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I agree on the RH drive imports - with a qualification.

I can understand bringing in something that is totally unavailable here and has some nifty factor - say a Nissan Skyline, or say some old 1950s Toyota.

But then don't use it as your daily driver. Use it on a sunny Sunday.

What bugs me is all the Mitsubishi Delica minivans - there are a LOT of them around here suddenly. As if we didn't have minivans available here! But... there aren't any that look like that, so maybe I could be convinced to overlook that... but: a Civic!? A plain old run of the mill CIVIC?

REALLY?

I truly hope that their insurance rates have a MASSIVE surcharge on them for RHD cars in a LHD environment (or vice versa). It is, plain and simple, not safe.

I used to drive a 1992 Skyline GT-R. Loved it except for RHD, I won't own another one again. Making left hand turns is just too weird, I never would try and squeeze through gaps because you simply can't see.

Another reason people import them is because RHD versions of cars in some cases are cheaper. For example, a Supra or RX-7 in good condition with LHD can cost up to $40k, whereas a LHD is almost always under 20k.

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I hate those gray, shadow panels installed over the headlights and tail lights. They are illegal in most states and a HUGE safety problem everywhere.

- 2nd is those factory stock or custom add-on driving lights that are aimed too high. They blind on coming drivers and if you flash the idiot driver, he just flashes you back, as though to say, "see, I DO have my low beams on."

Darwin

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I used to drive a 1992 Skyline GT-R. Loved it except for RHD, I won't own another one again. Making left hand turns is just too weird, I never would try and squeeze through gaps because you simply can't see.

Another reason people import them is because RHD versions of cars in some cases are cheaper. For example, a Supra or RX-7 in good condition with LHD can cost up to $40k, whereas a LHD is almost always under 20k.

Then I hope they pay the difference in insurance, honestly.

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Making left hand turns is just too weird, I never would try and squeeze through gaps because you simply can't see.

How is doing something in a RHD car any different that doing the exact opposite thing in a LHD car? :dontknow:

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Hybrid users are IMO typically arrogant pr*cks and self righteous jerks. Your hybrid ain't so green if you get your power from a coal, gas, oil fired electric plant ok? Your emissions are just happening oh 100 miles or more away.

Actually, that's not correct. Only plug in hybrids get energy from the power grid, and even using that energy is cleaner than burning gas.

HEV - Hybrid electric vehicle.

PHEV - Plug in hybrid electric vehicle.

• Total NOX emissions from PHEVs in the evaluated scenarios are equal or slightly less than from non-plug-in HEVs. Although total NOX reductions may be relatively small, tailpipe NOX is significantly reduced as more miles are electrically driven. Without the use of an air quality model, it is difficult to quantify the net benefit of reducing tailpipe NOX while increasing generator NOX emissions. In addition, there are significant opportunities for further NOX reductions in the electricity sector as many units are not fitted with the latest emission control technology.

• Because gasoline contains little sulfur (having been taken out at the refinery), the most important factors for net SO2 emissions are emissions from refinery operations and from marginal coal generation. For the evaluated daytime and delayed charging scenarios, total PHEV-related SO2 emissions are expected to be less than from conventional and hybrid vehicles. In the off-peak charging case, or any case where coal is at the margin a large fraction of the time, SO2 emissions are expected to be greater. Any emissions comparison must be placed in context of the national cap on SO2 emissions, which does not allow a net increase in SO2. As a result, any increase in SO2 emissions resulting from additional load created by PHEV charging must be offset by a decrease in emissions elsewhere.

• In all cases, there are significant reductions in net CO2 emissions from PHEVs.

http://www.nrel.gov/docs/fy07osti/41410.pdf

And the beauty of electric vehicles or plug-in hybrids is that they can be powered by wind, solar, or whatever else generates electricity, where conventional vehicles are only powered by greenhouse gas generating fuels.

Plus, they cost almost nothing to operate while you're running on the battery packs ($0.02 per mile IIRC).

On top of that the lack of greenness in the manufacturing of all that goes in your hybrid such as the batteries may disappoint you.

Actually that's not true either, given that the packs are recycled just like the batteries in gas powered cars are. There are 120 million privately owned fossil fuel powered vehicles on the road in the US today, all of which use almost exactly the same batteries that are in most of the few thousand electric vehicles. Add to that the batteries in fleet and govt vehicles. Each electric has a max of about 24 batteries, so we'd need 5 million electrics before their batteries even began to be anywhere near the number of batteries being used by gasoline powered vehicles.

Plus, they're incredibly fast:

I've ridden in this one, and while it's ugly, it is the fastest accelerating car I've ever been in:

They've got a pretty good list of conversions here:

http://www.evalbum.com/type

Edited by redwoodmodels
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So....while we're worrying about our car's emissions, volcanoes around the world spew tons more emissions than we mere mortals can release in a decade.

That's actually not correct either.

"The fact of the matter is, the sum total of all CO2 out-gassed by active volcanoes amounts to about 1/150th of anthropogenic emissions." Source: http://www.grist.org/article/volcanoes-emit-more-co2-than-humans

Anthropogenic = human caused

Also:

http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn11638-climate-myths-human-co2-emissions-are-too-tiny-to-matter.html

To save time and stay on topic, here are the rest:

http://www.skepticalscience.com/argument.php

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PT Cruisers - The entire car is like one bad bolt-on.

And I hear a maintenance nightmare. I saw one the other day with a checkered "woody" pattern made of different veneer stickers on the sides with large white walls, chrome steels (with those VW style hub caps over the lugs), and two chrome air horns mounted to each of the front fenders. Dice hanging from the mirror. A dice shifter. Etc... It was tacky like nothing I've seen since the 70's.

Had a guy around town who had a PT Cruiser with a flame paint job. Thought he was all that, squealing the tires from the stop signs, driving like a complete idiot!

How do you squeal the tires in a PT? Aren't those things pretty gutless?

Stick figures - dunno' who started this, but a stick figure family tree on the back window of minivans and SUVs is among the lamest things ever. A week or two back I saw just a couple on the back of an X3... no kiddie stick figure, no doggie/kitty stick figure. :blink: It was kinda' sad.

I was kind of wondering why people would want that information known by every random person they encounter on the road like that.

VW conversions are something I've never liked. Especially those fiberglass roadsters that are supposed to resemble convertible 1937 Cord's or something with the pipes hanging out of the side of the hood or those fiberglas wedge shaped VW conversions from the 1970's. I think this one was one: http://www.lotustalk.com/forums/attachments/f3/84582d1214877521-lotus-kit-car-lotus-kit.jpg

Edited by redwoodmodels
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My folks drive a Prius and they are not pricks. In fact, in 2006 I talked them into it as it seemed like a good enough car for their budget at the time. Size-wise, it is a good vehicle for my mom and the gas mileage is great for how they drive. You tromp on the gas and they accelerate very well, so there is no excuse to drive them 10 mph below the limit. I've even borrowed it for a couple long road trips and I really loved the gas mileage in it, even compared to my 2.0L Ford Focus ZX-3 with a 5 speed. I like the fact you fill it up at the pump, so you don't have to wait hours to charge the thing like a full electric (and regardless of what can generate electricity, coal, nuclear and other primary electrical generating capacity tends to out strip wind and solar power right now, so the pollution does get sent elsewhere).

Only thing I DON'T like about the Prius is they take damage too easily from their thin plastic body panels. My folks had to take it to a body shop in Texas after they hit a fresh shreaded retread tire on a 2 lane highway. And about a month later I managed to clobber a racoon in the thing when I hit it at night on the interstate. The airdam was badly bent, but the car still tracked straight. These things in order to get the efficiency up seem to have a glass jaw. But, at least the Prius is reliable as ever, given it is a Toyota product. Only other thing I am dreading a little is the day the battery goes out as I understand those can be expensive to replace. But, so far so good.

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I agree with the comments on the PT Cruiser and will extend them to include Plymouth's other "Retro" abomination, the Prowler.

There's someone with a Prowler not far from where I work and everytime I walk past it, it never gets less ridiculous looking.

As for the "Green" cars, I tend to agree with TOM4ever that hydrogen power will eventually be the favoured method rather than electric. It's sort of like all the methods they tried over the years to replace 35mm camera film until digital came along. Lot's of things were tried and tried again until something else entirely proved to be the answer.

I think for the bulk of the world, hydrogen will be the way. However, given the size of the fast food industry, I would REALLY like to see them make a decent go with the concept of recycled frying oil, seriously.

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Speaking of gasses, have you seen the air powered one? This guy can pull a small truck with a go cart using a compressed air engine.

Compressed air to propel autos is a twisted fantasy and inefficient. The energy input used to power a compressor to then provide compressed air to then drive an auto is many times less efficient than just burning gasoline or diesel to drive autos.

All these pie in the sky type devices are good at picking pockets of the gullible but short on providing real service to end users.

Hydrogen is nice but must be manufactured. Today hydrogen is made via burning natural gas, not truly green. But if we'd use the excess capacity of nuclear plants we could produce large amounts of hydrogen.

Edited by Les / Creative Edge Photo
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Rdwood,

Sorry you can buy that hype about hybrids. Simple fact is unless you get the electricity from a truly green source you are adding pollution much like any gas/diesel powered car. The huge strives made in regular gas/diesel engined cars in terms of cleanliness and fuel efficiency to power is great nowadays and is affordable to most consumers.

As per batteries, yes electric and hybrids use much more resources many of which more rare earth types and heavy in terms of extraction and manufacturing environmental issues to power said cars. The 12 volt battery in one standard car does not compare to the bank of batteries in these Hybrids and electrics.

These cars are not the near future nor a driving world savior and will not be any time soon if at all. They can play a limited role for some commuting but will not replace gas/diesel engines any time soon if at all.

As to solar and wind, HYPE HYPE HYPE at best the global electrical demand may be served by 10-15% solar and wind one day. Anyone making a higher claim is deluded, ignorant or a liar.

Edited by Les / Creative Edge Photo
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As to solar and wind, HYPE HYPE HYPE at best the global electrical demand may be served by 10-15% solar and wind one day. Anyone making a higher claim is deluded, ignorant or a liar.

What's your source for that assertion please, Les?

Personally, I think they are highly underdeveloped (unsurprising: it's hardly likely the extremely rich and hence influential petroleum industry would exactly encourage the competition) and possible very viable sources of energy, that are effectively infinite. I'd add wave power, too. As opposed to the noticeably dwindling global oil reserves.

Not Greenpeace tree hugger, just pragmatic and interested in the future...

Patrick

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Destroying the environment in the name of environmentalism ;)

Does anyone have any figures for how much CO2 is used in the manufacturing process of cars, compared to how much is released from the use of a single car for it's lifetime?

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And I hear a maintenance nightmare. I saw one the other day with a checkered "woody" pattern made of different veneer stickers on the sides with large white walls, chrome steels (with those VW style hub caps over the lugs), and two chrome air horns mounted to each of the front fenders. Dice hanging from the mirror. A dice shifter. Etc... It was tacky like nothing I've seen since the 70's.

As a precaution to the general public that car should come with warning signs 50 feet in every direction so that people with tacky-car-dia don't see it and keel over on the spot!!!

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Compressed air to propel autos is a twisted fantasy and inefficient. The energy input used to power a compressor to then provide compressed air to then drive an auto is many times less efficient than just burning gasoline or diesel to drive autos.

Again. That energy doesn't need to come from a power plant. Solar can drive a compressor.

All these pie in the sky type devices are good at picking pockets of the gullible but short on providing real service to end users.

Exxon wishes that were true. I know guys who haven't bought gasoline since the 1980's. Every time I drop another $37.80 to fill my tank, I wish I was one of them.

Here are some people have been building in their garages with off the shelves parts: http://evalbum.com/type

120 miles per charge.

You can believe whatever you want, but electric vehicles were practical for 80% of American's daily driving habits 15 years ago.

Sorry you can buy that hype about hybrids. Simple fact is unless you get the electricity from a truly green source you are adding pollution much like any gas/diesel powered car.

First off, I don't know who told you what you believe, but hybrids don't need to be plugged in. Hybrids like the Prius are simply gasoline cars that can capture, store, and reuse their wasted energy (like that from braking). Where you generate wasted heat in your brake pads, the hybrids generate electricity while braking that they store in their battery packs and use while driving. By their nature, hybrids pollute less than regular gasoline cars because their efficiency is higher.

Plug in hybrids CAN use electricity from the grid, but they don't have to. They can operate like regular hybrids, but they're capable of capturing and using even more of the energy that would normally be wasted by any other car. If they use power from a plug, that electricity does NOT, repeat until you get this DOES NOT, need to come from fossil fuels. Electricity is electricity is electricity is electricity is electricity. It doesn't matter if it comes from wind, solar, wave, or whatever else. And it's not hype. THEY MEASURED IT. Even when plugged into a fossil fuel power plant, hybrids pollute less.

As an example, they could all be run by solar. The sun sends enough energy our way every single minute of every day to power this entire planet for a year.

The cost of the war in Iraq was $720 million per day, and for that we could convert 1.27 million houses to run entirely on solar. We could have converted every house in America using what we spent on 100 days of the Iraq war (7 years so far). We've spent at least $3 Trillion on the war on Iraq so far, which is enough to equip every house with solar 41 times over.

We just need to choose to start funding solutions instead of funding problems.

Sources:

War Costing $720 Million Each Day, Group Says - http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/09/21/AR2007092102074.html

The true cost of the Iraq war: $3 trillion and beyond - http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/09/03/AR2010090302200.html

US Census - http://quickfacts.census.gov/qfd/states/00000.html

The huge strives made in regular gas/diesel engined cars in terms of cleanliness and fuel efficiency to power is great nowadays and is affordable to most consumers.

What? Where are you getting this?

The average national fuel mileage is 18 miles per gallon, which is less than it was back in 1987.

As per batteries, yes electric and hybrids use much more resources many of which more rare earth types and heavy in terms of extraction and manufacturing environmental issues to power said cars. The 12 volt battery in one standard car does not compare to the bank of batteries in these Hybrids and electrics.

Source? I've already shown you how they don't compare. I'd love to see who's telling you what you believe.

These cars are not the near future nor a driving world savior and will not be any time soon if at all. They can play a limited role for some commuting but will not replace gas/diesel engines any time soon if at all.

Here are 3400 of them that people have been building in their garages with off-the-shelves parts: http://evalbum.com/type

Here's a conversion someone bought that gets 120 miles per charge:

Here's what people are doing by modifying their hybrids in their garages:

250 MPG from a Prius - http://www.usatoday.com/money/autos/2005-08-13-hybrid-cars-tinkerers_x.htm

Here's the Nissan Leaf, which is currently being sold in America.

http://www.nissanusa.com/leaf-electric-car/index#/leaf-electric-car/index

Here's the Chevy Volt:

http://www.chevrolet.com/volt-electric-car/features-specs/

You can believe whatever you want, but electric, hybrid, and plug in hybrid vehicles were practical for 80% of American's daily driving habits 15 years ago.

They're not the only solution. People on farms, people in the trades, and others might still need a fuel, but that fuel doesn't have to be oil.

As to solar and wind, HYPE HYPE HYPE at best the global electrical demand may be served by 10-15% solar and wind one day. Anyone making a higher claim is deluded, ignorant or a liar.

Germany, which is roughly in the same latitude as Oregon, already exceeds the number you posted. Is that number made up, or do you have a source for it?

In 2010 nearly 17% (more than 100 TWH) of Germany's electricity supply (603 TWH) was produced from renewable energy sources, more than the 2010 contribution of gas fired power plants.[4] Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Renewable_energy_in_Germany which sourced http://www.renewableenergyworld.com/rea/news/article/2011/03/new-record-for-german-renewable-energy-in-2010??cmpid=WNL-Wednesday-March30-2011

Imagine how much more solar and wind there is in places like Kansas, Oklahoma, Arizona, and California than there is in Oregon.

And I've already shown you that the US had (and spent) the money that could have converted every single house in America 41 times over.

Destroying the environment in the name of environmentalism ;)

That is done and I agree is stupid and short sighted. However, hybrids are not doing that. Nor will electric vehicles. There are costs, but those costs are FAR less than the costs of using oil. People that support drilling complain about mining for battery elements, ignoring the facts that drilling is damaging in and of itself and that mining is required by drilling so that you can get the materials you need to process the oil you're drilling for. They oppose electrics for mining, but support drilling AND mining for oil? WTH? Not to mention that they want to use the Canadian tar sands for their oil, which requires the most destructive and polluting forms of mining in existence.

And there is no single greater demonstration of human stupidity than arguing against protecting the environment because of the costs to an economy that does not exist without the environment that's being destroyed.

Hybrids - little concern here in BC since most of our power is clean hydroelectric. :)

Our energy could be clean everywhere. We just have to choose to do it. I was in southern Oregon a while ago and I couldn't believe how perfect that place would be for solar. Rolling hills to mount the cells on (reduces the support structures needed to mount them at 45 degrees to face the most sun here), nothing but tumbleweed, tons of sun. The problem is that because there's nothing out there, they don't have power lines to carry the power where it would be used. All they need is someone to build the power lines. All we need is someone in power with enough vision to stop spending money creating problems and start spending it on solutions.

Edited by redwoodmodels
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Here's a link to a pic with ANOTHER pet peeve - cheap stick-on graphics from the auto parts store. http://www.chevyhhr.net/gallery/files/2/0/1/5/Picture003.jpg

Speaking of which, what's the deal with the black leather bibs around the grille and headlights? Saw them first and only in the US, and no one could tell me what purpose they serve.

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