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  1. #1
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    Hybrid vs Diesel

    With the new mileage requirments the government will be mandating in the future, I think we're going to see a lot more of these vehicles.

    I've always been a fan of diesel, going back to the 80's when I drove a little Ford Escort diesel that got 50 MPG and was just a lot of fun to drive. It had a 5 speed with a lot of low end torque. The big hang up right now seems to be diesel prices relative to gas. Wonder if we'll see any improvements in the future?

    Hybrid owners, what do you think of your vehicles? How good is the mileage really and do any of you have 150,000 plus miles on your vehicle? Toyota get's most of the spot light so far, but I noticed Honda has come out with a new one that's gotten good reviews and recently Car and Driver test drove a Ford Fusion Hybrid and called it the best system on the market, even trumping a Lexus Hybrid which cost twice as much.

    I kind of wonder if in the end simple small direct injected 4 cylinder engines will be the most cost effective answer.



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    Re: Hybrid vs Diesel

    The problem with diesel is there isnt enough refineries to keep up with much more demand and that will make the cost go up. Cold weather and diesel isnt a good mix either plus it smells bad.


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    Re: Hybrid vs Diesel

    I was really pumped for the VW Jetta Diesel that came out in 2009. However, when the fuel prices shot up, Diesel went even higher. If you calculate the cost per mile of the diesel and compare it to a Honda Civic (for example) with a standard gas engine, they are pretty much the same due to the fuel cost difference.


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    Re: Hybrid vs Diesel

    I think the ideal car in warmer climates would be a diesel hybrid where the diesel engine is only used to run a generator to re-charge the batteries. This way you can tune the engine for the best economy.



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    Re: Hybrid vs Diesel

    How much torque does the Civic have? The 09 Jetta has 236 ft-lbs at 1900 RPM. I drove one with a 6 speed in France about two months ago, and it's awesome. I want one.

    Diesel may not be feasilbe in Iowa in the future anyway. An Iowa legislator is proposing a bill to require all Iowa diesel to contain at least 5% biodiesel, ramping up to 20% by 2015. Most (all?) auto manufacturers won't approve the use of anything higher than B5. Who is going to buy a new car if the warranty is voided the first time you fill up the tank??? http://www.desmoinesregister.com/app...=2009903110360

    And FYI, the US produces a ton of diesel - so much that we export our surplus to Europe where the market is better. We also import Europe's surplus gasoline. And a ton of new diesel cars are sold in Canada every year, so the cold weather excuse is bunk.


    Last edited by besserheimerphat; 03-14-2009 at 10:19 AM.

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    Re: Hybrid vs Diesel

    Quote Originally Posted by besserheimerphat View Post
    And a ton of new diesel cars are sold in Canada every year, so the cold weather excuse is bunk.
    Good luck with that when it is zero out.


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  7. #7
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    Re: Hybrid vs Diesel

    Hybrid cars are really, really complicated cars with an awful lot that can go wrong. My current car is a 1993 Honda Civic. I have neglected the heck out of it, save oil changes, and it still runs very well. There is no way a hybrid is going to last 17 years without many, many, many thousands of dollars in maintenance.

    Diesel engines are even simpler than gasoline engines, so there are even fewer parts to wear out. A friend had a small diesel truck that he drove well past 300,000 miles.

    I'd go with a diesel. You'll pay more for the gas, but pay a lot less in maintenance, especially if you keep the car for 10+ years.



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    Re: Hybrid vs Diesel

    Quote Originally Posted by kingcy View Post
    Good luck with that when it is zero out.
    I guess your right, it's best to just dismiss any new technology since you had a bad experience with one 20 years ago. If you don't think it will work, just wait for a very cold day next winter, go to any auto dealership where they sell diesels and ask them to start one.

    I will grant you that they may need to have a block heater, or cycle the glow plugs a couple times, but even in very cold weather they will start with little trouble. When I was in France in January, overnight temperatures were between 25-30F. The engine started without cycling the glow plugs at all, no missing or stumbling, no loss of power. The car was an 09 Touran, mechanically the same as the 09 Jetta.



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    Re: Hybrid vs Diesel

    Diesel all the way...

    In my garage you shall find the following:

    1) 2001 F-250 Powerstroke...
    2) 2005 Jetta TDI...
    3) Very little space when they both are in there

    From the environmental standpoint, diesel got a very bad rap in the U.S., mostly because of those old two-stroke GM busses that used to billow black smoke. The rest of the world has pretty much seen past that, and embraced diesel as an economical fuel for auto transportation. The U.S., for some reason, can't seem to do it...

    Also, if you are industrious, you can make you own biodiesel...


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    Re: Hybrid vs Diesel

    I think "fun" is what will win people over eventually.



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    Re: Hybrid vs Diesel

    Quote Originally Posted by besserheimerphat View Post
    I guess your right, it's best to just dismiss any new technology since you had a bad experience with one 20 years ago. If you don't think it will work, just wait for a very cold day next winter, go to any auto dealership where they sell diesels and ask them to start one.

    I will grant you that they may need to have a block heater, or cycle the glow plugs a couple times, but even in very cold weather they will start with little trouble. When I was in France in January, overnight temperatures were between 25-30F. The engine started without cycling the glow plugs at all, no missing or stumbling, no loss of power. The car was an 09 Touran, mechanically the same as the 09 Jetta.
    Yes I know knothing about diesel engines. I only have 3 semis, 5 tractors, and 2 combines that are diesel. Granted techolongy has came a long ways in the past 10 years but it is still not perfect. When it gets cold you still have to treat the fuel and that is something many people wont take the time to do. Block heaters and glow plugs are maintance items that people will foget about until it is too late. My brother has a new diesel pickup and I find it odd he doenst use it when temps get very cold out and if he does it doesnt get shut off all day. People have to under stand you cannot treat a diesel engine the same as a gas one. Last time I checked it does get colder than 20 at night in Iowa.


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    Re: Hybrid vs Diesel

    The new Honda Insight seems like a pretty good deal. About $21,000, 50 mpg, and proven technology. It's not going to light a fire under you or anything but if you care about gas mileage, it seems like a good deal.


    It's also very ugly and looks a lot like the Prius which in turn looks a lot like the original Insight.

    IMO unless gas gets to be $8-$10/gallon, it's just not worth it. You may as well just buy a $16,000 Honda Civic, Save $5K, and have a better vehicle. The 10-15mpg you'll save won't made up for many years. Even if you drive 15,000 miles a year at $5/gallon you'll only save about $500. Until we see cars that get 80 mpg it just doesn;t make a lot of sense.



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    Re: Hybrid vs Diesel

    Quote Originally Posted by kingcy View Post
    Yes I know knothing about diesel engines. I only have 3 semis, 5 tractors, and 2 combines that are diesel. Granted techolongy has came a long ways in the past 10 years but it is still not perfect. When it gets cold you still have to treat the fuel and that is something many people wont take the time to do. Block heaters and glow plugs are maintance items that people will foget about until it is too late. My brother has a new diesel pickup and I find it odd he doenst use it when temps get very cold out and if he does it doesnt get shut off all day. People have to under stand you cannot treat a diesel engine the same as a gas one. Last time I checked it does get colder than 20 at night in Iowa.
    Right on target. Diesel is somewhat better than it used to be, but back when we had that extreme cold in January there were many, many problems with diesel vehicles.

    Personally though, I never liked Diesel...




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    Re: Hybrid vs Diesel

    Quote Originally Posted by kingcy View Post
    Good luck with that when it is zero out.
    That is a fairly old problem IMHO. I own a diesel truck and use a anti-gel additive that will keep the fuel from gelling up down to -35 degrees. I ran my truck everyday the last two winters and I never had a bit of problems, and it didn't run all day in extreme cold temps. If it gets colder than -35, I am staying home anyway.


    Last edited by Covenant Clone; 03-14-2009 at 11:37 AM.

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    Re: Hybrid vs Diesel

    Quote Originally Posted by bhoodjer View Post
    That is a fairly old problem IMHO. I own a diesel truck and use a anti-gel additive that will keep the fuel from gelling up down to -35 degrees. I ran my truck everyday the last two winters and I never had a bit of problems, and it didn't run all day in extreme cold temps. If it gets colder than -35, I am staying home anyway.
    They do take more care when it is cold out. There are a lot of people that wont take the extra care to make it work in cold temps. There are others that will foget or put off the extra until it is too late. Diesels are not for everyone and when you start selling more and more small cars with diesel motors there will be people that shouldnt own them that end up owning them.


    The gap in our economy is between what we have and what we think we ought to have--and that is a moral problem, not an economic one. - Paul Heyne

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