Archive for Saturday, November 17, 2007

Dealership sells natural gas car

November 17, 2007


— A Kansas automobile dealership has begun selling the natural gas-powered Honda Civic sedan, nearly 10 years after the Japanese automaker began building it.

The company only recently allowed sales of the car outside certain states.

Roger Scholfield, the owner of Scholfield Honda in Wichita, said he does not expect to sell as many Civic GX natural-gas models as gasoline-powered Civics or Accords. But he said if the dealership can sell five to 10 a month it would help it gain market share.

"And it's good for the environment," he added.

Scholfield started promoting the cars this week. Until recently, the models were available primarily on the coasts and through other approved dealers.

The car is identical to gasoline-powered models in terms of appearance and features, although its engine has a bit less horsepower. Its suggested retail price of $25,185 is about $10,000 more than for an entry-level, gasoline-powered Civic.

The Civic GX gets between 225 and 250 miles on a full tank of natural gas, said Lee Lindquist, alternative fuels specialist for Scholfield Honda.

But fueling stations are limited, with only a handful available in Kansas, Scholfield said.

To help overcome that obstacle, his dealership has joined with Fahnestock Plumbing HVAC & Electric to sell and install natural-gas filling units. The filling units, which range in price from $4,000 to $8,000, draw their natural gas from a business or home gas line.

Scholfield is banking sales will be spurred by a $4,000 federal tax credit on the GX and a $1,000 credit on the filling unit.


toefungus 10 years, 5 months ago

This is cool, but what I want to know is can you drive with a hose stuck in your butt?

labmonkey 10 years, 5 months ago

What would be nice would be a dual-fuel system where you can turn a switch to use either natural gas or gasoline. I am sure that a gasoline powered honda civic gets nearly twice as far on a tank of gasoline than the stated 225-250 miles on natural gas.

Haiku_Cuckoo 10 years, 5 months ago

The $10,000 increased price tag cancels out any potential savings on fuel costs. Go with diesel instead.

lounger 10 years, 5 months ago

Haiku-Save all the fuel money you want-diesel is horrible. Diesel engines were origionally supposed to run on peanut oil. Nasty Diesel fuel CANNOT be expelled from the lungs of infants. Think about that next time you drive....

compmd 10 years, 5 months ago

Wow, a "think of the children" line. Good grief, lounger, learn what you're talking about before you attack compression ignition engines. Per cubic centimeter of displacement, a Mercedes-Benz Bluetec Diesel engine is just as clean burning as a Honda CNG engine.

Dual-fuel CNG/Gasoline engines aren't realistic due to the different requirements of both fuels. For starters, the concept of injection volume, the compression ratio, and ignition timing would all be different, not to mention the fact that you would have to put a completely separate fuel system into the car from the engine back; you can't splice a second tank into the fuel system with CNG and gasoline, and even if you could, the switchover would likely kill the engine due to the problems I outlined above.

Save up for that diesel, Haiku. I prefer the Mercedes and find them to have superior engines and better reliability than the VWs. And rest easy knowing that if you have to drive somewhere you never have to worry about finding a place to fuel up.

CNG powered cars are neat for quick jaunts about a city, but road warriors they are not. I'll take a diesel any day.

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