No room for mistakes (26 Aug, 2021)

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No room for mistakes (26 Aug, 2021)

Postby aardvark_admin » Thu Aug 26, 2021 6:17 am

This column is archived at: https://aardvark.co.nz/daily/2021/0826.shtml

Is Toyota being extremely smart by holding off on investing heavily in the EV transition?

Could some basic stuff-ups cripple the bigger car-makers such as GM in the way we've just seen with the $1bn Bolt recall?

The early bird may catch the worm but isn't also said that he who hesitates is lost?

If you were a car maker, would you be putting all your efforts into making EVs right now, or waiting a while until you can do so with less chance of stuffing things up and crippling your bottom line through recalls?

And how has Tesla got things so right, when traditional auto-makers seem to be sometimes getting things so wrong?
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Re: No room for mistakes (26 Aug, 2021)

Postby GSVNoFixedAbode » Thu Aug 26, 2021 7:59 am

Odd, I see a lot of Toyota Prius cars around these days -second only to the Nissan Leaf - as well as a more recent flood (so to speak) of the Toyota Aqua hybrid model. Toyota certainly have skin in the game these days!

However, from an overall transportation standpoint, replacing ICE cars with EV cars changes the emission levels but not much else. Switching to e-bikes for the majority of single-person short distance / commute journeys will be the key to managing infrastructure, energy usage, and contested space. Seems, well, just plain stupid to drag a tonne or more of metal around for 1 person to get 5-15km from A to B. I note in London they've discovered (who'd'a'thunkit) that EV cargo bikes are far more efficient than courier vans. We should see similar uptake in NZ in about 20-30 years given our track record.
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Re: No room for mistakes (26 Aug, 2021)

Postby aardvark_admin » Thu Aug 26, 2021 8:29 am

GSVNoFixedAbode wrote:Odd, I see a lot of Toyota Prius cars around these days -second only to the Nissan Leaf - as well as a more recent flood (so to speak) of the Toyota Aqua hybrid model. Toyota certainly have skin in the game these days!

Hybrids are not real EVs insomuch as they are hybrid (the clue is in the name) and still use fossil fuel for anything but short journeys.

Toyota (as far as I am aware) have still not launched a pure EV in the way so many of the other manufacturers have.

From an owner's perspective hybrids can provide significant fuel savings -- but do not offer the same savings as a pure EV when it comes to servicing and maintenance. Still have to change the oil every 6/12 months, replace filters, plugs, etc and you *must* use the ICE sometimes or the fuel will go stale and screw up your injectors etc.
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Re: No room for mistakes (26 Aug, 2021)

Postby namartinnz » Thu Aug 26, 2021 9:12 am

Having considered buying a replacement car the last couple of years, my preference has changed. Certainly an SUV, ranging from CX5, CX9, Rav4 and Highlander. But after seeing Tesla drop their price of their Model 3 - way lower than an equivalant Hyundai/Kia EV, with the EV grant it looks like a feasible purchase proposition (and forthcoming Model Y)

In the mean time I'll bum around town in my clunky old 215000KM+ Honda accord and see what else comes over the horizon. Maybe Toyota will bring their RAV4 prime here - if they can build more....
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Re: No room for mistakes (26 Aug, 2021)

Postby Hiro Protagonist » Thu Aug 26, 2021 9:30 am

aardvark_admin wrote:From an owner's perspective hybrids can provide significant fuel savings -- but do not offer the same savings as a pure EV when it comes to servicing and maintenance. Still have to change the oil every 6/12 months, replace filters, plugs, etc and you *must* use the ICE sometimes or the fuel will go stale and screw up your injectors etc.

Makes me wonder why hybrids stick with ICE when a turbine would be lighter, more efficient and lower maintenance. Turbines suck as a prime mover for card, but would be ideal for a hybrid.
There was a turbine-electric bus running in CHCH for a number of years.
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Re: No room for mistakes (26 Aug, 2021)

Postby aardvark_admin » Thu Aug 26, 2021 9:40 am

Actually, unless you can recover and generate power from the exhaust heat (as is the case with large power-station turbines), gas turbine engines (particularly small ones) are pretty inefficient when compared to a piston engine of similar power. Their only real claim to fame is that they can burn anything from natural gas to diesel as a fuel which makes them quite versatile (but still inefficient and producers of CO2).
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Re: No room for mistakes (26 Aug, 2021)

Postby greven » Thu Aug 26, 2021 11:39 am

Toyota are all-in on hydrogen fuel cell. In theory it makes perfect sense, but the tech is far from ready to enter the mainstream market.
Imagine if fuel cells were a proven technology with the cost benefits afforded by economies of scale. Imagine at the same time NZ invests in exponential expansion of wind farms to meet peak demand... that leaves a lot of off-peak power available for desalination & hydrogen production at a local level. Suddenly hydrogen fuel cells are looking a whole lot better than batteries made from rare earth materials.

We would have to also move freight back to electrified rails if we encountered a long-term oil shortage - neither battery nor fuel cell are likely to take over that market. Anyone have ideas on how to make electrified rails safe for idiots?
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Re: No room for mistakes (26 Aug, 2021)

Postby phill » Thu Aug 26, 2021 2:24 pm

my thoughts on the train bit was big capacitors ..
bodies that are capacitors
ie capacitors made into everything that didn't need to be something else ( eg .. not a seat with a capacitor in it .. but a capacitor made into a seat )
inductive charging at stations and railway crossings ( they almost always being near a power line .. no need to stop )

trains that weigh 50 tonnes a carriage also need to go
and yes .. having high voltage capacitors near idiots desperate to find a way to touch them does come into the design process

and of course a launch system at stations to get them up to speed after stopping ( many ways ... most suitable )
( ,,,,,,,, ....... A E I O U use em sparingly theres probably not enough )

i might live and eat in a sewer .. but hey look how many of these shiny things i have got
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Re: No room for mistakes (26 Aug, 2021)

Postby Kiwiiano » Thu Aug 26, 2021 6:37 pm

Toyota’s management have been very reticent about moving away from ICE, they were early leaders with the Prius, but that is a Claytons EV, the EV you have when you don’t have an EV. Like the Hondas, they are only a battery assisted motor with no regenerative braking. The Plug-in hybrids are a better deal, for e.g. my daughter’s Mitsubishi Outlander in Dunedin goes 2 weeks or more without refueling. It’s magic to watch the ‘fuel gauge’ dropped during the drive up Mt Cargill from Roseneath to NE Valley then filling up going downhill.

The hydrogen suggestion is a red herring, needing a lot more development to get away from using fossil fuel hydrogen. Currently the ERoEI is way less than offered by batteries. And developments there are ramping up rapidly with nary a week going by without a new battery refinement here or a possible new technology there.
~ Kiwiiano
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Re: No room for mistakes (26 Aug, 2021)

Postby Mike23545 » Thu Aug 26, 2021 11:15 pm

Hi yawll,
I'm just wondering if anyone saw this video years ago re; GM & their 1st electric car.
I saved it for posterity when it first came out.
I've uploaded it to my mediafire site...if anyone wants to see what happened to it.
Linky > https://www.mediafire.com/file/kbza0kz2 ... r.mp4/file
It's about 380 odd meg & runs for about 1 1/2 hours.

T'is a real pity coz it looked like a winner, even with it's limited range of maybe 100 miles, 160 km or so.

Maybe Elon & the others will have better luck....this time.

Stay safe.
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