Dennis McLain's 1967 Oldsmobile 4-4-2
and 2012 Chevy Volt

Quite a contrast - my cadet car that **might** have gotten 15mpg going downhill with a tail wind, and my Volt. The Volt gets 80+ mpg, which is low because of a half dozen roundtrips between VA and Maine. Even better, my power company offers a 'time of use' plan, which means from 1AM to 6AM their kilowatt-hours go for $.05. A full charge takes roughly 11 kWh, so that's $.55 for a gallon equivalent. Average charge is good for 37 miles, and I average 37mpg on gasoline. Saving $1200 a year on gas. In other words, I can probably operate on what the Corvette guys spill when the fill up! It's a great driving car, and the electric drive is very quick from a dead start. Another bonus - total maintenance cost for the first 3 years is $45.00, to change the generator oil.

And yes, a lot of people ask why I bought one. I'm reading a book ("The Great Race", about how electric care will [eventually] rule the world), and saw this:

"For buying an electric vehicle does not appreciably reduce the negative externalities experienced by a single automobile purchaser or his family. It may give the driver some level of satisfaction, but an individual doesn't reap any personal climate dividend. Light-duty vehicles (cars, SUVs, and pickup trucks) account for around 10 percent of total greenhouse gas emissions. There are about 1 billion cars in the world today, so each consumer purchasing an EV {electric vehicle] can theoretically eliminate about one-tenth of a billionth part of global greenhouse gas emissions through their altruistic decisions - all while putting up with a shorter range and higher purchase price."

Actually, I am up to 4 tenths of a billionth - my son drives mine as much as I do and I have influenced two others to buy EV's. Ok, I admit I do have Tesla envy, but there a lot of better things to do with $100K than buy more car than I need.

Back to the 4-4-2. With the $3000 loan cap we had, I couldn't afford 1) power steering, 2) power brakes, 3) automatic transmission, or 4) air conditioning. Needless to say, Sandy couldn't/wouldn't drive it, and it turned into a Chevy Vega before I left for Viet Nam. Ouch! But, it was fun for some 68K miles, and in that era, it was probably close to dying anyway (at least that's what I keep telling myself).

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