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Toyota (TM) plans to sell its plug-in hybrid vehicles globally in two years, though with a...

Toyota (TM) plans to sell its plug-in hybrid vehicles globally in two years, though with a modest initial target of tens of thousands of vehicles per year. The car will be a version of the Prius - with an electric motor as well as a small combustion engine - that plugs into a standard outlet and gets about 134 mpg.
Comments (5)
  • Niner
    , contributor
    Comments (791) | Send Message
     
    I was always told that electricity was a very inefficient method of using energy. I remember (correctly or incorrectly) that 2/3 of the energy input was lost mostly in transmission. Now we charge batteries with I'm sure some loss and the we drive an electric motor that I would be really surprised if it is 100% efficient.

     

    Someone out there knows the answer to this question. It gets 134 mpg per gallon of gas. But, what is the energy cost converted to dollars and cents per mile vs. a standard car that gets 30 mpg. What is the carbon footprint. Is it really as good a deal as it sounds?
    14 Dec 2009, 11:24 AM Reply Like
  • Ed's perspective
    , contributor
    Comments (259) | Send Message
     
    follow up to niner . . .

     

    i also question these numbers as they sound so "political" rather than factual. ok... it goes for 14.5 miles on electricity only. If I plug the car in for how long ? (overnight?) ...what did THAT cost me to recharge?

     

    Then it runs on the combined gas/electric. What's the cost / run rate in THAT mode ( please give cents estimates on kilowatts per hour you would/could exepct to incur in a U.S market.)

     

    The batteries don't last forever and yield per charge would likely go down over time ... until you have to replace them completely. Bet that costs a bundle!

     

    I'd love it if there WERE a simple cost effective clean answer ... but i don't like it when it feels like i'm being splattered with "green propoganda".

     

    We're willing to support ideas ... but we're not dumb.
    14 Dec 2009, 11:33 AM Reply Like
  • jabberwolf
    , contributor
    Comments (78) | Send Message
     
    I kind of agree but only with the numbers.

     

    That phosphate lithium batteries (and other similar tech.) have been tested to death, at last at least 100,000 miles with repeated charging. The old tech of the prius batteries are well tested for repeated charges and seem to answer that question.

     

    But...
    To get that number for 14.5 miles with gasoline around $3 a gallon, the charge would have to be around 32 cents. That seems a bit low for an over night charge. An overnight charge to get 14.5 miles seems to be a bit much of work. That and the 134 mpg amount is not an average, it's just the amount you would get for the 14.5 miles.
    I'm not sure that's the average amount of miles traveled by a commuting driver per day.

     

    Comparing to the Volt's 40 miles per charge at around 1 dollar, and falling within the realm of average miles traveled per day, the Prius doesn't seem to compare.

     

    PS- Electricity is a very efficient use of energy. Combustion engines ( gasoline) in comparison are very inefficient. Its always the conversion of 1 medium of containing energy to another where you get loss. For example, using electricity to get hydrogen, only to convert hydrogen back to electricity to use - its a very large waste. The power plants convert fuel to electricity/energy much more efficiently than your car combustion engine does.
    14 Dec 2009, 12:18 PM Reply Like
  • Mad_Max_A_Million
    , contributor
    Comments (1175) | Send Message
     
    1. The numbers were computed without the staggering cost of cap and tax.
    2. It doesn't take into account the added cost of a new battery when the OEM loses capacity. Or the gradual reduction in capacity where the gas engine has to start working more of the cycle.
    3. It doesn't take into account the cost difference between a Toyota Corolla and this new buggy (many thousands).
    14 Dec 2009, 12:24 PM Reply Like
  • Niner
    , contributor
    Comments (791) | Send Message
     
    It is my understanding that loss during transmission is the big thing on electricity. Come on surely there is an engineer out there that knows exactly.

     

    On Dec 14 12:18 PM jabberwolf wrote:

     

    > I kind of agree but only with the numbers.
    >
    > That phosphate lithium batteries (and other similar tech.) have been
    > tested to death, at last at least 100,000 miles with repeated charging.
    > The old tech of the prius batteries are well tested for repeated
    > charges and seem to answer that question.
    >
    > But...
    > To get that number for 14.5 miles with gasoline around $3 a gallon,
    > the charge would have to be around 32 cents. That seems a bit low
    > for an over night charge. An overnight charge to get 14.5 miles
    > seems to be a bit much of work. That and the 134 mpg amount is not
    > an average, it's just the amount you would get for the 14.5 miles.
    >
    > I'm not sure that's the average amount of miles traveled by a commuting
    > driver per day.
    >
    > Comparing to the Volt's 40 miles per charge at around 1 dollar, and
    > falling within the realm of average miles traveled per day, the Prius
    > doesn't seem to compare.
    >
    > PS- Electricity is a very efficient use of energy. Combustion engines
    > ( gasoline) in comparison are very inefficient. Its always the conversion
    > of 1 medium of containing energy to another where you get loss. For
    > example, using electricity to get hydrogen, only to convert hydrogen
    > back to electricity to use - its a very large waste. The power plants
    > convert fuel to electricity/energy much more efficiently than your
    > car combustion engine does.
    14 Dec 2009, 09:12 PM Reply Like
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