Making a Difference

My Personal and Professional views

Chevy Volt 230 MPG. Really?

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The first question that came to my mind when I saw this headline was, “What will they give the all electric Tesla?” the answer, it turns out is not MPG but KW-hr/100 miles. . The EPA will not be giving MPG ratings to all electric cars, which makes sense consider there are no gallons to turn into miles but how will this convert in our brains and wallets?

Upon further research I learned that it is not even as simple as calculating your cost of electricity multiplied by the efficiency rating of your vehicle. You see it never is that easy. In fact you may be suprised to discover that it is all sort of a sham.

Like any debate your interst should define your position. if your interest is in saving money on fuel then you may be surprised to discover that most hybrids will take you over 5 years to receive a return. if your interest is on saving the planet then you may be amused to discover that no one in the electric cap business is prepared to tell you the environmental costs of producing and disposing of highly toxic battery systems.

If your interst is to reduce our dependence on foreign oil then you better make sure that your electric tesla is connected to a powergrid powered by a nuclear or coal, or natural gas power plant. Of course now we are back to other forms of environmental impact.

Tesla All Electrc Roadster

Tesla All Electrc Roadster

So what is the answer? Personally I am riding a bicycle, an electic one albeit, but a bicycle just the same. I imagine my cost per mile is somewhere in the sub penny range but then again the E+ was  not cheap and it does run partially on a natural gas plant, meaning my local electricty provider not me.

In the end I think we are all going to make decisions that somehow make us feel good but we need to remember that a diesel Jetta may actually be a better solution than a chevy volt. Nothing is black and white every answer is well, a hybrid.


Is a Hybrid worth it?

The real costs per mile:

The Tesla details:


Written by Jim McNiel

August 11, 2009 at 3:28 pm

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