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Old 03-25-2008, 11:38 PM   #1
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Sportsmobile Daily Driver

I'm curious as to how many of you guys use your sportsmobile as a daily driver. In order to make things work, I think I'll have to sell my truck until I can find a small POS to commute with. Any thoughts on a daily driver using diesel vs V10 Gasoline?

Joe
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Old 03-26-2008, 06:02 AM   #2
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I would say that it depends on your length of your commute to work. Mrs. Ed in Montana and myself have only a two to three mile work commute; too short to drive, too long to walk in bad weather.

The diesel SMB can't warm up enough in such a short distance to burn fuel efficiently, so we rarely use it as a daily driver; maybe only three times a month when we both need to drive to work separately. Otherwise, we share the Honda Element.

In the winter, I drive the Sporty once a week on weekends for longer errands, anytime I can drive for 20 minutes or longer outside of stop and go traffic. This charges the batteries and keeps everything in working order during the four "no-camping" months.
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Old 03-26-2008, 10:14 AM   #3
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I am sort of using mine as an occasional town driver, but not daily. As noted above, on the short trips the fuel mileage is abysmal. It has, however, motivated me to bike commute a lot more which I do about three days/week. For commutes under 10 miles, it's really not a bad option! Then drive the SMB 1 or 2 days a week and be more efficient about errands, such as groceries.

That probably didn't help too much, but it is something to consider. Overall, if I was looking at using my diesel SMB as a daily commuter, I'd instantly go do what you'd suggested and buy a POS instead/in addition.
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Old 03-26-2008, 10:41 AM   #4
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I've been using our SMB (2007 RB Diesel) as a daily driver since October 2007. The fuel mileage has been pretty sad on short commutes and errands, etc. However, it has also been comfortable to drive and I'm able to keep all of our surfboards locked inside which is incredibly convenient. I used to drive a Chevy Avalanche, so the size of the van (width & length) is about exactly the same. I have no problems driving it around except when it comes time to fill the tank.

I only get between 12 & 13 mpg when used for commuting purposes . However, on long trips we are in the 16 to 19 mpg range and it is still breaking in. Eventually I will get another vehicle that I can use as an every day driver, but this has been working really well so far.
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Old 03-26-2008, 01:07 PM   #5
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Part of my fuel strategy is that I bought a Vespa (80 mpg) to commute to work (5 miles). I drive the SMB on rainy or “California Cold” days (forgive me Montana Ed) that are below 50 degrees. The family errand car is my wife’s Hybrid Prius.
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Old 03-26-2008, 02:26 PM   #6
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Re: Sportsmobile Daily Driver

Quote:
Originally Posted by jlrray
Any thoughts on a daily driver using diesel vs V10 Gasoline?

Joe
FWIW - I average about 9MPG in the city stop & go traffic. It's a 2002, Quigley V-10. I'd bike to work and/or use my KLR 650 when I could if I sold my other vehicle. Gas consumption would be my only concern for using the SMB as a daily driver.
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Old 03-26-2008, 02:29 PM   #7
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I use mine as a daily driver and it’s an EB. I avoid short runs whenever possible trying to minimize slobber and warm up the motor the best I can before travel. The only problem so far was the mutual meeting of my vehicle and a Nissan Altima while backing. Sportsmobile 1, Altima 0. The Altima didn’t like the Aluminess bumper at all. Damages…Sportsmobile 0, Altima 4 grand plus. I’m in the process of buying a gas vehicle for in town and short runs that gets reasonable mileage, is easy to park, and is something I can tow (such as a Jeep). If I had an endless supply of money I would park a gas powered RB next to my diesel EB.
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Old 03-26-2008, 03:03 PM   #8
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I sold my Ford Explorer when I bought the SMB, it has become the 'utility vehicle' in my family. For errands around town I ride a 75 Honda CB200, which gets about 60 or mpg, and for longer trips a Triumph Bonneville its only when I have to haul dogs or music equipment do I drive the SMB, unless its the beach or mts, this was also the same for my explorer.
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Old 03-26-2008, 03:20 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by daveb
I use mine as a daily driver and it’s an EB. I avoid short runs whenever possible trying to minimize slobber and warm up the motor the best I can before travel. The only problem so far was the mutual meeting of my vehicle and a Nissan Altima while backing. Sportsmobile 1, Altima 0. The Altima didn’t like the Aluminess bumper at all. Damages…Sportsmobile 0, Altima 4 grand plus. I’m in the process of buying a gas vehicle for in town and short runs that gets reasonable mileage, is easy to park, and is something I can tow (such as a Jeep). If I had an endless supply of money I would park a gas powered RB next to my diesel EB. :a1:
DaveB
Dave,

Have you considered getting one of the new electric motorcycles? There are both dirt and road versions. Range is a measly 30-80 miles (drive cycle and company dependent), and cost is ~$8k. But you could carry that on the back of the SMB, and potentially charge while driving or with the solar panels... over a couple of days.
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Old 03-26-2008, 03:56 PM   #10
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I just bought a 2005 RB 12 pass. Quadvan is doing the conversion. It will be my daily driver. My Mitsubishi Montero gets 14-15 mpg around town. I think the Van will get 13-14. Does it pencil out to spend new $$$ on a higher mpg but additional vehicle? I wonder what kind of "new" mileage you would have to get to cover the additional cost of a higher mpg vehicle. Like Kzemach I may try to bike commute although Santa Rosa drivers have a reputation for running down bicycles. Charlie56 lives here too...maybe we could Vespa Pool!
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