Silent but potentially deadly electric cars will have to be fitted with artificial ‚Äėsound generators‚Äô so blind and partially sighted pedestrians can hear them coming, the European Parliament voted today.
It is part of new EU legislation which will also require conventional cars and lorries with petrol and diesel engines to make 25 per cent less noise.
The MEPs voted to introduce mandatory ‚Äėacoustic vehicle alerting systems‚Äô (AVAS) ‚Äď sounding like a conventional engine – to all new electric and hybrid cars to protect vulnerable road users.
It follows lobbying from British MEPs and campaign groups including Guide Dogs for the Blind.
Electric cars and plug-in hybrid cars such as the all-electric BMWi3 or the Toyota Prius currently emit very little sound when running on electric power only.
Campaigners say this particularly dangerous for partially-sighted and blind pedestrians.
Earlier proposals from the European Commission called for the installation of an artificial sound system to be done on a voluntary basis only. ¬† Read more »
It is bad enough that they are gayer than Fossy’s gay ute, but now there is more evidence that electric cars suck.
Electric cars lose more money through depreciation than any other type of car, according to new research from car pricing expert CAP Automotive.
CAP analaysed the prices paid for used cars up until the end of October 2013, and the results make alarming reading for anyone that has bought an electric car.
According to CAP‚Äôs figures, when broken down into fuel types, electric cars were worth on average just 20.2 per cent of their list price after three years, compared with diesel and electric cars, which retained 44.7 per cent and 43.6 per cent respectively.
The figures don’t take into account the Government’s plug-in car grant of up to ¬£5,000 towards the price of an electric car, or any discounts on list prices, but still suggest that there is a big difference between how much buyers are willing to pay for used electric cars compared with their conventionally fuelled counterparts.
Hybrid cars such as the Toyota Prius (below) depreciated more slowly than any other type of car, however, with a retained value of 45.3 per cent over the same period. ¬†¬† Read more »
Policy Parrot says:
And here is the reason why you won’t be seeing much advancement of public transport in Auckland over the next 40 years.
There is absolutely no denying the car industry is the master of adaptation when forced by laws and by public demand.
And the car industry are survivors.
Firstly – in a world full of public servants and green Taliban types all expressing desire for public transport in modern cities its of no surprise that Auckland Council politicians are easily convinced about trains and tunnels.
Expensive train sets are easy targets for politicking off. The media gets a huge woody over expenditure. The masses are easily excited about new things in a city. People like progress. Politicians promise it in the form of big ticket items.
Accompanying the public transport mantra is the call to make the motorcar extinct.
Urban designers want motorways converted to lofty bike ways or destroyed and replaced with train lines ranked with apartment buildings.
Green ranting loonies want everyone to ride bikes or skip to work wearing hemp suits and eating home grown turnips.
Council officers want a freebie ride to work.¬† Read more »
Green projects worldwide are failing and taxpayers and ratepayers are picking up the bills, especially for idiot projects associated with electric cars.
Councils across the UK have spent more than ¬£7.2m on charging points for electric cars over the last three years but many are not being used.
One in six councils admitted to having at least one point which has not been used at all over the past year.
While less than a third of authorities have a charging point used on average more than once a week, more than half of which are used only by council vehicles.
BBC Radio 4‚Äôs You and Yours found that council spending amounts to ¬£1,750 per electric car.¬† Read more »
Everyone should know how I feel about¬†electric¬†cars, they are tits, and gay at¬†the¬†same time.
Shai Agassi‚Äôs company,¬†Better Place, for example, has generated glowing magazine profiles, but it has managed to lose more than $500 million while selling astoundingly few cars. He stepped down as the chief executive, and his replacement lasted only a few months. It turns out that the things that are sexy to politicians and paradigm-shifting to conference audiences are not necessarily attractive to consumers.
As I blogged earlier another gay car company bled $100M off of the back of some bad reviews.
From proper cars to gay cars now.
It is certainly no secret that I hate electric cars and the¬†sanctimonious¬†creeps that drive them. Now people are starting to wake up to the dirty little secrets these gay cars have:
Electric cars are promoted as the chic harbinger of an environmentally benign future. Ads assure us of “zero emissions,” and President Obama has promised a million on the road by 2015. With sales for 2012 coming in at about 50,000, that million-car figure is a pipe dream. Consumers remain wary of the cars’ limited range, higher price and the logistics of battery-charging. But for those who do own an electric car, at least there is the consolation that it’s truly green, right? Not really.
For proponents such as the actor and activist Leonardo DiCaprio, the main argument is that their electric cars‚ÄĒwhether it’s a $100,000 Fisker Karma (Mr. DiCaprio’s ride) or a $28,000 Nissan Leaf‚ÄĒdon’t contribute to global warming. And, sure, electric cars don’t emit carbon-dioxide on the road. But the energy used for their manufacture and continual battery charges certainly does‚ÄĒfar more than most people realize.
A 2012 comprehensive life-cycle analysis in Journal of Industrial Ecology shows that almost half the lifetime carbon-dioxide emissions from an electric car come from the energy used to produce the car, especially the battery. The mining of lithium, for instance, is a less than green activity. By contrast, the manufacture of a gas-powered car accounts for 17% of its lifetime carbon-dioxide emissions. When an electric car rolls off the production line, it has already been responsible for 30,000 pounds of carbon-dioxide emission. The amount for making a conventional car: 14,000 pounds.¬† Read more »
I fail to see why standing around for hours waiting for a charge is¬†desirable. While there are three fifths of five eights of stuff all¬†electric¬†cars driven by smug people it is all fine and dandy, but as soon as you have to start queuing for a charge it will be the death of them.
Then of course there is the simple fact that they won’t solve suburban transport issues at all, in fact they will make them worse:
Electric vehicles have been touted as the dream technology to solve our suburban transport challenges and rescue us from oil dependence and environmental threats. Yet technology use occurs in a social context. Almost no discussion of electric vehicles has addressed the uneven suburban social patterns among which electric vehicles might be adopted.
The¬†evidence¬†that my colleagues Neil Sipe, Terry Li and I have assembled suggests the socio-economic structure of Australian suburbia, in combination with the distribution of public transport infrastructure, constitutes a major barrier to the widespread adoption of electric vehicles, especially among the most car-dependent households.
Relying on electric vehicles as a solution to energy and environmental problems may perpetuate suburban social disadvantage in a period of economic and resource insecurity.
The people most affected by poor transport options would be even more affected by a transition to gay¬†electric¬†cars.
It makes sense that households who are most car dependent and least able to afford higher fuel prices would be the most eager to switch to an electric car. But, it turns out, the social structure of Australian suburbia means these groups are poorly placed to lead such a transition.
In our study of Brisbane we created datasets linking vehicle fuel efficiency with household socio-economic status.¬†In our analysis, high vehicle fuel efficiency, including hybrids, serves as a proxy for future electric vehicles. We linked motor vehicle registration data with the¬†Green Vehicle dataset¬†on fuel efficiency, plus travel and socio-economic data from the ABS Census.
Our analysis builds a rich picture of how the spatial distribution of vehicle efficiency intersects with suburban socio-spatial patterns, using Brisbane and Sydney as case studies.
We found that the average commuting distance increases with distance from the CBD while average fuel efficiency of vehicles declines. So outer suburban residents travel further, in less efficient vehicles, than more centrally situated households. Outer suburban residents are also likely to be on relatively lower incomes than those closer in.
The result is those living in the outer suburbs have relatively weaker socio-economic status but are paying more for transport. For example, one-third of the most disadvantaged suburbs in greater Brisbane also have the most energy-intensive motor vehicle use.
A socially equitable transition to highly fuel efficient or electric vehicles ought to favour those with the highest current exposure to high fuel prices. Yet our research finds it‚Äôs not likely to happen.
What a dilemma for the green taliban, who are in reality a bunch of socialists. They insist on moving to¬†electric¬†this and¬†electric¬†that, but in doing so isolate and perpetuate the poverty trap, which of course would lead them to claiming the poor need¬†subsidised¬†cars…and on it would go.
I make no secret of the fact I hate electric cars, and hybrids. Sanctimonious green taliban type full of smug drive them….they are like minis..taking up way more space on the road than they deserve. The only thing worse on the road are cyclists.
Robert Tracinski thinks they are abomination…and I agree with him.
Electric cars never really made any sense. They are cloaked in the sanctimony of the green movement, because they don’t use nasty fossil fuels like gasoline. Instead, they use electricity, which is sent out through power lines from big power plants, which generate this electricity‚ÄĒhow? Oh yes, by burning fossil fuels like oil, coal, and natural gas. This is known as the “long tailpipe,” which goes from the car charging up in your garage all the way back to the smokestack of a coal-fired power plant. And don’t forget, electric cars also have giant batteries made from nasty toxic metals like lithium and cobalt, the manufacture of which¬†frontloads¬†carbon dioxide emissions.
So the electric car was always more an exercise in green paternalism‚ÄĒit is the future, as selected for us by our betters‚ÄĒthan a serious attempt to solve any real or imagined problem.
What makes even less sense is the stupidly ridiculous time ti takes to charge the stupid things. What are you supposed to do while it charges…sit there and smugly tell other smug pricks around you just how smug and cool you all are.
Then there was the fuss over¬†the¬†failed Tesla test drive and the social media disaster that befell Tesla:
The folks at Tesla, flunking Public Relations 101, decided that they would respond to this bad review by drawing a lot of attention to it. Tesla CEO Elon Musk¬†claimed¬†the review was a fraud based on data taken from the car’s internal logs. Tesla had an unhappy experience with a segment on the British automobile program “Top Gear” that they¬†claimed¬†was misleading. (I am shocked,¬†shocked¬†to discover that Jeremy Clarkson could play fast and loose with the facts.) Ever since, Tesla switches on a monitor whenever they loan one of their cars out to the press. So they claim the¬†Times¬†reviewer purposely drove the car in a way that ran down the battery and then deliberately lied about the results.
Musk’s rebuttal is less than convincing. He brays that the reviewer was lying when he said that he had to drive at 45 miles per hour‚ÄĒand points to logs showing Broder driving at about 50 miles per hour. Similarly, he declares that Broder turned up the heater to 74 degrees at the very point he supposedly had to turn it off‚ÄĒbut the graph he uses to verify this shows that Broder¬†did¬†turn the heater way down a few minutes later. In other words, Musk is seizing on technicalities, while the data he presents more or less verifies Broder’s account.
I’m all for never trusting the ink-stained wretches of the press. But if you read through Musk’s argument, the real heart of it is that Broder took too many detours between charging stations and didn’t wait long enough at the stations for his battery to take on a full charge. In other words: the car is OK, it’s just that¬†you drove it wrong. Excuse me? Is Tesla really marketing a product which relies on the consumer to coddle it to get it to perform just right?
[S]ince when is driving a car supposed to be so complicated? The whole point of technology is to use the machine’s energy and yes, to burn up natural resources,¬†in order to save human effort. The machines are supposed to work for us; we don’t work for them. This is especially true of the automobile, which is all about freedom, independence, going out on the open road and deciding on the spur of the moment where you want to go‚ÄĒnot about filing a flight plan and having technicians talk you through your trip.
I understand that the first round of a new technology doesn’t always work well and early adopters may have to make tradeoffs and accept limitations. But the Tesla is supposed to be the electric car¬†withouttradeoffs. This is supposed to be a mass-market car, the first wave of electric vehicles that can be manufactured and sold in truly industrial-scale quantities. It’s not supposed to be for hobbyists who don’t mind tinkering around with an experimental vehicle for the sake of technology curiosity.
But the folks at Tesla have gotten swept up in the quasi-religious hype of environmentalism. They’re not just manufacturing a curiosity for hobbyists. They’re¬†saving the planet, one preening and sanctimonious upper-middle-class driver at a time.
Smug, smug, smug…I agree with Tracinski, the electric car is an abomination.
A reader emails about my post earlier on Tesla electric cars:
I have a friend in¬†Germany¬†who has a Tesla.
It is bright yellow, not green, and unbelievably fast.¬† Read more »
You should know Fisker because you have helped to finance the Anaheim, Calif., company that makes ‚ÄĒ well, has made a few ‚ÄĒ electric cars. Its only model, the Karma ‚ÄĒ really; Obama administration green investments are beyond satire ‚ÄĒ costs $110,000. Your subsidy helped Justin Bieber, the fabulously rich Canadian teenager (he sings), buy one. No one ever said saving the planet one electric car at a time would be easy.
The Wall Street Journal reports that despite Fisker‚Äôs $192‚ÄČmillion in Energy Department loans, the Karma ‚Äúhas been hobbled by recalls and quality problems‚ÄĚ and the company has sacked half its employees. But perhaps Fisker‚Äôs biggest problem is that its source of batteries, A123 Systems, has gone bankrupt in spite of its $249‚ÄČmillion Energy Department grant. The administration that in the fiscal cliff drama is demanding control of much more of the nation‚Äôs wealth is the author of many Solyndra-style debacles.