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Sounds like a high school shop cobble job when compared to a fully engineered hybrid like Prius or Fusion. For full fuel economy benefit, the ICE in a hybrid needs to operate on Atkinson cycle.
The automobile is on a headlong path to becoming an appliance. This innovation a great example, its similar to the transmission in a washing machine. if you think about it appliances are long lasting, upgradeable, something you never think about or worry about. But the OEM industry is fighting back because their marketing methods of selling machismo and power don't work selling appliances. They want to sell complex fuel cell systems, hybrids, etc. But all that becomes irrelevant once the battery range reaches 250 miles.
The study methodology looks suspect for three reasons: first, ethanol is made by distilling (consumes energy)whereas gasoline is made by catalytic cracking. The yellow bars suggests corn roughly 2x GHC vs gasoline production which does not seem enough. Second, the tailpipe GHG output for the two fuels should be the same or close to the same. Last, they are using '05 tailpipe for gasoline. The GHG has improved by 50% or more since '05, with some vehicles delivered in Europe.
BEV's are blindly advocated by many without considering the reality: the fuel isn't green or efficient. In most of the US, the electricity generation is by coal or natural gas. If produced by the newest, most efficient gas turbine, the efficiency at generation is aprox 50%. Then comes the line losses. The electricity may be transmitted hundreds of miles. Overall, its more efficient to burn the natural gas in the vehicle. Even more so if the vehicle is a hybrid.
I fail to see this as any more/less efficient than a two stroke engine. Would seem to have the same emission problems as a two stroke. Further, there would seem to be sealing and/or lubricationissues w/ the hollow piston rod. It is an astonishing small package.
The car marketing paradigm of hubris and machismo sells cars is threatened and OEM's are mortified. Once the electric car has reasonable range its just an appliance about as interesting as a washing machine. Most owned vehicles are on the road just a few hours a day at most. Car sharing would ultimately reduce annual sales posing a further threat to OEM sales efforts.
Convincing (and costly) PR but at the end of the day its just "greenwashing".
The OEMs all pushing for fuel cell technology because electrics threaten to derail their marketing approach. The electric vehicle is very simple, really little more than an appliance once the range issue is worked out. Electrics need little maintenance and could be upgradeable by download. Current OEM marketing is based on differentiation from one model to the next; ie power, style, comfort, appearance etc and incremental improvements one year to the next. None of this works with an appliance on wheels-whereas maybe such marketing does work with a complex fuel cell vehicle.
The "fundamental change" over looked in this analysis is efficiency improvements; which have become truly amazing. In the auto showroom in Europe there are many models with 70 to 90 mpg fuel efficiency. The other factor is wide scale substitution of hydrocarbon alternatives to crude oil; notably natural gas. Efficiency improvements combined with the rise of alternative energy sources have led to year over year consumption decrease of crude in the US for about 2 or 3 years. China appears to be adopting the electric car en masse with the electricity to be produced by solar, wind, and coal-no oil.
Adding to the myth that oil is scarce and running out. There is an unlimited supply of oil, the only issue is production cost. Yes the marginal cost, or the cost of the next barrel, increases. However, that has always been true from the first barrel produced. The major oil companies have not and will not publicly disclose their actual reserves. Its a closely guarded secret known only to senior management. If you carefully read any such disclosure from a major, you will find all kinds of caveats. On the other side of the equation, worldwide demand is declining and unlikely to increase as fuel efficiency technology kicks in.
So he is predicting a vehicle like the Nissan Leaf doubles its range from 100 miles to 200 in only 5 years. That would be a huge game changer, more so if accompanied by lower cost of the vehicle.
A reminder, that oil is not scarce and never will be. Current levels of worldwide oil production/consumption are beyond comprehension; and can rise indefinitely as long as the price supports the marginal cost of production. The oil industry has capital and infrastructure to support vast growth. Nonetheless, biofuels and other alternatives will eventually succeed. Its just that the cost target is moving.
Toggle Commented Feb 3, 2015 on Arctic oil on life support at Green Car Congress
This study is projecting modest growth in petroleum consumption year over year; it affirms my prediction that the price of oil will collapse soon. Can't tell when but its coming.
Hydrogen fueling is asking for a major disaster. Fueling stations and FCV's would store an explosive gas at 900 bar. The station would likely fuel the vehicle using personnel with third grade education and 1 hour training. Nat gas is also questionable as to safety both on the vehicle and refueling. Using LPG in both instances makes a lot more sense. Should be able to reforumulate LPG on board the vehicle into H2. There is already large scale manufacture of LPG using plentiful nat gas.
My question is: will electric cars become like appliances or pc's, where they can be upgraded by software download or changing components. So for example could you take your early Leaf with a 100 mile range and improve its range to 141 miles with upgrades.
This study of future energy consumption mirrors other similar serious studies such as the Ricardo Study of about 1 year ago. Bottom line, forecasting flaccid future demand accompanied by robust supply. The scenario outlined will almost certainly lead to a collapse in the price of crude oil. @ David many current developments have "disruptive potential" one of which is certainly improving battery technology. Another the pace of conversion to natural gas fueled vehicles.
@mahonj: Efficiency standards such as these all but guarantee a collapse in petroleum prices. Oft repeated nonsense: "The days of cheap oil are over ...demand is rising all over the world". Oil is not scarce and never will be. The oil industry itself projects very moderate growth in worldwide demand (1.5% to 3% annually) over the next few years, and that is probably overly optimistic. See the recent study by Ricardo. The United States may be at the point where petroleum consumption is falling year over year. We are still the largest consuming market in the world by far.
Those of you skeptical of an oil price collapse should read the recent study by Ricardo. This Harvard Kennedy study addresses only supply whereas Ricardo included demand. Petroleum demand has potential to decline overall with the phenomenal increases in fuel efficiency coming on stream. Natural gas replacing oil as fuel could have a big impact. The notion that oil is scarce or depleting is absurd, considering the current staggering daily production. My prediction: oil price collapse is imminent when US oil consumption declines year over year. We're close now.
I tried to figure out how it works. The XL website says it uses regen braking which makes sense, this would be activated by the brake pedal signal. Then they claim it (helps) "propel the vehicle when drivers accelerate" and this would probably be activated picking up by the gas pedal or throttle signal. The oem engine management software would have to lighten the fuel boost when e-boost kicks in--this is plausible without tweaking. I would anticipate some driveability issues like rough transitions. Also it seems trouble is likely with antilock braking and traction control systems.
"many years sooner" is correct Harvey; in fact you will see US oil demand decrease year over year very shortly, I would say within 5 yrs. Not to be taken lightly, the US is the world's largest economy by GDP; currently aprox. twice number two, China. This Ricardo study closely tracks with the recent one by BP. As I've said all along, oil is not scarce, it could not possibly be given today's production levels. The invevitable outcome of these market forces will be a collapse in the price of crude oil.
Should make for a fun to drive rental car! Seriously GM doesn't say whether the Malibu powertrain will have stop/start and gives few details. Interesting divergence from Ford which is claiming its 2.0 liter ecoboost engine will do 240hp/270 ft lbs in the Explorer.
Many what-if design questions occur to me. For example, what if the front powertrain were removed and equivalent weight in batteries were put in? ie what range would result. The torgue of the electric drive suggests its overpowered at 740 ft lbs continuous; could it be downsized.
It is so urgent to put this in should be treated as a manhattan project with support from multiple government & private sectors. As a retrofit it could reduce US oil imports in a short time frame.
Here's a reminder that oil is not scarce and never will be. The oil man's adage is "we're fresh out of $4 a gallon gas but we've got all the $6 a gallon gas you could possibly want".