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Old February 20th, 2015, 05:26 AM   #10361
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Beer Store insanity is Ontario-only
Quebec and other provinces restrict liquor to government stores though
Alberta did a screwy privatisation, the government has a liquor monopoly, but privatised the retail, so stores buy from the government. However the government makes higher margins and consumers pay less for liquor in AB than in ON or QC, probably because the cash-register operators at the LCBO and SAQ make something like $20 - 30 an hour and have a gold pension...
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Old February 21st, 2015, 10:36 AM   #10362
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I never found getting off the interstate to grab lunch to never be much of an issue, most interstates are well serviced at exits. You don't need a rest station if every 3rd exit has multiple hotels and a large fast food selection.
Agreed on one exception: On toll roads in the Northeast (and I'm guessing elsewhere) where there is ticket system tolling, you need to pay to get off the highway, so that's the "incentive" to use the overpriced service areas for some people.

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Old February 21st, 2015, 07:57 PM   #10363
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I find getting off and back on less of an issue with E-ZPass, because I won't know what I'm paying for that until I see the statement, and I may not care then, and I'm not actually stopping at two more toll booths to pay my toll at the first and get a new ticket at the second.

But some service areas aren't that overpriced, so the convenience factor comes into play. Once I'm on a toll road, I'll probably use the services on it...if the prices were really an issue I'd work around it and buy gas or whatever before I get on.

I guess what I'm saying is that at least for me, the incentive for using toll-road service areas isn't avoiding the extra toll, just the general convenience of not having to get off at all.
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Old February 23rd, 2015, 01:18 AM   #10364
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How much is the usual price differential between fuel bought on rest areas (where they exist) and the prevailing fuel prices on neighborhoods abutting such highways in US?

I'm also wondering... are diesel-powered cars catching up on sales numers in US, or not?
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Old February 23rd, 2015, 02:19 AM   #10365
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I don't know about toll-road area gas stations, but gas stations right at the interstate exit are generally 5-10 cents higher than gas stations that are near, but unseen by travelers. I remember a gas station off the main highway in Texas where I lived that was always about 10 cents higher than the gas station I used half a mile down the road.
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Old February 23rd, 2015, 04:08 AM   #10366
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Quote:
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I'm also wondering... are diesel-powered cars catching up on sales numers in US, or not?
Diesel cars have had a constant growth in sales for a good decade here in the US. However recently because the average American has short term memory than diesel sales have slowed down because of the very low price of gas. It goes across the board as electric car sales have fell as well and more people are buying trucks and SUV's so far this year. When the fuel prices go back up I can imagine the trend towards diesel to continue. The problem with selling diesel cars in the US is the issue of strict US emissions, specifically California emissions standards. Also the perception of diesels being loud and dirty because most diesels here are the pickups with massive engines. That and people being afraid of the higher price despite the efficiency and better torque of diesel cars and trucks.
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Old February 24th, 2015, 12:53 AM   #10367
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I think the big problem to long-term acceptance in the US is the price of fuel... at the original diesel-craze circa 1980, diesel car was considerably cheaper to fuel, but considerably more horrible to drive.

Now diesels are a pleasure to drive, but the fuel unit cost is so much higher that your fuel savings is essentially negligible and it makes no sense...
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Old February 25th, 2015, 07:45 PM   #10368
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Quote:
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How much is the usual price differential between fuel bought on rest areas (where they exist) and the prevailing fuel prices on neighborhoods abutting such highways in US?

I'm also wondering... are diesel-powered cars catching up on sales numers in US, or not?
It's $2.39 at the Delaware Welcome Center in the I-95 median here, and it's $2.29-$2.33 at gas stations within a mile or two, even those next to exit and entrance ramps. The lowest gas price in the entire area is $2.19.

Gas stations in the rest areas on the NJ Turnpike are all at $2.12 right now, with prices in most areas along the way in New Jersey at $2.05-$2.09. New Jersey has a strange law, though, where the gas price on the NJ Turnpike can only be changed once a week.
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Old February 25th, 2015, 08:47 PM   #10369
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New Jersey and Oregon the only states with full-service mandatory gas stations... that's awesome!
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Old February 25th, 2015, 08:55 PM   #10370
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So awesome it needs to be bolded!

;-)

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Old February 25th, 2015, 10:48 PM   #10371
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Quote:
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Diesel cars have had a constant growth in sales for a good decade here in the US. However recently because the average American has short term memory than diesel sales have slowed down because of the very low price of gas. It goes across the board as electric car sales have fell as well and more people are buying trucks and SUV's so far this year. When the fuel prices go back up I can imagine the trend towards diesel to continue. The problem with selling diesel cars in the US is the issue of strict US emissions, specifically California emissions standards. Also the perception of diesels being loud and dirty because most diesels here are the pickups with massive engines. That and people being afraid of the higher price despite the efficiency and better torque of diesel cars and trucks.
The growth rate in diesel cars in the United States only looks impressive because it started from zero sales over a 15 year period when diesels could not meet US emission standards.

Electric vehicle sales have not fallen (other than the normal seasonal variation that applies to all passenger vehicle sales) and multiple studies have (surprisingly) shown that there is no correlation between the price of gasoline and electric vehicle sales. Here are references to a few:
http://www.greencarreports.com/news/...-word-gets-out

Diesels are inherently dirty because of particulate emissions, which for a long time were incorrectly believed to be harmless. France promoted diesels for many years believing diesels to be green and is now in the process of banning diesels from the roads, including already registered diesels, because even the cleanest diesels are unacceptably dirty.

The torque of diesel engines is good compared to gasoline engine but anemic compared to electric motors. That a stock Tesla can beat a Dodge Hellcat in the quarter mile is due primarily to the massive torque of electric motors. The Tesla flies from the starting line and the Hellcat never catches it.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kG6veF_34QE

As for efficiency, diesel car efficiency is below 40%, compared to above 90% (or between 80% and 90% with the heater on) for electric cars.
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Old February 25th, 2015, 10:55 PM   #10372
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The European (especially French and not particularly the UK) love affair with diesels (lower fuel tax, etc) seemed mostly related to seeing CO2 and fuel consumption as the things to reduce, ignoring much more harmful particulates and NOx.
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Old February 26th, 2015, 12:51 AM   #10373
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mcarling View Post
The growth rate in diesel cars in the United States only looks impressive because it started from zero sales over a 15 year period when diesels could not meet US emission standards.

Electric vehicle sales have not fallen (other than the normal seasonal variation that applies to all passenger vehicle sales) and multiple studies have (surprisingly) shown that there is no correlation between the price of gasoline and electric vehicle sales. Here are references to a few:
http://www.greencarreports.com/news/...-word-gets-out

Diesels are inherently dirty because of particulate emissions, which for a long time were incorrectly believed to be harmless. France promoted diesels for many years believing diesels to be green and is now in the process of banning diesels from the roads, including already registered diesels, because even the cleanest diesels are unacceptably dirty.

The torque of diesel engines is good compared to gasoline engine but anemic compared to electric motors. That a stock Tesla can beat a Dodge Hellcat in the quarter mile is due primarily to the massive torque of electric motors. The Tesla flies from the starting line and the Hellcat never catches it.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kG6veF_34QE

As for efficiency, diesel car efficiency is below 40%, compared to above 90% (or between 80% and 90% with the heater on) for electric cars.
But that isn't a good efficiency comparison - the diesel (or gas) car is 40 % efficient but it it working from heat energy which has low quality and comes from nature.
The electric motor is efficient but it is using work energy which is the highest quality and not present in nature.

Often you have the 80% electric car but that leccy is coming from 40% efficient coal plant passing 90% efficient distribution grid and charger
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Old February 26th, 2015, 05:10 AM   #10374
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Often you have the 80% electric car but that leccy is coming from 40% efficient coal plant passing 90% efficient distribution grid and charger
Even the least efficient and dirtiest coal plant producing electricity then used in an electric car is both more efficient and cleaner than, for example, a Prius. That's even true with a large and not so efficient electric car like a Tesla.
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Old February 26th, 2015, 09:35 PM   #10375
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mcarling View Post
The growth rate in diesel cars in the United States only looks impressive because it started from zero sales over a 15 year period when diesels could not meet US emission standards.

Electric vehicle sales have not fallen (other than the normal seasonal variation that applies to all passenger vehicle sales) and multiple studies have (surprisingly) shown that there is no correlation between the price of gasoline and electric vehicle sales. Here are references to a few:
http://www.greencarreports.com/news/...-word-gets-out

Diesels are inherently dirty because of particulate emissions, which for a long time were incorrectly believed to be harmless. France promoted diesels for many years believing diesels to be green and is now in the process of banning diesels from the roads, including already registered diesels, because even the cleanest diesels are unacceptably dirty.

The torque of diesel engines is good compared to gasoline engine but anemic compared to electric motors. That a stock Tesla can beat a Dodge Hellcat in the quarter mile is due primarily to the massive torque of electric motors. The Tesla flies from the starting line and the Hellcat never catches it.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kG6veF_34QE

As for efficiency, diesel car efficiency is below 40%, compared to above 90% (or between 80% and 90% with the heater on) for electric cars.
I agree electric is better but the technology and infrastructure aren't there yet. Yes the emissions on diesels are worse but they also use considerably less fuel than a gasoline engine. I'd say the growth rate is pretty impressive considering how diesels were virtually gone outside of pickup trucks for a while.

Last edited by I-275westcoastfl; February 26th, 2015 at 09:41 PM.
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Old February 26th, 2015, 11:08 PM   #10376
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The are always trade-offs.

I think a possible future development of electric cars are engines that are wheel-specific, instead of moving a power train.

There is a reason for which many industrial processes changed from steam-power to electricity early on 20th Century... there is a reason you use electricity, not a boiler-heat steam pipe, to power your vacuum cleaner, high-rise lift, mechanical gate...

Actually, early 20th Century saw many electric prototypes of cars in US. The biggest problem has been how to convey electricity around, and store it on a moving object. Hence cheap liquid fuels took place, as the 1910s kicked in and oil prices plummeted.

I ultimately think the combination of driverless cars with wheel-specific engines will be a winner for individual mobility. Maybe that could come in the form of a self-driven car that can still be manually operated with a drive-by-wire system (a steering wheel, or maybe a joystick, that commands a computer to steer the wheels instead of a steering column that drives the frontal axis while being assisted by hydraulics).
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Old February 26th, 2015, 11:53 PM   #10377
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Although the efficiency of fossil fuels is quite poor (most energy is wasted), it is easy to store, transport and cheap to extract and refine on a very large scale. Oil prices could go up to $ 300 per barrel and it would still be affordable if it wasn't for the high taxes in some regions.
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Old February 27th, 2015, 12:07 AM   #10378
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Suburbanist View Post
I ultimately think the combination of driverless cars with wheel-specific engines will be a winner for individual mobility. Maybe that could come in the form of a self-driven car that can still be manually operated with a drive-by-wire system (a steering wheel, or maybe a joystick, that commands a computer to steer the wheels instead of a steering column that drives the frontal axis while being assisted by hydraulics).
I hope it will not come for the next decade at least - by next century will be even preferable - as I love driving , and if cars would be able to drive themselves, some stupid politicians will decree that it's no longer safe to drive oneself and completely forbid it .
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Old February 27th, 2015, 12:14 AM   #10379
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I hope it will not come for the next decade at least - by next century will be even preferable - as I love driving , and if cars would be able to drive themselves, some stupid politicians will decree that it's no longer safe to drive oneself and completely forbid it .
That will be the natural and expected outcome on controlled-access highways, at least, in less than 25 years.

It is just a matter of saving lives, actually. I like driving but I fully support driverless cars. Car crashes are a top-3 cause of death on all age groups below 55. It is also the leading cause of death on those between ages 16 and 40. Pleasure of driving, mine included, cannot justify so many deaths.
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Old February 27th, 2015, 12:50 AM   #10380
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are you sure #1 isn't depression?

Wheel-motor I think is dead-end just because of the unsprung weight. Even Dr. Porsche had a wheel-motor electric car he designed that was popular, circa 1899 (Loehner-Porsche for example)
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