Recently, I had the opportunity to show my ecomodded 1991 Honda CRX at HybridFest, a car show dedicated to hybrids and green technology in Madison, Wisconsin. I was really excited, but I quickly realized that the trip would take a total of 2,500 miles, both from my native New Jersey, then over to my surrogate home in Missouri -- and then back.
This trip alone is more than I would drive in an entire year, so I had to carefully weigh whether or not the environmental impact of the drive would be offset by the potential for teaching the people I met about saving gas. I definitely wanted to get there as quickly as possible, but I also knew how much gas I would be wasting by driving fast. So I averaged about 60 mph over the whole drive.
Luckily, my recent modifications paid off, and I was able to maintain at least 60 mpg over the whole trip. Not only was this gratifying in terms of ROI on my ecomodding efforts, but it meant that the trip only cost about $110 dollars in gas -- and I had good mpg numbers to show off at HybridFest.
You can see for yourself how far I have come with the car since I first got it 3 years ago:
What's most exciting about this for me is that I have yet to do any aerodynamics modifications. With those in place I can expect even better fuel economy.
But, most of all, I am excited by the possibility of conventional gas engines. Hybrids are nice, but even in this fuel crisis we have seen hybrid sales figures drop and manufacturers flounder on releasing new models. Even if the US converts to a hybrid fleet in a decade or two, the rest of the world, with much bigger populations, will still be driving conventional gas cars for years to come. But that doesn't mean we'll all be driving gas-guzzling SUVs still.
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