Alltop, all the top stories
February 26, 2007

Are Hybrids Growing?


rose.jpegNothing like $3 gasoline to motivate buyers to buy hybrids. 254,454 last year, up 28% from 2005. Sounds great, but sales are starting to slow down. Ouch! Our wallet! Tax credits for some of the Toyota hybrids are expiring.

Lonnie Miller, director of industry analysis for R. L. Polk expects growth to continue. Sees strong demand. Three new models are leaving the drawing board for life in the real world.

GM has a “duel mode” hybrid that has 2 electric motors and a V-8 engine for 23 mpg in a pick-up or SUV. Definitely expands the market.

Filed under:Fuel Price Trends | by Pump Girl @ 8:10 pm | 

February 24, 2007

Diesel Cleans Up Reputation


Foreign companies are now trying to get the jump with vehicles powered by diesel. With a new sophisticated exhaust system to comform to the revised fed pollution laws (to use diesel fuel with only 15 ppm of sulphur vs. the former 500 ppm of sulphur), the new vehicles will save big $$ on fuel costs. Engines can be more powerful, too!

For instance, a Mercedes-Benz E320 diesel sedan costs about $1,000 more than a similar gas model. But it gets more than 35 miles per gallon, about 10 miles per gallon better than a comparable gas-fueled Mercedes.

This is not your diesel from the 80′s, and a recent survey by Autobytel showed 72% of Americans would “absolutely” consider buying a diesel vehicle.

Filed under:Fuel Economy,Fuel Price Trends,Vehicle News | by Pump Girl @ 8:04 pm | 

February 22, 2007

The Peak Oil Debate — A Great Discussion from a Valued Source


Regular readers know that the Peak Oil concept is crucial to understanding the future of oil prices. Pump Girl wrote an excellent series on this topic here, here, and here.

CERA Director of Oil Industry Activity Peter M. Jackson is a leading critic of the concept. The Oil Drum, an excellent resource for the discussion of oil prices (now added to our featured sites) has an extensive analysis of the Jackson argument.

Fleet managers and CFO’s with major energy expenditures should take the time to read this discussion. While it is a bit lengthy, it is time well spent!

Filed under:Fleet Managers,Fuel Price Trends | by OldProf @ 10:04 pm | 

A Case of Fuel Hedging: Alpine Air Express


It’s not about cars, it’s about planes. The idea is the same. Alpine Air Express has locked in fuel costs for the rest of 2007.

Management says it is important for 4 reasons:
1. Fixing costs could add over $1 million to profits based on last year’s costs
2. Fixing costs of fuel reduces risks (ie. natural disasters, unrest in the Middle East, etc)
3. Reducing a volitile expense reduces market risk, soothes shareholders
4. Alpine locked in price when oil was lower vis-a-vis current and historical prices

Does this sound familiar to you? It should! Gas-Lock Advisors can do the same for you. Sleep as soundly as Alpine execs.

Note to self: check in same time, same place next year to see who is smiling.

Filed under:Fleet Managers,Fuel Price Trends,Hedging | by Pump Girl @ 8:13 pm | 

February 20, 2007

Energy Independence in Ten Years?


Montana Governor Brian Schweitzer has the broad outline of a plan for energy independence in ten years. He combines conservation, coal gasification, and biofuels to make up the gap between current domestic consumption and production.

Rich Karlgaard, writing for his Forbes blog, Digital Rules, has a nice summary of the plan. You can also get a longer treatment from this recent article in Time.

Filed under:Fuel Price Trends | by OldProf @ 8:09 pm |