… a thought that I’m sure I’m not the only person in the world to think this. In these times of “global warming”, concerns about “carbon footprint” and everything else that’s going on, why is it that American cars are still less efficient than their European counterparts? We all know about these huge engine vehicles driven by Americans up to 5 litre, gas guzzlers and yet, in some cases, they only get the performance of what we’re taking from a 2 litre engine in Europe with nowhere near the same economy. Why aren’t American cars fitted with the same economical engines that their European friends have and get the same performance with better economy? Is it just me or am I missing something here?
American cars are generally heavier and that weight requires a bigger engine to pull the car on longer distances than normally covered during the course of a business day in Europe. We rented a car for two weeks in the USA to run the Interstate across six states and would needed to add an additional hour on every day of driving if we got a car with an engine smaller than 2.5 liters. And here in Ireland, my neighbur needs two SUVs with 4 or 5 liter engines because she pulls horse boxes several times a week. I’m all for a carbon tax because you can run a big motor on hydrogen to no ill environmental effect.
That’s very true Bernie; I’m all for a carbon tax too as long as it’s put on the fuel and not the engine. After all if I have a 5 litre gas guzzler that does 5 to the gallon and drive it 3 weeks a year, I shouldn’t pay more than a Prius owner who drives 30K km per year. I knew that some US cars were built a little heavier alright but didn’t know that it was that common. Is there a reason for this other than keeping the steel industry in operation? There are of course good exceptions to needing the big engine, like your neighbour as you say. However, they’re getting all to common for weekly shopping trips rather than pulling Mr & Mrs Shergar. Bring on the hydrogen drives! The work that Honda are doing sounds phenomenal and I can’t wait to see the first production model. Of course the big problem is who will store the fuel and how? If we solve that, we may just change the face of the planet or alternatively we may just continue on the line of evolution that we are already on. 🙂
people are bigger in the USA, that’s why they need big cars 🙂