Wednesday, November 24, 2004

More on Mini Cars

I'm beginning to see Mini Cars like Amazon.com. A good idea ahead of its time. Daimler-Chrysler has built their Smart Car, but sales have been not so good world wide. The Smart Car is not very attractive looking, and because it is small, only sells well in urban areas. And that's pretty much all it's good for, as smaller weaker engined versions don't even work on the highways, because they're too slow. You can buy a Smart Car if you live in Canada, or Europe, but for America, you'll have to deal with this gray market guy. He sounds a lot like Corbin Motors, which went bankrupt trying to sell three wheeled electric cars a couple years ago. Zap Motors has the advantage of basically selling something that already works, which is always good.

I'm beginning to see Mini Cars as a better solution then hybrids. Hybrids are loud, may cause cancer because of the electromagnetic radiation that pours out of them, and might not work too well at this point in their development. Big hybrids like the upcoming 400h, which is the hybrid version of the Lexus RX SUV, are being delayed until April, when they were supposed to come out this month. I really don't know if they can mass produce enormous batteries that can glom onto engines, and still produce output comparable to a v8 or large v6 engine. And since this is a luxury hybrid, consumers are probably unaware of how loud and annoying the hum of a hybrid is. They better put some sound dampeners on the electronics, because picky luxury buyers are going to be turned off. This is probably part of the reason for the delay. Sigh, diesel is so much simpler.

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