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Thursday, January 15, 2004

Yee Haw! Into the abyss...
Big engines are back, according to auto-industry-promoter-disguised-as-Detroit-Free-Press-journalist Mark Phelan:

Fueled by inexpensive gasoline, surging truck sales and improving energy efficiency, U.S. buyers' demand for V8s has risen every year since 1994, according to Ward's data.

Who can blame them? Gasoline prices vary, but don't seem to affect V8 sales, and fuel economy is rising.
GM and DaimlerChrysler could build as many as 3 million vehicles with these V8s annually. That means displacement on demand could reduce U.S. fuel consumption far more than selling a few thousand chic hyper-efficient gasoline-electric hybrids would.

You might ask, why not just build more four-cylinder engines in the first place? They cost less, and burn less fuel.

The answer is that you can't give a four-cylinder away in a big pickup, SUV or large car. That's why V8 demand has grown more than 50 percent since bottoming out at 19.2 percent in 1993.

"We expect V8 sales to continue to grow," Purcell said. "The customer likes them. You can do a lot of things with that much power under the hood."

Inexpensive gasoline? What does this moron think the $166 billion and 500 soldiers' lives (and counting on both) on the Iraq invasion was for? Democracy? Bridge for sale, Mark.

It's getting really hard to keep liking this country.