Feedback on a couple of the other ideas. I like the hopper. I'd general-case it as a 1x1 version of a belt that acts as a FIFO "buffer" to hold a half-dozen items in place. As items flow along the belt, they would get stuck in the hopper until it was full of 6 items, at which point each time an item entered the hopper, another item would flow out. Inserters would add and remove items from the hopper using their stack bonus.
I love the idea of lubricant being a consumable resource. I would love, love, love the idea of there only being a single type of belt. Sections of belt are upgraded from normal to fast by placing an adjacent device that consumed electricity and produced bonus belt speed (torque?). Sections of belt can be upgraded to express with a device that consumed electricity and lubricant and produced extra bonus torque.
If there's a desire to add features to belts, I'd really like to see the splitter get some extra functionality. I'd like to see two more modes to the splitter (that could be activated with modules). The mixer module, which would flip the sides of the belts, and a separator, which would split the sides of the belts. Example:
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S 1111 M 2424 1111 E 1313 2222 I 1313 2222 P 3131 X A 3333 E 4242 3333 R 2424 4444 R 3131 4444 A 4242 T