Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Long Live the Internal Combustion Engine!

I admit it. I don’t like electric cars.

I read this morning on Yahoo that "Porsche CEO suggests all Porsche models will be fully electric by 2030". Boy, that would make you think that even Porsche may be on the bandwagon.  If you look a little closer, the actual quote was "I would venture to predict that, by 2030, the sportiest Porsche will have an electric drive. Who knows – maybe by then even our iconic sports car, the 911, will be electric." Big difference.

I have had the opinion for many years that electric cars really pull the wool over the consumers eyes. Initially it was a "green" thing, right?  It's so much better for the environment to NOT be using a fossil fuel.  Save the planet!!!  But the reality is so much different than that.  No one wants to show you the strip mining required to get the battery components out of the ground. We have yet to talk about the disposal of the batteries or the incredible cost of replacing mostly dead batteries on a 5 year old used electric car.  Seems to me that a Honda civic (and almost every car) will run 300,000 miles without a new motor.

I could also point out the fact that the internal combustion engine is one of the most efficient systems that mankind has ever built -- all based on burning gasoline. My old friend Colin used to rant about the simplicity of his Mini Cooper that got almost 40 mpg without any batteries.  Very simple.  Add in the recent engineering and we have no problem getting 40+ mpg on a very simple 4 cylinder engine with very low emissions.

The mainstream media would have to believing that everyone is going electric. Gobs of articles about car companies going all electric by 20xx.  They may have that vision, but the American public hasn't adopted it yet. A few days ago my friend and I sat and had coffee in Venice, FL at a Dunkin Donuts on highway 41.  This may be the most busy stretch of road in the area -- 2 or 3 lanes of traffic each direction.  We watched the cars for 30 minutes (drinking coffee of course) and counted the electric cars. Nothing. Not one Tesla, Leaf or anything else.  We looked for hybrids too -- Bolt, Volt, Prius... nothing.  So adoption is in the tank.

This same friend and I also had a discussion last summer as our families were bugging out of Florida during Hurricane Irma. If you were in a $100k Tesla, you were in trouble  Try sitting in traffic, gridlocked on the highway for 12 hours in an electric car. You'd be the one people were pushing. Even if you got off the highway, you'd be hard pressed to find a charging station. Let's say you never left your house and rode out the storm.  We lost power for four days. Hmmmmmm......

Time to buy electric?  Consider these points:

-1 longevity of the vehicle
-1 is it really planet friendly
-1 efficiency of the system
-1 simplicity of the vehicle
-1 adoption rate of the technology
-1 charging station access

For me, there's nothing quite like mashing the gas pedal.  Doesn't really matter if it's a Tundra, Cayman or Ford Edge.... Long live the Internal combustion engine.

ps - the 911 will always be powered by internal combustion. There may be some low end torque battery assist, but the flat-6 will never be replaced by batteries. Just my prediction.

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