Tag Archives: Internal combustion cars

Weight Matters, by Eric Peters

Six pounds of gas or 1000 pounds of battery will take a small car 40 miles down the road. We’re being told the latter is more efficient and therefore better for the environment. From Eric Peters at ericpetersautso.com:

The saying goes that size matters – but weight matters more. If you want to go far. This is why EVs don’t. Even the really little ones – like Chevy’s Bolt, which is even smaller than a subcompact car like the Hyundai Accent – only go about half as far as their size-equivalents. Viz, 259 miles for the 3,589 lb. Bolt vs. 487 (on the highway) for the 2,679 lb. Accent.

That’s because a gallon of gas weighs about six pounds, which means a full tank of gas (12 gallons) in the Accent weighs 72 pounds. A great deal of energy is stored in those 72 gallons of gasoline – or even just six pounds. One gallon will power a car like the Accent some 40 miles down the highway and part of the reason for that is that as you burn it, there is less of it – and so, less weight to keep moving. After a car like the Accent has used up half a tank – about six gallons – it is carrying around half the fuel weight it began the trip with.

It takes a great deal more weight – that is never shed – to power an EV the same distance. A small EV like the Bolt is weighed down by the gas tank equivalent of about 1,000 pounds of battery pack – and in fact, it’s not equivalent, because the Bolt would probably need another several hundred pounds of battery pack to be capable of powering its electric motor for nearly 500 highway miles.

But for the sake of this discussion, let’s assume an equivalence.

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Time Efficiency, by Eric Peters

To compare electric and internal combustion cars, you have to compare all the costs. From Eric Peters at ericpetersautos.com:

I see Teslas regularly – when I make a run downtown, which is about 35 miles away. I have yet to see one locally. Probably because downtown is 35 miles away – and back.

This is about 70 miles, round-trip. It is not outside the maximum range of a Tesla, which is advertised as being able to travel about 270 miles with its standard battery (the optional battery adds hugely to the already high cost of a Tesla; we’ll delve into that aspect more below).

But it does take a bite out of it.

Ordinarily, this would be a matter of no concern – if we weren’t talking Teslas or electric cars, in general. There are lots of “gas hog” trucks up here that make daily trips down there – and back. Even given the cost of the gas, courtesy of the Biden Thing. This is still tenable because of the “gas hog” truck’s time efficiency.

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The Zero Emissions Tanker Truck, by Eric Peters

First they came for the internal combustion cars. Someday it will be everyone’s car regardless of whether they’re internal combustion or electric, and only the elite will have any kind of personal transportation. From Eric Peters at ericpetersautos.com:

If you think about it, a tanker truck is a “zero emissions” vehicle – in that the gas it carries isn’t “emitting” anything, as it is being transported from the refinery to the station.

Why are electric cars considered “zero emissions” when it amounts to the same thing?

True, while they are moving they are not “emitting.” But how about what makes it possible for them to move? Lots of C02 is being “emitted” by the coal/oil/natural gas-fired ultility plants that generate the majority (by far) of the electricity that electric vehicles “burn,” so to speak.

Does it matter – assuming C02 “emissions” matter – where they are “emitted”? Logically, of course, it does not.

But politically – that’s another matter.

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Toyota Warns (Again) About Electrifying All Autos. Is Anyone Listening? by Bryan Preston

Oh, what does Toyota know about automobiles? From Bryan Preston at pjmedia.com:

AP Feed
Depending on how and when you count, Japan’s Toyota is the world’s largest automaker. According to Wheels, Toyota and Volkswagen vie for the title of the world’s largest, with each taking the crown from the other as the market moves. That’s including Volkswagen’s inherent advantage of sporting 12 brands versus Toyota’s four. Audi, Lamborghini, Porsche, Bugatti, and Bentley are included in the Volkswagen brand family.

GM, America’s largest automaker, is about half Toyota’s size thanks to its 2009 bankruptcy and restructuring. Toyota is actually a major car manufacturer in the United States; in 2016 it made about 81% of the cars it sold in the U.S. right here in its nearly half a dozen American plants. If you’re driving a Tundra, RAV4, Camry, or Corolla it was probably American-made in a red state. Toyota was among the first to introduce gas-electric hybrid cars into the market, with the Prius twenty years ago. It hasn’t been afraid to change the car game.

All of this is to point out that Toyota understands both the car market and the infrastructure that supports it perhaps better than any other manufacturer on the planet. It hasn’t grown its footprint through acquisitions, as Volkswagen has, and it hasn’t undergone bankruptcy and bailout as GM has. Toyota has grown by building reliable cars for decades.

When Toyota offers an opinion on the car market, it’s probably worth listening to. This week, Toyota reiterated an opinion it has offered before. That opinion is straightforward: The world is not yet ready to support a fully electric auto fleet.

Toyota’s head of energy and environmental research Robert Wimmer testified before the Senate this week, and said: “If we are to make dramatic progress in electrification, it will require overcoming tremendous challenges, including refueling infrastructure, battery availability, consumer acceptance, and affordability.”

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Energy Hogs, by Eric Peters

Just because an electric car doesn’t guzzle any gas doesn’t mean it isn’t an energy hog. From Eric Peters at ericpetersautos.com:

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Non-electric cars haven’t “guzzled” gas – most of them – for decades. There are a few that still do, models like the V8 powered Dodge Charger and Challenger most blatantly – and they are of course on the Automotive Enemies List, compiled by people who use “gas guzzler” in the way that some people (often the same people) use “racist” or “misogynist” to cat-call that which isn’t but which they simply don’t like for reasons of general disagreement.

In any event, why it is the business of the person who didn’t buy the “gas guzzler” and isn’t the one paying for the gas it “guzzles” is a question – per The Chimp – that is rarely asked. It is like Jones bitching about his neighbor’s lawn, which is larger than his own and takes his neighbor more time to mow. The neighbor isn’t knocking on Jones’ door and demanding he mow the lawn, nor pay for the fertilizer, etc.

The whole thing is motivated by nothing more than the offense taken – how dare you! – by people who simply don’t like it that someone else has chosen to buy a car that “guzzles” more gas than they think is proper etiquette.

Oh, yes – there is the bogey about “externalities” – this idea that the guzzling of gas imposes indirect costs, shouldered by others, such as the cost of maintaining carrier groups to protect the oil supply chain (never mind that America was energy independent, oil-wise, when Orange Man Bad) and of course, “climate changing” effusions of atmosphere-warming carbon dioxide, a pre-Rona beta test of kernel-of-truth exaggerated to hysterical proportions in order to impose draconian solutions to a problem that doesn’t exist, in any meaningful sense.

The climate changes. This is news? It gets episodically warmer, then colder. Sometimes more and sometimes less. It is all a function of incredibly complex, interwoven factors (e.g., solar cycles/activity, natural events on earth such as volcanic eruptions) that the “experts” themselves have not divined though many pretend to have certain knowledge of the works, with incredibly simplistic solutions proffered that seem to always entail “sacrifices” by the average guy that always seem to redound to the benefit, financial and otherwise, of the stratified elites most unctuously sermonizing about the necessity of these “sacrifices.”

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The Alternatives We’re Denied, by Eric Peters

There’s a market out there for certain types of electric cars, just not the kind that the government has to subsidize people to buy. From Eric Peters at ericpetersautos.com:

If electric cars are the ducks guts – the better alternative – then why is the government doing everything it can – shy of actual bayonets in the back – to deny us the freedom to choose?

Obviously, the worry is we might choose something else – if the government were to allow  us to do so.

Can’t have that.

Which ought to raise questions – not about electric cars – but about this business of denying people the freedom to choose the alternative that works best for them. As opposed to the one forced upon them by government.

Interestingly, the reasons electric cars are being forced onto the market is because people aren’t free to choose economically sensible and practical electric cars – because none such exist.

And the reason they don’t exist is  . . . because the government is forcing electric cars onto the market.

It requires a bit of explaining.

If a free market existed, there might well be a market for electric cars – just not the electric cars that are being pushed onto the market, like Teslas and their emulators from the other car companies.

Those cars are mandated cars; their electric propulsion systems are almost incidental. What defines them is their trying to “compete” – in air quotes to emphasize the absurdity of anything mandated into existence and maintained in existence by subsidies – with the non-electric cars they cannot directly compete with.

But which they’re – irony! – forced to try to do, precisely because they’ve been mandated and subsidized as the replacement for non-electric cars.

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The Great Regression, by Eric Peters

Once upon a time progress meant things got better, but under the new definition of progress, that’s not necessarily true, especially when it comes to government-favored technologies. From Eric Peters at ericpetersautos.com:


Volkswagen is touting the 260 mile range of its new ID.4 electric crossover, up 10 whole miles from what the EPA had previously estimated.

This means you can travel as far as 130 milesone way – before you are forced to stop for a long time in order to keep going that way. Or you can turn around and make it home – maybe. At the risk of maybe not quite making it and having to wait for a long time before you can get home again.

This is what you get for $40,000 to start, the base price of the ID.4.

Well, technically, $39,995. Gotta keep it “under “40k,” which appears to be the new benchmark for EV entry-level.

Here is what you used to be able to get from VW for $22,460 back in 2015 – which was the year before VWs like the TDI diesel-powered Jetta TDI sedan got in trouble with Uncle:

652 miles before you had to stop for a couple of minutes in order to be back on your way again.

To be fair, that was on the highway.

In city driving, the Jetta TDI could only go 449 miles – which is only just shy of twice as far as the ID.4 can go, anywhere – for just shy of twice as much.

Only in a world gone loopy could such a reversion and diminution be cause for anything other than embarrassment – and ridicule. But it is of a piece with the bizarro oh, thank you massa eructing from people who have been graciously allowed to walk around again, provided they wear a Face Diaper and provided they don’t stand too close to anyone else. Or the curious, obsequious gratefulness of restaurant owners allowed to open, provided they only serve half the people they used to be able to – while still being obliged to pay all of the rent and taxes, etc. 

It’s pathological.

That goes double-plus-good for for the car press, which in saner times would have ridiculed a car that went half as far and cost twice as much being purveyed as some sort of boon to the car-buying public.

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What’s it Going to Be? by Eric Peters

With current electric car technology and costs, the only way governments can force mass adoption is to make internal combustion prohibitively expensive. From Eric Peters at ericpetersautos.com:

Something’s got to give – and will, soon.

Odds are it will be us. Giving more money, that is. Our punishment for not buying an electric car. Or put another way – to make it just as expensive for us to continue driving a non-electric car as it is to buy an electric car.

In order to “level the playing field.” Get ready – it’s coming.

It’ll be done in any of several ways. In China, people are allowed to drive non-electric cars, provided they pay an exorbitant  fee$14,000 – for the privilege. After winning a license plate lottery that allows them to pay the fee.

Winning the lottery can take years. But EVs can be registered immediately . . . and without the punitive fee. You just pay the punitive expense . . . for the EV.

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