Electric vehicle

Gayer than Fossy’s Gay Ute

It takes a lot to find a ute gayer than Fossy’s gay ute, but the diminutive Simon Bridges has managed it, and worse splashed it all over social media.

Read more »

Why Politicians support green projects, clue, it isn’t for the environment

Politicians the world over chuck billions at green projects but it isn’t to save the planet. They think that teh billions are good for the economy, despite it mostly being subsidised or borrowed.

Freakonomics highlights this.

Perhaps not surprisingly, “Government Promotion of the Electric Car: Risk Management or Industrial Policy?” (gated) finds that the economic benefits of the industry are the primary motivator for most governments. From the press release:

Contrary to common belief, many of the world’s most powerful nations promote the manufacture and sale of electric vehicles primarily for reasons of economic development – notably job creation – not because of their potential to improve the environment through decreased air pollution and oil consumption.  Read more »

Gay Car review knocks $100m of Tesla’s value

Gay car maker Tesla has had $100M knocked from their market capitalisation:

“NEVER pick a fight with someone who buys ink by the barrel,” Mark Twain famously warned. The question is whether that wisdom holds true in the digital age, particularly when the guy picking the fight has a seemingly unlimited supply of electrons.

What’s clear is that Elon Musk is not someone to readily brook criticism. A few years back, for instance, the co-founder of PayPal, an online payment service, and, more recently, the founder of Tesla Motors, a maker of battery-powered cars, went to war with the BBC over a story on the cheeky Top Gear, a wildly popular car show. He ultimately lost.

What’s not clear is who came out on top in Mr Musk’s latest media brawl. This one pitted him against one of the world’s most powerful and influential newspapers, the New York Times. Last month it ran a report by John Broder that detailed his drive from Washington, DC, to Boston in one of the carmaker’s new Model S sedans. What seemed to have short-circuited Mr Musk was a shot showing the electric vehicle being loaded onto a flatbed truck after running out of juice.   Read more »

Electric cars are totally gay

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’s 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.

Why you won’t catch me driving an electric car anytime soon

I think electric cars are gay. There are many and varying reasons for that, but seriously they are just gay. For a start the amount of time spent recharging the stupid things is just ridiculous.

Have a read of this article at The NY Times about a little trip in an electric car.

Setting out on a sunny 30-degree day two weeks ago, my trip started well enough. A Tesla agent brought the car to me in suburban Washington with a full charge, and driving at normal highway speeds I reached the Delaware charging dock with the battery still having roughly half its energy remaining. I went off for lunch at the service plaza, checking occasionally on the car’s progress. After 49 minutes, the display read “charge complete,” and the estimated available driving distance was 242 miles.

Fat city; no attendant and no cost.

As I crossed into New Jersey some 15 miles later, I noticed that the estimated range was falling faster than miles were accumulating. At 68 miles since recharging, the range had dropped by 85 miles, and a little mental math told me that reaching Milford would be a stretch.

I began following Tesla’s range-maximization guidelines, which meant dispensing with such battery-draining amenities as warming the cabin and keeping up with traffic. I turned the climate control to low — the temperature was still in the 30s — and planted myself in the far right lane with the cruise control set at 54 miles per hour (the speed limit is 65). Buicks and 18-wheelers flew past, their drivers staring at the nail-polish-red wondercar with California dealer plates.  Read more »

It’s official – electric cars are a useless expensive waste

Wonder no more. Electric cars are a useless expensive waste of resources:

U.S. federal policies to promote electric vehicles will cost $7.5 billion through 2019 and have “little to no impact” on overall national gasoline consumption over the next several years, the Congressional Budget Office said in a report issued on Thursday.

Consumer tax credits for buying electric vehicles, which can run as high as $7,500 per vehicle, will account for about 25 percent of the $7.5 billion cost, the CBO said.

The rest of the cost comprises of $2.4 billion in grants to battery makers and projects to promote electric vehicles as well as $3.1 billion in loans to auto companies designed to spur production of fuel-efficient vehicles.

Many of these initiatives were initiated in 2009 under President Barack Obama, but the loan program was authorized in 2007 under the Bush administration.

Producing all-electric cars and plug-in hybrids is part of the auto industry’s solution to reach increasingly stringent fuel economy standards designed to cut emissions and lessen the United States’ dependence on oil.

U.S. government standards mandate that by 2025, automakers to show corporate average fuel economy (CAFE) of 54.5 miles per gallon or about 39 miles per gallon in real world driving.

The tax credits will increase sales of EVs, hybrids and more fuel-efficient gas-powered models and help boost the average fuel economy of automakers’ fleets, the CBO said. The federal tax credits apply to the first 200,000 electric vehicles sold by each manufacturer.

But these sales will leave room for automakers to continue to sell models with low fuel economy, the CBO said.

“The more electric and other high-fuel-economy vehicles that are sold because of the tax credits, the more low-fuel-economy vehicles that automakers can sell and still meet the standards,” according to the report.

As a result, tax credits will have “little or no impact on the total gasoline use and greenhouse gas emissions of the nation’s vehicle fleet over the next several years.”