How will the Chevrolet Volt be better than a Toyota Prius plug-in hybrid?

Discussion in 'Chevrolet Volt' started by Adaam, Jan 31, 2011.

  1. drinnovation

    drinnovation EREV for EVER!

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    I don't thin the PiP has to go up by an order of magnitude for them to make a profit. Depending on how one allocates the R&D costs and marketing, they are probably making a gross profit per car now as the PiP shares so much with the Prius, the parts/manufacturing costs are not likely above the sales price. I expect that is why toyota did not push the engineering envelope, let alone try something as disruptive as the Volt. Nothing wrong with a company wanting to play it safe and maintain profits. Incremental innovation is a good thing too.

    GM took a gamble with the Volt, in my view a necessary bet given their position. GM had to develop a better product if they have any chance of regaining leadership. Disruptive innovations tend to require a leap of faith and are high-risk high-reward decisions. Toyota took the leap with the Prius, now they are more slow and steady building off their reputation. Unlike some past gambles, like two-mode, where the technology was more catchup, with the Volt they hit it out of the park.
     
  2. Trollbait

    Trollbait It's a D&D thing

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    I am unaware of any reason why an Atkinson engine couldn't also be made for high octane. Such an engine would have longer power stroke than now.

    Btu content of premium can be lower, but these aren't external combustion engines. High compression engines are more efficient. Despite the fuel having less energy, the high compression energy can actually go farther on a gallon than the lower compression one.

    Any links on the differences between octane production? Why would high octane produce more ghg in production? If because of pure energy requirements, couldn't we just switch to a greener source. We could just use ethanol to increase regular's octane to avoid the ghg of high octane.

    More importantly, how much more ghg? If production emissions have a large affect on the net amount, then we should just be using diesel. As crude supplies get sourer, we'll be cracking more and more diesel for gasoline. Which isn't good for any gasolines' emission and energy profile.
    Actually started a thread basicly asking that in the environment section.
     
  3. telmo744

    telmo744 HSD fanatic

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    Maybe a balance between the better LHV of fuel and the increase in efficiency. Regular is avaliable, cheaper, and Atkinson Cycle Toyota engines are still to match in BSFC results.


    Octane increasing consumes energy - reforming gasoline. Do you need a link for that?

    Ethanol increases octane, but lowers LHV.
     
  4. usbseawolf2000

    usbseawolf2000 HSD PhD

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    The real issue is that Volt owners don't know how many kWh they consumed. That's because the car does not keep track of it (or intended to). Therefore, Voltstats.net was forced to use the EPA EV MPGe number.

    The formula is: Total Miles / (Gallons Burned + (EV Miles / 93))​

    The EV ratio is the 10% subset of all Volts. ~70% EV ratio is on Voltstats.net is high. All the Volt averages ~60% on EV (per GM ticker). That would put Volt's composite MPGe to be lower than EPA's 60 MPGe.

    Your composite MPGe is higher because you don't use the heater in the winter and drive slow. I am sure there are Volt owners in the opposite extreme (85 mph aggressive EV driving). It can go both ways and the average should be pretty close to the EPA number.

    How did you apply the same and got Prius PHV with 61.16 MPGe?

    Lower price, less dependence on tax credit, better packaging (more seat and cargo volume), lighter car (within midsize range), shorter recharge time, higher MPG, less complexity (no clutches, no liquid battery cooling), etc.

    The only draw back is the inconvenience of recharging at the end of every trip. If you have a long continuous trip, you are forced to use gas (but at 50 MPG). That's a lot of pluses and a small negative (basically lack of luxury feature). Therefore, it is better.

    You paid extra to keep those wind farms running and let someone else use that electricity when the wind farms are in operational. You shifted most of your commute from gas to mostly coal since you recharge from the grid at night. That's another way to look at it. If you recharge from the grid, you ought to use the average CO2 emission resulted from generating electricity.

    Many people need to be aware that Volt can use more electricity than their home and how the electricity is produced and the efficiency of it. Concentrating only on Volt's gasoline consumption (or the lack of) is just fetish.

    Despite having said that, I think your Volt's carbon footprint is lower than the Honda Del Sol it replaced.

    That's the pre-production model. The production PHV (midsize) weights 3,165 lbs, lighter than the CX-5. The compact Volt is 600 lbs heavier than CX-5. Volt also requires premium gas to get 37 MPG. It is not bad but then not great for hybrid standard, especially with the 150 hp electric motor. Honda mild hybrid with 15hp can get higher MPG with regular gas. Again, I am pointing out the hidden cost of having an oversized battery pack and 35 miles EV range. I am not attacking the Volt.
     
  5. Trollbait

    Trollbait It's a D&D thing

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    Yes I do, because little to none of the gasoline coming out of a station pump is straight distilled gas. Maybe 20% of crude is what we call gasoline. It can be less, and even in light, sweet crude, there isn't enough to supply demand. On top off that, the straight distilled gas has too low of an octane for modern engines.

    So even regular gasoline has undergone cracking and possibly even reformulation at the refinery.

    I have heard the claim that premium requires more energy, but have never seen the data to back that up. There isn't a simple answer to the question. Petroleum is a stew of organic chemicals. Getting either octane is going to require energy. Perhaps high octane gas requires more energy. Does that automatically mean is more well to wheels than regular in terms of carbon emissions? If the refinery isn't making high octane gasoline, does it actually save that energy or use it to make something else? Which is easier to get from heavy crude, regular or premium? Or are we better off from a ghg stand point of not breaking up the diesel portion?

    I suspect in the complete picture
     
  6. Trollbait

    Trollbait It's a D&D thing

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    Only true of early models.

    I think most Volt owners are aware of these costs, and feel they are worth it.
     
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  7. usbseawolf2000

    usbseawolf2000 HSD PhD

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    So where is the data so that we can apply it to get the composite MPGe?
     
  8. drinnovation

    drinnovation EREV for EVER!

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    The Volt tracks it, just not in an interface the user can easily access. They design it to use the onstar reporting which emails monthly reports (and which has a web-interface with more details, thought that was just broken for a while.) The data reported by the volt via onstar includes the charger losses.

    The PHV does not track what was consumed, instead it tracks/reports what it used from the battery, ignoring charger losses, which is just misleading. And the PHV did not provide any way to automatically track anything or access remote reports.



    volstats could estimate it, using battery % per mile, which for all we know is how the PHV estimates things. But this is a bit more complex and so far not enough people have asked for it for mike to implement it. They get their estimates via email once a month.. which is enough for most people I guess.


    In as much as I recall, the EPA assumed 63% EV and its at 61.1 overall, so its pretty much on the estimate. Even if it assumed 66% EV, its not that far off.


    Yes voltstats is biased. But if you consider that biased then please don't use any data from fuelly or the PC spreadhseet as those are even more biased, all self-reported by hand, and hence we have no idea how biased they are. While think there is interesting data in looking at sources like Fuelly and the PC spreadsheet, they are too biased and too small sample, to be used detailed comparisons.


    Given your complaints about bias data, let us know when there is official automatically reported data from all Plug In Prius, then lets we can compare real world data. Since you have argued that it will all balance out to EPA in the end, until toyota develops an automated system like OnStar or CarWings that reports automatically, I guess your must stick with EPA data, and must just use standard utility factors.



    It is irrelevent since the data is based on self-reported EV percentages on PC Spreadsheet.
    (but I just used weighted harmoni mean of the EPA MPGe data).

    The PHV's 11 miles of EV has a standard utility factor of 22%, though you had an alternative UF table saying 28%, so I'll use that table. Then the overall MPGe of the Prius PHV is estimated to be =1/(0.28/95+0.72/50) = 57.65 MPGe overall.

    Using your table, at 35 miles on the 5-cycle equivalent , the utility factor is
    for the Volt is at .63, which gives an overall MPGe of 60.13.
    Even if you drop down to the 61.14 currently in the Volt fleet average its 59.02 so still better than the PHV.
     
  9. drinnovation

    drinnovation EREV for EVER!

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    Wow you really like to spin what someone said. With your logic I might say you bought a prius so your neighbors could drive an SUV and since you live in NYC we should just assign you the GCG of the region independent of what actions you take.

    I bought wind to power include offseting the electricity used by by car. And since wind farms produce more wind-based eletricity at night, the statements about coal at night have no real value. What they shut down at night is mostly the green NG plants (peakers), and they use the coal and wind. I have seen the wind-generation reports from my utility and my peak charging and their peak wind generation are well aligned.


    Have to be careful there.. my family usage of electricity is quite conservative. In our 2850sq.ft 4bed/3bath house we use about 150-250kWh of power per month for the house and the Volt added 175-225kWh for a combined monthly usage about 400-475 kWh.

    HOWEVER, EIA data says in 2010 the average US house used 958 kilowatthours (kWh) per month, or about twice what we use (including the volt). So for an average house a Volt would likely only be a 25% increase in electricity usage. Many volt owners had their power bill go DOWN, because it allowed better rate structures and/or encouraged them to be more conservative.
     
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  10. telmo744

    telmo744 HSD fanatic

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    Reforming units, which give gasoline many of the isooctane needed, are targeted to the highest possible, and can give up to RON 100 or more, with lots of aromatic contents.
    But the blend itself incorporates a bit less of that feed when composing regular, AFAIK. I'll try to bring more data to discuss.

    I found one link related:
    Is high-octane gas bad for the environment? - Slate Magazine
     
  11. Jeff N

    Jeff N The answer is 0042

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    As others have pointed out, the 2012 Volt, like the 2012 PiP, shows the kWhs consumed from the battery to wheels on the display in the car. The car also uploads additional charging data which includes charging overhead via OnStar.

    The Voltstats.net site uses the webapi originally intended for use by the OnStar smartphone apps and it does not provide access to all the data uploaded by the car. OnStar is working on a new webapi and it will be used, when available, by voltstats.net.

    Toyota does not provide "from the wall" kWh consumption data to owners, right? Toyota does not provide 3rd party website access to allow owners to track gasoline and kWh charging energy consumption like voltstats.net.

    Volt Stats: Frequently Asked Questions

    This issue was discussed last month but maybe you forgot:

    http://priuschat.com/forums/prius-h...ring-prius-phv-chevy-volt-10.html#post1516246

    Actually, the PiP appears to charge at only 2/3rds the rate of the Volt. So, for the same time spent charging, the Volt will drive a farther distance.

    Multiple PiP owners here report a charge rate of around 2 kW at 240v. I personally noticed a PiP charging at a ChargePoint station at  around 2kW last week while the LEAF in the next space was charging at over 3kW. The Volt also charges at over 3kW at 240v. 

    Another PiP owner recently reported charging at around 1kW at 120v whereas the Volt charges at 1.4kW at 120v.

    That's the EPA combined city/highway estimate. As the doctor has pointed out, it's not hard to get mid-40's. As I mentioned on another thread, I haven't been able to charge in the last 2-3 weeks and have driven 700+ miles gas-only at 45 mpg on a mix of city and highway driving. I verified the Volt's displayed gasoline consumption at the pump and it was accurate to within 1%.

    I can hardly wait to get back to 70-80% EV driving again.
     
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  12. sxotty

    sxotty Member

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    So isn't that already high octane fuel? You seem to be arguing that portugal is doing it all wrong and should have lower quality fuel like we do in the US with octane rating 85-87 (RON 91-92). So basically you have to burn normal gas there :)
     
  13. john1701a

    john1701a Prius Guru

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    My post was against the "more" mindset, so not sure where that came from. The point is to make a profit, to not lose money. The scope is each automaker's own product-line.

    The trophy-mentality is what we've been fighting for years. It's counter-productive and causes a loss of focus.

    We all know that taking advantage of electricity is a natural & necessary progression. The argument comes from the speed at which that needs to happen.
     
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  14. scottf200

    scottf200 Member

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    Volt Generates First Time Interest in Chevrolet
    Nearly seven in 10 buyers trade in non-GM vehicle
    2012-05-23

    [​IMG]

    DETROIT – The Chevrolet Volt is winning new customers to the brand from the competition with the Toyota Prius topping the list of most traded-in vehicle followed by the Toyota Camry, Honda Civic and BMW 3 Series.

    “I owned a Prius for six years and loved it. I was one of the first to sign-up for the plug-in (version),” said Steve Glenn of Santa Monica, Calif. “While I was waiting for it to ship, I learned that the Volt would qualify for the HOV stickers, so I did a test drive. I fell in love then. It’s faster, better appointed and gets far better gas mileage than the Prius (or the plug-in). I've driven it over 1,000 miles and I've only used five gallons of gas.”

    Access to high-occupancy vehicle lanes, also known as carpool lanes, is a desired commuter perk in traffic-clogged California.

    “Volt is a game changer for us in northern California,” said Shaun Del Grande, president, Del Grande Dealer Group in San Jose. “On a daily basis new customers are coming into our dealership to check out the Volt because of its breakthrough technology and superior fuel economy. Our dealership is seeing new customers who are trading in Prius and Civic models, and we’re just getting started with electric vehicles.”

    In a recent survey, Volt owners expressed their passion for the vehicle with 93 percent stating that they would buy the car again.

    “Nearly seven in 10 Volt buyers are new to Chevrolet,” said Volt marketing manager Cristi Landy. “With new customers coming to the brand because of the Volt, our dealers have a great opportunity to establish lasting relationships and introduce them to our entire Chevrolet product line up.”
    http://media.gm.com/media/us/en/gm/news.detail.html/content/Pages/news/us/en/2012/May/0523_volt.html
     
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  15. telmo744

    telmo744 HSD fanatic

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    Yes, it is overspec for some cars (like Prius), but for many others RON 95 is minimum required. Portugal follows european rules. If I had an 91-92 option, I would use it, it is not lower quality, it means lower octane rating, period. :rolleyes:

    Nevertheless, please remind me where i have missed the right way of explaining higher RON footprint without getting answers of the type pro hominem fallacy.:eek:
     
  16. sxotty

    sxotty Member

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    Do you know what a pro hominem fallacy is? I assume Portuguese is your native language, but don't get all touchy, no one insulted you, nor did they commit ad or pro hominem discussion.
     
  17. telmo744

    telmo744 HSD fanatic

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    Felt that. RON discussion was purely technical.
     
  18. sxotty

    sxotty Member

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    I apologize then the emoticons made me think you were upset by something I had said.

    In any case I certainly feel that a higher RON than 92 is higher quality fuel since one of my vehicles has a turbo :). But quality is pretty vague it depends on whether you need the attribute. It just seemed that since you could use regular in the volt/ampera over there that it was not an advantage worth mentioning in regards to vehicles in Portugal since it doesn't apply.
     
  19. lamebums

    lamebums Member

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    Hi all--

    I haven't read all 108 pages of this thread but the entire discussion seems to center on the Volt's longer plug-in range vs. the Prius' better engine efficiency.

    I didn't see anyone mention Toyota's long history of superior build quality and reliability versus GM/Ford/Chrysler cars which will invariably show a whole host of issues before long.

    Maybe the Volt will be different? I'd only be convinced if, in ten years, the Volt gets the same tip-top reliability reports that the Prius has gotten since 2000.
     
  20. drinnovation

    drinnovation EREV for EVER!

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    There are posts on the issue, but as say yourself, for many they will only believe in the reliability (and GM quality) when they see years of data. Then again, critics questioned the reliability of hybrids when they came out too. On the bright side for the Volt, the folks at consumer reports, which took a while to warm up to the volt, rated the most reliable of any GM car and now have it as a recommended buy.

    Consumer Reports Says Chevy Volt Is GM's Most Reliable Vehicle | PluginCars.com

    Consumer Reports recommends Chevrolet Volt
     
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