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Old 06-28-2012, 04:09 AM   #31 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by rmay635703 View Post
The average american consumer was TAUGHT stupidity over the generations by auto manufacturers, the old trucks did not have huge horsepower and were purpose built.

If anyone would avertise to the virutues of saving money,not needing more power we could slowly relearn society but it might take the next 100years just as it took roughly 70 years to teach us to be wastefull pigs.
After reading through this the second time, I disagree. This thinking puts the onus of responsibility and the culprit entirely on the auto manufacturer, and that gives them too much credit.

Without a doubt, both the auto manufacturer and the consumer influence each other. The marketing departments and salesmen convince the consumer they need a certain type and brand of vehicle, but the engineers and think-tanks also listen to consumer desire.

What I really believe is at the heart of human nature is the tendency to react to situations rather than take a broader and longer view. When gas is cheap, the consumer reacts by buying gas guzzlers because they can afford them and it projects the image they desire. When gas is expensive, or when "Green" is vogue, the consumer reacts by purchasing something more fuel efficient. It's a financial decision for many, and a way to feel morally superior for others (thinking of Hollywood actors here).

Fuel prices in the U.S. have historically been low with price spikes that the consumer would endure. They had no reason to drive a more efficient vehicle because eventually prices would drop back down near to the previous cheap price.

Once fuel prices become "expensive" and remain there over many years, the consumer will demand increasingly more fuel efficient vehicles.

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Old 06-28-2012, 10:45 AM   #32 (permalink)
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It really is frustrating that the automakers can't/won't build a wider variety of vehicles.

There are a number of reasons for it, but, in the end, the blame lies, IMO on the government/big manufacturer collusion.

The government makes it very difficult to bring a vehicle to market. They site safety/emissions.

That is the biggest crock of sheeeet ever.

If they those were the only concerns, they'd have us all drive mid-sized sedans with about 80 hp and a top speed of 65 mph. How can they say cars must be safe, then allow Chevy to build and sell a 600 hp Corvette to anyone that can write the check? And an Excursion may put fewer ppm of various substances into the are, but are you going to try and tell me that it puts less stuff into the air than a small vehicle with an engine that doesn't quite meet standards?

The whole thing is so freaking ridiculous, it's laughable.

When I look at what the rest of the world has available to consumers, it really pisses me off.

Our system is designed with one purpose in mind. To make it so that newcomers can't get into the game.

I'm not saying do away with regs, but, make them sensible. We should have emission standards based more on total pollutants than PPM numbers that simply tell a manufacturr they may spew as much crap as they like, just dilute it. And you dilute it with a bigger engine that burns more. As for crash standards I would establish standards and tell manufacturers they are free to meet/not meet them, so long as there is full disclosure to the public.
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Old 06-28-2012, 06:50 PM   #33 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pete c View Post
...

I'm not saying do away with regs, but, make them sensible. We should have emission standards based more on total pollutants than PPM numbers that simply tell a manufacturr they may spew as much crap as they like, just dilute it. And you dilute it with a bigger engine that burns more. As for crash standards I would establish standards and tell manufacturers they are free to meet/not meet them, so long as there is full disclosure to the public.
I thought that was true today. Is there a minimum "star rating" that a car has to meet today? I thought they all tried to get at least 4 stars to make sure the competition can't use it against them in advertising.

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Old 06-28-2012, 09:38 PM   #34 (permalink)
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pete c -



I thought that was true today. Is there a minimum "star rating" that a car has to meet today? I thought they all tried to get at least 4 stars to make sure the competition can't use it against them in advertising.

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No, unfortunately it's not. There are definitely minimum standards and going through the process ain't cheap.

I think that small builders should have the ability to skip these, so long as they don't try to pass off their vehicle.

As for emission standards, I think they should be waved up until a certain number of units built.
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Old 06-28-2012, 10:12 PM   #35 (permalink)
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That bigger engine still needs more emissions control equipment (more cats, more high pressure injectors, bigger urea tanks (for diesels)) to meet emissions.

The big difference is, with high-mark-up products like SUVs and sportscars, you can fold that extra cost very easily into the sale price. With small vehicles with low-mark-up, you can't.

This isn't just in America, though... EURO V standards are very strict and will be very difficult for many to meet. It's just that the numbers there support developing small engines to meet them.

It would be nice if all countries agreed on a global standard and stuck with it. This is what NCAP is all about, and despite ANCAP (China) having a lower crash speed previously, from 2012 onwards, all NCAP results (China, Australia, Euro, ASEAN) will be applicable anywhere. Hopefully the same can be done with emissions, with tiers for manufacturers and simple, per unit, monetary fines for those who can't meet the stricter standards.
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Old 10-11-2012, 04:50 AM   #36 (permalink)
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I thought I had heard that they originally wanted to use a purpose made 1L aluminum engine, but shelved it to save money; and used the "off-the-shelf" 1.4L cast iron unit? I am still hoping they go this route...
That 1.0L engine was based on the one used in European versions of the Opel Corsa, as "off-the-shelf" as the 1.4L naturally-aspirated. That option should've actually retained in the production version of the Volt since day one, altough probably cooling issues were a reason to not retain it.

After all, if there was really the need for an all-new engine to the Volt, I believe a 2-stroke one would make more sense due to the compactness and lesser dead weight while operating on EV mode. Lesser maintenance would be another advantage.
workaround ideas to discuss among friends: Two-stroke engines: still a viable technology?
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Old 10-11-2012, 05:41 AM   #37 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cRiPpLe_rOoStEr View Post
After all, if there was really the need for an all-new engine to the Volt, I believe a 2-stroke one would make more sense due to the compactness and lesser dead weight while operating on EV mode. Lesser maintenance would be another advantage.
workaround ideas to discuss among friends: Two-stroke engines: still a viable technology?
Actually this is a pretty good idea. Running at a single speed should make scavenging a pretty simple affair (I guess you might have to adjust for air density differences, but I think that's not a big issue if you allow some reasonable amount of trapped exhaust). Have cam actuated valves, fuel injection of course, and a very high static compression ratio. If you really want to chase down the last bit of friction rods can be lightened since they don't have a strong load reversal and thus fatigue resistance requirements.

GM is good friends with Eaton, they can surely strike up a deal for some superchargers with better rotor sealing for scavenging purposes.
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Old 10-11-2012, 09:58 PM   #38 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by serialk11r View Post
Actually this is a pretty good idea. Running at a single speed should make scavenging a pretty simple affair (I guess you might have to adjust for air density differences, but I think that's not a big issue if you allow some reasonable amount of trapped exhaust). Have cam actuated valves, fuel injection of course, and a very high static compression ratio. If you really want to chase down the last bit of friction rods can be lightened since they don't have a strong load reversal and thus fatigue resistance requirements.

GM is good friends with Eaton, they can surely strike up a deal for some superchargers with better rotor sealing for scavenging purposes.
The main advantage I see in a 2-stroke gasser is the absence of a valvetrain, which leads to a lighter and more compact cylinder head design, and also decreasing the demand for maintenance.

As far as superchargers go, it wouldn't be so bad if GM started to make 2-stroke Diesels again, but something more efficient and with a better power-to-weight ratio than the older Detroits. With current VGT developments it could even have some reasonable improvements in engine-braking.

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