Electric Vehicles

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Hristo Botev
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Re: Electric Vehicles

Post by Hristo Botev »

@Riggerjack: I don't know anything about the oil refining process, but I took him to be saying that the refractory tower valve adjustment wasn't really an option--that gasoline is a byproduct of the refining process; you can't just turn a knob and have one barrel of crude oil produce more lubricants, less gasoline. Is that just flat-out wrong?

tonyedgecombe
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Re: Electric Vehicles

Post by tonyedgecombe »

Riggerjack wrote:
Wed Dec 16, 2020 12:33 pm
Scrap.

So after the car is all used up, all those refined rare earths are in concentrated form, and in an established recycling system.

How is this worse than the ICE car that gets scrapped?
Clearly the recycling isn't a problem. The lack of availability of cheap cars might be for some people.

Hristo Botev
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Re: Electric Vehicles

Post by Hristo Botev »

Anecdotally, I bought a 2-year-old Nissan Leaf awhile back from a dealer, drove it for 2 years, and then sold it privately for more money than I'd paid for it. (I only sold it because the garage in our new house was too small for even a Leaf; it was a fantastically fun car to drive.) That was only one of two times in my life where I've had a car appreciate in value. The other time was after I'd had buyer's remorse after buying a brand new Honda minivan, and because of Fukushima I was able to sell it back to the dealer for more than I'd bought it for, because apparently the plant that made the navigation screens was inside the affected zone.
Last edited by Hristo Botev on Wed Dec 16, 2020 3:48 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Alphaville
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Re: Electric Vehicles

Post by Alphaville »

tonyedgecombe wrote:
Wed Dec 16, 2020 3:39 pm
Clearly the recycling isn't a problem. The lack of availability of cheap cars might be for some people.
yeah, the chevy bolt starts at $36k and goes up from there

comparatively, the 3cyl ford fiesta (now discontinued) started at something like $13k? maybe less?

chenda
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Re: Electric Vehicles

Post by chenda »

Classic cars are sometimes mooted as a financially viable way of ownership which doesn't depreciate. I don't know how practical this is though, it seems probably a lot of effort if you're not a classic car enthusiast and don't enjoy regularly tinkering with it.

Hristo Botev
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Re: Electric Vehicles

Post by Hristo Botev »

Per @SClass it sounds like older diesel Mercedes that can be converted to veggie oil power are holding their value.

But I've got a couple friends who do the vintage car thing (Jeep Wagoneer; the old Ford Bronco; an old Porsche 911; a Scout), and they don't leave much time for other hobbies; and I'm sure the money you put in certainly don't add up to the money you might one day get out.
Last edited by Hristo Botev on Wed Dec 16, 2020 3:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Alphaville
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Re: Electric Vehicles

Post by Alphaville »

Hristo Botev wrote:
Wed Dec 16, 2020 3:56 pm
Per @SClass it sounds like older diesel Mercedes that can be converted to veggie oil power are holding their value.
he said veggie actually destroys the value, as mercedes purists believe it causes engine damage.

Hristo Botev
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Re: Electric Vehicles

Post by Hristo Botev »

Alphaville wrote:
Wed Dec 16, 2020 3:58 pm
he said veggie actually destroys the value, as mercedes purists believe it causes engine damage.
Right; I said Mercedes that can be converted to veggie.

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Alphaville
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Re: Electric Vehicles

Post by Alphaville »

Hristo Botev wrote:
Wed Dec 16, 2020 4:00 pm
Right; I said Mercedes that can be converted to veggie.
but just like teenage sucide: don't do it :D

Hristo Botev
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Re: Electric Vehicles

Post by Hristo Botev »

More like an additional selling point that could appeal to both the collapsists (versatility) and the environmentalists (look Ma! no waste!), in addition to the Mercedes diesel purists. Also, as I understand it, you can't really do the veggie conversion thing with the new diesels; so we're basically talking about a relatively small window of time with cars that, as I understand it, also happen to have been really well made, and are also simple enough that a smart and resourceful home mechanic (i.e., not me) can keep them plugging along for quite some time.

Gilberto de Piento
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Re: Electric Vehicles

Post by Gilberto de Piento »

I sometimes see the Leaf for sale used at prices that are much cheaper than a similar has powered car. Usually 40-60,000 miles, mint condition, almost all of battery capacity still there for say $5-8,000. Between what you get for the price and the low operating costs it seems like a reasonable choice if you can live with the limited range and drop in value as the battery loses capacity. Unfortunately I can't because otherwise I would like to get away from some of the problematic parts that don't exist on an electric vehicle.
Last edited by Gilberto de Piento on Wed Dec 16, 2020 5:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Hristo Botev
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Re: Electric Vehicles

Post by Hristo Botev »

This may be a bit of sacrilege to say on this forum, and perhaps on this thread especially, but with a family we never would have done the Leaf as anything but a second car (though it served that purpose wonderfully). Range anxiety is not really a concern when you know you've got an ICE alternative sitting in the driveway should the SHTF and you need to get out of dodge with the kids and the dog and as much of your stuff as you can. So, I guess back to the original question, the best option for our family of 4 would be owning just one used and modest (i.e., it won't get stolen) ICE vehicle that gets north of 35mpg combined, when fully loaded up with people/gear, but that will sit in the driveway and not be used 6 of 7 days a week, as we opt not to outsource to an ICE what our legs can do more efficiently.

ETA:
Gilberto de Piento wrote:
Wed Dec 16, 2020 4:54 pm
I sometimes see the Leaf for sale used at prices that are much cheaper than a similar has powered car. Usually 40-60,000 miles, mint condition, almost all of battery capacity still there for say $5-8,000.
There was something weird that happened with all the government subsidies or credits (I think it was ~2015), where the used price on those cars reflected the fact that NO ONE paid anything close to the "sticker" price. And also there were like a ton of 2-year leases that were ending. So, IIRC, we paid something like $8K for a car that was 2 years old and that had a sticker price when new of $30K+; but it was because there was a bunch of inventory at the time and because the price reflected the real price that had been paid for those cars new. But when we went to sell it 2 years later, the prices hadn't really moved at all, in part because the inventory for used Leafs that were then 2 years old wasn't really there. It's a weird market. And it's made weirder by the fact that, at the time, no one really had a good grasp on what would happen with the batteries; how long the lifespan was. Seems like they have a better idea now.

chenda
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Re: Electric Vehicles

Post by chenda »

Sales of new petrol and diesel cars and vans are going to be banned in the UK from 2030, although hybrids will be allowed. Car use may have dropped significantly by then.

Toska2
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Re: Electric Vehicles

Post by Toska2 »

As a personal car that goes 4k-10k miles a year? The greatest boondoggle of the last decade. A status symbol wrapped in pseudo-environmentalism.

A personal car that goes 10k-25k miles a year? An environmental tragedy. Again, law of diminishing returns. If you driving that much the electric portion becomes less of a percentage. (Hybrids)

Businesses that run a defined route; mail, casinos, airports, hotels, tourism? Great. Awesome. Get that ROI.

Heavy duty or auxiliary power usage; school buses, city buses, garbage trucks, bucket trucks, snow plow trucks and leaf vac trucks? Long overdue.

As my own vehicle? Hah. I paid $3500 for a 6 year old econobox. I put on 100,000 miles in 6 years. Its at 220,000 miles, gets an honest 32 mpg and still goes 350 miles per fill up.

sky
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Re: Electric Vehicles

Post by sky »

I was thinking of something like this: https://www.aptera.us/ , if they ever go into production.

Riggerjack
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Re: Electric Vehicles

Post by Riggerjack »

@ hristo

Oil refining works much like a alcohol still. The temperatures that one draws the product determine their content.

A barrel of crude has many, many products that can be made from it. Waxes for jewelry making, to LP, and everything in between.

All of those products were at one point waste byproduct, but someone figured out how to use them.

Per the article, 46% of crude becomes gasoline. If demand for gas drops, gasoline production drops. But there is still a market for all those other products.

So if a refinery can't sell enough gasoline, the band if temperatures used for separating gasoline will be tightened. This means less gasoline, and more lighter products (paint thinner, LP) and more heavy products (diesel, kerosene, heating oil) and a change in supply/demand curves of all those products means different prices.

But nobody runs a refinery at a loss, so the prices will move to a vaguely profitable new equalibrium. If no such new equalibrium is available, the refinery closes down (again changing supply curves) until a new equalibrium can be achieved.

This could create additional volatility, and perhaps some big news in financial instruments, but nothing very serious in supply chain shortages, by itself.

I could see this interacting with other shocks to cause problems, but by itself, a decrease in gasoline demand is just BAU as far as refineries are concerned.

Now I haven't been in a refinery in nearly 20 years. Maybe things have changed. But as far as I know, this is is still how things are done.

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Sclass
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Re: Electric Vehicles

Post by Sclass »

@RJ not to nitpick but fractionating is only part of the process.

The crack ratio (diesel:petrol) is set up prior to that in the fluid catalytic cracker and reformer. These are not easy to just turn the knob on. Totally separate from the fractionating tower. There was a big adjustment when the US started producing a lot of light sweet crude from hydrofrac stimulation back in the early 2000s which really caught the refiners off guard because of their inability to just turn the knob after they got cut off from sour Saudi and Venezuelan feed stocks.

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Alphaville
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Re: Electric Vehicles

Post by Alphaville »

sky wrote:
Thu Dec 17, 2020 1:28 am
I was thinking of something like this: https://www.aptera.us/ , if they ever go into production.
those are a beauty. i wouldn't mind renting one for the weekend. buying for $50k+ not for me. but model would work great in my state where we get almost 300 sunny days per year. free charges while parked!

Kriegsspiel
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Re: Electric Vehicles

Post by Kriegsspiel »

Those Aptera vehicles remind me of the Elio Motors "cars" that advertised really high MPG. They got around the safety features that hinder higher MPG (or better battery performance in EVs) because they're technically motorcycles for regulation purposes. According to their FAQs, Aptera is using the same regulatory "exploit."

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Re: Electric Vehicles

Post by jacob »

Much more could be accomplished by simply lowering the speed limit. Less fuel wasted on friction. Smaller crashes. Less weight spent on safety features. Even better mileage.

Current car culture is caught in an arms race of ever bigger vehicles under the constraint of going 70mph. However, expect this to hit a tipping point and flip the other way at some point.

(This is just me fantasizing about cordoning off one lane on all the freeways for human powered vehicles. For example, if that happened here, I could bike downtown in about 25 minutes. With a car it currently takes 45-60 minutes depending on traffic.)

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