Gas prices!!!!!

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Spectere_uplink
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Postby Spectere_uplink » Tue Aug 30, 2005 9:41 pm

Your example has little bearing on reality and only covers a single model of a single manufacturer. First of all, one of the more popular cars on the road in my area (especially due to the major sales on the 2004/2005's when Chevy phased them out) is the Chevy Cavalier, which has an economic 4-cylinder engine.

Imported vehicles are very common in the US, especially Asian ones. In fact, they are more affordable than many cars from GM, Ford, and Chrysler. In fact, there's a Kia sitting in my garage now.

Simple fact: at any given time most of the cars you'll see on the road are powered by a little 4-banger. Even minivans and SUVs typically don't have anything bigger than a small block V6 in them (my dad's Dodge Caravan has a Mitsubishi-built V6 engine, I think it's a 3.0L, that gets roughly 22 mpg city and 35 mpg highway).

You keep asking why the US uses so much gas and you seem to be ignoring everyone's posts in this thread. I recall someone making a mention of how you can't really find public transportation outside of large cities. This is very true.

For me to go to school I have to have a car; there's no way around it. I live roughly 15 miles away from my school. My car is rated at 37 mpg highway, but since I gave it a tune-up I've been getting roughly 40 mpg. That means that a single trip to and from school will burn 3/4 gallons of gas. Three days a week, 2.25 gallons of gas used per week.

That doesn't include work. That's roughly 3 miles away, not even accounting for lunch stops or trips between buildings (I work at a public school system). 6 miles, round-trip, five days a week. That's 30 miles per week, or a gallon of gas used (it's all city driving).

Right now we're up to about 3.25 gallons of gas per week for a fairly efficient car, if I take a direct route from A to B without stopping or revving my engine too high. That is over a quarter of a tank of gas for me (12 gallon tank). That's only required mileage -- that doesn't include stops at my friends house (note that my friends live, on average, 5-7 miles from me, and I'm not going to abandon my social life because of gas prices, nor am I going to walk or bike because there's the chance of getting mugged, which isn't that unusual of an occurance in the area that I live in, not to mention that I'd have to travel through heavy traffic.

Basically, by the time you add all of the little extras up, I have to refill my tank every two weeks, give or take a few days.

Also, keep in mind that I'm a relatively light driver. The mileage that I put on my car yearly falls into every "low" bracket that I've seen. If you factor in grocery-grabbing and other things that the head of a household would do then you're looking at a lot more city miles. Then there are the people who travel 20-30 miles (and up) to work every day, one way, with no option of public transit.

If you actually read all of that and still want to know why the US uses so much gas that I'm going to fucking e-slap you.
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Postby Stewsburntmonkey » Tue Aug 30, 2005 10:26 pm

doormat wrote:Well, look at it this way. Ford build 2 family saloons (sedans) in the same market sector. The Taurus and the Mondeo. (The taurus is for the US market, the Mondeo is european). Now tell me why the US uses so much gas.


Well first the Mondeo is about twice as expensive as the Taurus. With that sort of price difference you would expect better engineering/performance. Second, the Mondeo is diesel while the Taurus is not. The US isn't nearly as diesel friendly as Europe is and in any event comparing miles per gallon for different fuels is not the best way to make a comparision.. Third the Mondeo produces about 120 horsepower while the Taurus produces about 150 horsepower (both of these are numbers for the least powerful engine offered). This reflects the longer distances US cars are generally driven over.
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Postby The GoldFish » Wed Aug 31, 2005 1:04 am

Hey Stews, you do realise how much cheaper everything is in America to begin with right? (ie, I wouldn't weight cost very heavily at all)
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Postby Stewsburntmonkey » Wed Aug 31, 2005 1:19 am

Yes, I do realise that the relative cost of that car is not twice as much as in America, but it is still a good deal more expensive even in relative terms.
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Postby ToRmEnToR » Wed Aug 31, 2005 6:43 am

Simple fact: at any given time most of the cars you'll see on the road are powered by a little 4-banger. Even minivans and SUVs typically don't have anything bigger than a small block V6 in them (my dad's Dodge Caravan has a Mitsubishi-built V6 engine, I think it's a 3.0L, that gets roughly 22 mpg city and 35 mpg highway).


3.0L a small V6 block? Lol that's funny... When people tell me they have a small engined car I'm thinking in the direction of an 1.2 engine or something. 3.0 is huge! The honda just for example takes something around 60 mpg (US gallons. 70 regular gallons per mile).

EDIT>

PS,

Today the gas prrices in israel go up again. One litre of 95octane will cost 5.90NIS = 1.30$. Almost 5$ per gallon (US gallons. 5.90$ per gallon). That's just unbelivable.

Some echonomic bigshot said that oil prices will drop as low as 30$ per barrel while others claim that it'll pass the 100$ just as soon. What do you guys think? (dont have time to think right now, at work)
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Postby Calimar » Wed Aug 31, 2005 9:52 am

Will go up. Too much demand, and monopoly has always brought an rise in prices, never a lowering. There's a cartel for oil price, so as long as we're stuck with oil for transportation, we're basically screwed. It worked while china and india were non-developed. But now....

Gas is now 1.30eu a litre in Italy, roughly 6 US$ a gallon at current dollar exchange rates. There was a us guy yesterday complaining about the $2.60 price being "ridicolous" ;)

Still, there's basically NO reason to use a 3 liter engine with current technology. Common Rail engines have an incredible torque with smaller engines, and can drive about anything you want.
It's just a matter of habits - and after all the US are the only country that still has that kind of engines and cars....

IMNERHO.
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Postby ReflectingGod » Wed Aug 31, 2005 10:53 am

ToRmEnToR wrote:
Simple fact: at any given time most of the cars you'll see on the road are powered by a little 4-banger. Even minivans and SUVs typically don't have anything bigger than a small block V6 in them (my dad's Dodge Caravan has a Mitsubishi-built V6 engine, I think it's a 3.0L, that gets roughly 22 mpg city and 35 mpg highway).


3.0L a small V6 block? Lol that's funny... When people tell me they have a small engined car I'm thinking in the direction of an 1.2 engine or something. 3.0 is huge! The honda just for example takes something around 60 mpg (US gallons. 70 regular gallons per mile).



The 350 c.i. Chev motor I was talking about earlier is a GM small block V8 (350 c.i. is approx 5.7 litres) the big block chevs go over 8 litres.

Also, although a lot of people don't realise this, turbocharged enginers are very efficient. In general, a small , turbocharged engine uses less fuel than a larger naturally aspirated motor making the same power, i.e. the fuel consumption of a turbocharged motor is less per kiloWatt than a naturally aspirated car. This is why a lot of modern diesel engines are turbocharged.
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Postby Spectere_uplink » Wed Aug 31, 2005 7:39 pm

Calimar wrote:Still, there's basically NO reason to use a 3 liter engine with current technology.

Uh, the van is a 1993, and I should probably mention, if I haven't already, that it's a Japanese engine (since some people here seem to have this idea that only American-made engines are "big").

Calimar wrote:It's just a matter of habits - and after all the US are the only country that still has that kind of engines and cars....

The V12's in some high-end European cars are neither small nor fuel efficient. :/
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Postby doormat » Wed Aug 31, 2005 10:02 pm

Well first the Mondeo is about twice as expensive as the Taurus. With that sort of price difference you would expect better engineering/performance.


That's my point exactly. Same target market, but the cars are very diffrent. American cars are cheaper, but badly built and ineffecient. Europe has higher standards. (And the mondeo is mostly a petrol V6, which actualy provides better performance than the V8 taurus on about half as much fuel.)

It's always fun to look at V12's in high end cars... let's see... american high end cars... :lol:

Seriously, the Aston does about 20mpg. Which is more than the new shelby cobra. Or any number of other poor american cars.

And the "japanese" cars in america are mostly "japanese" like the Mondeo is "american". Toyota's flagship engine in the rest of the world is a twin turbo V6. In america, it's a dumb V8, because that's all the americans will buy. And I've never seen a Nissan Titan anywhere but america.

You need to re-value what you want from cars, as a nation. You may have to spend a higher amount to buy a smaller car, and you may lose that joke of a domestic car industry and see more transnational designs... but it'll save you gas money in the long run, and you don't realy have a choice. Bush can only order the tide back for so long.
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Postby Stewsburntmonkey » Wed Aug 31, 2005 11:04 pm

doormat wrote: Europe has higher standards. (And the mondeo is mostly a petrol V6, which actualy provides better performance than the V8 taurus on about half as much fuel.)


There are a lot of crap cars in Europe. . . The difference is not in quality, but in what the ideal of the car is. In the US the car is viewed and used very differently than in Europe. This is reflected in the types of cars that are made.

It's always fun to look at V12's in high end cars... let's see... american high end cars... :lol:

Seriously, the Aston does about 20mpg. Which is more than the new shelby cobra. Or any number of other poor american cars.


The Astin Martin is one of the finest cars in the world. However if you compare it to the definative American super car (the Corvette), it comes out looking fairly bad (performance wise). The Corvette has a V8 which virtually matches the Astin Martin Vanquish in power. The Corvette's gas consumption is however far better (18/28 versus 10/21 mpg).

And the "japanese" cars in america are mostly "japanese" like the Mondeo is "american". Toyota's flagship engine in the rest of the world is a twin turbo V6. In america, it's a dumb V8, because that's all the americans will buy. And I've never seen a Nissan Titan anywhere but america.


You are heading into dangerous waters here. A V8 is relatively rare even in the US. The vast majority of vehicles in the US are still V4 or V6.

You need to re-value what you want from cars, as a nation. You may have to spend a higher amount to buy a smaller car, and you may lose that joke of a domestic car industry and see more transnational designs... but it'll save you gas money in the long run, and you don't realy have a choice. Bush can only order the tide back for so long.


You don't seem to understand how different driving conditions are in the US from anywhere else in the world. Long distance/highspeed driving is the norm in America. Driving long distances at highspeed demands more horsepower than driving shorter distances does. A higher horsepower engine can sustain speed a lower RPMs and thus reduce wear and tear on the engine.
Last edited by Stewsburntmonkey on Thu Sep 01, 2005 2:56 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Postby ReflectingGod » Thu Sep 01, 2005 2:32 am

TBH, if you are driving a Vanquish, you won't be too worried about what you are spending on fuel.

And I can see where stews is coming from on the long distance driving. You try driving anywhere outside Perth in Western Australia, and its a very long way until you reach anything else. The last thing you want when you're cruising at 110Km/h is your 1.2 litre 4 cylinder revving its guts out. The 6s and 8s are a lot more practical.

Also, another reason to buy a V8, the towing capacity is great, handy if you tow something heavy often.

Personally, I'm a big fan of the Wankel rotary engines in some mazda's but they aren't exactly efficient either. Fuel economy isn't the only factor to consider in engine choice.
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Postby ToRmEnToR » Thu Sep 01, 2005 6:52 am

Stewsburntmonkey wrote:Driving long distances at highspeed demands more horsepower than driving shorter distances does. A higher horsepower engine can sustain speed a lower RPMs and thus reduce wear and tear on the engine.


It's all about gear ratios. A small 4V engine can cruise at high speeds on low RPMs if everthing will be set up right. Maybe a good idea is to invent a cruise gear that'll have a very small ratio and thus allow very echonomic driving at 80 mph for example. Of cource the only drawback would be the almost complete lack of ability to accelerate (when using this gear of cource). This gear should change lots of things in the fuel injection system. The main thing it should change is the ristriction on the amount of fuel injected into the engine. Even if the driver presses the pedal to the floor, the only amount of fuel that'll be allowed into the engine is the ammount that will be converted to energy in the most efficiant way, insted of filling the engine with large amounts of gas which will stay mostly unused.

Besides that, I'll again mention the high-output small engines. With dualstage turbo charging and all, they are able to provide more power for at the same RPM.

Optimizing small engines to create maximum output is the future IMO...
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Postby Spectere_uplink » Thu Sep 01, 2005 7:03 am

doormat wrote:American cars are cheaper, but badly built and ineffecient.

I'm finding it harder and harder to take you seriously. You obviously have no idea what kind of abuse the Chevy Cavalier (ESPECIALLY the older ones) can live through. I know someone who had 280,000 miles on their motor and was lax about changing the oil and his Cavvy ran surprisingly smoothly.

doormat wrote:Europe has higher standards.

So explain to me why the Jaguar is said to have an atrocious reliability rating. And what about the Land Rover?

doormat wrote:Seriously, the Aston does about 20mpg. Which is more than the new shelby cobra. Or any number of other poor american cars.

Yeah, 20mpg HIGHWAY. There's an important distinction between city and highway.

doormat wrote:In america, it's a dumb V8, because that's all the americans will buy.

You're pretty thick, aren't you?

In fact, I seriously think you're just trying to turn this into yet another Europe vs. US thread. All you're doing is trolling about things that you know absolutely nothing about.

ToRmEnToR wrote:Maybe a good idea is to invent a cruise gear that'll have a very small ratio and thus allow very echonomic driving at 80 mph for example

Most highways in the US top off at 55-65mph, and most overdrive gears seem to be tuned to work well at those speeds (though it will kick in as soon as 35 mph to save gas while prowling around off the highway). Keep in mind that if you make the gear ratio too small you wouldn't be able to accelerate (as you stated), go up steep hills, and you have the possibility of the engine stalling if it upshifts early.
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Postby ToRmEnToR » Thu Sep 01, 2005 8:15 am

Spectere wrote:So explain to me why the Jaguar is said to have an atrocious reliability rating. And what about the Land Rover?


I think doormat was talking about the more common EU cars in comparison to the more common US cars.



Most highways in the US top off at 55-65mph, and most overdrive gears seem to be tuned to work well at those speeds (though it will kick in as soon as 35 mph to save gas while prowling around off the highway). Keep in mind that if you make the gear ratio too small you wouldn't be able to accelerate (as you stated), go up steep hills, and you have the possibility of the engine stalling if it upshifts early.


Well a 2.0L engine can handle 55-65mph without breaking any sweat (my mazda 323 1.8L can cruise at these speeds at low rpms) while still providing good acceleration (sure it doesnt come near a 4.2L buick, but it eats so much less fuel) . The extra gear I've talked about should be nothing but an extra. The driver will only activate it whenever he'll see that he wont need to accelerate much and just ride at a certain speed. Maybe it can be intigrated into the cruise control system...
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Postby ReflectingGod » Thu Sep 01, 2005 8:17 am

The problem with the argument on ratios is that there are a limited number of gears in a car (typically 5/6 in a modern manual, and 4/5 in an automatic). First gear has to be tall enough to launch easily, and you don't want huge gaps between ratios, so you can't neccesarily put in a gear as high as you want.

And Spectere, I doubt any automatic transmission woud be poorly designed enough to shift up in such a way as to cause a stall. And anyway, real men drive manuals :P
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