Tuesday, July 11, 2006

The Wrong Road?

Much buzz has been made of the Daimler "SmartCar", supposedly the solution to our MPG woes. But how smart is it? Its estimated highway mileage is 55 MPG, while in city driving is 45 MPG. But look of the size of this thing: other than transporting two human beings from A to B, this car is useless. And the A and B had better be on roads that are only populated by only cars of SmartCar size, because it's going to lose against a normal-sized car in an accident It seems that the MPG premium to gain from such a specialized vehicle should be huge, at least 100 MPG. And cheaper: the 2-seat version is over $25K. My first car - a 1980 Datsun 310 GX (N10 Pulsar) - got at least 30 MPG in city driving, and 40+ on the highway. It could carry five people, albeit it was a snug fit. I think it cost a lot less than $25K.