Originally Posted by ENINTY
Thanks for sharing your thoughts. You have some good points and we can debate them as some have no answer as they point to future issues that have time on their side for technology to solve.
But my reasoning for considering a volt is purely on gas savings for my daily 160 mile commute. I'm not a greenie by any consideration (look at some of my posts regarding the carbon fiber 7-series thread); and I also own a Hummer H3T. I spend X dollars a month on fuel. The Volt would almost give me half my trip back using no gasoline and only an estimated $3.00 to travel 70 miles of it, with 90 miles commuting at approximately 37 MPG, which is 10 MPG better than my E90 gets on average (and I've kept strict fuel consumption records on every tank of gas since mile 3 so I know I get an average 27 MPG). This of course means charging the Volt at work during the day, which is something I need to discuss with my company. I can install the 240V charger at home myself. However claiming the new F30 328i gets 38 MPG is a bit of a stretch. Yes, I’m sure one could get better than the 36 MPG highway rating in some perfect conditions (weather, traffic, and terrain), but for my commute, I’d might expect an average of 30 MPG. I’ve not really seen where turbo engines get really much better fuel consumption in real-world driving situations.
One of the concerns I have is something you brought up which was battery replacement. This issue has kept me away from considering other hybrids (I've considered them since the original Honda Insight came to market in 1999) such as the Ford Fusion, which is also an excellent car as I found when I test drove it in 2009. But I've been studying the issue of battery replacement. It appears the batteries rarely fail and not need replacement over the operating life of the vehicle. From studies I read on the SAE website, in one instance Ford, who is long-term, real-world testing their hybrid drive system in taxi cabs in San Francisco has only one (1) battery cell go bad in something like 10,000 cells in use in a combine million mile use (I forget the exact details, but it is on the order of that magnitude). I know a few people with long-term Prius (Prium?) who have had no battery failures; one is a 1st gen Prius with just over 100,000 miles on it. So the concern over premature battery replacement has become less of a concern on my part.
A new Volt is far better in comfort and reliability than an early ‘90s civic (that would have close to 200,000 miles on it assuming it was driven an average of 10,000 miles a year); and where would I get one with sub 5,000 miles to use as fresh a long-term daily commuter. I’d rather just run the wheels off my E90; it’s already a worthless used car with 167K on the clock.
I think the best takeaway here is, discovering the Volt is really worth consideration as a car for a lot of people. If it is true most drivers drive less than 70 miles a day, the Volt fills the bill as an electric-only vehicle, and can work quite well as an ICE-powered car when needed.
got a good point, driving a volt compared to a H3 would definitely be a cost saving option... no doubt. a that rate of comparison, it would make sense that the volt would in turn make up for cost of the car from the fuel saving(s). i agree.
but what i do not agree is at volt's price range which is, in $30k ~ $40k it does not justify when compared to its competitors like when its compared to H3. for me i wouldn't mind buying an old civic and even replace the engine if miles are too high... but thats not for everyone so i understand. but i hope you got the idea of what i am trying to say, which is there are alternatives out there if milage is one's pure concern.
i agree EPA ratings sometimes seems like "hope it gets" and other times "underrated" varying from models and manufacturers... but gives a relative idea of what to expect. i do not expect f30 to get 38mpg but i do expect 34 - 36mpg and with those kind of numbers, volt make less of sense. to me i think volt would make sense if it ran on water and electric or get 10 - 15 miles better than 40 mpg'ers. on a side note, i think volt's cabin/interior is very subjective when it comes to being nice and not generalized opinion that some of its competitors might have attained already.
far as batteries go, 14% green house gas is from transportation, and 27% are from manufacturing, adding additional battery production certainly will not decrease the 27%. and even if battery lasts 100,000+ miles you will have to factor in breakdowns, wrecks, lemons, etc. america alone is pouring 2 billion lithium ion battery per year into wastelands... and i think volt will just add to that since there is no profitable gain in recycling lithium ion batteries. im not an environmentalist, but i am interested in commodity production and its pro and cons.
fwiw, i do not even consider nissan leaf as a car nor in any of my comparison factors. so with that in mind, since i am here bored at work did some math. correct me if i am wrong btw.
variables: fuel price= $3.55(regular) fuel capacity= 14 gallon charging= 3.00
H3(9mpg) - volt(37mpg) = 28mpg x $3.55= $99.4 in savings - 3.00 = $96.4
so if volt and h3 travels same amount of distance with 14g then you would be saving $96.4 per tank.
elantra(33mpg) - volt(37mpg) = 4mpg x 3.55 = $14.2 in savings - 3.00= $11.2
so if we use hyundai elantra then the savings are only $11.2 per tank
cost difference of the volt from elantra $14k est. and it would take 1,273 fill ups to make up the difference plus you'll have to factor in depreciation and interest of the 14k for the length of the loan.
i appreciate what the volt is trying to do but just like so many brilliant ideas, i just dont see it working/applying in real world.
plus there are diesels out there too that are great milage per gallon as well for less or equal amount of money.