Turbine Trucks And More Turbine Hotness (Now With More Pics)

Paul Niedermeyer
by Paul Niedermeyer

Chopped and Diced has a nice set of turbine pictures, including the big trucks from Ford, GMC, and Chevrolet. The trucks probably made the most sense for a practical turbine application, given their steady power output requirements and low maintenance. But diesels just haven’t been beat when it comes to high thermal efficiency, which tops 50% in the case of the giant ship engines we showed you last week. More turbine trucks and an insane looking home made turbine bike after the jump:

Paul Niedermeyer
Paul Niedermeyer

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  • Toad Toad on Dec 13, 2009

    These trucks look extremely cool, but trucks are all about making money, not looks. As the owner of 10 trucks, I can tell you that simplicity, reliability, comfort, and economy are all that really matter. For example, can you imagine the cost to replace the front windshield on the Ford turbine truck (not to mention the load on the A/C system from all of the sunlight)? Most truck windshields are only $100 -200 installed. I cannot begin to imagine the cost of turbine repairs, not to mention trying to find parts or qualified mechanics to do the work. Simple, proven trucks are popular for the same reasons Honda Accords are. I have seen trucking companies nearly bankrupted by buying trucks with "new & and improved" components that repeatedly fail, causing the trucking company to lose customers due to missed delivery times and expenses that continue while trucks stay in the repair shop not producing revenue. These kind of problems have even forced Caterpillar out of the heavy duty truck engine market. On a brighter note, for a really cool visionary vehicle from the 1930's that is not well known take a look at the GM Futureliner http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3Yy-0iDHAz8. Saw an unrestored one sitting in a parking lot north of Chicago 20 ago, should have bought it then!

  • ZoomZoom ZoomZoom on Dec 14, 2009

    I like that Chevy too! It would be fun to pull that one into a Walmart or a 7-Eleven store!

  • Daniel J Until we get a significant charging infrastructure and change times get under 10 minutes, yes
  • Mike I own 2 gm 6.2 vehicles. They are great. I do buy alot of gas. However, I would not want the same vehicles if they were v6's. Jusy my opinion. I believe that manufacturers need to offer engine options for the customer. The market will speak on what the consumer wants.For example, I dont see the issue with offering a silverado with 4cyl , 6 cyl, 5.3 v8, 6.2 v8, diesel options. The manufacturer will charge accordingly.
  • Mike What percentage of people who buy plug in hybrids stop charging them daily after a few months? Also, what portion of the phev sales are due to the fact that the incentives made them a cheaper lease than the gas only model? (Im thinking of the wrangler 4xe). I wish there was a way to dig into the numbers deeper.
  • CEastwood If it wasn't for the senior property tax freeze in NJ I might complain about this raising my property taxes since most of that tax goes to the schools . I'm not totally against EVs , but since I don't drive huge miles and like to maintain my own vehicles they are not practical especially since I keep a new vehicle long term and nobody has of yet run into the cost of replacing the battery on an EV .
  • Aquaticko Problem with PHEV is that, like EVs, they still require a behavioral change over ICE/HEV cars to be worth their expense and abate emissions (whichever is your goal). Studies in the past have shown that a lot of PHEV drivers don't regularly plug-in, meaning they're just less-efficient HEVs.I'm left to wonder how big a battery a regular HEV could have without needing to be a PHEV.