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^They're not choosing them, they're being sold them. Almost nobody needs that crap. But since Americans' #1 skill is rationalizing things and creating justifications it's easy for the marketing people and sales staff to get people (non-enthusiasts even!) to sign for an extra $5-50K.

Edited by GCrites80s

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19 hours ago, GCrites80s said:

This is in contrast to when I was racing R/C in the '90s and early 2000s with Ni-Cd and NIMH batteries which always wanted a "full" discharge each cycle (to excatly 6.0v on a 7.2v pack, but still NO lower) while making the most power with a fast charge (5 amps+) but having a shorter life when charged at more than 4 amps. Some people who were really reckless would charge directly off of a full-size car battery (no charger) to nuke their batteries for a big main event. This was dangerous and would kill the batteries in a few cycles but gave another 25 watts or so. Personally, I wanted same amount of horsepower in the mains that I had in practice and the qualifying races so that I didn't blow corners or crash off of jumps. I don't think the top pros wanted a bunch of new horsepower out of nowhere either.

 

A kid I was friends with down the street, and this other kid from the next neighborhood had those $130~ RC cars with the NiCad batteries.  I seem to recall that there were two tiers of battery power, but that might be wrong (one that started with a 7 and another with 9?).  I only got to drive one of them 2-3 times.  They were unbelievably fast but the batteries often died in under five minutes.  It was inconceivable that I would ever get a toy that nice, but I remember spending a lot of time looking at the RC car ads in the back of magazines.  

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^Most NiCd R/C cars were 7.2v (six-cell) but the Tyco Turbo Hoppers were 9.6v (eight cell). Unfortunately those 9.6v packs were filled with AA-size batteries so you didn't get any more run time than the 7.2v packs which were filled with sub-C batteries. I was having an OK time with the toy-grade cars until a track opened in an old Nissan dealership at East Main St. and I-270 in 1991. The Tyco, Nikko, Radio Shack and Sears cars could barely make it around the track at all from being too light, bouncing all around and not having limited-slip differentials. For only about $30 more you could get a Kyosho or Tamiya that could easily navigate the track and had replaceable parts. And the battery charged in only 15 minutes rather than 4-8 hours!

 

Then I promptly set about accidentally double-charging the battery on the bedroom floor of a buddy's brand new trailer home, melting the carpet in the process. 

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https://www.journals.uchicago.edu/doi/abs/10.1086/688218?journalCode=jacr&

 

The Functional Alibi

Anat Keinan, Ran Kivetz, and Oded Netzer

Sept 07, 2016

 

Abstract

Spending money on hedonic luxuries often seems wasteful, irrational, and even immoral. We propose that adding a small utilitarian feature to a luxury product can serve as a functional alibi, justifying the indulgent purchase and reducing indulgence guilt. We demonstrate that consumers tend to inflate the value, and usage frequency, of utilitarian features when they are attached to hedonic luxuries. Using a mixed-method approach, combining archival data (an analysis of over 1,000 online reviews of handbags) with studies conducted in the field and laboratory, we establish the functional alibi effect and show that it is mediated by guilt and more likely to occur when the luxury purchase is perceived as frivolous and expensive, and when the purchase is for oneself rather than a gift. We explore the effect of adding a functional alibi in a variety of marketing contexts, and we examine various consumer populations representing diverse demographics.

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There's a totally ridiculous amount of semis on the road now. It's insane. Also big strides in auto emissions during the 2000s are being erased due to SUVs and crossovers as the ICE engine emissions reductions slow. The crossover engine has to be 500cc larger to offset the vehicle's size and weight relative to the equivalent sedan model. 

Edited by GCrites80s

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FUDsters having a rough morning...

 

 


"It's just fate, as usual, keeping its bargain and screwing us in the fine print..." - John Crichton

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Tesla posted a small Q3 profit based on surging overseas sales, however U.S. sales have declines sharply since 2018:

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-tesla-results-idUSKBN1X81NM

 

Seems like most Americans who wanted a Tesla already have one.  A worldwide recession in 2020 could accelerate the domestic trend and tip things in that direction overseas.  

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17 hours ago, jmecklenborg said:

Tesla posted a small Q3 profit based on surging overseas sales, however U.S. sales have declines sharply since 2018:

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-tesla-results-idUSKBN1X81NM

 

Seems like most Americans who wanted a Tesla already have one.  A worldwide recession in 2020 could accelerate the domestic trend and tip things in that direction overseas.  

 

Declining revenue was because of their product mix - they are intentionally moving away from the higher-priced Models S and X.  They leaned more into the Model 3 obviously, which comes at a lower price.

 

Also, do you care to tell us how all automakers did in the U.S. in Q3?  Hint: similar results as Tesla.

Edited by DarkandStormy
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Very Stable Genius

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20 minutes ago, DarkandStormy said:

 

Declining revenue was because of their product mix - they are intentionally moving away from the higher-prices Model S and X.  They leaned more into the Model 3 obviously, which comes at a lower price.

 

Also, do you care to tell us how all automakers did in the U.S. in Q3?  Hint: similar results as Tesla.

 

They're not in the same league.   The Big 3 are gigantic companies, upwards of 10x bigger than Tesla. 

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8 minutes ago, jmecklenborg said:

They're not in the same league.   The Big 3 are gigantic companies, upwards of 10x bigger than Tesla. 

 

Auto sales down everywhere = fine for the Big 3, bad for Tesla.  Weird why you're holding one company to a different standard than others.  And that you still didn't address Tesla's changing of their product mix.

 

(Not that I don't disagree with U.S. sales declining being concerning, but context matters.)


Very Stable Genius

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15 hours ago, jmecklenborg said:

Tesla posted a small Q3 profit based on surging overseas sales, however U.S. sales have declines sharply since 2018:

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-tesla-results-idUSKBN1X81NM

 

Seems like most Americans who wanted a Tesla already have one.  A worldwide recession in 2020 could accelerate the domestic trend and tip things in that direction overseas.  

 

Can't wait to see your level of triggeredness once the Y is America's best selling SUV. 

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Speaking of triggered, I visited my Musk-obsessed brother last month in LA.  When we walked past the purple line station construction site at Fairfax Ave., it was a Sunday, but I remarked that "you can hear the ventilation for the tunnel and maybe tunnel boring machine".  His brain matter boiled and dripped out of his ears.  He literally had no idea that not one but dozens of companies have been building tunnel boring machines for the past 50 years and Musk's Boring Company has yet to build a single one.  Such is the stranglehold that Musk has over so many of America's minds.  

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^You appear to be the Musk-obsessed one.


"It's just fate, as usual, keeping its bargain and screwing us in the fine print..." - John Crichton

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43 minutes ago, jmecklenborg said:

Speaking of triggered, I visited my Musk-obsessed brother last month in LA.  When we walked past the purple line station construction site at Fairfax Ave., it was a Sunday, but I remarked that "you can hear the ventilation for the tunnel and maybe tunnel boring machine".  His brain matter boiled and dripped out of his ears.  He literally had no idea that not one but dozens of companies have been building tunnel boring machines for the past 50 years and Musk's Boring Company has yet to build a single one.  Such is the stranglehold that Musk has over so many of America's minds.  

 

This anecdote tells us nothing about Tesla's revenue or about their prospects to become profitable.  It also has nothing to do with Electric Cars, this topic (Musk has his own topic, somewhere, I believe).


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The more cars they sell the less money they make. The fewer cars they make the less they lose. That's the difference between them and other automakers in Q3.

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5 hours ago, jmecklenborg said:

Speaking of triggered, I visited my Musk-obsessed brother last month in LA.  When we walked past the purple line station construction site at Fairfax Ave., it was a Sunday, but I remarked that "you can hear the ventilation for the tunnel and maybe tunnel boring machine".  His brain matter boiled and dripped out of his ears.  He literally had no idea that not one but dozens of companies have been building tunnel boring machines for the past 50 years and Musk's Boring Company has yet to build a single one.  Such is the stranglehold that Musk has over so many of America's minds.  

triggered GIF

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On 10/15/2019 at 5:25 PM, taestell said:

 

The fact that higher end Teslas are a status symbol right now isn't really a bad thing. If people are buying fancy electric cars instead of fancy ICE cars, that's still a win.

 

The bigger issue is America's love affair with huge vehicles. The gains that we are making in the efficiency of ICE vehicles are being cancelled out by the fact that more people are choosing SUVs and big trucks instead of cars. Until we can do something to lure people out of big ICE vehicles, electric cars aren't going to have any meaningful impact on amount of oil that is burned or the amount of pollution belched out into America's cities.

 

Well, the most plausible replacement for large ICE vehicles is large electric vehicles.  Tesla is working on a compact SUV and a pickup is strongly rumored to be the next frontier.  And of course Tesla already has at least some pre-orders for its semi truck, and Chinese manufacturers have been going full throttle (no pun intended) developing electric buses.

 

But, for example, my wife and I are probably about to purchase an ICE minivan simply because no one yet makes an electric minivan.  Chrysler makes a hybrid Pacifica, but I don't want a hybrid and I don't want a Chrysler.

 

7 hours ago, Clefan98 said:

 

Can't wait to see your level of triggeredness once the Y is America's best selling SUV. 

7 hours ago, GCrites80s said:

So that is inevitable?

 

No, but it's definitely doable.  The SUV segment is heavily fragmented, so getting to the top spot isn't as much of a lift as you might think if you have in mind the total size of the SUV segment.  The best-selling SUV in 2018 was the Toyota RAV4 at about 408k:

 

https://www.businessinsider.com/best-selling-suvs-in-america-2018-3#5-chevrolet-equinox-290458-199-8

 

Tesla won't do that next year or the year after when the Model Y is just coming into production, but I don't see any reason why that's not an achievable target in 3-5 years.

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3 hours ago, Clefan98 said:

 

I sure hope not. No one wants to see you or @jmecklenborg end up in a psych ward.

 

Do you follow automobiles? Have you been into cars for a long time? The reason I ask is that everyone who does those things has seen an enormous amount of automotive news over the years including futurism articles. The ones who have this background don't make outlandish predictions about what ANY car is going to do in the future, especially in a certain time frame. This is because historically automotive news (made by professional automotive journalists no less) that tries to predict the future has been very, very wrong. Like 90% wrong. If THE FUTURE was true, Mustangs would be front-wheel-drive and the Corvette would have gone mid-engine in 1983 rather than for 2020. That perspective also comes from being around racing where the people involved seldom, if ever, make any sort of bold prediction other than "I think this car will be strong today".

 

 

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12 hours ago, GCrites80s said:

Do you follow automobiles? Have you been into cars for a long time? The reason I ask is that everyone who does those things has seen an enormous amount of automotive news over the years including futurism articles. The ones who have this background don't make outlandish predictions about what ANY car is going to do in the future, especially in a certain time frame. This is because historically automotive news (made by professional automotive journalists no less) that tries to predict the future has been very, very wrong. Like 90% wrong. If THE FUTURE was true, Mustangs would be front-wheel-drive and the Corvette would have gone mid-engine in 1983 rather than for 2020. That perspective also comes from being around racing where the people involved seldom, if ever, make any sort of bold prediction other than "I think this car will be strong today".

 

All currently known oil reserves will be completely depleted within 50 years (or slightly less) at current projected usage rates.  This isn't a "EVs are vastly superior" type of argument.  It's a "EVs will be the only viable option for our kids to drive when they're parents because oil is literally running out" argument.

Edited by DarkandStormy

Very Stable Genius

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28 minutes ago, GCrites80s said:

Lithium isn't exactly bubbling up out of the ground either. That's why we're still in Afghanistan -- for the lithium reserves.

 

This is conspiracy-theory nonsense.  Afghanistan is landlocked and across the world.  We have much more accessible reserves much closer to home.  Honestly, if massive reserves were discovered in Afghanistan, most would probably ultimately end up getting used by China.

 

Yes, we're looking to help develop mineral resources in Afghanistan, as are Russia, China, and European countries: https://www.cnbc.com/2017/08/18/trumps-afghanistan-strategy-may-unlock-3-trillion-in-natural-resources.html.  That doesn't mean it's "why we're still in Afghanistan."

 

We have a decent amount of lithium in the western U.S., and South America also has significant deposits that are (a) closer, (b) easier to get on ships, and (c) less geopolitically unstable.  We are a long, long way from "Peak Lithium."


Even Forbes has been saying there's not really a profitable path for the U.S. in Afghanistan re: mineral resources: https://www.forbes.com/sites/timworstall/2017/07/27/dear-president-trump-afghanistans-minerals-arent-very-valuable-theyre-really-not/

 

For more coverage about both lithium sourcing and sourcing of other metals in EV batteries, Bloomberg seems to have done a pretty thorough article a couple of years ago: https://www.bloomberg.com/graphics/2017-lithium-battery-future/

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6 hours ago, GCrites80s said:

All sources of energy are subject to geopolitical issues. None of them will "save" us.

 

That's a cop-out.  Utah is not subject to the same geopolitical issues as Chile or Bolivia, which are not subject to the same geopolitical issues as Afghanistan.

 

And I don't even know what you're talking about with respecting "saving" us.  Saving us from what?

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Going back to the sorts of things we used to talk about on UO in 2008-2012 that we kind of absorbed and added to our brain files but haven't talked about directly much lately, the demand for energy used for transportation is going to have to go down in the as time goes on anyway as the population increases at least on a per-capita basis. Renewables can certainly help, but look at how much resistance there still is to their implementation. On this site, we are aware of what needs to be done to reduce that demand and for the most part UO users are interested in those things (good urbanism, transit). Changing propulsion methods can help some, but a car is still just a car no matter what it runs on... even hamsters. As electric cars move away from being a niche product, don't be surprised to continue to see enormous resistance from governments, certain big-business sectors, dictators, OPEC, the need for profitibility and even some things we haven't even thought of yet.

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13 hours ago, GCrites80s said:

Going back to the sorts of things we used to talk about on UO in 2008-2012 that we kind of absorbed and added to our brain files but haven't talked about directly much lately, the demand for energy used for transportation is going to have to go down in the as time goes on anyway as the population increases at least on a per-capita basis. Renewables can certainly help, but look at how much resistance there still is to their implementation. On this site, we are aware of what needs to be done to reduce that demand and for the most part UO users are interested in those things (good urbanism, transit). Changing propulsion methods can help some, but a car is still just a car no matter what it runs on... even hamsters. As electric cars move away from being a niche product, don't be surprised to continue to see enormous resistance from governments, certain big-business sectors, dictators, OPEC, the need for profitibility and even some things we haven't even thought of yet.

 

Quote

Thinking about the future of transportation from the United States can sometimes feel like thinking about swimwear in Svalbard: There is little to see here (and hasn’t been in some time). China has laid down the world’s largest high-speed rail network in just two decades, quashing its high-polluting domestic air business. Congestion pricing has been rolled out in London and Singapore, making the downtowns more pleasant and walkable. Cycling has become a crucial transportation mode in places as varied as Shenzhen and Strasbourg. In the U.S., by contrast, travel by plane, train, bus, and foot is undoubtedly less pleasant than it was 50 years ago.

https://slate.com/technology/2019/10/future-of-transportation-bus-bike-elevator.html

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On 10/30/2019 at 9:30 PM, GCrites80s said:

including futurism articles. The ones who have this background don't make outlandish predictions

 

Nobody predicted the electric blade scooter, but here it is. 

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https://www.cnet.com/roadshow/news/tesla-cybertruck-unveiled-elon-musk-electric-pickup-truck/

 

Tesla unveiled their latest automobile last night - the "Cybertruck."  The presentation didn't go too well, though, as Elon had Frans throw some metal balls at the windows to show how strong they are.  He broke both the front and back window.

 

As an observer, I'm not really sure who this is supposed to appeal to.  Tesla fans, who likely already have a Tesla car?  The space is going to be crowded in the next few years, with many manufacturers offering more traditional-looking trucks as BEVs.  Wall Street hates it, as the TSLA stock is down 5+% today.

Edited by DarkandStormy

Very Stable Genius

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Pickup trucks are 100% about Buzz the Overpaid Boomer. While I think the truck is kind of neat, my taste runs almost completely counter to Buzz's. Buzz likes trucks that look like the scary boiler in the basement of an old elementary school.

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1 minute ago, taestell said:

I don't get it. I can't see this "truck" appealing to truck people in any way.

 

I'm being told by Tesla/Musk fanboys that it's not supposed to appeal to truck people?

 

Also, when the lack of crumple zones is brought up, I'm told Musk is just very advanced and preparing for a "post crash society" due to autonomous vehicles.  I'm not sure if they're serious.


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