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Old June 15th, 2006, 08:41 AM   #1
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the ultimate indy movie car?

Hold on, this will get around to lighting....

So I was taking a break from my usual time waster of shopping for an HDV cam and thinking about replacing my minivan. The minivan is great for carrying all the gear to a shoot. But I would really like a hydrid. Are there any hybrid vans currently on the US market? no.

But in searching for one I came across a brief article on the Toyota Sienna Hybrid minivan thay they say is coming to the US market in 2007 here:

Now the thing that really caught my eye was the statement that it provides 1,500 watts of auxiliary AC power! (It mentioned at 100 volts, I hope that means 115 in the US).

SO a 7 passenger vehicle (or 2 passengers and a boat load of camera/grip gear) that is very high mileage and can power a set of Arris out of the box. Does it get any better than that? Did I mention it does 0-60 in 8 seconds?

Sounds like just the ticket.
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Old June 15th, 2006, 01:26 PM   #2
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Funny how the mind works. I thought you were looking for a car to wreck. I was going to suggest my 11 year old Buick.
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Old June 15th, 2006, 05:33 PM   #3
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Your choices are limited in Indy Car selection if you intend to race. The Indy Racing League has only Honda as the engine supplier and recent rule-changes that brought the displacement down to 3.0 liters give you only one choice. You can't buy used and conform to the rules unless a team is willing to give up one of their current 2006 models. Ask Danica Patrick if she is fed up with hers...

You can add a power inverter to any vehicle, but it requires a heavy-duty alternator (at least 150Amp) to deal with 1,500Watts. carries 200Amp models for my truck that cost $225, so it is not that big a deal to upgrade a current vehicle to put out serious power. An inverter is probably similar in price although I saw a 1,500W model at Costco once for $85.

I'm all for fuel mileage combined with functionality. I really wish there were diesel hybrids as they would be even more efficient. A diesel could also be more precisely tuned in a hybrid to reduce it's emissions since it would not need to operate in a stressed acceleration from zero mph that tends to cause smoke and such. I've seen a diesel engine that claims better than %50 thermal efficiency compared to a gas engine's ~%25 (lack of) efficiency. Of course, I would put bio-diesel in as often as possible. Sigh, unfortunately I can't afford any kind of new vehicle at this time so I am stuck with an inefficient pickup.
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Old June 20th, 2006, 04:29 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Marcus Marchesseault vehicle at this time so I am stuck with an inefficient pickup.
Yikes. I'm betting that's really painful on the wallet in Hawaii these days.
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Old June 20th, 2006, 07:28 PM   #5
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Actually, for a pickup it is not so bad. It is a 4-cylinder and I get 22mpg. One advantage of living on a medium-sized island is that I never need to drive more than 40 miles out and 40 miles back. Usually, I do 15-mile round trips. I mostly call it an inefficient pickup because most gasoline engines are quite wasteful.

This thread is a bit off-topic for a lighting forum, but I will try to show the relevance:

A typical hybrid vehicle that gets most of it's direct propulsion from the electric motor would need to supply loads of 75,000 Watts. It would probably need to sustain output of of 25,000 Watts. What this makes cars into is large, self-propelled electric generators. All that energy would not necessarily be easy to convert to 120VAC, but it is there and a 5 pound inverter could probably enable a few thousand watts for a reasonable price. As it is, most vehicles can only provide a surplus of 500-750 Watts.

Imagine the increase in convenience and in our country's security if the roads were filled with electric generation stations. Power outtages would not have a major impact on our society. The need for power on the set would be a matter of connecting the stingers to the production vehicles. If you are on location and need to run tools, no problem. And if you run out of fuel, filter the grease from the fryer on the craft services truck! :)

To solve my own transportation needs and to cool my boiling hatred of sending money to countries that hate us, I am trying to get myself set up with an electric bicycle. If I am right, I will be able to sustain 25mph in the convenient bike lanes between my neighborhood and town. Traffic around here rarely exceeds the pace of a moped, so I don't see much downside to reducing the weight of my primary vehicle by 3,000 pounds. If my calculations are correct, I may then be able to get up to 75% of my transportation energy from solar and human power while barely working up a sweat. (My gut tells me I should work up a sweat more often.)
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