I spotted one of these in the scooter shop
near my work. I know it's not a car or HPV, but the steering and suspension
design is something different!
thought you might be interested in case you hadn't seen one before.
Happy Audi Owner
Re I hate it I hate it I hate
Replaced Lexus SC400 after 11 years and 240,000km
(2 bushes, 1 alternator, and 1 hydraulic hose only!!) with 2002 Audi S6.
(Recommended by Autospeed no less!). In 6 months, Car died on first big trip 3
weeks after purchase (thermostat), aircon failed, IPod interface won't work
(tried several, no way to get stereo minijack into audio system, weird bose
unit), faulty brake lines, but the worst thing about it is the SOFTWARE is
COMPLETELY BRAIN DEAD. Can't leave windows open a finger width without lights
flashing permanently. Can't open windows a fingerwidth without using ignition
key to kill power, as once within fingerwidth, software decides that you want
window closed, or open! Much heavier on gas than Lexus (agree 4WD, more
oomph etc) Garage laughed at me, they suggest replacement of disk rotors fairly
common, as well as prodigious use of pads.
Most disturbing of all, I cannot find an Audi
owner who has not had a fair amount of trouble.
Can't get any workshop manuals. Audi treat you
like an idiot. Smartly dressed twerp at desk designed to prevent any rational
discussion about vehicle. Merc's are worse, Beemers slightly better, all
are terrible compared with JUC or New JC. Porsche, that is an income statement,
not a car, don't even think about it. Couldn't find an NSX in NZ, so bring on
the Lexus LF-A. The only saving grace of this piece of SH-1T is that Audi pick
up the entire maintenance tab for 3 years.
Roger De Salis
Have you seen the michelin tyres that dont
need air? They look like run flat technology. www.forwardlook.net Came
out in 2005 (proto)
John on Hybrids
Just a note on hybrids:
In general fuel consumption (with the same engine
type) is a function of:
1 vehicle weight - energy
required to get up to speed = 0.5 x mass x velocity^2. This energy is then lost
as heat when the brakes are applied;
2 vehicle weight and tyre
factors including tyre pressure - rolling resistance is proportional to vehicle
3 vehicle frontal area - height
by width - and shape factor - aerodynamic drag = C x frontal area x velocity^3
(note that at a low speed of 30 km/h aerodynamic drag may only be 3% of total
energy use whereas at 100 km/h the aerodynamic energy drag increases to 30% of
total - and 37 times more energy in absolute terms)
Most of the efficiency of hybrids comes from three
1 the engine runs at optimum
efficiency for much more of the time - every engine has a "sweet spot/ area"
where the conversion of fuel to energy is maximised; and
2 instead of brakes turning
kinetic energy into heat, the electric motor/ generator turns the kinetic energy
back into electrical energy stored in a battery; and
3 the engine may be turned off
at lights so making a further small saving in consumption.
Hence the difference in fuel consumption is much
greatest in urban travel where regenerative braking has a big effect.
Now the Honda Insight versus say the Toyota
The Insight was a 2 seat vehicle with a width of
1695 mm and height of 1355 mm = 2.23 square metres, and a weight of 838/ 852
The Prius is a 4 seat vehicle with a width of 1725
mm and height of 1490 mm = 2.57 square metres, and a weight of 1325 kg
In city travel the weight is the major issue.
Insight at 3.4 litres/100 km goes to 5.4 litres/100 km pro-rata on weight
compared to the Prius 5.1 litres/100 km.
Of course the other issue is engine type - a
turbocharged diesel has a basic efficiency of around 40% because of its much
higher compression ratio and hence higher peak temperature compared to a petrol
engine at around 25%.