Is The 2,500 Dollar Car The End Of Us ALL?

We have a problem with oil on this planet, namely there is not enough of it, and we all want it. So far it’s been Europe and the USA (mostly the USA) using up almost all the oil. Mainly for things like gas, and power plants. Oil also has this other little problem, it is full of carbon. When you burn it it shoots out co2 (and other toxic nasties) which is causing our planet to warm at an alarming rate. So what would happen if billions of people that couldn’t afford cars suddenly could.

Next fall, the Indian automaker Tata Motors is scheduled to introduce its long-awaited People’s Car, with a sticker price of about $2,500. Hot on its tail may be as many as half a dozen new ultra-affordable vehicles — some from the world’s leading carmakers, including Toyota and Renault-Nissan.

“Ask one billion people, and 99 percent of them are going to say they want a car,” said Jagdish Khattar, managing director of Maruti Suzuki India, the country’s largest car manufacturer. “The problem is, How many can afford it?”

By 2013, CSM predicts, India’s market will expand an average of 14.5 percent a year, compared with just over 8 percent for China. CSM estimates that in 2013, the Chinese will buy 10.8 million cars, compared with 3.8 million in India, but says there is already a glut of local and foreign manufacturers in China, making India a more attractive long-term market.

If global manufacturers can figure out how to make small, cheap cars in India, they are expected to start exporting them to other fast-growing markets where the proportion of car ownership remains small — places like Southeast Asia, Africa and the Middle East.(via)


This is a big problem. A global environment problem and a moral problem. These cheap cars will run on gasoline. They will spread like wildfire and the problems that come with them will spread too. India will be forced to build more highways, this means less nature, more concrete (itself a big producer of green house gasses). It means traffic, it means traffic jams, it means worse air quality. In places that already have some of the worst air quality in the world they will be adding in lots of car fumes. These will also pretty much unregulated cars, no crash tests, nothing. Expect car crash deaths to rise.

So basically having the worlds poor driving internal combustion cars is a disaster for everyone. But where do we get off telling these people they can’t do the same exact thing we have been doing for decades. Why shouldn’t some guy in India get to drive his cheap little death trap of a car if some asshole in America can drive his giant hummer around? I mean where do we get off?

I am not sure how we are going to solve this problem. One way might be to try and develop a cheap electric car. Something that would run on a couple of solar panels, and be workable in a place without much of an electrical grid. Another might be to trade these countries aid for the promise they wont develop these cheap cars. Another might be to invest billions in public transportation in these countries. Yet another might be to help these countries develop city planning based on pedestrian and bike travel, along with public transport so that the citizens don’t need cars as much.

Most of the potential solutions mentioned above should also be applied to the United States and Europe (to be fair Europe is so far ahead of us on these routes that I am reluctant to even include them in the list). There is no easy solution, but what I do know is that billions more people driving cars makes the squabbles we have been having over oil to date look like a tea party with friends.

10 thoughts on “Is The 2,500 Dollar Car The End Of Us ALL?”

  1. After exploiting the resouces of the poor countries, and polluting our planet (while refusing to admit responsibilities in global warming), the Western world does not have the moral stand to raise objections to an even more intense spreading of combustion vehicles in China and India.

    What is necessary is a change of paradigm in relating to the world and its resources, in the fair share of resources and wealth, in conceiving personal mobility (fat Westerners could learn NOT to drive a car for one mile to the next McDonald), and in values in general, lest that we don not transform the Earth in a sterile, polluted and dead agglomerate moving around the sun.

  2. Wow, am I missing something, or are you just agianst progress? Yes, people want CHEAP transportation. Economies thrive on it. The only thing people truely care about is the bottom line. What will it cost me? Bring that product to the market and their ecomomy will boom. Is that a bad thing? We can sit back and say “hey wait a minute, that isn’t good for the environment” because we can afford to. We have an extremely weathly society. Even the poorest here are richer than the upper classes elsewhere. We have no right to police other countries trying to play catch up. All we can do is develope new CHEAP technologies that will lead us into the next generation of transportation. Hydrogen is not the answer. It is far too expensive to manufacture and store, plus a whole new infastructure has to be built for it. Who’s going to pay for it? You? No, gasoline is not going away, not quite yet. As soon as we develope a product that is as cheap and widely available as oil, that is when things will change. As far as the impact on the environment goes, we are being scared into thinking that the world will end if we continue to burn oil. Not so, the carbon dioxide output of people does not even come close to the output of valcanoes. Global warming is a good thing. Warming trends throughout history have always been times of prosperity, wealth and growth for all plant life. The current conditions are being way overstated, and the impact will not be seen for many generations. Do I think we need to produce alternative fuel sources? Yes. More than ever, but that is only because we can afford to. Back off developing countries, we got here with oil, now let them do the same.

  3. Does anyone know how to get on the waiting list for this car? I will buy it today if i am guaranteed this car when its introduced. this car should have been intruduced a decade ago.

  4. Lets get this car in america
    great mpg not that bad for the inverment
    its a car for all us weed smoking tree hugging hippes
    Peace for life!

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