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Maximizing efficiency and minimizing harm. What should you be driving?. Which “alternative” shows the most promise? Craig Childers. What technology is out there?. Standard Hybrids Plug in Hybrids Hydrogen power Diesel New clean diesel technology Bio-diesel Electric vehicles.

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maximizing efficiency and minimizing harm what should you be driving

Maximizing efficiency and minimizing harm. What should you be driving?

Which “alternative” shows the most promise?

Craig Childers

what technology is out there
What technology is out there?
  • Standard Hybrids
  • Plug in Hybrids
  • Hydrogen power
  • Diesel
    • New clean diesel technology
    • Bio-diesel
  • Electric vehicles
what determines best
What determines “best”?
  • What factors should we consider in evaluating alternative fuel/hybrid vehicles?
    • MPG rating
    • CO2 emissions
    • Cost of ownership
    • Vehicle production
    • Type of fuel used
what can an alternative fuel hybrid vehicle provide for the average consumer
What can an alternative fuel/hybrid vehicle provide for the average consumer?
  • There are clear benefits to the consumer, but society as a whole also benefits from consumers switching to alternative fuel/hybrid vehicles.
    • Lower fuel costs
    • Lower fuel consumption
    • Lower greenhouse gas emissions
    • Lower air pollution
greenhouse gas emissions
Greenhouse Gas Emissions
  • We will start at what likely will be the most far reaching and long term effects of motor vehicle usage – greenhouse gas emissions.
  • The EPA monitors and establishes testing methods for determining a vehicle’s greenhouse gas emissions.
  • While there are other forms ofgreenhouse gasses, this presentation will focus on CO2 emissions – the EPA has determined CO2to be the primary form of GHG, and they represent 96% of the transportation sector’s Global Warming Potential (GWP) weighted emissions.
  • GHG emissions are calculated based on determining the amount of fuel combusted by the vehicle – and then factoring in what the manufacturer has done to reduce the emissions between the engine and the tail-pipe, i.e. catalytic converter technology.
the europeans do it right
The Europeans do it right.
  • In the UK – all new cars sold have, along with the normal window sticker telling you the price, MPG, options, etc, a window sticker telling you the “green-ness” of the car.
  • The sticker will tell you the g/km of CO2 which the car will emit – and color code the quantity based on the “green-ness” of the vehicle.
  • Below 140 g/km of CO2 is considered to be good.
lowest ghg emitters in the us
Lowest GHG emitters in the US
  • The EPA has a “SmartWay” ranking system and will rank cars based on a combination of their MPG, air pollution, GHG emissions and fuel type.
  • also ranks vehicles and gives you a score of how “green” they are from 0 (best) – 100 (worst).
and the winners are
And the Winners are…
  • The lowest GHG emitters, on sale today in the US.
    • Toyota Prius
    • Mercury Milan/Ford Fusion Hybrid
    • Honda Civic Hybrid
    • Honda Insight
  • All of these cars score a 10 on the EPA’s GHG scale, which is the highest score.
  • The Prius and the Milan/Fusion are “Bin 3” on the air pollution scale, placing them between Ultra-Low Emissions (Bin 4) and Super-Low Emissions (Bin 2).
  • The pair of Hondas best the Prius/Fusion with a “Bin 2” ranking, making them Super-Low emission vehicles, the lowest emitting hybrid cars on the market today.
honda insight
Honda Insight
  • Combines a 1.3 liter VTEC engine with a 13 hp electric motor.
  • EPA “Bin 2” Super Low Emissions, and a combined MPG of 41.
ford fusion hybrid
Ford Fusion Hybrid
  • Combined MPG of 39, “Bin 3” emissions
  • Driven by drivers who were trained in maximizing fuel efficiency, a standard 2010 Ford Fusion managed 81.5 MPG in a Ford sponsored event.
  • North American Car of the Year and Car and Driver “10 Best” 2009.
toyota prius
Toyota Prius
  • Combined MPG of 50, and “Bin 3” emissions.
  • By far the most popular Hybrid on the market today, Toyota has sold more than 2 million Prius since the car’s inception.
what do those cars illustrate
What do those cars illustrate?
  • The combination of a standard petrol engine with a technologically advanced electric motor yields substantial results.
  • With 10-15 better MPG then their straight petrol counterparts and significantly lower emissions, cars like the Fusion Hybrid and the Prius show that automakers can make automobiles that are both efficient and green.
  • If all US drivers drove vehicles that emitted GHG as low as the Insight and had MPG in the low 40s, the US’ consumption of oil would plummet, and our production of GHG would drop significantly.
what is next
What is next?
  • While Hybrid technology is very significant, automakers are looking forward to what is next – how can we have higher MPG with lower emissions?
  • Plug-in Hybrids are becoming the next popular thing, and they make logical sense in bridging the gap between petrol cars and full electric automobiles.
plug in hybrids the best of both worlds
Plug-In Hybrids, the best of both worlds.
  • Plug-In Hybrids (PHEV) represent a quality balance between the range-limiting capabilities of an electric car and the fuel usage of a gas car.
  • Cars like Chevrolet’s Volt provide “gas-free” driving while the batteries are powering the automobile, and have the range of a normal gas powered car to boot!
  • If you live in a city and drive locally, you would never have to fill your car up with gas, the Volt is expected to have a battery range of around 40 miles.
phev s have significant advantages
PHEV’s have significant advantages
  • Increased PHEV use would lower our C02 emissions significantly, all while increasing MPG, and reducing our dependence on fossil fuels.
    • CO2 emissions will decrease over the long run, as our electric grid in the US is made more green and more efficient.
wheel to wheel efficiency
“Wheel to Wheel” Efficiency
  • Thewheel-to-wheel efficiency of charging an onboard battery and then discharging it to run an electric motor in a PHEV or EV is 80% (and could be higher in the future)—four times more efficient than current hydrogen fuel cell vehicle pathways.
the chevy volt
The Chevy Volt
  • Obvious advantages to the PHEV - principally the cheap <40 mile operation. (according to Bureau of transportation, nearly ¾ of American’s daily commute is less than 40 miles.)
  • Very “green” if charged with solar, wind, etc. power. – off-peak grid time.
    • Also – most US electricity is produced domestically.
  • Combine with a “smart grid” – and consumers who charge at night can get enormous benefits.
  • 0-60 in less than 9 seconds, seamless constant electric motor – the gas motor never is connected to the drivetrain.
  • Will qualify for a $7,500 Government tax credit.
  • Should cost between $2,000-$3,000 less a year than an average 30 MPG sedan.
are electric vehicles feasible
Are Electric Vehicles feasible?
  • There are many issues which lay in the path of a full electric vehicle (EV) and success in the US market.
  • Charge time? Range on charge? Battery cost? Battery technology? Outlets to charge? Increased load on our energy grid?
  • However, answers seem to be coming quick, and the future looks bright for the electric car.
the future of electric vehicles ev
The Future of Electric Vehicles (EV)
  • Currently in the US, there are very few EV vehicles available.
    • Tesla Roadster (Previous slide)
    • Mini – E (in limited quantity on a lease program)
  • However, 2010 will see a multitude of new EV and PHEV (previously mentioned) vehicles.

Tesla has unveiled the Tesla Model S - as the company says the "world's first mass-produced, highway-capable EV". The Tesla Model S sedan has a range of 300 miles, a 0 to 60 mph acceleration time of 3.9 seconds and an electronically limited top speed of 130 mph. The company say the electric Tesla Model S can be re-charged from any 120V, 240V or 480V outlet, a full re-charge taking 45 minutes from the 480V outlet


The new Nissan LEAF - is a fully electric-powered car which Nissan says will be the world’s first affordable electric vehicle.

  • What gives the LEAF its credentials is a set of laminated lithium-ion batteries and an electric motor. Unlike hybrids like the Chevrolet Volt, no fossil fuel engine of any type of size is to be found in it. The batteries make over 90kW while the motor delivers 80kW (109hp) and 280Nm, figures similar to those of a compact turbo diesel motor. Charge time will be in the 8 hour range for a full charge, but a shorter 80% “quick” charge will be available as well.
new incentives and legislation are promoting the growth of ev
New Incentives and Legislation are promoting the growth of EV.
  • President Obama has made a goal of 1 million PHEV vehicles by 2015 – as a result there are large amounts of federal funding for battery manufacturers – which should rapidly increase electricity storage and charging technology.
  • Currently, there are incentives of up to $7500 on purchasing a new EV or PHEV, and the government has over $2 billion in incentives for battery and automobile manufacturers.
  • As battery and charging technology increases, EV will be more and more prevalent – and similar to the PHEV situation, as energy providers seek to keep up with greater demand the grids should hopefully improve, and become more efficient.

This Ford Focus EV will be powered by a permanent magnet electric-traction motor and a 23kw litium ion battery. The goal is to have this on the road by 2011 and the vehicle should do near 100 miles on a charge (6-8hrs).

what can we do now
What can we do NOW?
  • If anything has been consistent thus far, it is that long-term viable solutions are still some distance off, and nearly all of the forthcoming PHEV and EV vehicles are either a small passenger car (Nissan LEAF, Focus EV, Volt, Prius PHEV) or prohibitively expensive (Tesla Roadster, Fisker Karma).
  • We need to take an active roll in severely lowering both our GHG emissions and raising the average MPG of the vehicles which we drive, and we needed to do this yesterday.
there are several alternatives which exist today
There are several alternatives which exist today.
  • If drivers, especially those who are not ideal candidates for PHEV/EV cars (no garage or have longer commutes), switch to new vehicles which provide measurable increases in MPG and decreases in GHG emissions, the goals of reduced energy consumption would be realized sooner.
  • These new alternatives include new cleaner diesel vehicles, currently available hybrids, or new vehicles which utilize new, more efficient, gasoline engines.

The BlueMotion concept uses an updated 1.2L three cylinder TDI diesel, with 74 hp. Combined with 15-inch low rolling resistance tires, a blanked off grille, extended rocker panels for lower drag, automatic start stop, and brake energy regeneration. The bottom line is 71.3 mpg (US) and 87 g/km of CO2 emissions. That makes the new BlueMotion the most efficient five passenger internal combustion car on the road.


The Touareg V6 TDI Clean Diesel is powered by a 3.0L, turbocharged six cylinder engine that produces 225 horsepower and an impressive 407 lbs-ft. of torque. Utilizing third generation common rail injection and the most advanced catalytic converter system in the world, it meets Tier 2, Bin 5/ULEV II standards.


The currently available 2009 Jetta TDI gets a combined MPG of 35, and is ULEV certified. It is also an EPA “SmartWay” car.

  • If Automakers like BMW, Audi/VW embrace biodiesel technology we can not only reduce our consumption on a per-gallon basis but also reduce our general consumption of petroleum based diesel.

Switching to a more efficient gasoline powered automobile, like a Honda Fit, can be an excellent improvement. Combined MPG of 31, and ULEV certification.

you can still drive an suv
You can still drive an SUV!
  • The Ford Escape/Mazda Tribute/Mercury Mariner Hybrid are all SULEV, with a combined MPG of 32. All that and you get room for 5 and lots of space.
  • The ability to be proactive and drive vehicles which limit GHG emission and increase mileage is getting easier and easier by the day.
the epa has suggestions
The EPA has suggestions
  • The tailpipe emissions from cars and trucks account for almost a third of the air pollution in the United States.
  • Your choice of vehicle makes a difference for the environment.
  • Be responsible about using and caring for your vehicle and it will reward you by polluting less and lasting longer.
  • Choose a cleaner vehicle
  • Choose a more fuel efficient vehicle
  • Drive fewer miles
  • Maintain your vehicle properly
  • Refuel wisely
2010 models which qualify for irs tax credit
2010 Models which qualify for IRS tax credit
  • To encourage the purchase of Hybrid and “Advanced Lean-Burn Vehicles” the IRS offers significant tax credits.
    • Various Audi and VW clean TDI cars range from $1,150 to $1,700 in tax credits
    • Purchase a Fusion Hybrid and get between $3,400 and $850 in tax credits.
    • A Honda FCX Clarity fuel cell vehicle qualified for $12,000 in tax credit.
what can we expect the future will bring
What can we expect the future will bring?
  • It is difficult to determine exactly what technology holds the most promise for a long-term viable solution to oil dependency.
  • Lately the “winners” have been picked by the government, rather than consumers – the best solution is one where the best most efficient technology “wins”.
  • Hydrogen cars are a now classic example.