrill

My sex life is just like my Lamborghini!

(I don’t have one...)


41 posted on 05/16/2014 2:02:51 PM PDT by outofsalt (If history teaches us anything it's that history rarely teaches us anything.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 27 | View Replies]

To: GeronL; nascarnation

It was the license plate from the former owner (of an AAMCO transmission shop of all things!) that I had bought it from was the problem. When we bought it there was still several months left on the sticker, so I didn’t go and get a new registration. He apparently called the plate in to the DMV as ‘stolen’.

When we broke down on I-95, a highway patrolman gave us a ride to a AAMCO Transmission shop (!) just off the interstate about a mile or two away. They towed it in and told us they could not fix it, so we called my mom to come get us, and stayed with the car that night because she wouldn’t be there til the next day. The shop owner said is was okay to stay in the parking lot.

About 11 pm that night, I was reading a book and my wife was asleep in the driver’s seat. All of a sudden we were surrounded by cop cars and blue lights and sirens all over the place!

We were ordered out of the car with our hands up and all the rest.

We were taken into the local police station and questioned for what seems like hours, separately of course.

They got the same story from both of us, called the former owner in Florida and got everything straightened out. All I had to do was pay a fine for improper registration, about $52 IIRC, at the local Justice of the Peace office.

By this time it was daylight and the cops even bought us some coffee just as my mother and brother pulled into the parking lot, up from Florida..............................


42 posted on 05/16/2014 2:09:19 PM PDT by Red Badger (Soon there will be another American Civil War. Will make the first one seem like a Tea Party........)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 40 | View Replies]

To: GeronL
Some cars should come with a spare

Like my Fiat X1/9 I owned............

43 posted on 05/16/2014 2:41:21 PM PDT by Red Badger (Soon there will be another American Civil War. Will make the first one seem like a Tea Party........)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 36 | View Replies]

To: Red Badger

lolz


44 posted on 05/16/2014 2:41:44 PM PDT by GeronL (Vote for Conservatives not for Republicans!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 43 | View Replies]

To: nascarnation

“WSJ had a story this week that the high sulfur coal from here in Indiana (that the EPA says can’t be used in the US) is barged down the Mississippi, then freightered across the Atlantic, and is burned for power in Germany - and it’s still cheaper than their domestic coal.”

I understand that they still “make things” other than software, porn, and regulations there, so, I guess they need it.


45 posted on 05/16/2014 3:37:29 PM PDT by The Antiyuppie ("When small men cast long shadows, then it is very late in the day.")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 17 | View Replies]

To: nascarnation

When I was in the UK in the 90s, I had a 1978 Vauxhall Chevette. Faded green that looked like infected snot. Paid 350 dollars for it

I called it the “Booger.” Even wrote it on the rear fenders and the trunk lid with permanent marker.

Best car I had over there. Lasted almost a year and half till it lost second gear. Took me all over.


46 posted on 05/16/2014 3:44:41 PM PDT by 5Madman2 (There is no such thing as an experienced suicide bomber)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 32 | View Replies]

To: 5Madman2
If you like to read books, try Bob Lutz's latest. The section on when he was with GM Europe in the 70s is absolutely hilarious.


47 posted on 05/16/2014 3:47:11 PM PDT by nascarnation (Toxic Baraq Syndrome: hopefully infecting a Dem candidate near you)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 46 | View Replies]

To: 5Madman2

We had a Vauxhall here in the states. My parents bought it brand spanking new in 1962 to replace a 1949 English Ford.

My brother totaled it 2 weeks after the purchase. My parents bought a used one from a second hand dealer, and bought the totaled car from the insurance company and put it in the back yard.

They used the parts as needed on the used car. I got my license a bit later, and used to drive that car all over the place. I loved it. It cornered well, and was easy on gas. It lasted forever it seemed.


48 posted on 05/16/2014 3:51:41 PM PDT by greeneyes (Moderation in defense of your country is NO virtue. Let Freedom Ring.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 46 | View Replies]

To: nascarnation

I can imagine

Thanks for the reference.

While I was in UK for 4 years, I bought many old cheap pieces of crap-drove them until they died and sent them to scrap yard.

The net result was even though I bought so many cars (around 6), I was still way ahead of the game financially, comparing the cost vs. a meager 250 dollar a month car payment


49 posted on 05/16/2014 3:53:24 PM PDT by 5Madman2 (There is no such thing as an experienced suicide bomber)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 47 | View Replies]

To: Red Badger

On our honeymoon in 1971, my wife and I rented a Hillman Avenger in Scotland, but as I recall, it didn’t look a bit like that car in post 10. I note that the tag on that car is 1972 and likely the car we rented was around that model year.


50 posted on 05/16/2014 4:53:16 PM PDT by OldPossum ("It's" is the contraction of "it" and "is"; think about ITS implications.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 14 | View Replies]


Navigation: use the links below to view more comments.
first 1-5051-58 next last

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
General/Chat
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson