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Old March 21st, 2008, 10:53 PM   #2001
Alex Von Königsberg
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Ha, let's implement a tax on American cars in the USA
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Old March 21st, 2008, 11:02 PM   #2002
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chriszwolle View Post
Hmm, if everybody has a smaller car (and not necessarily a compact or something), this problem wouldn't exist.

I checked some car sale sites in the Netherlands, but nearly all American cars have 3 liter engines or above, even up to 7.2 liters (Chevy Suburban), and also a V8 engine. That's what we put in full sized trucks over here. Those massive cars run like on half or a third than on regular cars in Europe. If all Americans decide to buy smaller cars, everybody can enjoy driving much longer. (you consume less fuel, which is also better for your wallet )

In the Netherlands, we have a slurptax for extremely fuel-inefficient cars. (usually sports cars and american cars).
Keep in mind that in Europe, most vehicles are also diesel-powered. I know for a fact that an Audi Q7 here with a 3.6 liter engine runs on about 14-19 miles a gallon. A 3.0 liter diesel engine on the Q7 in Europe can get a mileage in the mid-twenties, with higher engine torque than the US-spec 3.6. Lots of diesel-powered vehicles in Europe have Prius-equivalent/beating fuel economy. A recently introduced Volkswagen Golf diesel-hybrid gets 69 miles per gallon. The demand for diesel in Europe is because diesel fuel is kept relatively cheap compared to petrol.

Now when it comes to US vehicles, diesel engines are not available yet because of air-quality-regulations, but new technology is cleaning that up and should be available soon. BUT, that doesn't mean Americans should just hop back into SUVs. I think a heavier gas tax should be implemented once diesels are established along with a gas-guzzler tax.
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Old March 21st, 2008, 11:03 PM   #2003
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Originally Posted by ADCS View Post
Many people feel unsafe in even smaller SUVs. They like having a taller view of the road. Yes, I know this is very irrational, but take it for what it's worth.
Then maybe they should subsidize smaller cars more...
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Old March 21st, 2008, 11:14 PM   #2004
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The most modern Diesel engines are not as polluting as their counterparts from the early 1990's. Diesel is also more fuel efficient, indeed beating a Toyota Prius easily.
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Old March 21st, 2008, 11:17 PM   #2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flierfy View Post
You don't seem to know what rail-bound system can carry, do you. A train every 90 sec is the very well possible. Trains don't have to stop for 2 min. I suggest you read some literature on that matter.

Probably not. If they were busy they would run a few more trains.
Passenger (Intercity) trains run here up to 15 coaches, about 400-500 metres. Higher frequentions with those lengths are only worsening the capacityproblems, and makes PT very costinefficient...
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Old March 21st, 2008, 11:21 PM   #2006
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Proposing government-imposed solutions to the problem is fine, but you have to remember that it will be incredibly unpopular among half the American population. Remember, we don't necessarily have the same viewpoint on the role of government as you all do.

That being said, a combined hefty tax on gas-guzzlers and substantial tax credit for efficient cars is an idea that is floating around here lately, and one that is gaining support.
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Old March 21st, 2008, 11:39 PM   #2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by geogregor View Post
It depends if you mean heavy rail or light rail/metro.
But even in busy London Undrground 90 sec is just minimum or even to short. It's simply imposible for normal trains to stop every 90 sec.
Tell me at least one example where trains stop every 90 sec on the same track and same platform?
A train every 90 sec is the minimum. Under some circumstances and for a short time such a frequency is reached. However, no rail company schedules 40 train on a single track. That's why I wrote up to 40 trains an hour. We were talking about capacity after all.

Most metros are heavy rails by the way. I actually can't name one that isn't.
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Old March 21st, 2008, 11:46 PM   #2008
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Originally Posted by Chriszwolle View Post
Well, you seem to know it all so well, why don't you explain to the Dutch railways they should stop shorter?
Why should I? Dutch railways run obviously way under capacity. So they can easily afford to stop for 3 min or longer.

I just contradicted your claim roads would require less space than rail-bound systems which is simply wrong.
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Old March 21st, 2008, 11:49 PM   #2009
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Diesel's a good idea(one I've supported for a while), but after seeing the Price per Gallon of Diesel(3.78 Liters worth), it made me take pause.

http://tonto.eia.doe.gov/oog/info/gdu/gasdiesel.asp

^Why is diesel going up faster and more dramatically then Gasoline? The low-sulfur diesel switchover took place last summer yet the major price rise began after New Year's 2008.
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Old March 22nd, 2008, 12:29 AM   #2010
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What's wrong with electric cars?

And it's going to take a while to get Americans into the same tiny cars that Europeans will drive in. American mentality has always been bigger=better.

Whoever thought of putting an electric motor and engine into a car? Not efficient at all. An electric battery on its own would incredibly more efficient.

Why are Americans so unwilling to allow gas taxes to rise yet think that the roads will still be there at the same quality? No cars without roads, no roads without money. I'm usually against taxes, but this is one of my exceptions. The cost of driving is more than just the price of the car, car insurance, and gas.
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Old March 22nd, 2008, 01:02 AM   #2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HAWC1506 View Post
Keep in mind that in Europe, most vehicles are also diesel-powered.
Eh? Since when? Last I saw the vast majority of cars were running on petrol
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Old March 22nd, 2008, 01:29 AM   #2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KIWIKAAS View Post
Eh? Since when? Last I saw the vast majority of cars were running on petrol
There are very little noticeable differences between the way a petrol powered car runs compared to a diesel powered car. Modern diesels do not emit huge puffs of black smoke and the popping engine sound is virtually eliminated. It also varies country to country.

Diesel sales in October 04 to September 05:

In Belgium and France, diesels made up more than 70% of the market, and increased by 3% in Belgium and 6% in France.
In Germany, about 43% and sales are increasing by 6%
In the U.K., 36% and increasing 8%
In Greece, it is only 1% and decreasing 56%.

The price of diesel also varies in different countries whereas in France, diesel is 19% cheaper than petrol, while in the U.K., it's actually 5% more expensive. Either way, the trade off is that diesel cars are more efficient.

While we're on gas tax and numbers, does anyone know how much Europe is taxed compared to the U.S.? I'm also curious to hear some general tax numbers such as sales tax and property tax, just to see how much overall tax Americans pay compare to Europeans.
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Old March 22nd, 2008, 01:41 AM   #2013
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Ok. New car sales. Now I understand.
I thought you meant cars on the road.

The petrol tax in The Netherlands is around 70% of the price I believe.
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Old March 22nd, 2008, 01:45 AM   #2014
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I live in Spain and it's said that more than 50% of the fuel price are taxes, I don't know it it's true, but here is more expensive than in USA, (I've a diesel car, like most on Spain and I pay about 1,20€/l).

You can visit this page (http://193.146.123.247/aplicaciones/...tes/index.aspx) to know the prices of all the gas stations of the country. Here we are used to see the diesel cheaper than the petrol but now sometimes is more expensive (it should become cheaper in June).

Bye!
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Old March 22nd, 2008, 01:49 AM   #2015
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Gas tax in the US is pretty pitiful, and what's worse is that we can't get electric cars here. They would be the most efficient (as far as I know) and there's no local pollution. So why is there not more demand for it?
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Old March 22nd, 2008, 01:50 AM   #2016
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Connecticut has one of the highest fuel taxes in the US, and I believe that we are seeing a hike come July.

It's still tiny compared to Europe, at ~62 cents/gal.
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Old March 22nd, 2008, 01:55 AM   #2017
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So in general, do Americans pay less taxes than Europeans? If they do pay less, then seriously Americans need to change their spending habits and bust out some more cash into our infrastructure.

Also has anyone noticed that most American roads have really thin lane markings?
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Old March 22nd, 2008, 01:57 AM   #2018
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Americans pay MUCH less than Europeans across the board. It's no comparison.

In some ways, it's a good thing. A lot of that money goes to social programs and not everyone will agree on that. It's just a different mindset. But when it comes to infrastructure, the US should expect to pay more.
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Old March 22nd, 2008, 02:01 AM   #2019
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We need to pay a LOT more when it comes to infrastructure.

I don't know about you guys, but I felt disturbed after seeing those pics of I-95 in Philly. If it can happen there, it could literally happen anywhere, and people may get hurt. This is the worst time to be picky about upgrading infrastructure.
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Old March 22nd, 2008, 02:12 AM   #2020
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And it's not really the best time to raise any taxes at the moment, and I don't really see any prospect of higher gas tax anytime soon.
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