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Intelligent Speed Assistance

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Intelligent Speed Assistance

Old 12-17-23, 12:31 AM
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Originally Posted by 50PlusCycling
When I moved to Japan some years ago, I was surprised at the variety of vehicles on the road. Go-carts (like the kind they used to race at Malibu Grand Prix), new custom roadster cars without bumpers, small motorcycles converted into 3-wheelers, and stuff like that. It turns out that in Japan, pretty much anything which has wheels and an engine can be licensed to drive on the roads. Not to mention the 660cc Kei Cars and trucks which are little more than beer cans with wheels.

Yet, Japan’s roads are reasonably safe. Japan understands something which America simply can’t grasp, that it is impossible to build a safe car. A vehicle is only as safe as the person who operates it. Japan does not focus on the car manufacturers making safer cars, Japan focuses on making safer drivers. Getting a drivers license in Japan is hard, and expensive. I had to take a an extremely long and difficult written test, with perhaps half the questions pertaining to safety, I had to take a separate driver safety course and get a CPR certification. I had to spend numerous hours behind the wheel with an instructor, and then take a very challenging driving test with an angry, gaijin-hating police officer. Getting a car license in Japan is harder than getting a class A license in America (and I should know, as I had a class A). The total cost was around $3000.

Japan’s laws are tough, according to the law there is no such thing as an “accident.” All collisions are the result of negligence, all collisions resulting in injury are considered criminal negligence. Any collision which results in a fatality results in a mandatory prison sentence for the negligent driver. Japan absolutely does not tolerate unlicensed/uninsured drivers, such people are not ticketed, they are jailed.

The result is that Japan’s traffic homicide rate is 2.7 per 100,000 people, while America’s rate is 13 per 100.000.
Japan and US are not comparable in a great many other ways too.

Japan’s population is quite homogeneous, all 125 million or so, they have have less than 3 million non-Japanese.
Traditionally, they are very law-abiding people and very compliant. Perhaps things might be changing in Japan now. I recall one incident about an employee in my group from Japan. His reason to go back to Japan was that US environment is bad for his family, his wife sometimes talks back to him so it’s time to go home. Before leaving, he invited my wife and I for dinner and his wife would not sit down to eat with us. In fact, we were surprised to see (like in old movies), she would walk backwards from the table after serving various dished… and this was the spoiled lady by American culture!

Unlike Japan, US population is most diverse and some people truly do not share the same values. It will not be easy to convince them all to do things, that they equate to their freedom, in a uniform way. You may recall that there are areas here where DOT has no mandatory requirement to wear a helmet while using a motorcycle. You combine this diversity of sensibilities with the newly determined necessity of reducing the number and budget of police force (that would be needed to enforce laws), chances are very slim that the wishful thinking of some would ever materialize.
And the above points are relevant to only the legal citizens of this country. Quickly increasing illegal aliens (not sure what the kosher term is these days, please fill in the correct descriptor) do drive, without license/training, cause accidents and not held accountable for anything.

[About 40 years ago someone rear ended my car on a highway in TX in a traffic jam. The pickup driver entered the highway increasing his speed, as one normally does, without paying any attention that the traffic in the main lanes wasn’t moving. I happened to be the one in his way, and the impact dragged my car into the car in front me. The guy from truck simply exited and ran away, leaving his truck - never to be found! Well, the police probably never looked for him. They told me that he was probably an illegal Mexican, they see it all the time in stolen vehicles, obviously no insurance or registration. I should get my insurance to pay for damages.]

It’s a little more complicated here.
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Old 12-17-23, 12:49 AM
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I must admit I got impatient towards the end of new posts and started skimming, but I'm hanged if I saw the post that acknowledged that speed on its own is rarely what is deadly. Also, the unrestrained virtue signalling in the completely groupthinked opinion that forcing all motor vehicles (and e-bikes) to obey speed limits would bring about utopia. Wrong. A car going six miles per hour can kill you. For every accident that took place because some idiot was speeding, several happened where the driver was well below the speed limit, but was careless. Made some kind of blunder behind the wheel and someone(s) died as a result.

When I moved to the West Coast from NYC I rented a 16' moving truck from Penske. I hadn't driven in five years. With scant instruction I was given the keys to 15,000lbs of GVWR and encouraged to take it anywhere I wanted for the next 9 days! The one restriction: the vehicle was speed limited to 75mph. I don't know how they managed it, but no matter what amount of gas pedal, downslope, or following wind, that truck did not ever exceed 75mph. Nor did it need to. 75mph is damn fast for something that big, and there was NOTHING stopping me from doing 75mph down a 15mph (marked) residential street!! Long before the means to actively control vehicle speeds and link them to posted maximums for various kinds of roads, our cars will be fully automatous and will do it for themselves. That is a better way of doing it, because the self-driving car will not just obey the speed limit, which is an absurdly low bar for excellence. The self driving car will have no negative emotions clouding it's judgement if forced to stop due to another operator or pedestrians stupidity or poor judgement. This is something distracted or impaired drivers don't always do.

Of course, there have been and will be AV failures, and these are overhyped by those with a vested interest in the status quo. The worst AV, however, is not worse than the worst human driver. What happens when they get good? Do you think any insurance company is going to let a human get near their insured ever again? This 'intelligent speed assistance' is just a place holder until human driver obsolescence. It's got no real teeth, and that's ok, I suppose.
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Old 12-17-23, 12:51 AM
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Originally Posted by Bald Paul
Exactly. It's going to be hard justifying laying out $70K or so for a Hellcat, Shelby, or SS - let alone the supercars - just so you can drive alongside Soccer Mom in her minivan. Money may allow you to buy something outrageously fast, but it doesn't get you the common sense or driving skill to handle it responsibly. If you don't believe me, just look at the number of YT videos of idiots putting innocent people's lives in danger while "roll racing" on the highways.
If they do somehow manage to restrict speed in cars, it's my hope that these same morons will turn to crotch-rockets (sport bikes). There's a much better chance of them removing themselves from the gene pool.
You must check out the prices of some of the newer soccer mom’s minivans, they aren’t as cheap as you might think. A new Toyota Sienna is pushing around 50k.

And many man children already use crotch-rockets. To our (my generation’s) dismay, one of my friend’s sons owns 5 of them, 2 BMW, 2 Ducati, 1 Harley. He also has 3 cars sports and thankfully, pushes all of them only on tracks - or so he tells us. He is still in one piece.

Even if they put an electronic limiter, changing these things is easily done by software updates. My friend’s son is already getting 30 or 40 horsepower more than native software on M5 permits.
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Old 12-17-23, 01:03 AM
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Originally Posted by Leisesturm
I must admit I got impatient towards the end of new posts and started skimming, but I'm hanged if I saw the post that acknowledged that speed on its own is rarely what is deadly. Also, the unrestrained virtue signalling in the completely groupthinked opinion that forcing all motor vehicles (and e-bikes) to obey speed limits would bring about utopia. Wrong. A car going six miles per hour can kill you. For every accident that took place because some idiot was speeding, several happened where the driver was well below the speed limit, but was careless. Made some kind of blunder behind the wheel and someone(s) died as a result.

When I moved to the West Coast from NYC I rented a 16' moving truck from Penske. I hadn't driven in five years. With scant instruction I was given the keys to 15,000lbs of GVWR and encouraged to take it anywhere I wanted for the next 9 days! The one restriction: the vehicle was speed limited to 75mph. I don't know how they managed it, but no matter what amount of gas pedal, downslope, or following wind, that truck did not ever exceed 75mph. Nor did it need to. 75mph is damn fast for something that big, and there was NOTHING stopping me from doing 75mph down a 15mph (marked) residential street!! Long before the means to actively control vehicle speeds and link them to posted maximums for various kinds of roads, our cars will be fully automatous and will do it for themselves. That is a better way of doing it, because the self-driving car will not just obey the speed limit, which is an absurdly low bar for excellence. The self driving car will have no negative emotions clouding it's judgement if forced to stop due to another operator or pedestrians stupidity or poor judgement. This is something distracted or impaired drivers don't always do.

Of course, there have been and will be AV failures, and these are overhyped by those with a vested interest in the status quo. The worst AV, however, is not worse than the worst human driver. What happens when they get good? Do you think any insurance company is going to let a human get near their insured ever again? This 'intelligent speed assistance' is just a place holder until human driver obsolescence. It's got no real teeth, and that's ok, I suppose.
Tesla seems to be making a headway in that direction.
But I do enjoy long distance driving and if it comes to be driven by self-driving cars, I’d opt for fast trains if made available.
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Old 12-17-23, 02:05 AM
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Originally Posted by Rolexdev
Absolutely, determining accurate speed limits involves complex considerations. Variables like school bus stops or open country areas with higher limits add layers of complexity. Implementation requires careful planning and thorough consideration of diverse scenarios.
It isn't complicated at all. Speed limits are common sense. ALL interstate highways are designed so that an 85th percentile driver is comfortable at 80mph! THAT is what the speed limit on Interstates should be. Everywhere in the U.S. Is it? In my state OR it's 55mph (still!). In WA just to the north, its 70mph. Over in MT, I believe its 90mph. Most residential areas and school zones are 20mph. A number of 15mph residentials are popping up. 30/35 for arterials. 45 for two lane blacktop. And so on. It isn't rocket science. Most people know how fast to drive to be safe for a given lane width, curvyness, road surface, etc. A good rule of thumb is to set the speed limit 20mph slower than an 85th percentile driver is comfortable and have your LEO ready to pick off out of staters whenever the revenue people say to go get 'em. Who doesn't know to stop behind a school bus with it's lights flashing? There's no app for that. If it was as simple as staying under the speed limit at all times there wouldn't be so much mayhem on our roads. Most people DO, in fact, stay under the speed limit. And? Nothing. That simply isn't what the problem is.
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Old 12-17-23, 09:54 AM
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Originally Posted by Leisesturm
I must admit I got impatient towards the end of new posts and started skimming, but I'm hanged if I saw the post that acknowledged that speed on its own is rarely what is deadly. Also, the unrestrained virtue signalling in the completely groupthinked opinion that forcing all motor vehicles (and e-bikes) to obey speed limits would bring about utopia. Wrong. A car going six miles per hour can kill you. For every accident that took place because some idiot was speeding, several happened where the driver was well below the speed limit, but was careless. Made some kind of blunder behind the wheel and someone(s) died as a result.
The first words in the OP quote
More than 40,000 people died in vehicle crashes in the U.S. last year, and speeding is a major reason why. Speed-related crashes accounted for roughly 12,000 deaths in 2021, the last year for which there are complete statistics, and hundreds of thousands of injuries.
Obviously speed control would not eliminate all 12000 of those deaths, and eliminating less than 12000/40000=30% of vehicle deaths would not be utopia
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Old 12-17-23, 10:52 AM
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Originally Posted by Leisesturm
It isn't complicated at all. Speed limits are common sense. ALL interstate highways are designed so that an 85th percentile driver is comfortable at 80mph! THAT is what the speed limit on Interstates should be. Everywhere in the U.S. Is it? In my state OR it's 55mph (still!). In WA just to the north, its 70mph. Over in MT, I believe its 90mph. Most residential areas and school zones are 20mph. A number of 15mph residentials are popping up. 30/35 for arterials. 45 for two lane blacktop. And so on. It isn't rocket science. Most people know how fast to drive to be safe for a given lane width, curvyness, road surface, etc. A good rule of thumb is to set the speed limit 20mph slower than an 85th percentile driver is comfortable and have your LEO ready to pick off out of staters whenever the revenue people say to go get 'em. Who doesn't know to stop behind a school bus with it's lights flashing? There's no app for that. If it was as simple as staying under the speed limit at all times there wouldn't be so much mayhem on our roads. Most people DO, in fact, stay under the speed limit. And? Nothing. That simply isn't what the problem is.
I remember the days when Montana had no speed limit - the guideline was prudent and safe.
Sure enjoyed driving there and exceeding 130MPH.
Occasionally when we encountered a police on a desolate cross road, they will simply wave and we wave back without slowing down from whatever speed we were going, usually greater than 90MPH. Good old days…
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Old 12-17-23, 03:31 PM
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Originally Posted by Leisesturm
ALL interstate highways are designed so that an 85th percentile driver is comfortable at 80mph! THAT is what the speed limit on Interstates should be. Everywhere in the U.S. Is it? In my state OR it's 55mph (still!). In WA just to the north, its 70mph. Over in MT, I believe its 90mph.
You sure about that? The Oregon Department of Transportation might disagree.
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Old 12-17-23, 06:15 PM
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Originally Posted by Alan K
I remember the days when Montana had no speed limit - the guideline was prudent and safe.
Sure enjoyed driving there and exceeding 130MPH.
Occasionally when we encountered a police on a desolate cross road, they will simply wave and we wave back without slowing down from whatever speed we were going, usually greater than 90MPH. Good old days…
Fall 1996 I drove across the country to get back to grad school for the next semester. Day 1 was my longest self-driving day ever, 1200 miles from Seattle to Bismarck. I got a speeding ticket in Montana, because in the dark there were speed limits to protect drivers a little from deer.
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Old 12-17-23, 07:07 PM
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Originally Posted by RubeRad
Hands-free calling is a lot better than actually operating the phone directly; but most people assume there is no risk at all which is not true. Studies have shown that people talking to somebody on a hands-free call are measurably more distracted/dangerous than talking to somebody in the car.
That is old news. But I mean that, in the sense of, drivers being oblivious how they are putting peoples' lives' at risk. Just for the convenience of talking n the phone.
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Old 12-18-23, 11:10 AM
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Originally Posted by delbiker1
I believe there is more to it than simply lack of focus. Most people are in big hurry and concerned mostly about themselves. That is a matter of misdirected focus. It seems the wellness of health and life, including one's self, is less important than shaving a few seconds, or minutes, off a trip in a vehicle. I also believe most people that are speeding are aware of that, most of the time.
putting teeth into it can bleed out a lot of what it can be. with how people act, they display dispensation more often than not. Also, society on a personal level is all about convenience. The simp way to understand it is, 'If something impedes MY convenience, YOU can't do/have that.' Car tailgating another car that's already doing 10MPH over would be a fair example.
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Old 12-18-23, 12:02 PM
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Bottom line gist of this thread:
Motorized vehicle operators are stupid/bad people who behave badly and drive worse;
Ranting about motorists and their lack of intelligence is suitable grist for the Bicycling Advocacy and Safety list;
By inference, bicycle riders (especially those who who rant about motorists) are intelligent/good people and always ride (and presumably drive) safely.
This allegedly is Bicycling Advocacy.
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Old 12-18-23, 12:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Alan K
Japan and US are not comparable in a great many other ways too.

Japan’s population is quite homogeneous, all 125 million or so, they have have less than 3 million non-Japanese.
Traditionally, they are very law-abiding people and very compliant.
It’s a little more complicated here.
Where do I start. Hmmm. Ok, the main fail here is in thinking that non-American = less law abiding. IOW, that the ... lower class cruft pulling down America's metrics in road safety is all *cough* non-white. To get from 2.7 per 100K to 13 per 100K needs the active participation of a good healthy chunk of the majority population. More so, given that access to motor vehicles is not always a given at the lower tiers of socio-economic grouping. In the U.S. a person of color is far more likely to be a victim of a white speeders carelessness than the reverse.
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Old 12-18-23, 12:14 PM
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Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike
Bottom line gist of this thread:
Motorized vehicle operators are stupid/bad people who behave badly and drive worse;
Ranting about motorists and their lack of intelligence is suitable grist for the Bicycling Advocacy and Safety list;
By inference, bicycle riders (especially those who who rant about motorists) are intelligent/good people and always ride (and presumably drive) safely.
This allegedly is Bicycling Advocacy.
There is ample evidence that there is a lot of truth to the bottom line gist of this thread. Why defend car drivers? How do you defend America's last place ranking among peer nations in road safety? Everything else is the same. Only the people (their national identity, not their DNA) are different. Your inference is exactly that: your inference. Calling out the culture of carelessness and aggressive roadcraft of American drivers has no crossover to the cycling community.
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Old 12-18-23, 12:20 PM
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Originally Posted by RubeRad
The first words in the OP quote

Obviously speed control would not eliminate all 12000 of those deaths, and eliminating less than 12000/40000=30% of vehicle deaths would not be utopia
Then why this thread? What good is a technology that is, out the gate, going to be less than 30% effective? It does strengthen the case of those who will see it as a 'Big Brother' overreach. Control for control's sake.
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Old 12-18-23, 01:20 PM
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Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike
Bottom line gist of this thread:
Motorized vehicle operators are stupid/bad people who behave badly and drive worse;
Ranting about motorists and their lack of intelligence is suitable grist for the Bicycling Advocacy and Safety list;
By inference, bicycle riders (especially those who who rant about motorists) are intelligent/good people and always ride (and presumably drive) safely.
This allegedly is Bicycling Advocacy.
Yep, you are getting it! 👌
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Old 12-18-23, 01:24 PM
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Originally Posted by Leisesturm
Then why this thread? What good is a technology that is, out the gate, going to be less than 30% effective? It does strengthen the case of those who will see it as a 'Big Brother' overreach. Control for control's sake.
What good is saving a large fraction of 12000 human lives a year? If you're enough of a grinch, maybe nothing
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Old 12-18-23, 01:27 PM
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Once the the 30% of accidental deaths are brought down to zero, or close to it, we the bicyclists will begin a new movement, to force all the rest to ride bicycles, which will change the rest of population into nice thoughtful and kind people like us.

Addendum: Until we can force everyone to ride bicycles, there are “intelligent” speed control equipped cars on the market. But despite all the wishful thinking, they are not all electric cars when it comes to customer satisfaction and reliability. The hybrids score the best, Tesla does better than before (seems to be improving with time)… as per Consumer Reports:
https://www.consumerreports.org/cars...s-a1047214174/

Last edited by Alan K; 12-18-23 at 01:39 PM. Reason: Addendum
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Old 12-18-23, 01:45 PM
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FWIW, a couple years ago my cousin was killed by an ******* that was driving 100mph on surface streets and ran a red light. Either joyriding, or (as claimed for legal defense before fleeing the country) temporary insanity. Speed governance would mean I would still have a cousin.

A few years before that, a friend on his motorcycle got hit by a car running a red light, and is paraplegic now. Not sure if that was speeding or just ignoring a red light (probably on phone), but if assistive safety technology were in place, my friend would not be living in a wheelchair.

40,000 vehicle deaths per year, I'm sure we all have stories, it's just gotten too normalized in the public conception
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Old 12-18-23, 03:32 PM
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Originally Posted by Alan K

Addendum: Until we can force everyone to ride bicycles, there are “intelligent” speed control equipped cars on the market. But despite all the wishful thinking, they are not all electric cars when it comes to customer satisfaction and reliability. The hybrids score the best, Tesla does better than before (seems to be improving with time)… as per Consumer Reports:
https://www.consumerreports.org/cars...s-a1047214174/
I've been a very happy Tesla owner since 2018. Our first 2018 Model X had quite a few minor software bugs, which all eventually got fixed with various updates, but they were mostly related to features that don't even exist on most conventional cars! We currently have a pair of Model Ys and they have been faultless to date. Intelligent speed control is standard and pretty effective if and when you choose to use it.
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Old 12-18-23, 05:10 PM
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Good to know, thanks for sharing.

Among my local friends, opinions have been mixed.
Many seem happy, or so they say after spending over $100k. But besides the subjectivity, there is one case that stands out. One of my friend’s son was completely sold on the idea of buying a Tesla and he did. He convinced his father also to buy one too and he bought the Tesla SUV (model X, I think). One day the young man was driving on a busy highway going south from the SF Bay area, his front side passenger wheel took off by itself. This was without any prior accidents or damage to the car. He was fortunate to not get seriously hurt, thanks for heavy traffic and lower speed.

It took Tesla almost 3 months to get this car repaired so it can be “safely” driven again - the reason was unavailability of parts.
By the end of the week, after picking up this car, he dumped (sold) it and bought a new Mercedes SL63. His father has no issues with his Tesla X.

My wife and I had tentatively decided earlier that after our current cars are no longer worth fixing, we might buy one Tesla and another comfortable/larger hybrid car for longer trips. Our current cars are refusing to give up the ghost… so it may take several years.

I may buy a large 8 cylinder car so when I’m driving around the city, I’ll be safe from crazy bicycle riders not killing me.

Last edited by Alan K; 12-18-23 at 05:14 PM.
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Old 12-18-23, 06:03 PM
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Originally Posted by Alan K
Once the the 30% of accidental deaths are brought down to zero, or close to it, we the bicyclists will begin a new movement, to force all the rest to ride bicycles, which will change the rest of population into nice thoughtful and kind people like us.
Yep, you are getting it! 👌 - a "movement" sure to win over the great unwashed unintelligent masses who drive motorized vehicles.
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Old 12-18-23, 06:52 PM
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Originally Posted by Alan K
Good to know, thanks for sharing.

Among my local friends, opinions have been mixed.
Many seem happy, or so they say after spending over $100k. But besides the subjectivity, there is one case that stands out. One of my friend’s son was completely sold on the idea of buying a Tesla and he did. He convinced his father also to buy one too and he bought the Tesla SUV (model X, I think). One day the young man was driving on a busy highway going south from the SF Bay area, his front side passenger wheel took off by itself. This was without any prior accidents or damage to the car. He was fortunate to not get seriously hurt, thanks for heavy traffic and lower speed.

It took Tesla almost 3 months to get this car repaired so it can be “safely” driven again - the reason was unavailability of parts.
By the end of the week, after picking up this car, he dumped (sold) it and bought a new Mercedes SL63. His father has no issues with his Tesla X.

My wife and I had tentatively decided earlier that after our current cars are no longer worth fixing, we might buy one Tesla and another comfortable/larger hybrid car for longer trips. Our current cars are refusing to give up the ghost… so it may take several years.

I may buy a large 8 cylinder car so when I’m driving around the city, I’ll be safe from crazy bicycle riders not killing me.
Long trips in a Tesla are actually very relaxing providing there is a convenient supercharger network en route. I drove from the UK down to the French Alps last summer for the L’Etape du Tour and that was very easy. Stopping for a half hour break every 4 hours or so is a good idea anyway.

Whenever I get driven in a conventional car now I really notice the subtle engine vibration through the cabin, even in high end Mercs. It all adds to fatigue on a long trip and is totally absent in an EV. You still get road noise and vibration of course, but the constant engine drone is one less thing!
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Old 12-18-23, 07:27 PM
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The safest speed is the average traffic speed so there are a lot of freeways where being restricted to the posted speed limit would render you a slower moving vehicle which always presents a traffic hazard.

It only works if everyone is similarly restricted.

That will happen in time and will almost certainly happen in conjunction with the widespread use of autopilot vehicles. But despite current movement in that direction I suspect market dominance is a long way off.
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Old 12-18-23, 08:50 PM
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Originally Posted by PeteHski
Long trips in a Tesla are actually very relaxing providing there is a convenient supercharger network en route. I drove from the UK down to the French Alps last summer for the L’Etape du Tour and that was very easy. Stopping for a half hour break every 4 hours or so is a good idea anyway.

Whenever I get driven in a conventional car now I really notice the subtle engine vibration through the cabin, even in high end Mercs. It all adds to fatigue on a long trip and is totally absent in an EV. You still get road noise and vibration of course, but the constant engine drone is one less thing!
You are quite correct about engine vibrations in most gas powered cars.

Not all cars are equally horrible with engine vibrations. Do you recall the first commercial of Lexus LS400 - a glass of wine on the top of the car engine, running - no ripples on the surface. May be the commercial was fake… who knows!
But I understand that these LS series cars have proven to be quiet and comfortable for long trips,

The European idea of long distance driving versus what some us do here are different. My guess is that you drove probably around 600 miles - this is an easy day’s drive for us (on a single tank, if so chosen).

Many of my European friends, pre-Google U days, really did not have a good comprehension of distances in US. Texas alone is quite large, Dallas to El Paso (western edge of TX) is about 650 miles.
I have driven many times from Dallas to Minnesota in a day - distance is about 1000 miles. I know that driving such a distance would be utterly impossible in any electric car.

One of my friends travels from Chicago to Atlanta a few times every year to see his family - never takes his Tesla… too much waste of time in charging the battery. I like the idea of another company, can’t remember which one, that swaps the battery module from exhausted to a fully charged in less than 5 minutes.
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