How Far Are We From A Drastic Change In Transportation?
Posted 02 January 2019 - 01:11 AM
Posted 02 January 2019 - 04:17 AM
I’m talking about daily transportation that is different from the vehicles we have today (i.e. regular cars, trucks, suvs, etc.). Will we be riding around in electric bubbles in 10-20 years, or do think the normal petrol-powered car will be around for a long time yet?
I think that is a false antithesis.
We will still be in cars, rather than "bubbles", whatever you mean by that, but a significant fraction of them will not have internal combustion engines and quite a lot may not need to be driven by the occupant.
There was an item in the Financial Times 2 days ago according to which motor industry analysts have concluded that 2018 was probably the "peak" year for production of IC engines.
Posted 10 March 2019 - 07:00 PM
Posted 11 March 2019 - 12:22 AM
How much longer do you think the internal combustion engine will be in our lives before the roads are dominated by EVs and/or other power sources? Do you think it will be a gradual change? Will ICE become more efficient and coexist with other forms of powertrain? Or do you think we’ll see the definitive extinction of internal combustion engines very soon?
When I was working for the City of Atlanta a few years back* I was issued a brand new Ford C-Max hybrid. It was a little weird having the engine shut off unexpectedly. The car would start out on electric getting on the highway but then the gas engine would kick in unexpectedly, or you would be cruising on the gas engine and it shut off when the battery was fully charged. Maybe I am a little too sensitive to subtle changes to the car I am driving, but I found it slightly disturbing. Overall though, the car had good acceleration, got very good mileage (about 38-41 mpg overall), and was reasonably comfortable.
A regular electric vehicle is only practical for urban driving where there is a good charging infrastructure, while hybrid vehicles allow long range driving without charging. Most new hybrids will allow plug-in charging of the battery pack to improve gas mileage but that still relies on having a charging infrastructure. For the foreseeable future I see electric vehicles being limited to urban areas and internal combustion and/or hybrid vehicles roaming the highways. Hydrogen, NG, or LP all have potential, but are also still limited by infrastructure.
*I just glanced at my resume, and that was in 2014. Surely the technology has advanced a bit in 5 years.**
**I meant automotive technology. Nothing ever advances in the City of Atlanta, where they are stuck in a reconstruction era mentality.
Edited by fahrquad, 11 March 2019 - 07:51 AM.
Posted 11 March 2019 - 12:29 AM
I should add that the air conditioning and power steering were both electric motors instead of engine belt driven and were more efficient. If car manufacturers have not yet adopted these for I/C engine cars, they should. It would also clean up the engine compartment a good bit.
Posted 11 March 2019 - 08:13 AM
It looks like diesel/electric hybrids will be the future for passenger and commercial transportation, at least for the foreseeable future. Higher capacity battery packs will allow greater range for electric vehicles, but there are still limits for longer distances. I am still waiting for the atomic powered flying car I was promised back in the 1960's.