[Vwdiesel] Those anti-SUV ads

dennis pantazis dennis at pantazis.org
Sun Jan 12 22:17:05 EST 2003

i agree to all of your insightful opinions.

on a sidenote, did anyone catch the piece on npr's fresh air with paul
eisenstein which discussed the implications of oil shortage, ie the war with
iraq, strikes in venuzula, suv's and fuel efficeincy overall?


"Journalist Paul Eisenstein covers the automotive industry and is publisher
and editorial director of http://TheCarConnection.com, a site of news,
opinions and reviews about cars. He'll talk about the latest car trends and
the economic outlook for automakers. The North American International Auto
Show -- where most manufacturers unveil their new products -- takes place in
Detroit Jan. 11-20, 2003"

its a long interview, about 40 minutes. if you are in dialup, it will be

overall, i think it is a very good interview and i learned quite a bit
listening a couple of times.

i listened to it again online tonite and have tried to provide a summary. if
you can listen to it, do. i am not sure i have gotten all the points and
gotten them 100% accuratley. my comments in <>.

they discussed these adds specifically. they quoted the greorge add.

eiseinstein perception of the industry's reaction to these adds is 'looking
over its shoulder because its aware of the criticisms of the boon of the
suv, but the reality is that industry is looking to the future consumer
demand for more.... <so what we are saying here is that the big 3 realize
that they are contributing to all the bad but let's face it, they are making
too much money at it. until they figure out a way to do good and make MORE
money, why rock the boat?>

pure electric vehicles (battery cars) are dead. too costly, too much a fixed
end solution.

fuel cell is what auto industry is bankning on. too many coulds and
possiblies...<they are defering technology>

gas/elec hybrid. gm announced plans to produce 1M units/year by 2007 <yeah
pro's: 12-50% more fuel economy
people who have them like them.
cons's $5-$12K more in price <seems pointless since toyota and honda are
making them and they are making money. more like big hasn;t figured out to
make money at it>
they are more complex vehicles
gov't should pass tax credits to encourage usage.
only about 35,000 units sold last year.

lexus is putting out a gas/elec hybrid. <good move lexus> this could prove
that alternatives are sexy as well as responsible>

<***> mainstreaming the hybrid is important to gain acceptance.

some of the curiousities:

gm/caddy's prototype 1000hp (thats right 1K) v-16 car, 20 mpg!, technology
has displacement on demand where up to 12
of 16 cylinders get turned off to save fuel. this tech will trickle down

alternative fuel front:
ethanol has stalled: hasn;t caught on, alcohols are environmentaly
dangerous. few states still have 10% ethanol blends <mostly midwestern agg

discussion on the euro diesel challenges: 70% austria, 50% in france new
buyers are going diesel, driven by fuel economy
40% better milage
old holdover diesel memories don;t apply, but they taint current views.

drove v10 vw, was amazed at performance, its not your grandpa's diesel
passengers didn;t realize it was a diesel until told <we all know this>

emissions laws geared towards gassers, have made it almost impossible for
new diesels to be sold here, almost impossible after 2007
disadvantages of diesels-
"incredibly slight increase in nitrous emissions
particulate emissions:
tradeoff is tiny:
biggest benifit- C02 emissions=> cut cunsumption you cut emissions
its the fastest easiest way to reduce emissions,
automakers are trying to push for revisions
calif emissions board drives entire us emissions policies, they are
realizing the benifits of diesels,
industry is pushing for adoption, we may see revision of emissions
standards, and a rebirth of diesels

how/why japanese vehicles have terrible fuel efficiency numbers. they are
worse than we are. its a misconception that the japanese have more efficient
vehicles than we do

suv accident rates have statistically improved for accident rates.
surprisingly, its compacts/subcompacts that are more dangerous due to one
car accidents!

suv's are taking over the american highway. soccer moms and soccer dads.
typical americanisms: bigger, better, power

suv's are becoming like the minivans of the 80's & 90's. 3rd row seats,

one plus for suv's is all wheel drive. safer all around.


thats about all i have time for. there is some more, but like i said, listen
to it if you can.


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