AuthorTopic: Ford Fusion Energi review  (Read 2150 times)

Offline MKing

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Ford Fusion Energi review
« on: July 20, 2015, 06:05:49 PM »
As hybrids have evolved, so have the consumers. From the original Honda Insight to modern EVs packing enough electrical power to electrocute your entire family or power your house, it has only taken about 20 years for this evolution.

Here is the car.




The current Ford Fusion Energi is not like the Volt, which is an EV with a gasoline motor onboard that creates electricity that then goes into an electric motor to power the wheels. This is different than an EV that has no additional means of creating electricity onboard to extend the range of the car. The Chevy Volt even calls the engine a "range extender". The Ford Fusion Energi is far more similar to their Hybrid model, mostly IS their hybrid, with a monster sized bigger battery eating up half the trunk. The difference between the two being that the Energi motor can power the wheels directly, in conjunction with the traction motor. Either can drive the car, or both.

The Energi has half the EV range of the Volt, and a less powerful electric motor as well. But as I have noted before, range anxiety played into my Volt decision, the Leaf can run dry in 60-80 miles, and gee, don't I need the ability to drive across the state on a moments notice? Nope. Mistake. Turns out, I don't even do the 40 miles a day, the Volt never used its gas engine, a Leaf would have been fine. Too late.

So fast forward a few years. Leafs are showing up in the paper, discounted down to $10-$15G, but it also turns out that the Leaf is having a bit much capacity loss, particularly in hot areas, and apparently because of lack of thermal management. So after seeing all these Leafs, I begin checking all the others, and presto, all sorts of Volts are coming off lease, Leafs, and the used EV car sale wars have begun!

But I don't want a Leaf. I have a different problem. Two kinds of driving, which with the Volt required 2 different cars. One for gasoline free motoring for the family around town, and another for continent spanning road trips. Enough!!

The solution? A plug in hybrid. Cmax? Too small, dorky looking, for some reason gets crappy mileage compared to something more full sized like the Fusion. A Prius? Hard to find, small, tin-can-ish, noisy.

So, early review on the Fusion. Quiet. Might be quietest car I've ever driven. Almost 20 miles of EV on the battery. 6 hours or so to charge. Supposed to get 45 on the highway. Turns off engine at 75 mph and runs electric if it wants to. Is selectable, can choose EV only, EV auto (runs like an EV but uses the engine when it wants to) and EV later, which turns off the EV idea, saves the battery, and runs it like the hybrid platform it is built upon. Transition between EV and ICE is far more seamless then old hybrids ever were, you can't even tell the ICE comes on sometimes. Brake transition between regen and calipers is about as good as well, there is a little grab right as you come to a stop, maybe, sometimes. Sometimes it is all regen, something hard to do on old hybrids. Plenty of power, EV, ICE, or both. I forced it to use gasoline the other night just to make sure the motor worked. Running around 150 after 6 days of use, hasn't reached the 250-300 mpg that the Chevy reached yet. But I have hope.

Bought it used, 11000 miles or so, will report back after it has done both its EV job, and its road trip job, to see how it works out as a 1 car solution to the modern traveler/commuter marching forward into the new electrically powered world of transport.
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Offline MKing

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Re: Ford Fusion Energi review
« Reply #1 on: July 30, 2015, 11:31:17 AM »
About 300 miles on the clock so far, down about 1.5 gallons of gas if my estimates are correct. Just cracked the overall 200 mpg mark. Got the electric bill, no noticeable effect yet but it probably doesn't include daily or every other day charging more than a time or two in the billing cycle.

Quiet as any car I've ever owned, EV power alone is more than sufficient to get up to highway speeds, so far there has been no need whatsoever to run the gas engine, I've just been doing it to test out its hybrid efficiency mode. 88 mpg on the last trip where it behaved as just a normal hybrid, so that is pretty outstanding.

The car is heavy, and feels it in certain circumstances, but overall handles the weight pretty well, suspension tuning and tire wise. 

Excellent A/C, brakes are hybrid-ish but much better than the older style hybrids. The transition between ICE and EV is as good as it gets, the thing kicks into EV mode on even small downhills on the interstate, picks the ICE right back up and you can't even tell unless you are watching the gauges. Figured out how to get  traditional engine monitoring view on the control screens, coolant temps and tachometer, along with the state of charge (SOC) of the high voltage battery (HVB), voltage in/out, instant fuel mileage, lane control sensors, all sorts of monitoring.

So far this particular personal peak oil transport is passing all the doomer approved tests for efficiency and mobility in a resource scarce world, and does it with comfort and style. Now if we could only find that resource scarce world somewhere in our solar system….
Sometimes one creates a dynamic impression by saying something, and sometimes one creates as significant an impression by remaining silent.
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Offline MKing

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Re: Ford Fusion Energi review
« Reply #2 on: August 01, 2015, 10:11:10 PM »
Put gas in the thing tonight because I just couldn't stand it any more. After experimenting with all EV for a few days, the last couple have been doing hybrid trips, I conserve the HVB and just let the car function like it would when the HVB is discharged. It runs between 45-55 mpg in hybrid mode, mixed interstate and bigger secondaries (35-50 mph). It is an excellent "normal" hybrid in terms of efficiency.

So I've driven about 400 miles on the nose, and it used 3.1 gallons of gas, 129 mpg. Using the ICE mid sized sedan I had before this thing, I would have needed about 15 gallons or so, and the only reason I even used those 3.1 gallons is because I wanted to test the machine, I could have done all EV instead. So a savings of about 12 gallons (call it $31 at current gas prices) in the first 400 miles or so. Just got the electric bill for the month, haven't noticed any difference in it at all, but I'm not sure I will.

Figure that normal around usage (school, groceries, looking for ammo, commuting to and fro) runs about 1000 miles a month, 38 gallons ( $100) saved, 40 charges at less than a quarter each, call it $10 in electricity. Savings of maybe $90/month in fuel costs, not bad.

Reporting from the front lines of the transport transition, one saved gallon of liquid fuel at a time.  :emthup: :emthup:
Sometimes one creates a dynamic impression by saying something, and sometimes one creates as significant an impression by remaining silent.
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Offline MKing

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Re: Ford Fusion Energi review
« Reply #3 on: August 03, 2015, 11:07:23 AM »
Wifey use of EV.

So the wife, enjoying the Energi far more than the Volt, has now decided to drive it, and today the verdict was returned. 33 mpg. Hammer down, throttle WFO, no EV for her, it is all about listening to the excellent stereo, the quiet of the power train, and if she wants more power, she is going to get it. And to hell with steady and calm braking, she is absolutely wrecking my rankings on the MyFord Mobile App, where I had climbed in just a few weeks to a respectable showing in the Renaissance Man category.

This car can save the planet from peak oil. Unless you get a lead foot in it, in which case we are all gonna die.

Next experiment will involve sending her out with a full EV tank (didn't do that this morning) and hope that her driving stays under the EV tank maximum, and therefore even if she is crazy with the car, she will be crazy with an EV, as compared to an ICE.
Sometimes one creates a dynamic impression by saying something, and sometimes one creates as significant an impression by remaining silent.
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Offline Eddie

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Re: Ford Fusion Energi review
« Reply #4 on: August 28, 2015, 08:36:27 AM »
Good info, MK. Sounds like a good compromise car for those of us who drive too many miles to make the Volt work.

Down here in the islands I cant help but see how an EV jeep or small pickup would be stellar. No ICE needed.

Read a local newspaper article that chronicled some guy here who converted an old Mini-Moke.
« Last Edit: August 28, 2015, 08:41:09 AM by Eddie »
What makes the desert beautiful is that somewhere it hides a well.

Offline Eddie

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Re: Ford Fusion Energi review
« Reply #5 on: August 28, 2015, 09:35:03 AM »
Seems like a Prius upgrade kind of car. Don't forget that the Prius, though, has turned out to be the most dependable car sold.

Not the most dependable eV. the most dependable car, period. the one I gave my daughter is nearing 200k with not a single repair.
What makes the desert beautiful is that somewhere it hides a well.

Offline MKing

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Re: Ford Fusion Energi review
« Reply #6 on: August 28, 2015, 11:30:30 AM »
2500 mile road trip report.

A couple of weeks ago the second half of the EVs usefulness was employed. 2500 miles over 5 days and 3 universities. No additional electricity was applied other than that it contained when I left the house, about 10 miles worth. After that, it functioned as a normal Ford Fusion Hybrid. Operated at high speeds nearly exclusively except when in town, 70-75+ mph, ambient temps were about 100-105F during the day the entire trip except the last day. Because the Ford battery pack is air cooled, as compared the Volt which is liquid cooled, I rarely employed my usual driving technique of collecting half a farmers tan with the window down, and used the A/C from dawn to dusk. This is important in this car, because the air used to cool the battery comes from the cabin, the cooler the passengers are, the cooler the air fed into the battery pack to keep it cool.

Seat is all day comfortable, the A/C had no trouble maintaining 70F cabin temps under all conditions, and didn't appear to be even taxed. Further experimentation with A/C ability around town, engine on, engine off, EV mode only, verifies that it could be nuclear powered it is so good. Battery eats up half the space in even the hybrids trunk size, but it was enough for 2 adults for 5 days in SUMMER without trouble. Winter involving more heavy clothing, bigger bags, boots, and would require more space that would spill over into the cab. Car is at least as quiet as anything I've ever owned, driver side windows up or down. Radio is excellent, could use a little more max volume with the windows down at 80mph and the occupants doing karaoke at the top of their lungs to Sammy Hagar, but even at max volume the quality was still there.

41.6 mpg over entire trip, worst tank of 33 mpg, best tank of 52 mpg. Sensitive to wind speed as any CVT tranny is, as best I can tell, having owned at least a half dozen or more of the things now.

Based on knowledge contained within the Nav system, it is quite possible that the ICE isn't even fully broken in when I bought it. Previous owners had a wonderful opportunity based on their home location to EV all the way to work and most of the way home with a recharge (which the college where she worked has). 2500 mile using the ICE should certainly move the motor along the way of breaking.

I should also note the complete and wildly interesting difference the larger battery makes, even when trying to use it like a normal hybrid. You can store MILES of electricity in a good downhill run, and the car will run along using that juice until it drains it, and then kick back to ICE power. Turns out, there is a meter that tracks ICE/EV ratio during any given tank, it turns out that this car, being driven no different than any consumer might, turns itself off about 20% of the time and just coasts. You can be running along, the engine also charging the battery as it goes, and then the car will decide that it has enough juice, and you don't need much power with a slight tailwind, so it just turns off the ICE and kicks into EV mode for a mile or two, at 75mph. With no need to power things like the A/C compressor or alternator or power steering pump, there is no need for the ICE to run if it has electricity. Craziest thing about the entire car.

Next up comes its first oil change (by me anyway) to something slick and synthetic, and perhaps a trip to the Smokies, might even do the Dragon in it, or perhaps the Chernola Skyway, and the length of the Blue Ridge Parkway. The more hills involved, the better, because this car reacts to standard hypermiling techniques like nobodies business, better than the Volt even. The Volt used its motor as a generator, not as direct power for the wheels. mechanical energy to electrical, electrical back to mechanical, probably why the Volt is less efficient in road trip mode by at least 10%. But this thing, you can keep the juice in the battery for when you need it, allowing it to soak up energy in downhill coasts, using it to get only a slight hump in the road to the next downhill, turning on the ICE when it is most effective (powering up a hill), it is a gizmo freaks delight. Works pretty good as regular car as well.

Figure another big road trip with my oil in it (as compared to whatever junk the dealership uses) to keep the ICE breaking in, the temps should be coming down soon and if there is one thing batteries like, it is cooler temps (getting 25 miles per charge right now, sans A/C). EV range is higher than advertised, but then I am already familiar with how to hyper mile, and that kind of stuff works in EV as well as it does hybrids.
Sometimes one creates a dynamic impression by saying something, and sometimes one creates as significant an impression by remaining silent.
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Offline MKing

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Re: Ford Fusion Energi review
« Reply #7 on: August 28, 2015, 11:44:56 AM »
Good info, MK. Sounds like a good compromise car for those of us who drive too many miles to make the Volt work.

Depends I suppose. Drive the Volt 40 on EV, 40 on ICE, 80 miles round trip and you are at like 75mpg measured just using the expense I notice, which is gasoline, not electric. 40 miles covers 75% of an average Americans commute, I don't know how far you are from work and places you frequent but I'm in suburbia, everything is close by. I can do 3-4-5 trips in a day and be on the original charge. Been hassling the wife to use the EV instead of the convertible but what can you do, the weather is nice for the convertible, she likes her car, in another month or two she'll shift away from hers and be in the EV, same as before.

But I've only got two main configurations, EV around town, short range stuff, and driving across the continent in a weekend. It does both well. The Volt did one well, and really was treated more like a pure EV, to the point where I still wonder if I wouldn't have been better off with a Leaf. Damn range anxiety that us early adopters suffered from. Not a problem now as we consumer types gain experience with these personal peak oil solution technologies.

Quote from: Eddie

Down here in the islands I cant help but see how an EV jeep or small pickup would be stellar. No ICE needed.

Read a local newspaper article that chronicled some guy here who converted an old Mini-Moke.

EVs do short/normal ranges stellar. In Austin, boy that place is just big enough and spread out enough that 40 miles EV might be a minimum for a multi trip afternoon, plus back and forth to work.
Sometimes one creates a dynamic impression by saying something, and sometimes one creates as significant an impression by remaining silent.
-Dalai Lama

Offline MKing

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Re: Ford Fusion Energi review
« Reply #8 on: August 28, 2015, 11:49:26 AM »
Seems like a Prius upgrade kind of car. Don't forget that the Prius, though, has turned out to be the most dependable car sold.

I've always wanted a Prius, and haven't ever bought one. The thing is a tin can, noise wise. But you are right about reliability, so once I came real close to the lexus Ct200H, Prius drivetrain with a Lexus interior, and a little quieter. Couldn't do it though, just wasn't something I wanted to road trip in. Whereas the Camry hybrid was a great road tripper, but the Ford is better because of all the changes that allow it to be an EV as well. More efficient too, and I expect it to get better as the motor breaks in, the temps come down, and I drive it more back east where I'm not always running 80mph.


Quote from: Eddie
Not the most dependable eV. the most dependable car, period. the one I gave my daughter is nearing 200k with not a single repair.

My Toyota's have all held up pretty well. Never driven a Ford into the 6 figure mileage range yet, but this one has potential.
Sometimes one creates a dynamic impression by saying something, and sometimes one creates as significant an impression by remaining silent.
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Offline agelbert

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Re: Ford Fusion Energi review
« Reply #9 on: August 29, 2015, 04:50:26 PM »
Well done, MKing.  :icon_sunny:

I am relieved of the thought that you were going to "take advantage of low gasoline prices"  by buying a hummer.  ;D
Leges         Sine    Moribus      Vanae   
Faith,
if it has not works, is dead, being alone.

Offline MKing

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Re: Ford Fusion Energi review
« Reply #10 on: August 29, 2015, 05:31:27 PM »
Well done, MKing.  :icon_sunny:

I am relieved of the thought that you were going to "take advantage of low gasoline prices"  by buying a hummer.  ;D

I've already owned one. It was okay. 15 mpg around town, got as good as 19mpg on the highway. Used it for one family christmas trip. It was a bit tight for 4 people, the dog, and presents and stuff.
Sometimes one creates a dynamic impression by saying something, and sometimes one creates as significant an impression by remaining silent.
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Offline agelbert

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Re: Ford Fusion Energi review
« Reply #11 on: August 30, 2015, 01:47:36 PM »
Well done, MKing.  :icon_sunny:

I am relieved of the thought that you were going to "take advantage of low gasoline prices"  by buying a hummer.  ;D

I've already owned one. It was okay. 15 mpg around town, got as good as 19mpg on the highway. Used it for one family christmas trip. It was a bit tight for 4 people, the dog, and presents and stuff.

I had a brief job parking cars at the Park and Travel long term airport parking when I first moved my retired ass to Vermont. Having spent most of my working life inside a reinforced concrete windowless building (Enroute Air Traffic Control Center), I figured this was a chance to be outdoors 24/7 and get paid for it!

I confess to the gas guzzling pleasure of driving cars too (at least in 1996!). I got to drive Mercedes diesels, a hot Porsche and all kinds of vehicles I would have otherwise not driven because they are high price tag items. We even had that EV that GM destroyed on behalf of the fossil fuel industry parked there once. I didn't get a chance to park that one, though.

I got to drive a Hummer once. I was surprised that it had that that HUGE separation between the driver and the passenger in the front. I did not find the hummer to be anything but a rather clunky riding truck suitable for midgets with Napoleon complexes. How tall are you, MKing? (just kidding!  ;D)

Back in 1981, when you made your discoveries about how to deal with the status quo, I made a few discoveries of my own. I had a Ford F-150 super cab pickup that got about the same mileage as that hummer you had. :( I was working at Syracuse Tower (not where I could see outside - I was in automation at the time).  I had owned that pick up since 1977 and I was not a happy camper about the mileage, given the price shock in 1979. I would  ride a bike with a tiny roller drive motor on it to work during the summer (freezing my arse off at night because it used to go down to 45 in summertime Syracuse, New York back then. Even at 15 mph, 45 degrees is no fun at all for an 8 mile ride).

Of course in winter ( any part of the year that was not summer in Syracuse - only Buffalo gets more snow in the lower 48 USA than they do!), my fondly labeled "Arab buster" ;D ( I was a Republican back then!) was out of the question.

Just before the strike, Jeff Hall, the PATCO union rep, became all friendly with me even though previously he (along with most people there) had no use for me whatsoever because of my "low class" Hispanic heritage. I smelled a rat but did not say so. I simply told Mr. Hall that I had signed a contract when I hired on specifically pledging not to strike.

The strike came in August. The telephoned threats came right after that. At work, I went back to working airplanes instead of the computers that helped work airplanes. We worked 50 to 60 hours a week.

The union folks decided the spic needed a lesson. My F-150 crapped out. Courtesy Ford charged me about $1100 for a major overhaul. I specifically told the mechanic to give me an oil sample BEFORE the overhaul.

He "forgot". All I got from him was the scored cylinder sleeves. I took those to my insurance agent (vehicle vandalism repair costs were part of my homeowners policy).  He said, I'm sorry sir, company policy does not allow payment for damages if no oil sample is submitted and we get proof from a lab of adulteration. But thank you for insuring with Allstate. 

I'm sure the "bad memory" of the mechanic at courtesy Ford had nothing whatsoever to do with the one thousand plus people march at the Syracuse airport terminal building SUPPORTING THE STRIKERS (that included a lot of employees from Courtesy ford...).

So we both learned a thing or two in 1981.

I'm sure my experience does not surprise you, considering the steps you take to avoid getting the short end of the stick, so to speak.

I bring them to your attention, not so you will say, "No shit Sherlock, where'd you get the first clue?", but as proof that some people, quixotic though their behavior may appear, refuse to go with the "fuck your buddy to stay ahead of the game" Social Darwinist program.

Of course, folks like me often end up living in manufactured homes and driving 20 year old gas guzzlers. I simply do not consider the outward accoutrements of  materialism a true measure of success.

Lucid said,
Quote
I think it's healthy to marinate on your mortality from time to time.  It helps keep things in perspective.  I read an article a while back that was written by a hospice nurse.  She said the number one thing that people regret on their death bed is that they didn't live life how they wanted to...they lived it how society wanted them to.  They wished that they had done more of the things that they wanted to do. 

I think there is a lot of wisdom there.  We should all live as if we will die tomorrow, and we should live that way everyday.

http://www.doomsteaddiner.net/forum/index.php/topic,559.msg84109/topicseen.html

I agree. and because I live my life, particularly since 1981, as if I might die tomorrow (or today), I have lived my life the way I think is the best way to live it, regardless of what society wants or expects from me.

When I go to my grave, I will have some regrets, but they are all from my behavior prior to my 1978-1981 epiphany.

You may say, as any materially successful chap might say to my "sermon" about the joys of principled poverty  ;D, that I'm just rationalizing the shaft job I have gotten from society because I didn't have the intestinal fortitude to overcome life's " normal Social Darwinian challenges", as the materially successful chap DID and DOES. :evil4:

But I might counter that it is the materially successful chap that is doing the rationalizing (see what Lucid said.  8)).
« Last Edit: August 30, 2015, 02:07:01 PM by agelbert »
Leges         Sine    Moribus      Vanae   
Faith,
if it has not works, is dead, being alone.

Offline MKing

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Re: Ford Fusion Energi review
« Reply #12 on: August 30, 2015, 03:53:45 PM »
I bring them to your attention, not so you will say, "No shit Sherlock, where'd you get the first clue?", but as proof that some people, quixotic though their behavior may appear, refuse to go with the "fuck your buddy to stay ahead of the game" Social Darwinist program.

Anthony, your recitation and research on renewables and their superiority to fossil fuels for the good of the planet are legion. But when dear Sir are you going to put your money where you mouth is and PARTICIPATE with those of us who are already well into the next generation transportation revolution?

Quote from: agelbert
Of course, folks like me often end up living in manufactured homes and driving 20 year old gas guzzlers. I simply do not consider the outward accoutrements of  materialism a true measure of success.

Ditching the gas guzzler for the hardware necessary to help save the planet is a moral issue, it doesn't have anything to do with preening within our consumerist society.

Quote from: agelbert
Lucid said, I think it's healthy to marinate on your mortality from time to time.  It helps keep things in perspective.  I read an article a while back that was written by a hospice nurse.  She said the number one thing that people regret on their death bed is that they didn't live life how they wanted to...they lived it how society wanted them to.  They wished that they had done more of the things that they wanted to do. 

I can believe it. Do you mention this because you feel you might feel guilty about that gas guzzler, and not joining those of us trying to help the planet? There is still time!!

Quote from: agelbert
You may say, as any materially successful chap might say to my "sermon" about the joys of principled poverty  ;D, that I'm just rationalizing the shaft job I have gotten from society because I didn't have the intestinal fortitude to overcome life's " normal Social Darwinian challenges", as the materially successful chap DID and DOES. :evil4:

But I might counter that it is the materially successful chap that is doing the rationalizing (see what Lucid said.  8)).

And how about the morality of living better for the greater good of the planet Anthony? How does that factor into your joys of principled poverty?
Sometimes one creates a dynamic impression by saying something, and sometimes one creates as significant an impression by remaining silent.
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Offline jdwheeler42

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Re: Ford Fusion Energi review
« Reply #13 on: August 31, 2015, 05:51:24 PM »
Anthony, your recitation and research on renewables and their superiority to fossil fuels for the good of the planet are legion. But when dear Sir are you going to put your money where you mouth is and PARTICIPATE with those of us who are already well into the next generation transportation revolution?
When the OpEx savings justify the CapEx.

(Of course, I'm speaking for myself, not Anthony.)
Making pigs fly is easy... that is, of course, after you have built the catapult....

Offline MKing

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Re: Ford Fusion Energi review
« Reply #14 on: August 31, 2015, 08:28:46 PM »
Anthony, your recitation and research on renewables and their superiority to fossil fuels for the good of the planet are legion. But when dear Sir are you going to put your money where you mouth is and PARTICIPATE with those of us who are already well into the next generation transportation revolution?
When the OpEx savings justify the CapEx.

(Of course, I'm speaking for myself, not Anthony.)

How dare you think economically in a world dying from all the CO2 being randomly emitted from ICE powered cages!!

Anthony has PROVEN that renewables are superior!! Therefore, things powered by renewables must be superior, therefore your explanation goes against his PROOF!!!

What value to the external benefits of not emitting CO2 did you include in your calculation, and where? $1? $1,000,000?
Sometimes one creates a dynamic impression by saying something, and sometimes one creates as significant an impression by remaining silent.
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