Thursday, April 07, 2005

Toyota: Hydrogen Cars are Lame

Not so at Toyota. Hybrid vehicles are showing up all over US roads because the Japanese carmaker has thrown its full weight behind the technology. The company has its own fuel cell prototype in the works, but executives are quick to note that the Prius is actually more efficient when you factor in how much energy it takes to produce the hydrogen fuel in the first place. And unlike hydrogen cars, hybrids work with the current energy infrastructure.
Yet another source saying that hydrogen cars don't make any sense. Why would you want a hydrogen car if a hybrid is more efficient?
Right now, there are about 800 million cars in active use. By 2050, as cars become ubiquitous in China and India, it'll be 3.25 billion.
I thought we had 500-600 million cars today, but what is a few million cars between friends? Wow, 3.25 billion is a big number. I just don't see how the earth can support that many. And for the life of me, I don't see why China is building its transportation plan around cars. I have always thought that cars make sense in suburbs and poorly designed cities (aka Los Angeles and Silicon Valley), but if you were building a city from scratch that had over a million people (and China has a lot of those) I would put in good mass transportation ala Tokyo or NYC. Once you get too many people, cars just cause a lot of traffic and don't get you anywhere fast ala Bangkok, not even thinking about the environmental issues. You can just get places quicker in a dense city via a subway than via a car in traffic. For as good of central planners as the Chinese are, I think they are really screwing the pooch here and are going to turn China into a whole bunch of Los Angeleses.

via Wired

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