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Donít Believe the Hype About the Plug-In Car
Minyanville ^ | 12/15/09 | Scott Reeves

Posted on 12/17/2009 5:09:38 AM PST by FlyVet

Hybrid gasoline-electric and all-electric cars will continue to cost more than vehicles with a conventional internal combustion engine for the foreseeable future, putting the new technology beyond the reach of many car buyers.

Sales of hybrid and all-electric cars therefore may be limited to affluent buyers who can afford to make an environmental statement and the vast majority of vehicles will continue to be powered by gasoline or diesel engines. While promising, the new lithium-ion battery technology won’t significantly reduce pollution or dependence on foreign oil by 2030.

(Excerpt) Read more at minyanville.com ...


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Culture/Society; Government; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: automotive; environment; hybrid
Further excerpts:

Projections of future battery pack costs are uncertain, as they depend on the rate of improvement in battery technology and manufacturing techniques, potential breakthroughs in new technology, possible relaxation of battery protection parameters as experience is gained, and the level of production.”

Based on the current state of the technology, the cost of a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle , known as a PHEV in the trade, will be about $18,000 higher than a conventional vehicle, including a $14,000 battery pack. That means it will take years, and perhaps longer than the vehicle’s useful life, to recover the upfront costs of plug-in hybrid vehicles despite the lower per-mile cost of operation.

It will take about eight hours to recharge a hybrid car’s battery using 110-volt current commonly used in homes. In a recent report, the Electric Power Institute, an independent nonprofit organization based in Palo Alto, California, says the US now has enough capacity to charge 1 million electric vehicles at night. This suggests you shouldn’t get charged up about the electric car -- at least not yet.

Plug-in hybrid electric vehicles will produce less carbon dioxide than similar cars powered by conventional internal combustion engines, but the dollar and environmental cost of generating electricity is often overlooked. Coal fires many generating plants, a source of constant ire for environmental groups such as the Sierra Club, a powerful lobbying group. The cost of reducing or capturing carbon dioxide emissions must be factored into the overall cost of battery-powered electric vehicles.

Caution is needed to prevent the promise of electric vehicles from becoming another over-hyped alternative like corn-based ethanol. There’s just one problem with that bright idea: It takes 29% more fossil energy to produce a gallon of ethanol than the ethanol releases when burned as fuel, making the disparity between energy input and output the triumph of politics over logic.

There’s always the hope that a genius at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology or another top school will invent the gizmo that changes everything. But this isn’t Hollywood and technological advances are likely to be incremental. That means no immediate miracles and oil will continue to be a vital part of the economy for the foreseeable future.

1 posted on 12/17/2009 5:09:39 AM PST by FlyVet
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To: FlyVet

The inconvenient truth about electric cars is that they need electricity. The car itself may not pollute, but the coal burning electricity plant sure will.


2 posted on 12/17/2009 5:15:53 AM PST by tips up
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To: FlyVet

That other gizmo is a hybrid car that runs on natural gas instead of gasoline.

Plug in your car to your nat gas pipe at your house every night and let the car compress the gas into its tank while also running the engine to charge the battery up.


3 posted on 12/17/2009 5:18:34 AM PST by mamelukesabre
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To: FlyVet

As always, it’s all about thermodynamics. And most people don’t have a clue.


4 posted on 12/17/2009 5:21:18 AM PST by far sider
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To: FlyVet

But.. but... but...

The Chevy Volt is going to get 230 MPG!

I saw it on TV!


5 posted on 12/17/2009 5:21:23 AM PST by Haiku Guy ("I don't give them Hell / I tell the truth about them / And they think it's Hell" -- Harry Truman)
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To: tips up

considering virtually every single attempt to build new generating plants is blocked by every communist organization as well as every Democrat. There will be No electricity to plug into.
typical Monkey *%cking a Jug, doesn’t know why he’s doing it, but it sure feels good.


6 posted on 12/17/2009 5:21:24 AM PST by eyeamok
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To: FlyVet
I like the fact that incandescent light bulbs are being outlawed because they use too much electricity. Meanwhile, we hope to run the nation's automobile fleet off of household juice.

I think there may be a problem with that.

7 posted on 12/17/2009 5:21:44 AM PST by ClearCase_guy (Macbeth is ripe for shaking, and the powers above put on their instruments.)
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To: FlyVet
Not mentioned is when you have to replace that $14,000 battery, and you will have to if you keep the car for a few years, you will have to not only have to buy a new battery, but someones going to have to pick up the cost of the disposal of that hazarous waste.
8 posted on 12/17/2009 5:24:03 AM PST by NavyCanDo
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To: ClearCase_guy
No, no. Electricity comes from the wall socket. It's magic. Ask any Obama supporter.

Another thing I can't figure out. They pitch a hissy fit whenever a power company wants a new high-tension line, because it's an eyesore. But it's okay to obliterate the pristine countryside with big, ugly, noisy, bird-killing windmills.

9 posted on 12/17/2009 5:25:43 AM PST by FlyVet
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To: FlyVet

The best vehicle to have is one that will run on quite literally moonshine or ethanol. Its legal to make your own and not difficult to do, having the right type of engine is the requirement and living in a rural area where you have available grasses to use helps.


10 posted on 12/17/2009 5:33:06 AM PST by Eye of Unk (Would spring please arrive early, My new motorcycle awaits to run free and wild.)
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To: FlyVet

Well, they gotta start somewhere and this technology is very promising. Ignore the naysayers, I say.


11 posted on 12/17/2009 5:35:38 AM PST by rawhide
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To: FlyVet
Based on the average cost of residential electricity was 12¢/kWh (DOE) in the U.S. in April 2009. The average household used 936 kWh/mo. in 2007 (DOE) and would pay about $108 for it based on the April 2009 average rate. DOE also has historical rates.

If it takes 12 kwhs for one recharge of the vehicle, we're looking adding about $55 to $60 to your electric bill each month.

Does this sound right?

12 posted on 12/17/2009 5:36:38 AM PST by wolfcreek (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lsd7DGqVSIc)
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To: far sider
it’s all about thermodynamics.

Nonsense. Thermodynamics was invented by the oil companies and Republicans to keep us from implementing a true socialist utopia.

I would put a /sarc tag, but you know . . . What really kills me, sickens me at heart, is that there ARE people out there who believe what I just put up there.

13 posted on 12/17/2009 5:36:53 AM PST by Hardastarboard (Maureen Dowd is right. I DON'T like our President's color. He's a Red.)
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To: Eye of Unk

I have a vision now of all the hillbillies in Appalachia becoming wealthy entrepreneurs with the revenue earned from their moonshine stills.


14 posted on 12/17/2009 5:39:01 AM PST by 3catsanadog (If healthcare reform is passed, 41 years old will be the new 65 YO.)
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To: Haiku Guy

Don’t listen to the TV. Your dog knows better.


15 posted on 12/17/2009 5:40:20 AM PST by bmwcyle (Free the Navy Seals)
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To: tips up
The car itself may not pollute, but the coal burning electricity plant sure will.

Then of course people will get those nice, sky-high electric bills as a result. But as for not polluting, I have to take somewhat of an issue with that. The process of making a large battery, especially on a mass production scale, is very nasty for the planet. You have to mine and mix up very toxic chemicals to make batteries work. It is even more fun when you have to dispose of the battery.

Couple this with the fact that every battery loses the ability to hold a charge over time. A car that gets 100 miles of range on one charge when it is new might only get 50 or 10 miles on a single charge in a few years.

16 posted on 12/17/2009 5:47:08 AM PST by pnh102 (Regarding liberalism, always attribute to malice what you think can be explained by stupidity. - Me)
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To: NavyCanDo
“Not mentioned is when you have to replace that $14,000 battery, and you will have to if you keep the car for a few years, you will have to not only have to buy a new battery, but someones going to have to pick up the cost of the disposal of that hazarous waste.”

Yep, total cost of ownership on one of these is very high - and is never detailed out by the media for the public to see. Additionally, those few who actually pay taxes are picking up a significant amount of the cost of this car. Examples; there's a $7,500 tax credit provided and there's no income criteria associated with this credit. Secondly, and this is an issue with all hybrids and electric autos at this time, these autos are not paying their fair share of road/use taxes. This is a problem that will have to be addressed eventually, probably by taxing autos by their miles driven would be my guess.

17 posted on 12/17/2009 5:47:09 AM PST by snoringbear (Government is the Pimp,)
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To: FlyVet
From your post:

"Caution is needed to prevent the promise of electric vehicles from becoming another over-hyped alternative like corn-based ethanol. There’s just one problem with that bright idea: It takes 29% more fossil energy to produce a gallon of ethanol than the ethanol releases when burned as fuel, making the disparity between energy input and output the triumph of politics over logic."

ArabLaughing

18 posted on 12/17/2009 5:48:44 AM PST by preacher (A government which robs from Peter to pay Paul will always have the support of Paul.)
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To: 3catsanadog

I did some minimal research into this last year and it still may be legal to make as much as 10,000 gallons of ethanol per year for your private use tax free.

My first project would be to run some in my high compression motorcycle engine, that one of the engine requirements being high compression, fuel injected helps too.

The engine will burn more in quantity but if you can make it really cheap who cares? And btw moonshiners did indeed mix the ‘shine into their fuels, thats how NASCAR started.


19 posted on 12/17/2009 5:48:49 AM PST by Eye of Unk (Would spring please arrive early, My new motorcycle awaits to run free and wild.)
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To: FlyVet

I can’t even buy a regular new car...always have to buy used...and keep them for 10 years...


20 posted on 12/17/2009 5:51:47 AM PST by Sacajaweau
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To: FlyVet

The problem is that some this crap works in Europe and the left(who think that Europe is so much smarter than we are)think it will work here. What the retards forget is how much bigger this country is vs Europe. An example would be TN from Bristol to Memphis is 500 miles, while London is only 200 miles from Paris and around 600 miles from Berlin.


21 posted on 12/17/2009 5:54:55 AM PST by sticker
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To: FlyVet

You have totally ignored a HUGE portion of the cost of auto ownership. Your obscenely costly HYBRID is going to cost thousands of EXTRA dollars annually for INSURANCE. If you live in a state like Massachusetts, there will be an annual bill called the EXCISE TAX, levied and paid LOCALLY for the privileage of auto ownership.
The extra gasoline costs for my beloved old station wagon will be a mere drop in the cash bucket you’ll be spending.


22 posted on 12/17/2009 5:58:33 AM PST by CaptainAmiigaf (NY TIMES: "We print the news as it fits our views")
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To: tips up

When I was talking about electric cars with my 5 yr old, I mentioned that we’d just park them at night and the electricity fairy would come by and touch it with her wand to recharge it for the next day.

She didn’t buy it. But a lot of “greenies” believe a fairy tale that’s very similar.


23 posted on 12/17/2009 6:00:20 AM PST by MrB (The difference between a humanist and a Satanist is that the latter knows who he's working for.)
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To: far sider

Algore:

“What are these laws [of physics]? We’re in power now, we can change the laws.”


24 posted on 12/17/2009 6:01:08 AM PST by MrB (The difference between a humanist and a Satanist is that the latter knows who he's working for.)
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To: tips up

We are now in what I think is the automobile death spiral. Governments (both state and Federal) derive enormous amounts of tax monies from the sale of gasoline. As these sources of tax revenues dry up, they will be forced to find new ways to offset this deficiency. I think they will increase the taxes on the purchase of new automobiles, licensing, and there will probably even be a mileage tax. These actions will further drive up the cost of owning and operating an automobile, thus fewer will be sold and operated. Plus, throw in hybrids and the supposed electric cars, and the tax revenues will decline even farther. The death spiral will continue with each new round of increased taxation and lower demand for cars. After all, one half of all voters work for government (I consider the public school system as government employees) and they are not going to do away with their own jobs. We can expect higher taxes and increased expense for automobile ownership until only politicians and their benefactors will be able to afford an automobile.


25 posted on 12/17/2009 6:01:24 AM PST by Texas Jack
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To: Haiku Guy

Is that a gallon of electrons?


26 posted on 12/17/2009 6:01:51 AM PST by Brett66 (Where government advances, and it advances relentlessly , freedom is imperiled -Janice Rogers Brown)
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To: preacher

It’s worse than the gallon to gallon comparison:

1.29 gallons of gasoline containing
148,350 BTUs of energy

to produce 1 gallon of ethanol containing
84,000 BTUs of energy.


27 posted on 12/17/2009 6:04:05 AM PST by MrB (The difference between a humanist and a Satanist is that the latter knows who he's working for.)
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To: snoringbear
You started to nibble at something here...there will of course, be all sorts of tax credits and energy incentives tied to the initial purchase of the e-vehicle and whatever charging mechanism required. They'll probably end up practically giving these cars away, if consumers agree to buy the electricity.

Of course all the car, battery, and infrastructure credits will have to be paid for somehow. In the end, Obama's mathmaticians & Al Gore will show us how it's 100 times less costly to drive "green technology."

28 posted on 12/17/2009 6:05:18 AM PST by Lou L
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To: FlyVet

I’m holding out for my flying car.


29 posted on 12/17/2009 6:06:04 AM PST by MaxMax (Obamao can't play in the Olympic reindeer games)
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To: tips up; FlyVet

This could though be optional for us here in my country. We have abundance of electricity, but need to import all gasoline.


30 posted on 12/17/2009 6:11:11 AM PST by Leifur
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To: MrB
It's funny that when you speak facts to people they have no clue.
But most greenie-weinies know their bumper sticker talking points.
31 posted on 12/17/2009 6:12:00 AM PST by MaxMax (Obamao can't play in the Olympic reindeer games)
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To: MaxMax

One of THE stupidest platitudes,
the one that makes me the angriest,

is the phrase “green jobs”.


32 posted on 12/17/2009 6:13:38 AM PST by MrB (The difference between a humanist and a Satanist is that the latter knows who he's working for.)
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To: wolfcreek
The cost of recharging the vehicle is relatively cheap, no doubt. But, as the article notes, the infrastructure isn't there.

The greenies want their green cars, but no new power plants, no new high tension lines to carry the added electricity. We've already suffered brownouts in CA and the northeast without the added load. They want something for nothing, as usual.

33 posted on 12/17/2009 6:13:54 AM PST by FlyVet
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To: MrB
Greenie-Weinie: Don't you care about the planet?

Me: You smoke pot don't you!

Greenie Weinie: Blank stare

34 posted on 12/17/2009 6:17:17 AM PST by MaxMax (Obamao can't play in the Olympic reindeer games)
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To: tips up

Oh, but we’re going to power them off of Windmills and Unicorn Poop. (/sarc)


35 posted on 12/17/2009 6:18:06 AM PST by Little Ray (Cheney / Norris in 2012!)
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To: MaxMax

I’m getting a Shetland Pony and a surrey with the fringe on top.


36 posted on 12/17/2009 6:39:55 AM PST by 3catsanadog (If healthcare reform is passed, 41 years old will be the new 65 YO.)
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To: far sider

Why do you say it’s about thermodynamics? The efficiency of the engine is one factor. Others are fuel cost, ease of handling and storing the fuel, cost of the engine and drivetrain, and emissions.


37 posted on 12/17/2009 7:10:23 AM PST by frposty (I'm a simpleton)
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To: Eye of Unk
ethanol. Its legal to make your own

No it is not.

38 posted on 12/17/2009 7:11:02 AM PST by Jeff Chandler (:: The government will do for health care what it did for real estate. ::)
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To: Eye of Unk
I did some minimal research into this last year and it still may be legal to make as much as 10,000 gallons of ethanol per year for your private use tax free.

Minimal sounds right.

39 posted on 12/17/2009 7:15:07 AM PST by Jeff Chandler (:: The government will do for health care what it did for real estate. ::)
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To: Jeff Chandler

Yes, it is legal. There are home units to distill your own ethanol for vehicular use, with a small fuel producer permit.

http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&source=hp&fkt=2422&fsdt=10797&q=make+ethanol+fuel+home&aq=0m&oq=ethanol+fuel+hom&aqi=g-m1

It’s illegal to sell non-taxpaid grain alcohol.


40 posted on 12/17/2009 7:20:01 AM PST by RegulatorCountry
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To: RegulatorCountry

I stand corrected. It is illegal to distill alcohol for human consumption.


41 posted on 12/17/2009 7:21:20 AM PST by Jeff Chandler (:: The government will do for health care what it did for real estate. ::)
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To: Jeff Chandler

No, it’s not illegal to do that, either. It’s illegal to sell it without paying taxes and possessing the proper permits.


42 posted on 12/17/2009 7:23:46 AM PST by RegulatorCountry
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To: snoringbear
Our desert heat kills batteries....last week I had to replace one of the car batteries....it was an Interstate with an 84 month rating, and was 32 months old.

In the summer, I leave no rechargeable or battery stuff in the garage; not even a cordless phone.

43 posted on 12/17/2009 7:29:00 AM PST by ErnBatavia (It's not the Obama Administration....it's the "Obama Regime".)
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To: pnh102

Understood. I just meant the actual driving of the car.

Battery production and disposal is a huge problem.


44 posted on 12/17/2009 9:44:46 AM PST by tips up
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To: preacher
Enviros can't do math, don't know basic science, and want the world to work by magic. But the Laws of Nature can not be abrogatted.


45 posted on 12/17/2009 10:12:45 AM PST by Clock King (There's no way to fix D.C.)
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To: FlyVet

For us, that would be a 30% increase in our electric bill. My gasoline bill for my truck is less than $100 per month and I don’t have to worry about $14,000 worth of batteries.

During the warm months here in Texas, it would also stress the grid.


46 posted on 12/17/2009 12:34:44 PM PST by wolfcreek (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lsd7DGqVSIc)
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To: Eye of Unk
The engine will burn more in quantity but if you can make it really cheap who cares? And btw moonshiners did indeed mix the ‘shine into their fuels, that's how NASCAR started.

Who in there right mind would put a batch of double run "shine" into a gas tank?

47 posted on 12/18/2009 4:55:11 PM PST by dearolddad
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