complicated = expensive
batteries & electric motor = expensive
Did somebody mention carbon fiber?
Hardly anybody that could afford it would be willing to be seen in it.
21st November, 2013 @ 4:54 a.m. (California Time)
A worthy thought, but if you have 4 people going anywhere, where do you put, for instance, grocery bags? What should be a boot (trunk?) is full of batteries.
21st November, 2013 @ 4:18 p.m. (California Time)
Apologies - Read th story, then checked out the pix. There appears, #15, to be a little space left at rear.
21st November, 2013 @ 4:21 p.m. (California Time)
We need a better way of comparing the economy of hybrids. Plug in hybrids such as the Volt should show the steady cruising range and economy after the battery has been exausted of its initial charge as well as the government combined figures for short trips.
If I want to drive to Queensland from Melbourne (2000km approx) will the 33litre tank in the TwinUp get me there without re-fuelling ?
I do think there is a place for hybrids but misleading fuel economy figures do not help.
21st November, 2013 @ 7:34 p.m. (California Time)
They just are tricking the regulations with these hybrids.
It's just in like Formula 1, you just have to find a way to go around the rules.
This will not change until they will not implement a consuption cycle where a car is run until all kind of energy tank is depleted, then the consumption is calculated.
22nd November, 2013 @ 1:39 a.m. (California Time)
Carbon fibre has no place in road cars, unless in a part of the vehicle that is not likely to suffer impact damage, as it is prone to shattering into projectile shards in the event of a crash. Apart from that, it isn't a material that most body repairers will have been trained to deal with.
22nd November, 2013 @ 4:46 a.m. (California Time)
Good ol' Slowburn. Always in a hurry hatin' anything EV or even hybrid related. Yes carbon fiber was mentioned in regard to driving the XL1's price tag uphill. It escaped Your attention that This car is NOT the XL1.
The Up! seems like a perfectly viable intermediate solution towards a sustainable future if humanity survives to see it.
Don't even try to justify any of our average gas-guzzling toxic fumes spewing monsters of yesterday (with Your usual subsidies non-argument).
I told You before and I'll tell You again: Should You live to see old age, You'll see the inevitable decline of Fossil fuel burning vehicles. You will be able to dwell in atavistic nostalgia by visiting Your truck in a museum probably called "the human stupidity memorial".
22nd November, 2013 @ 5:12 a.m. (California Time)
This is mind-blowing!
22nd November, 2013 @ 6:47 a.m. (California Time)
Yeah, for the right price I think I could see myself in one of these....wonder if it'll take racks for my kayaks and what the extra drag will do to efficiency.
22nd November, 2013 @ 10:41 a.m. (California Time)
It is insane that a small fuel efficient car is this expensive.
All you need is a 600cc diesel engine running a small generator, a small bank of super-capacitors (perhaps linked with a small Li battery) and electric motors driving at least 2 wheels, to get 150-200mpg. How complicated is that? No complex transmission system that is cost-prohibitive to repair. It's not complicated, and maybe that's the problem. No one seems to be stepping up to create something that is affordable and fuel efficient. It certainly shouldn't cost over $30K to get something like that built in semi-mass production. VW values this car at $145K? What a joke! Maybe for a prototype. Fuel efficient cars are needed by everyone, not just the elite. VW (and everyone else for that matter) needs to step up and produce these cars in quantities enough to see affordability. And if they need someone to show them how to do it, I'd be more than happy to.
22nd November, 2013 @ 11:04 a.m. (California Time)
Totally agree with you Niko. Hopefully there will be battery breakthrough that is far better and less damaging to the world using cheap,common material. This world also needs a cleaner way to produce large amounts of electricity and fuel. Still using 2500 lbs to move one person most of the time seems totally wasteful and outdated,as well.
22nd November, 2013 @ 11:17 a.m. (California Time)
You can't miss the BMW logo on the building at Moses Lake, WA while driving I-90. Carbon fiber parts for the BMW M3 are produced there, with a bright future. Similarly, Idaho's governor and lite gov. made the trip from Boise to Coeur d'Alene Airport for the dedication of North Idaho College's Aerospace Facility. It's amazing that NIC president Priscilla Bell was able to obtain a $3 million grant, and within a year, VP/now president Joe Dunlap and Kassie Silvas had the curriculum and facility up and running with 39 students working toward their airframe composites construction and repair certification, with assistance from Boeing, Empire Airways and other businesses. They are able to use vacuum infusion and other techniques, besides "pre-preg" (fabrics pre impregnated with resins and catalysts) as they have the capability to deal with the vapor emissions. The future for the repair business in composites is huge and bright, as it includes smaller parts like snowmobile cowlings.
Years ago, I drove a '69 VW Squareback in Montana and Idaho terrain. Despite the rudimentary mechanical Bosch fuel injection system, this vehicle consistently ran 36-40 miles per gallon. If that figure dropped, it was time to crawl underneath and adjust the valves, and perhaps the timing. You could do a lot yourself back then...
22nd November, 2013 @ 11:24 a.m. (California Time)
EV and E-Hybrid are the least cost effective way to increase fuel economy and if it was not for government subsidies none of the major manufacturers would be fielding models.
While carbon fiber has its uses the cost/benefit ratio for its use in body panels is wrong.
Make a 250 CC ultra-high compression constant output diesel that runs on a variety of high octane fuels such as alcohol or methane and deliver the power through a pneumatic or flywheel drive train and I'll be there. I just don't want any part of the expensive environmental disaster of an EV power train.
22nd November, 2013 @ 12:51 p.m. (California Time)
EV and E-Hybrid are far more cost effective than any ICE driven vehicle (with the possible future exception of hydrogen) IF one takes into account ALL COSTS including environmental - which You fail to do every single time.
"...and if it was not for government subsidies none of the major manufacturers would be fielding models."
Externalisation of environmental costs (the rape of nature) by big oil alone dwarfs any in comparison tiny amount of subsidies those EV manufacturers eventually get. Are You or any other reader capable to present some hard facts how much money EV manufacturers got in subsidies AND how much subsidies the "standard" car (and truck) industry got since inception?
Lobbied suppression of technology aside (does "Who killed the electric car" ring any bells?) the EV industry couldn't possibly get as much "free" money as the established car industry already got over the last 130 years.
"While carbon fiber has its uses the cost/benefit ratio for its use in body panels is wrong".
Always the futile money bias. Money (as it is now) does not reflect real cost. What has Henry Ford and Lotus in common? They both used hemp for body panels. Go figure why the use was discontinued...
"I just don't want any part of the expensive environmental disaster of an EV power train."
Disaster? Really? But are You fine with Deepwater Horizon events? What's that? A minor inconvenience?
Amory Lovins has a good idea: Stick your tail pipe into your passenger cabin - that might change one to reconsider the attitude towards fossil fuel burning vehicles.
22nd November, 2013 @ 3:28 p.m. (California Time)
First problem: High drag. Second: No curb weight given. Third: No honest or meaningful mileage given. Fourth: Sluggish.
I want an EV that has a range large enough to get me to my normal destination and back without charging until I get home. Thirty miles limits me to a 15 mile radius, which is pathetic. I want a burst of speed for merging on the freeway. I want extended range for road trips (HEV). I will pay up to $35K. More if it's sexy.
I will settle for 100+mpg ICE fueled by CNG. But no economic car will exist until the manufacturers realize that the basic platform must be aerodynamic, e.g., drag > .20, and lightweight, e.g., curb under 2K lbs.
23rd November, 2013 @ 11:44 a.m. (California Time)
Tailpipe emissions can be controlled. I am old enough to remember the constant smog of the 70s. with far more oil burning cars on the road the are is much cleaner today.
What killed the electric car was that they could not sell enough at the price to pay for their production. But the greens are all collectivist nitwits that don't care about economic reality.
24th November, 2013 @ 3:02 p.m. (California Time)
Love the concept - Im keeping my fingers crossed it goes further.
25th November, 2013 @ 8:15 a.m. (California Time)
Don is spot on with the drag and weight. Another non propulsion related (and ignored) factor is rolling resistance.
Inefficiency is a problem and our current so-called economic system thrives on "solving" problems. If there is no problem, money can't be made. Therefore devices must consume more and break down as often as possible. An attitude as sane as was the Jerry Springer show audience!
"What killed the electric car was that they could not sell enough at the price to pay for their production." Yeah, right! That's why they took back how many 5000 (!?) EV1s and crushed them to (destroy the evidence of business as usual disrupting tech or officially) not to damage their "public image". 'cause these were some really useless cars ... mhm...
"Tailpipe emissions can be controlled." but you still die if you try to suck on them. Oh I forget - the fumes get spread all over and that's harmless.
Only a shortsighted nitwit thinks that present economics are a viable rule-set for managing all human (inter-)action. It's not about being "green" than it is about being sane. You've heard about the rumor that we live on a finite planet which ecosphere can't sustain infinite consumption/pollution?
25th November, 2013 @ 12:20 p.m. (California Time)
How do you go from more cars and less pollution to global destruction.
In the 1970s an effective way of killing moles was to pipe the exhaust from the car into the hole for a few minuets. a couple years ago an acquaintance's wife caught some mice with live capture traps. He tried to kill them by piping the exhaust from his 2005 car to them in a cage under a blanket for half an hour. Finding the disease vectors still alive he released them 50 miles from his house. The tailpipe is not near as deadly as you think.
26th November, 2013 @ 7:32 a.m. (California Time)
More cars = less pollution -> if YOU say so it must be true.
How about: new cars -> inferior quality -> shorter product life -> more waste ...
I didn't say it kills in seconds, but cumulatively it is still deadly enough.
There are more than enough reasons not to have ICEs
If health doesn't concern You, the quadrupling of gas prices (or worse) eventually might.
26th November, 2013 @ 12:41 p.m. (California Time)
It takes being pretty special to say that stating the fact that we now have more cars and less pollution is say that more cars = less pollution. It just means that the pollution being generated by each car is now on average significantly less than it was in the 1970s and the trend is for further improvement.
I saw no indication that they compared the noise levels, the density of alternating magnetic fields, or the concentrations of artificially generated EM noise (radio waves).
There is no reason to believe that the real price of fuel is going to double in the next hundred year despite the predictions of the doom and gloom "Prophets" that have been consistently wrong for centuries now. Taxes will go up and the value of the currency will will drop but the price per liter of fuel (minus taxes) vs. kilo of whole wheat bread (minus taxes) will most likely remain similar.
As for improving the black cab emissions there are better options than going to spark ignition. I am assuming that they already are using ultra-low sulfur fuel and a catalytic converter so improve the converter by including the tech for http://www.gizmag.com/voto-phone-charger-fire/27333/.
Putting a filter on the exhaust to trap particle emissions.
Possibly using this tech http://www.gizmag.com/gasoline-powered-diesel-like-engine/22608/
EVs are overly expensive and under performing. Getting the same performance out of a pneumatic vehicle would cost significantly less, allow for "fueling" a stuck on the side of the road car with a man portable "gas can" (liquid nitrogen or dry ice in an insulated container) and all at lower environmental impact than the extraction of the rare earth elements necessary for the batteries and motors for EVs.
28th November, 2013 @ 6:22 a.m. (California Time)
Interesting idea, all I do know for sure, is getting on a freeway in Houston in a car with a 0-60 time of 15 sec and a top speed of 87MPH will get you killed..Yow...
28th November, 2013 @ 9:49 a.m. (California Time)
Another alternative which was displayed 2012 Geneva Motor show is Tata Megapixel which is stated to hit the market in 2015 (India & EU).
Stated to have 110 KM/Litre or about 253mpg but with an expected price of USD 8000-10000 (at least in India, might cost a bit more in EU due to shipped and more expensive distribution)
28th November, 2013 @ 9:50 a.m. (California Time)