Autoline Daily

Subscribe - Podcasts Video Podcasts iTunes Zune RSS Audio & Other Options
Autoline Daily

Episode 313 – Whitacre Takes Top Spot at GM, Pricey Plates in China, CAT’s Hybrid Bulldozer

January 25th, 2010 at 12:19pm

Runtime 7:35

GM announced this morning that Ed Whitacre will become the permanent CEO of the company.  Car sales in China are rising, but so is the cost of driving one.  The average price for a license plate in Shanghai has risen to more than $5,600!  Caterpillar shows off a new electric bulldozer that’s 25 percent more efficient than other models.  All that and more, plus a look at how Ford is using advanced technology to eliminate noise in its vehicles.

Transcript and Story Links after the jump . . .

Here are today’s top headlines. Ed Whitacre will become GM’s permanent CEO. It costs five grand to buy a license plate in Shanghai. And Caterpillar comes out with a hybrid bulldozer.

Up next, we’ll be back with the news behind the headlines.

This is Autoline Daily for Monday, January 25, 2010.  And now, the news.

GM announced this morning that Ed Whitacre will be the permanent CEO of the company, ending the search for a new CEO that was underway. It also ends speculation that Christopher Liddell, who recently came over from Microsoft, might be in the running for the CEO job.

It’s earnings time! We’ll be hearing from a lot of automakers and suppliers reporting their earnings over the next week or two. Fiat lost $1.2 billion last year, more than twice what analysts expected, the AFP reports. But Fiat predicts it will make a profit of 200 to 300 million euros….if European governments continue their cash-for-clunkers incentives.

Gold has been on a tear over the last decade with prices well over $1,000 an ounce. But now Bloomberg reports that metals investors are dumping gold and buying platinum. Some analysts say the price of platinum could rise by more than 50 percent this year, after rising nearly 60 percent last year. A key reason why they’re so bullish, besides all the mumbo-jumbo technical analysis is because the auto industry buys about 70 percent of all platinum for catalytic converters, and they plan to buy 20 percent more than last year.

Car sales in China keep on rising and so does the cost to drive one. According to Gasgoo, the average cost of a license plate in Shanghai has risen to over $5,600. Those plates are auctioned off by the city. Last month, 8,000 were handed out but the number of people bidding on them went from about 400 to nearly 19,000, which obviously drove up the price. Drivers wanted to get a new plate before the Chinese new year in February, and also because the government is limiting plates for an upcoming World Expo in Shanghai.

In other China news, GM says it will need a new plant in the country. According to Reuters, the company has added shifts and expanded assembly lines to meet demand at its existing facilities, but it says it still needs another plant. GM said it expects to sell 2-million vehicles this year in China compared to 1.8 million last year.

To help keep classic models running and looking good for years to come, Audi recently launched a new website to sell vintage parts.  Right now the company has more than 300,000 components available, including stuff for really old vehicles like Horchs and Wanderers.  The site is www.audi.de/tradition-parts — the link will be posted in the show notes if you want to check it out.  The company wanted to ensure the availability of the most necessary parts for classic models.  Members of ACI – the Audi Club International – receive special deals when ordering from the website.

So, you think hybrids only come in one size – small?  Well, think again.  At 11-feet high and 60,000 pounds the Caterpillar D7E bulldozer dwarfs your neighbor’s Prius.  According to the New York Times, the earth mover is 25 percent more efficient than a conventional model, but the company prefers to call it an “electric tractor” rather than a hybrid.  It’s powered by a 9.3-liter six-cylinder diesel engine with 719 pound-feet of torque.  The ICE drives a generator which in turn runs two 107-horsepower electric motors – one for each tread.  It has no battery pack, but the efficiency boost comes partly from regenerative braking and partly from keeping the engine running at a constant speed.

Coming up next, a look at how Ford is boosting the perceived quality of its cars by making them quieter.

With so many new vehicles being introduced to the market every year, now more than ever, it’s important to get new ones out even faster. And when you can do that and improve quality and reduce cost all at the same time…even better. That’s why Ford is using a couple of technologies that can do just that. One called “Noise Vision” allows engineers to “see” and eliminate sounds in the interior during development.

It’s a small sphere that’s placed inside the vehicle and is equipped with more than 30 microphones and 12 cameras. Software reads the data and creates a computerized image showing hot spots in the interior that could be caused by wind noise, rattles or unwanted feedback from the engine or road.

In the past it was a process of elimination to identify and fix rattles and squeaks, which in some cases could take weeks. Now it’s only a matter of a few hours with Noise Vision. The other technology Ford is using to improve sound quality is something that looks more like a video game than a development tool. Called “Virtual Vehicle Sound Simulator,” it’s used to fine-tune sound inside the vehicle.

Using the virtual simulator, engineers can hear what the vehicle would sound like under different road conditions, speeds, gear ranges and throttle conditions as a simulated vehicle shifts, accelerates and decelerates.

In the past, engineers would test specific components one at a time in a single drive condition. Now engineers can hear noises in real-time in dozens of conditions.  Each of these tools has contributed to the success the company has seen lately.

Don’t forget to tune in to our live webcast from the auto show in Washington DC tomorrow starting at 12:30 p.m. Eastern Time. We’ll be talking with politicians, regulators and industry executives, such as Johan de Nysschen from Audi and Alan Mulally from Ford. And we’ll be taking your questions, which you can send to us.  Just head over to the John’s Journal section of our website where we have a special form where you can submit them.

And that’s it for today’s top news in the global automotive industry.  Thanks for watching, we’ll see you tomorrow.

Thanks to our Partners for embedding Autoline Daily on their websites: Autoblog, The Auto Channel, Car Chat, WardsAuto.com and WWJ Newsradio 950

46 Comments to “Episode 313 – Whitacre Takes Top Spot at GM, Pricey Plates in China, CAT’s Hybrid Bulldozer”

  1. Alex Kovnat Says:

    >Coming up next, a look at how Ford
    >is boosting the perceived quality
    >of its cars by making them quieter.

    No matter how quiet the interior is (and remember: excessive quiet on the exterior, especially in front, has been linked to blind pedestrian injuries), it won’t do the consumer any good if (for example) someone’s Ford Fusion is as much of a lemon as my 1997 Saturn SL-1 was.

  2. Nick Stevens Says:

    John,

    You are 100% right about one thing, that technical analysis is indeed meaningless mumbo-jumbo, and those posing as “technical analysts” are 100% charlatans, whether they predict oil prices, gold prices, or stock markets.

    Your show today will also erase the last doubts anybody could have about India comparing even remotely to China, economically. You cite that to just get a licence in Shanghai costs more than… TWO, not one, little Tata Nanos! LOL!!!

    Chinese sales already are 30% higher than USA sales in 2009. Imagine what would auto sales in China be if they did NOT have to pay $5,600 per licence!!!.

  3. Tony Gray Says:

    The electric dozer seems to make sense, as electric motors make max torque at 0 RPM.

    This is why I was always wondering why hybrids haven’t taken off in Heavy Duty pickups and trucks…you’d think it would have significant benefit to them.

    Perhaps an engineer on the forum knows why this hasn’t been the case, at least so far.

  4. pedro fernandez Says:

    I wonder if it would be feasible to use a small diesel power plant to run a couple of electric motors in a car, like they do with the very fuel-efficient diesel/electric trains that have been used for decades now.

  5. Nick Stevens Says:

    As for Whiteacre as GM CEO, a definite improvement over Henderson and esp. Wagoner and his predecessors, but probably no Alan Mullaly.

  6. Nick Stevens Says:

    “# pedro fernandez Says:
    January 25th, 2010 at 12:43 pm

    I wonder if it would be feasible to use a small diesel power plant to run a couple of electric motors in a car, like they do with the very fuel-efficient diesel/electric trains that have been used for decades now.”

    IT sure is feasible, but any diesel-electric hybrid, even a non-plug in, will be doubly expensive, once because of the Hybrid systems and secondly by using the more expensive diesel engine. Peugeot had a diesel electric concept that could make more than 70 MPG but I doubt they built it. Even in $7-$9 gas europe.

  7. HtG Says:

    Did I hear it right, that tractor will not have a battery pack, but still use regenerative braking? Somebody please ‘splain me.

  8. pedro fernandez Says:

    Nick: I was not referring to a hybrid, but rather a system like the Volt, but with a small diesel motor that would run at a constant speed providing juice to an electric motor, I can’t understand why this system would be so costly.

  9. Nick Stevens Says:

    pedro: So you don’t understand why the Volt is so costly?

    Gas < diesel < hybrid < diesel hybrid < plug in gas hybrid < plug-in diesel electric hybrid.

    GM asks for $7,500 government subsidy to sell the stupid Volt, but they really need $20,000 to make the $40,000 cobalt as cheap as a chavy cobalt-cruze cheapo car it really is.

  10. Kit Gerhart Says:

    Apparently diesel-electric power trains become increasingly efficient compared to other systems as size increases, expecially if varying ground speeds are involved. Nearly all IC engine powered railroad locomotives have always been that way. In cars, it seems to be more efficient to connect the engine directly to the wheels using gears, even though engines, both gas and diesel are most efficient a a specific RPM. That is especially true at constant speed cruising where the engine can be run at a good rpm for efficiency. I can’t imagine but what there would be at least a 10-15% power loss in a generator/motor system of the type that could be used in a passenger car.

    For several years, new cruise ships have had diesel-electric power trains, but I suspect the reason is more to make these huge ships “easy to park” than efficiency reasons. The motor/propeller units are in pods that can be turned in any direction to go sideways, etc. The big cargo ships use one or two huge diesels running at very low rpm connected directly to the propeller(s). Apparently that is the most efficient power train for something very large that only has to go one speed.

  11. Darron65 Says:

    From the source:
    Like automotive hybrids, the D7E does recapture energy that would otherwise be wasted, though not in the traditional sense of a regenerative braking system. During forward and reverse shifts, which happen hundreds of times a day in a bulldozer, the electric motors momentarily push energy back into the engine’s flywheel.

  12. Alex Kovnat Says:

    OK Tony, you’ve thrown down the gauntlet. So I’ll provide my perspectives.

    The Caterpillar bulldozer is not the same kind of “hybrid” as the Toyota Prius. It is more similar to the familiar Diesel-electric railroad locomotive, insofar as all the engine does is drive a generator, which in turn provides electric power to traction motors.

    This configuration is used for Diesel locomotives because they are by nature, all wheel drive. A locomotive has to have all axles powered, so its entire weight is effective as an agent in enabling traction. The most convenient way to do this, is for each axle to have its own motor.

    Since driveline stresses result when you compel any two or more axles to rotate at exactly the same speed, one would need a complex system of differentials to assure this doesn’t happen if one were to specify mechanical drive.

    On the other hand even the biggest trucks on our nation’s highways, have only two drive axles. So to prevent driveline stresses, you need only one interaxle differential (which is lockable if the driver finds it necessary) in addition to the usual differentials between right and left sides of each drive axle.

    That’s why up till now, we have not seen trucks using the same configuration as Diesel locomotives.

    With all the talk about global warming, we are seeing more and more road vehicles with hybrid electric drive. But I think that in many cases, parallel hybrid (i.e. mechanical drive, with a motor-generator on the driveline between engine and transmission) or the Prius configuration, would be preferable to the arrangement Diesel locomotives use.

    The reason why separate motors for each track works with a bulldozer is, its not expected to go very fast. If it were expected to move as fast as the Army’s M1-series main battle tank, one would have difficulty with separately motored tracks because of steering issues.

  13. Salvador G. Says:

    JohnMc., At 11-feet high and 60,000 pounds the Caterpillar D7E bulldozer would EAT my neighbor’s Prius -Which would be really cool.
    -Although, at 60,000pnds. I would like to know the what’s top speed of this thing to make up that electric power under breaking?

    The Virtual Vehicle Sound Simulator, Humnn!! You know Gran Turismo 5 is coming out later this year, couldn’t Ford just wait.

  14. LEX Says:

    John,

    Peter and you were right! Ed Whitacre decided that he was the best man for the CEO job at GM.

    I when to my local Chevy Dealership and sat in both an Equinox and Traverse. The Equinox interior is confining and the Traverse is only a bit larger in the third row and rear storage areas than my 07 Pilot EXL. A stripped FWD Traverse starts at $30K. The interior materials in the Chevy’s is mostly hard plastics. The dealer has no selection or booklets and the MSRP’s are too high as compared to the competition. Maybe when Foo King Motors takes GM over in a few years there will be improvements.

    This battle between Hyundai and Honda over who is the most fuel efficient Auto Maker is going to get Hyundai alot more foot traffic in their dealerships. Honda needs to start rolling out new versions of the CR-V and epecially the Element. The Insight needs to grow to the same size as a Third Gen Prius and the Civic needs a practical third door hatchback identical to the Euro Honda Civic Type R of 2008. That Euro Civic Type R is a real sleek design. Ford figured it out bring the sleek smart looking models from Europe to the States. Why doesn’t Honda do the same. The 2008 Civic Type R could be Honda’s Ford fighter.

  15. Nick Stevens Says:

    “For several years, new cruise ships have had diesel-electric power trains, but I suspect the reason is more to make these huge ships “easy to park” than efficiency reasons. ”

    That’s absolutely right, the most efficient huge ships, that weigh up to 10 times as much (fully loaded) than these cruise ships that look big but are mostly empty air and have very shallow draft), are all powered by ultra-low speed diesels making up to 115,000 HP and being mind-bogglingly efficient, they can carry a ton of cargo 1,000s of miles PER GALLON!

    many Navy ships have also been diesel electric for a while, as well as trains, of course.

  16. EAB Says:

    The drivetrain on the Caterpillar is similar to what I think the mainstream answer is for cars. Seems like the ability to have the engine run at one constant speed puts the idea of a relatively small, lightweight gas turbine in the mix with all of the other solutions. It may not have been practical a few years ago, but now that we have to look at getting the weight out of cars, I think a constant speed GT with a relatively small bank of batteries (only need enough to provide a “boost” to the GT’s available 100HP or so) would be something to consider. In the city, the GT could just shut down for severe light to light commuting, and run at a constant RPM for high efficiency on the highway, power feeding a generator/charging system, and power doing directly to the electric motors.

  17. Nick Stevens Says:

    I remember back in the 80s there was a dry bulk carrier, the biggest at the time, with a cargo capacity of 360,000 tons, a single ultra-low speed diesel engine that burned 30 tons or so of heavy diesel a day, and a speed of about 12-13 knots. You can calculate the fuel efficiency of this thing, approximately you are moving 360,000 tons by about 300 land miles for 30 tons fuel, and there are about 260 gallons per ton, so your MPG is a mind-boggling ..13,950 ton-miles per gallon!!!

  18. Jim Sawyer Says:

    Amazing! LEX implies that Honda needs a FORD-fighter!

    My, how the world is changing.

  19. Nick Stevens Says:

    Even more amazing, LEX has been preaching his environmental BS here every day, I expected him to be driving a prius or civic hybrid, and what is he driving? A STUPID SUV! and not even a small CR-V sized Honda, but the effing biggest one Honda makes, the PILOT? WHY? I bet all he needed is, at most the outstanding Honda ODyssey Minivan (which has cylinder deactivation for better HWY MPG) and even more, much more, interior space than the Pilot.

  20. ol wrench Says:

    Has Ford implemented this “sound tech”in any vehicle so far? Chassis rumble & roar are my pet peeves.
    My first job at a ford dealer 50 years ago was removing noisy foreign objects put there by good union members.

  21. Kit Gerhart Says:

    Lex writes:

    “This battle between Hyundai and Honda over who is the most fuel efficient Auto Maker is going to get Hyundai alot more foot traffic in their dealerships.”

    Does anyone really care who the “most efficient auto maker” is? If I am shopping between, say, a Prius and an Insight, I really don’t care that Toyota is a “less efficient” car maker than Honda because they sell big pickup trucks. The Prius is the more efficient, roomier, more refined car, none of which has anything to do with “most efficient car maker” claims.

  22. pedro fernandez Says:

    Lexus has been making ultra-quiet cars since their inception in the late 80′s and now we’re supposed to believe that Ford is breaking new grounds in this field? give me a break, please. Sound abatement starts at the engine and ends up with the tire thread design. Good engineering and build quality and you don’t need all those tricky electronics.

  23. Nick Stevens Says:

    Luxury cars with soundproofing without electronics used to do it by adding 100s of pounds of weight to isolate the cabin. High volume non-luxury cars can’t do that, for cost and lower MPG reasons, hence they try to do it with electronics.

  24. pedro fernandez Says:

    Nick: I have driven late model Civics, Elantras and Corollas and they also are very quiet. Just basic, good engineering and application.

  25. dcars Says:

    The Sound technology mentioned is mind boggling. Building and engineering cars is amazing , I watched a program on Nat Geo that showed the new Camero being build in Oshawa Ontario and it’s unbelievable how sophisticated this process is.

  26. pedro fernandez Says:

    And speaking of Ford, now that they’re selling Volvo and divorcing Mazda, where are their platforms gonna come from? unlike GM, who gets them from Germany and Australia, they have no other sources. Now that they have will have to come up with their own architectures, we’ll see how good they really have gotten.

  27. dcars Says:

    Pedro, have faith, I bet we can still engineer some nice cars in the US.

  28. pedro fernandez Says:

    Dcars: do you recall the last American developed and engineered car platform from Ford or GM? Was it Cobalt? the old Taurus?

  29. Kit Gerhart Says:

    pedro fernandez Says:
    January 25th, 2010 at 4:14 pm

    “And speaking of Ford, now that they’re selling Volvo and divorcing Mazda, where are their platforms gonna come from?”

    Ford of Europe does most of the work on a number of important cars for Ford, including Fiesta and Focus.

  30. dcars Says:

    Who’s engineering the Volt? I know US engineering graduates aren’t as interested in the Automotive world. Too many layoffs, comparatively low pay and the competition to recruit them is stiff. To bad I’d hate to say the US loose this ability.

  31. C-tech Says:

    Thank you Alex for the explanation.

  32. LEX Says:

    Hey Nick Stevens,

    Yes, my wife does drive the Odyssey EXL with the
    cylinder deactivation to carry the kids around. I never said I was a tree hugger. You assumed I was as tree hugger, and you know what you get when you ASS-U-not-ME! The Prius and Insight are too small for my family. When I purchased both vehicles gas was around $2.25 a gallon. At that time Honda was making the most fuel efficient vehicles including their SUV’s and minivan. I enjoy the outdoors especially skiing. I needed AWD and space for the family and equipment. I plan on keeping my Honda’s for a long time which is also good for the enviroment since they are very clean running vehicles. If the CR-V and Element were updated I might consider on of them when the kids are able to drive.

    You only live once and you should enjoy what you drive! So Lighten Up!

  33. HyundaiSmoke Says:

    Kit, That doesnt matter as Both 2nd Place Accent and 3rd Place Fit sell better than Prius in one week combined, than the Prius in a Month.

    Therefore consumer knowledge about fuel eocnomy to value rules the day.

  34. LEX Says:

    Hey Kit Gerhart,

    I understand were you are comming from regarding my comment on the “Most Fuel Efficient Auto Maker”. I agree that you need to purchase the right vehicle to fit your needs and lifestyle. This is called “freedom of choice”. Yes, I would like to see more fuel efficient vehicle in very vehicle class running on domestically produced fuels. John McElroy keeps preaching about domestically produced Bio Fuels which I am in full agreement. Our country need to get off being addicted to foreign oil. We need to move towards domestic sources of fuel. E85, Bio-Fuels, Bio-Diesel, HyBrids, Hydrogen, CNG, Electric, are all possible solutions in the long and short terms and in certain situations. On size does not fit all. We all want the best value for our hard earned money, isn’t that right!

  35. HyundaiSmoke Says:

    The Replacement cost of prius batteries after 120,000 use, etc… Plus its unconventional styling which only gives it niche appeal hurts the thing.

    Its a development car. However, I think in 2015-2020 Toyota will have everything Hybrids, and the Prius will be a pure electric car to experiment on.

  36. LEX Says:

    Jim Sawyer Says:

    Amazing! LEX implies that Honda needs a FORD-fighter! My, how the world is changing

    Yes Jim, the world is changing. Who would have thought a few years ago that Ford would have won both North American Car and Truck of the year awards, where the truck was not a F150!

    The Ford Transit Connect is a perfect example of were the North American Auto Market is heading. It filled a niche which the Honda Element should have been able to fill, but didn’t. The Transit Connect has space and fuel efficiency, and will hopefully fill the currently vacant slot in Ford’s passenger market left vacant by the demise of the Ford Windstar. It took Alan Mulally, Jim Farley and many others to redirect Ford into a winning position. Ford has been gaining momentum and the other OEM’s need to take notice. I spoke about Honda because they were once a very focused OEM. In my opinion, they have made a bad choices bringing to market the Crosstour. It is one pretty expensive and not very roomy CUV. You already know what I think about the Insight, which seems to be the same as other, too small and too expensive for what is delivers.

  37. Andrew Charles Says:

    The largest trucks used on mining operations have been using diesel-electric powertrains for many decades. At one point GM was building this kind of truck themselves, using similar powertrains as the Electromotive diesel locomotives. However this business is even less suited to mass production than diesel locomotives and was sold off long ago.

    Regenerative braking is only a recent innovation in traditional diesel-electric locomotives and is not widespread, and full-hybrid road engines are still in development. Although there efficiency gains to be made they are comparatively small as very little of the enormous kinetic engine available can be possibly be stored. For commuter trains of course the situation is quite different. They start and stop relatively often and relatively quickly, whereas road engines can go coast-to coast ideally with no stops at all, relatively slow acceleration and as little braking as possible; commuter trains often operate as multiple units with motors in almost every car, while road engines may haul several dozen cars for every engine. I believe some work is being done on hybrid electric streetcars, but although those few diesel rail cars being built use automotive powertrains I haven’t heard of anyone adapting the GM/Allison or Azure Dynamics systems to rail vehicles, which would seem a no-brainer.

  38. Andrew Charles Says:

    LEX, you may be surprised to learn that Toyota built a Transit Connect style LCV just over twenty years ago. It was called, appropriately enough, the Deliboy, but shortsightedly it was never sold outside of Japan (typical of Toyota), where it doesn’t seem to have had much success compared to the Japanese cab-forward style compact vans ad was soon dropped. It was up to the Europeans to really embrace the 2-box compact LCV with a range of fwd car-based LCVs such as the Berlingo, Combo, Caddy and Kangoo. Ford was actually rather late to the genre with the Transit Connect, and most competitors are now onto their 2nd or 3rd generation vehicle.

  39. Nick Stevens Says:

    # pedro fernandez Says:
    January 25th, 2010 at 3:51 pm

    Nick: I have driven late model Civics, Elantras and Corollas and they also are very quiet. Just basic, good engineering and application.

    Actually, it is not just that. The field of NVH (noise Vibration and HArshness) is quite evolved, and they do not deaden the sound by simply adding insulation any more, or by making sure the engine is tuned up etc. They do cancellation of noise with active measures. I am not in this field, but my colleague across the hall made a career of it.

  40. dcars Says:

    Hi Nick,
    Did you you engineer cars? Cool. I guess that explains your knowledge on the subject.

  41. Nick Stevens Says:

    Dcars,

    Not really. I just like to read and hear about cars, both the engineering and the industry production, inventory, sales etc stats, same way others like to read sports stats!

    I did once teach a course to Automotive engineers that came back for a master’s, most worked for Ford, a few years ago, and to about 20 distance learning types that were also from Chrysler and suppliers. This was all extra to my regular job, that summer I also had full research pay on top of my regular 9 month acad year salary, and I was paid real well to do the course. However, the math background of the students was not that good and the course was difficult for them. it was not about engineering the cars, not the nuts and bolts, but analyzing decisions with applics. in the Auto sector. The distance learners actually liked the class better than the smaller in-class crowd.

  42. Nick Stevens Says:

    Among the distance students was the daughter of a very high-up Ford VP, a guy of Hispanic origin that has since retired.

  43. Kit Gerhart Says:

    HyundaiSmoke Says:
    January 25th, 2010 at 11:00 pm

    “The Replacement cost of prius batteries after 120,000 use, etc… Plus its unconventional styling which only gives it niche appeal hurts the thing.”

    The “unconventional styling” has little to do with styling per se. It is designed with a purpose. The car is a hatchback, making it very easy to use its available space. It is shaped the way it is for low aerodynamic drag. That is why it gets better steady speed highway fuel economy than any other car you can buy in the US, even the VW TDI’s.

    We’ll know more about the battery issue when the cars are older. The Prius owners I know don’t really care at this point, because the batteries are warranted for 10 years, and they don’t plan to keep the cars that long.

  44. HyundaiSmoke Says:

    Kit, I put that many miles on a car after 3 years of use my friend.

    So, for us higher mileage drivers, that kind of thing matters. Im the guy who trades a car after 5 years and its got 200K already.

  45. Nick Stevens Says:

    I assume most of the 200k miles are highway miles, then you do not need a hybrid, but you really do need a diesel, and you do NOT have to sell it at 5 years but at 15 with 600,000 miles, and if you want you can keep it more. Seriously.

    And the resale value will be far greater than any equivalent gasoline engine.

  46. HyundaiSmoke Says:

    You do have a point Nick, yeah 90% Highway almost.