#501  
Old 11-07-2019, 08:23 PM
Ravenman is online now
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Originally Posted by SamuelA View Post
Well, buy a car intended to last 5 more years. Buying a brand new one planning to drive it 10-15 makes "zero sense".
You’re saying that autonomous cars will be generally available in 5-10 years?

Yeah, not buying that at all.
  #502  
Old 11-07-2019, 08:30 PM
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There's another thread on the viability of autonomous or self-driving cars, so can we please leave that out of the discussion here?
  #503  
Old 11-07-2019, 08:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Magiver View Post
well some of them are a bit high strung.

I greatly want an EV. When they've evolved to meet my needs I will buy one. If you don't like hearing that they aren't a direct replacement for ICE cars then don't read the thread.

EV's in their current state are not a direct replacement for ICE cars. That is a fact. The battery technology is lagging and the infrastructure supporting it not even close to wide scale use.
Thinking of an EV as a "replacement" for an ICE car is the like thinking of a laptop as a replacement for a desktop. I remember a time when there was significant cost / performance / longevity differences between the two. That has now largely disappeared, and in most instances it simply comes down to preference between the two for most who are not on the fringes or have unusual needs.

Different needs, different usage patterns and different cost / benefit structures.

It doesn't need to be so complicated - for a significant number of people - an EV will "work" with minor attitude adjustments, for others, they won't.

The area of overlap in usage and "fit" is going to get bigger as technology gets better though.
  #504  
Old 11-07-2019, 09:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Bone View Post
State law in CA says that Condo's can't prevent a person from installing a charger in their parking space, but the owner pays the cost.
Do you know how metering works?

I also don't have an assigned spot.

And obviously I'm not in CA but it's still useful to see how other places do it.
  #505  
Old 11-07-2019, 11:43 PM
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Do you know how metering works?
I actually don't. But I think this is the relevant law for time of use meters installed in common areas or where there are HOAs.

In the Bay Area now, it's a bit of an exaggeration, but Teslas and Bolts are like camry's or honda accords. They are everywhere. The Model 3 is pretty much the best commuter car available - cheap energy, easy driving, high performance, latest tech with autopilot making traffic no problem, chargers everywhere, HOV lane access, etc.

If you're in the bay area and you are buying a car that is used for commuting, if you aren't buying a Model 3 or Bolt, you've made a mistake.
  #506  
Old 11-08-2019, 02:07 AM
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In the Bay Area now, it's a bit of an exaggeration, but Teslas and Bolts are like camry's or honda accords.
Going by year, I don't think it's an exaggeration at all. I'm almost certain there are more 2019 Model 3s than 2019 Camrys around here. It's ridiculous sitting at a stop light in a cluster of four Model 3s, with a few more on the other side, and all of them 2018-2019.
  #507  
Old 11-08-2019, 02:39 AM
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because it doesn't fit what you made up.
What I made up? You posted what sounded like a very straightforward scenario: a 50-mile commute followed by a 120-mile weekend trip to your friend. You did not mention a 20-mile diversion or a second commute.

Look, it doesn't matter at this point. The 235 mile scenario is the one you had in mind. I think you were less than cogent in describing the trip but I really don't care at this point.

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Originally Posted by Pantastic View Post
Well that's definitely not the case with me or anyone that I know, and I'm pretty sure that most people with ICE vehicles don't spend their time constantly thinking about scheduling their next fillup.
Well, I guess these are the types of people that are always 10 minutes late to shit. I know a few of them. But most people I know actually plan things a bit.

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Originally Posted by Pantastic View Post
Not sure why you're so keen on making false claims, but I have not in the least. You have made all kinds of exaggerations in your case, and made weird assumptions then accused me of changing my story when they turn out not to be correct in some Quixotic attempt to demonstrate that electric cars are better than they are.
I'll let the others decide which of us has made more exaggerations. But let me quote you again:
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Originally Posted by Pantastic View Post
As I pointed out before, $80k is still more than I've spent on cars in my entire life. I'm not sure why you guys don't get that I have zero interest in buying a vehicle that costs more than five times what my current car does and is much worse, as I'd need to plan my life around it's needs and expect to routinely add an hour or more to road trips.
First, for some reason you're still talking about this $133k--scratch--$80k car, when the cars everyone is suggesting here are more like $30-40k. Second, the $80k car has a whopping 373 mile range, which means you could forget to plug in for a week and still commute every day and go out a few nights. Third, there's no "routinely" adding an hour to the situation you mentioned, which was already a combination of a rare event (forgetting to plug in) and a mildly common event (weekly at most). You don't need to plan your life around the car and in fact just about every aspect of the car requires less thought than your current vehicle. The 373 miles would make the trip to your parents, too, with a couple of commutes and diversions thrown in as well. The $40k car is slightly more limited at around 250 miles, but it still covers your claimed trips without extra waiting.

Nevertheless, I certainly don't recommend an EV of any kind for you, given your claimed forgetfulness. It is in fact necessary to plug in EVs from time to time.
  #508  
Old 11-08-2019, 09:51 AM
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I think another key reason some people think EVs are terrible is that EV-owning people have the audacity to say something when misinformation is presented by people who have a very, very tenuous grasp on the subject.

I remember a few years ago reading an article that claimed that the "real" range of a Nissan Leaf was only 20 miles in the "real world." That's because while the range of the car at the time was like 85 miles, you had to deduct:
1. 17 miles because you can only charge it to 80%;
2. 15 miles because the battery will degrade in 5-10 years;
3. 12 miles because sometimes its cold outside; and
4. Divide by two because you have to drive back from your destination.

Ergo, the Leaf could only travel 20 miles.

And then Leaf owners got sooooooo meeeeean and left comments on the article that hurt the author's feelings because they didn't agree 100%. What bad, bad people!

And then look at all of us meanies in this thread, daring to disagree that an EV costing less than $80,000 cannot handle a 50 mile commute. We are so bad bad bad!
  #509  
Old 11-08-2019, 09:55 AM
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So you're saying that someone who is imperfect about charging, has an active life like I did a lot of when I was younger and occasionally do today, has friends/dates who don't live in the same town, should not get an EV if they live somewhere like the US Southeast or Midwest unless they want to do a lot of planning around their car or be prepared to borrow people's cars on a routine basis? That's matches what I said in my OP, so I guess you're agreeing with me. It seems like you're trying to paint this as some kind of extreme edge case that's not worth considering, but it's really not that exceptional of a set of circumstances.
I suppose that same someone has to do "a lot of planning" around remembering to set their alarm so that they can go into work in the morning, too. But seriously, how often do you expect all of those scenarios to line up, in a given year?

Again, your scenario is an (1) above average commute, (2) forgetting to plug in at night, (3) 20 miles of errands, (4) a far-off driving distance to visit a friend (5) another above average commute (6) with no convenient fast chargers during any of this 200+ miles of driving, or charging ability at work, or charging ability near friend's house.

When pointed out that several current EVs can, in fact handle this scenario just fine, you've thrown in (7) 80% battery degradation or inclement weather to justify your "routine" example.

Knock any *one* of these links out of the chain, and the EV would have been fine. And I get it, this stuff happens occasionally, and EVs are not as well equipped to deal with it in many parts of the country right now. But this is not a "routine" example for most of the population. And even when it does happen, it would likely be limited to just being an hour late for work to charge the car on the L2 you have installed at home, or divert to a fast charger. About the same consequences as "forgetting to set your alarm to wake up in the morning".

My current workplace has no gas stations for ~10 miles, and the nearest one is a few miles opposite my commute direction. On more than one location, I've had to visit that exact inconvenient gas station on my way home, because I've been on empty, and had to do some unexpected driving for work, and didn't want to risk running out on my way to the convenient station.

I've had more than a few hair-raising drives with the E light on, because I thought I probably could make it to the convenient station. And a few where I've had to bypass the convenient station in the morning because I'm already running late for work. And a few where I've been 5-10 minutes late to a meeting because I absolutely had to stop for gas in the morning, because i didn't think I'd be able to make it all the way to work, and then the 10 miles back.

I've had absolutely none of this stress since buying an EV, since the "convenient" station is now located in my garage, and it takes 5 seconds of effort to "fill up". But i'm just one anecdote here, and my situation isn't everyone's.
  #510  
Old 11-08-2019, 10:54 AM
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My wife has taken our LEAF to my parent's cabin. I'm going to meet her there this weekend. I've been driving our gas car around,which is OK since it needed a run (has sat for over a month), and we're going to sell it soon anyway...

Got home last night and noticed the gas gauge was very low. Shit. Had no time to go back out and find a gas station that was open, as I had committed to tasks at home, like cooking dinner for son, helping with homework etc. So now I have to do some planning.
Do I head off early this morning and find an open gas station? Or find someone to be with my son while I head out at night and fill up? <call.. can't find anyone at short notice> Self serve means I will probably get smelly gas shit on my hands (those pumps handles often leave my hands smelly for some reason). Better take some wet wipes. Where are they? <search house>. I should probably check the oil when I'm there. Better set the alarm to leave extra early.

I really wish I could have been driving the LEAF. Then I just would have plugged in when I got home (5 seconds) and never given it another thought. No planning required. Sweet!
  #511  
Old 11-08-2019, 01:34 PM
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I'm looking at a map right now of the EV charging stations near my home. Since I live pretty near a couple of Interstate highways, I seem to have a better selection than most people in this area. Here's what I see:

1) One 50 Kw port with CHAdeMO and CCS combo connectors
2) Tesla only, two ports, 8 Kw max, for hotel guests only
3) One Level 2 J1772 port. It's at a car dealership, no info about operating hours or other restrictions
4) One 50 Kw port with CHAdeMO
5) Two Level 2 J1772 ports, 6.6 Kw max

Would someone like to interpret these results for me? How good is a 6.6 Kw or an 8Kw charger in terms of someone being able to get a fast charge and get back on the road? Which models use CHAdeMO, which use J1172, and are there adapters for each other? Should Tesla owners feel cheated because there's no Supercharger, and the only Tesla charger available is for guests of a second-rate hotel that no one who drives a $30,000 car would want to stay in?
  #512  
Old 11-08-2019, 02:09 PM
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Originally Posted by Euphonious Polemic View Post
The cool part is how they live in remote areas where there is no charging infrastructure (with no possibility of any infrastructure being built), yet there are LOTS of 24 hour gas stations available, with more probably on the way!
Not my case certainly. If I want to fill my car up after 10 PM I would have to drive about 30 miles.
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  #513  
Old 11-08-2019, 02:34 PM
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Originally Posted by Kent Clark View Post
I'm looking at a map right now of the EV charging stations near my home. Since I live pretty near a couple of Interstate highways, I seem to have a better selection than most people in this area. Here's what I see:

1) One 50 Kw port with CHAdeMO and CCS combo connectors
2) Tesla only, two ports, 8 Kw max, for hotel guests only
3) One Level 2 J1772 port. It's at a car dealership, no info about operating hours or other restrictions
4) One 50 Kw port with CHAdeMO
5) Two Level 2 J1772 ports, 6.6 Kw max

Would someone like to interpret these results for me? How good is a 6.6 Kw or an 8Kw charger in terms of someone being able to get a fast charge and get back on the road? Which models use CHAdeMO, which use J1172, and are there adapters for each other? Should Tesla owners feel cheated because there's no Supercharger, and the only Tesla charger available is for guests of a second-rate hotel that no one who drives a $30,000 car would want to stay in?
The J1772 chargers are not good enough for fast/trip charging, but are perfectly fine for long term charging: overnight or during the work day. They are good for quick charging for somebody with a plug-in hybrid that has a tiny battery. For example, a 40 minute charge over lunch at the parking garage in the mall might be enough to get your plug-in hybrid back home without having to use any gas. Sure, the same amount of power is added to an EV, but somebody with 200 miles of range, might not care about adding 12 miles over lunch. Most EVs, including Teslas, can charge from a J1772 level 2 charger. Teslas use an adapter, and it is the native connector for others.

The CHAdeMO and CCS connectors are variations on J1772 which allow DC fast charging. 50kW can put a lot of power in a car quickly. It is standard or an option on many non-Tesla EVs. Tesla sells an adapter to allow CHAdeMO charging.

The 8kW Tesla connectors are probably Tesla wall connectors installed at the hotel for guests to charge with overnight. 8kW is not fast charging, and is about the best you'll do on home charging.

These are charge rates for my car, other cars which are less efficient will have other rates:

6.6kW Level 2, about 22 miles of range added per hour of charging. That is going to be 220V by 24 amps (30 amp outlet) or 200V by 26 amps (commercial power).

8kW Level 2, about 30 mph. This is probably a 220V by 32 amp residential, or 200V by 36 amp commercial.

50kW Level 3, about 200 mph.

150kW Tesla supercharger, about 600 mph.
  #514  
Old 11-08-2019, 04:14 PM
YamatoTwinkie is online now
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Originally Posted by Kent Clark View Post
I'm looking at a map right now of the EV charging stations near my home. Since I live pretty near a couple of Interstate highways, I seem to have a better selection than most people in this area.
While "proximity to EV charging stations near my home" is definitely important for people without any home/work charging available, and may help in the rare "i forgot to charge last night and I have to leave for a big trip" scenario, you may very likely never need to use the charging stations anywhere near your house if you have home charging available.

Again, you're probably starting out the day with 200-300 miles in the tank, and your return trip is going to take you right back home where your charger is. There is almost zero point in stopping anywhere else near your house to charge, unless it's free electricity and you were going to park there anyway for another reason.

You should probably be more concerned about where the fast EV charging stations are along your common routes 50-100 miles away, the L2 charging availability at hotels in cities that you typically travel to, and near the out-of-the-way places you stay at often (i.e, your parent's house in rural Appalachia)

Last edited by YamatoTwinkie; 11-08-2019 at 04:15 PM.
  #515  
Old 11-08-2019, 04:55 PM
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Electric Vehicles are to Internal Combustion Engined vehicles like LEDs are to Incandescent lights. They offer such enormous advantages that it's a question of when, not if, we switch. For many years the options were a crappy power plant(ICE) which was AT BEST 50% efficient, and polluted the air, AND required things like multi-speed transmissions, coolant, lubricant, exhaust gas filters, etc. to offset their negatives, wrapped in a nice car, comfortable, sporty, reliable. OR a wonderful power plant(Electric Motor) with a kind of crappy car, cheaply built, degrading batteries, limited availability, poor parts availability/serviceability. Finally the electric cars are changing that and just like the light bulb, the tide is turning. And we'll be better off for it, even if some people want to hang onto their "heat globes" but most of us will switch over because the advantages are just enormous.
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Originally Posted by Kent Clark View Post
I'm looking at a map right now of the EV charging stations near my home.

<SNIP>

Would someone like to interpret these results for me? How good is a 6.6 Kw or an 8Kw charger in terms of someone being able to get a fast charge and get back on the road? Which models use CHAdeMO, which use J1172, and are there adapters for each other? Should Tesla owners feel cheated because there's no Supercharger, and the only Tesla charger available is for guests of a second-rate hotel that no one who drives a $30,000 car would want to stay in?
You're still thinking in terms of gas cars. You don't need to go to a public charger in a typical day in the life of a plug in driver. Public chargers SHOULD be in out of the way places, the kind of places where you don't live or work. The kind of places where you DON'T have easy access to a plug. 99% of your charging will be at home, in your garage. 0.9% will be at a friend/family member's place. 0.09% will be at stores/malls. About 0.01% will be at public chargers unless you specifically choose to go to them. You will almost never NEED to. Sure this makes them most effective/useful for people who have garages at the moment, but that's a pretty big market segment and likely to be enough to bootstrap the US into a predominantly electric vehicle future.

Enjoy,
Steven

Last edited by Mtgman; 11-08-2019 at 04:57 PM.
  #516  
Old 11-08-2019, 05:30 PM
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Electric Vehicles are to Internal Combustion Engined vehicles like LEDs are to Incandescent lights. They offer such enormous advantages that it's a question of when, not if, we switch.
This is a good analogy.

Also, early LEDs that were as good as 60w incandescents were $50 a bulb. Like the model S and X

The model 3 at 40-50k is like those $10 a bulb LEDs. Worth it for commonly used bulbs - a 60w bulb left on all the time eats $63 of power per year.

Similarly, BMWs and other similar cars to the M3 are expensive to maintain and will burn through tens of thousands of dollars in fuel over their lifetime.

But at $10 a bulb it's still not a no brainer for everyone. And LED bulbs fail in places like ovens, just like EVs fail in the Arctic. (The actual Arctic not Vermont)

Similarly LED bulbs sometimes have significant failures - not from the diodes wearing out, but from the power supply. And early EVs often have door handle failures and other basic fails.
  #517  
Old 11-08-2019, 06:45 PM
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You're still thinking in terms of gas cars. You don't need to go to a public charger in a typical day in the life of a plug in driver.
I used those charging points as a reference because I'm familiar with where they are and what they look like (they all look pretty much the same to me,) AND because, as I said, they're all easily accessible from Interstate highways, so they might be exactly where a long-distance driver is looking.

But echoreply is telling me that out of four chargers (the fifth is restricted to hotel guests) two of them are inadequate to give a proper boost to someone on a long-distance drive.

Knowing now that I would need a Level 3 charger (or the Tesla equivalent) I searched for all Level 3 charging stations in St. Louis City and St. Louis County Missouri. That's a population total of about 1.3 million in 550 sq. mile area.

I found 12 Level 3 chargers and only one Tesla supercharger. (I think there's actually another Tesla Supercharger, but it isn't marked on the map as such.)

I then took a closer look at the trip from St. Louis to Chicago that I mentioned in an earlier post. There are Tesla Superchargers marked in both Springfield and Bloomington, but I can't find a Level 3 non-Tesla charger in either city.

All I can conclude from this is either a) I don't know how to find a Level 3 charger or b) there's a high inconvenience factor in using an electric vehicle in my part of the Midwest.
  #518  
Old 11-08-2019, 07:43 PM
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i buy “green power“ from my electric company. if they’re being honest, I’m about zero carbon emissions from my iPace. It’s nit exactly zero, because not all of my charging is at home
Given the the fundamental interconnectedness of all things, particularly the electrical grid, I'm not sure how they make sure only the green electron holes reach your house. I guess if we can arbitrarily pick and choose, I choose all of the green ones at my house, too, except I don't have to pay for them.
  #519  
Old 11-08-2019, 08:14 PM
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Given the the fundamental interconnectedness of all things, particularly the electrical grid, I'm not sure how they make sure only the green electron holes reach your house. I guess if we can arbitrarily pick and choose, I choose all of the green ones at my house, too, except I don't have to pay for them.
This is a bad argument and you should feel bad. If you bank in the same bank as some drug dealers and terrorists, when you go to withdraw some of your hard earned money, the actual paper bills might be the ones deposited by the criminals. Doesn't change the fact that you added clean money and removed money equal to or less than what you added.

Electric grids absolutely are subject to conservation laws. Really the way to view them is the same, except that the laws of physics mean the grid leaks, so the total withdrawals are always less than the deposits.

With that said, you aren't wrong in one respect - if a few people in your area pay extra for green power, it doesn't make any real difference. What makes a difference is either subsidizing green power, taxing dirty power, or technological advances making green power cheaper than dirty power. People doing things not in their own best interests (paying more for electricity just so they feel better) isn't a winner.

Last edited by SamuelA; 11-08-2019 at 08:14 PM.
  #520  
Old 11-08-2019, 08:41 PM
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All I can conclude from this is either a) I don't know how to find a Level 3 charger or b) there's a high inconvenience factor in using an electric vehicle in my part of the Midwest.
Not all EVs, just non-Tesla. Even though there are only two Superchargers on the way to Chicago, that's totally fine--even with the shorter-range Teslas, you need at most a 20 minute top-off in Bloomington.

I don't see any CHAdeMO or CCS stations on the St. Louis to Chicago route. They definitely need to improve that. Hopefully, the billions that Volkswagen will spend on charging infrastructure will fix that.

As YamatoTwinkie says, assuming you have a home charger, you don't have to worry at all about chargers close to home. Not once have I gone to a Supercharger <100 miles from home. There's just no point since I can easily drive in that radius given the basic range I have.
  #521  
Old 11-08-2019, 08:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Kent Clark View Post
.

All I can conclude from this is either a) I don't know how to find a Level 3 charger or b) there's a high inconvenience factor in using an electric vehicle in my part of the Midwest.
I find the maps in the internet to miss a lot of actual charging stations, including Level 3. The various apps seem more up to date, in my experience.

Between St Louis and Chicago I saw level three chargers in Effingham, Joliet, Woodbridge, Bloomington, and Springfield. it’s about 300 miles. One stop should be sufficient. I am actually surprised there aren’t more. The West Coast has more on the highways.
  #522  
Old 11-08-2019, 10:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Dr. Strangelove View Post
I don't see any CHAdeMO or CCS stations on the St. Louis to Chicago route. They definitely need to improve that. Hopefully, the billions that Volkswagen will spend on charging infrastructure will fix that.
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Originally Posted by Procrustus View Post
Between St Louis and Chicago I saw level three chargers in Effingham, Joliet, Woodbridge, Bloomington, and Springfield. it’s about 300 miles. One stop should be sufficient. I am actually surprised there aren’t more. The West Coast has more on the highways.
Thank you for acknowledging the problem. The Midwest is not the West Coast.

Door to door from my house i St. Louis to my son's apartment in Chicago is 320 miles. Now, assuming I can get 270 miles off a charge, I could drive to Joliet, where there seems to be a good choice of charging stations, get a high-power charge, then have plenty of power to get to Chicago, play around in Chicago, get back on the road to Joliet, top off and drive home.

But take a look at your maps. I-80, or worse, I-88 across northern Illinois. I-39 from Rockford to Bloomington. The most direct route from Springfield to Kansas City. There are a lot of literal charging deserts, and where there are chargers, they're Level 2, which means (so I'm told) plugging in for a long time to get even 50 additional miles.

It's not quite as bad as in 1919, when Eisenhower's cross-country trip planted the idea of interstate highways in his head, but you have to admit, a weekend trip to see the sights in Chicago, St. Louis, Minneapolis, etc. can require a good deal more forethought than most of us are used to.
  #523  
Old 11-09-2019, 06:03 AM
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It's not quite as bad as in 1919, when Eisenhower's cross-country trip planted the idea of interstate highways in his head, but you have to admit, a weekend trip to see the sights in Chicago, St. Louis, Minneapolis, etc. can require a good deal more forethought than most of us are used to.
So, as I understand it, here are the extra steps:

a. Set your EV to maximum charge a few hours or less before you depart.
b. Get in the car, put the navigation address in the HMI

It will then plan for you your charging stops and give you your route.

Is it perfect? Can you come up with a more optimal plan? Possibly, but it's not like planning the lewis and clark expedition. Which, ironically, covered a similar area to where you are noticing problems.
  #524  
Old 11-09-2019, 04:44 PM
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Thinking of an EV as a "replacement" for an ICE car is the like thinking of a laptop as a replacement for a desktop. I remember a time when there was significant cost / performance / longevity differences between the two. That has now largely disappeared, and in most instances it simply comes down to preference between the two for most who are not on the fringes or have unusual needs.

Different needs, different usage patterns and different cost / benefit structures.

It doesn't need to be so complicated - for a significant number of people - an EV will "work" with minor attitude adjustments, for others, they won't.

The area of overlap in usage and "fit" is going to get bigger as technology gets better though.
I disagree. I think EV's will completely replace ICE cars when the batteries improve. I don't think it will be an overlap.

And nobody is going to miss ICE cars beyond nostalgia.
  #525  
Old 11-09-2019, 06:08 PM
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So, as I understand it, here are the extra steps:

a. Set your EV to maximum charge a few hours or less before you depart.
b. Get in the car, put the navigation address in the HMI

It will then plan for you your charging stops and give you your route.

Is it perfect? Can you come up with a more optimal plan? Possibly, but it's not like planning the lewis and clark expedition. Which, ironically, covered a similar area to where you are noticing problems.
Didn't look at my examples, did you? OK, here are a few more. These are not theoretical - these are actual trips that I've made, and not unusual for us Midwestern clodkickers.

I'm using PlugShare.com as my source here. Maybe there's a more up to date resource.

My house to Kirksville, MO -194 miles each way. When I had a kid at Truman State University, I'd make this trip several miles a year. There are three possible routes. The two shortest ones have NO Level 3 chargers anywhere. The user comment on the Tesla charger said it charged at a rate of 25 miles per hour. The comments on the J1772 charger suggest roughly the same time. So I'd need to park my car for 4 hours to get the range for a 400 mile round tip.

My home to Osage Beach, Mo (aka, Lake of the Ozarks) 157-167 miles. There is a Tesla Supercharger at each end, but Lake of the Ozarks doesn't have a Level 3 supercharger. In fact, of the three more direct routes from my house to Osage Beach, there's exactly one CHAdeMo Level 3 charger outside of St. Louis along any of the routes.

My house to Memphis, TN 290 miles. Straight down I-55, should be a breeze. I see exactly one Tesla supercharger between St. Louis and Memphis, or a single Level 3 charger, just 30 miles south of St. Louis.

My house to DFW airport - 674 miles. By far the fastest route between my house and my wife's sister's home is I-44/U.S. 69/U.S. 75. There are chargers "coming soon" to Muskogee. but as of today, I'd have to drive from DFW to McAlester to top off, then to Springfield, MO, then to my house.

When people tell me all I need to do is plan my trip, here's what I'm hearing.

1) Plan to make more stops, and longer stops than just taking an off ramp to the closest gas station.

2) Prepare to eat a r-e-a-l-l-y long lunch. And maybe a r-e-a-l-l-y long dinner, as well.

3) Better yet, limit your car choices to whatever Tesla happens to be making at that time, because there are even fewer fast chargers for anything that isn't a Tesla.

This reminds me of the Mac/PC wars. Folks, the Mac is still a niche product.
  #526  
Old 11-09-2019, 06:15 PM
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If your point is that EVs are still a niche product, I don't disagree. I think the total number of EVs on the road in the US is a million or two, versus 250 million ICE vehicles. So no surprise that EV chargers are rare. (Except, of course, that any 110V outlet can be used for slow charging.)
  #527  
Old 11-09-2019, 07:19 PM
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Another factor. Tesla charges an average of $0.26 a kilo-watt hour at supercharger.

The 5-year average gasoline price is $2.70. (and unfortunately, in California where gas is expensive, so is electricity)

Traveling by supercharger, assuming 300 watt hours/mile (there are charging losses), this is equivalent in cost to a car that gets 34.6 miles per gallon.

Or you can go get a Rav4 hybrid, which has more competitive acceleration than previous hybrids, and is bigger inside, and has more ground clearance, and is a little cheaper, and is likely more reliable than Tesla - and get 40 mpg all the time. There's only a cost savings with an EV if you charge at home. Oh, and it has a tank range of 580 miles. (though in practice you only get 460 miles, the car starts to bully you with a flashing fuel light when you have 3 gallons left)

Huh.

Last edited by SamuelA; 11-09-2019 at 07:22 PM.
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Old 11-09-2019, 10:08 PM
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Or you can go get a Rav4 hybrid, which has more competitive acceleration than previous hybrids, and is bigger inside, and has more ground clearance, and is a little cheaper, and is likely more reliable than Tesla - and get 40 mpg all the time. There's only a cost savings with an EV if you charge at home. Oh, and it has a tank range of 580 miles. (though in practice you only get 460 miles, the car starts to bully you with a flashing fuel light when you have 3 gallons left)

Huh.
Agreed, as I said way back in Post #19. It may take decades for an adequate charging infrastructure to be built out in non-urban areas.

At the risk of telling another back-in-the day-story, in the 1980s I did some work with Ford on alternative fuel vehicles. (Chrysler and GM were doing their own research at the same time.) That was also the time period when T. Boone Pickens was beginning his attempts to convince the U.S. to convert to natural gas. Ford was prototyping a Crown Victoria to run on compressed natural gas. They kept running into range issues - no matter what the designers and engineers tried, either the tanks took up the entire trunk compartment (in a 1980s era Crown Victoria ) or the vehicle couldn't go 200 miles.

Y'all can figure out what happened after that. 30+ years later natural gas is a niche product, used mainly in local service fleets within a small radius of a charging station. 30+ years later, fuel cells still haven't worked out. Battery technology has turned out to be the best alternative, but there are still too many holes in the performance envelope. And ICE technology has improved in the last 30+ years.

But it's fun to watch technology advance. My 1980s cell phone (yes, I had one!) came in a bag, had a battery the size of my shoe, and barely gave 15 minutes of talk time.
  #529  
Old 11-09-2019, 10:48 PM
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Another factor. Tesla charges an average of $0.26 a kilo-watt hour at supercharger.

The 5-year average gasoline price is $2.70. (and unfortunately, in California where gas is expensive, so is electricity)

Traveling by supercharger, assuming 300 watt hours/mile (there are charging losses), this is equivalent in cost to a car that gets 34.6 miles per gallon.

Or you can go get a Rav4 hybrid, which has more competitive acceleration than previous hybrids, and is bigger inside, and has more ground clearance, and is a little cheaper, and is likely more reliable than Tesla - and get 40 mpg all the time. There's only a cost savings with an EV if you charge at home. Oh, and it has a tank range of 580 miles. (though in practice you only get 460 miles, the car starts to bully you with a flashing fuel light when you have 3 gallons left)

Huh.
And yet, the EPA estimates it costs $1,000 a year to fuel a RAV4 hybrid, versus $500 a year for a Model 3.

https://www.fueleconomy.gov/feg/Find...41307&id=41416

Last edited by Ravenman; 11-09-2019 at 10:49 PM.
  #530  
Old 11-10-2019, 12:09 AM
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Agreed, as I said way back in Post #19. It may take decades for an adequate charging infrastructure to be built out in non-urban areas.

At the risk of telling another back-in-the day-story, in the 1980s I did some work with Ford on alternative fuel vehicles. (Chrysler and GM were doing their own research at the same time.) That was also the time period when T. Boone Pickens was beginning his attempts to convince the U.S. to convert to natural gas. Ford was prototyping a Crown Victoria to run on compressed natural gas. They kept running into range issues - no matter what the designers and engineers tried, either the tanks took up the entire trunk compartment (in a 1980s era Crown Victoria ) or the vehicle couldn't go 200 miles.

Y'all can figure out what happened after that. 30+ years later natural gas is a niche product, used mainly in local service fleets within a small radius of a charging station. 30+ years later, fuel cells still haven't worked out. Battery technology has turned out to be the best alternative, but there are still too many holes in the performance envelope. And ICE technology has improved in the last 30+ years.

But it's fun to watch technology advance. My 1980s cell phone (yes, I had one!) came in a bag, had a battery the size of my shoe, and barely gave 15 minutes of talk time.
I think you're significantly overstating the infrastructure difficulties for EVs here.

Most people do most of their driving in shortish trips beginning and ending at their home. For those people, an ordinary 120V plug would on average maintain a charge for most and an 240V plug would on average maintain a charge for all. Even granting that people don't want to have to rent a vehicle every time they want to make a road trip (however infrequent), EVs are already entirely adequate for nearly every second/third car in a household where that household has off-street parking. According to this, 38% of households have 2 cars and 20% have 3 or more. With 9% having no vehicle at all (and ignoring the existence of 4+ car households), that makes some 47% of personal vehicles 2nd or 3rd cars.

Even if only half of those have or can easily get a power outlet at their parking space, that's nearly a quarter of all vehicles for which the charging infrastructure is perfectly adequate right now, with no additional charging infrastructure besides a few 240V plugs being added to garages for those who use their second vehicles too much for a 120V outlet to keep up. And that's without even considering those households whose driving patterns allow for an EV as their primary vehicle, or all the fleet vehicles that don't need long range.

That's without even thinking about L3 chargers. As the L3 charging network is built out, the percentage of vehicles that could feasibly be EVs will of course increase. This isn't remotely like CNG, or fuel cells, or whatever other niche alternative fuel source you want to try to compare it to. Electrical infrastructure is already ubiquitous. It's not going to take decades for EVs to be a feasible choice for a large percentage of vehicles, because they already are. They are still relatively expensive, potentially difficult as a household's primary vehicle, and not at all good for people who drive significantly more than average, but they are far more than niche.
  #531  
Old 11-10-2019, 02:02 AM
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And yet, the EPA estimates it costs $1,000 a year to fuel a RAV4 hybrid, versus $500 a year for a Model 3.

https://www.fueleconomy.gov/feg/Find...41307&id=41416
Don't be lazy. Check the math I gave. If it is right it's right. EPA must be assuming mostly or all at home charging.
  #532  
Old 11-10-2019, 02:35 AM
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I actually don't. But I think this is the relevant law for time of use meters installed in common areas or where there are HOAs.

In the Bay Area now, it's a bit of an exaggeration, but Teslas and Bolts are like camry's or honda accords. They are everywhere. The Model 3 is pretty much the best commuter car available - cheap energy, easy driving, high performance, latest tech with autopilot making traffic no problem, chargers everywhere, HOV lane access, etc.

If you're in the bay area and you are buying a car that is used for commuting, if you aren't buying a Model 3 or Bolt, you've made a mistake.
ehhh, I don't know about that, the HOV lane is full of cheaters. Bridge tolls (I have a 2- bridge commute) and fuel savings are good, though.

And there are other good plug-ins!
  #533  
Old 11-10-2019, 06:21 AM
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Don't be lazy. Check the math I gave. If it is right it's right. EPA must be assuming mostly or all at home charging.
The issue isn’t your manipulation of numbers, it is your manipulation of numbers.
  #534  
Old 11-10-2019, 06:36 AM
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EPA must be assuming mostly or all at home charging.
You mean the EPA is assuming people use the cheapest and most convenient way to refuel their vehicles? What a curious assumption.



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  #535  
Old 11-10-2019, 07:20 AM
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Most people do most of their driving in shortish trips beginning and ending at their home.
And a vehicle that is only adequate for most of their trips is inadequate. Especially when most vehicles do not have dedicated home parking near a plug.

Last edited by Ruken; 11-10-2019 at 07:21 AM.
  #536  
Old 11-10-2019, 07:31 AM
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They kept running into range issues - no matter what the designers and engineers tried, either the tanks took up the entire trunk compartment (in a 1980s era Crown Victoria ) or the vehicle couldn't go 200 miles.
And the refueling time was slow. You could pay big money for a home compressor, assuming you even has has at home, but I found their reliability wanting. And filling at a station, while lightning compared to EV charging, is still too slow.

There was another push for NGVs with the shale boom, and we did see some improvements, e.g. conformable tanks, better small compressors. And Pickens reactivated briefly before he died. But the smaller the vehicle, the harder it is to have NG make sense. Opposite of how it's harder to make a larger EV.
  #537  
Old 11-10-2019, 08:55 AM
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And a vehicle that is only adequate for most of their trips is inadequate. Especially when most vehicles do not have dedicated home parking near a plug.
Did you not read the rest of my post? If a household has multiple vehicles, the second one doesn't need to have the range to do roadtrips.
  #538  
Old 11-10-2019, 10:23 AM
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Did you not read the rest of my post? If a household has multiple vehicles, the second one doesn't need to have the range to do roadtrips.
And how did you arrive at that statement?
  #539  
Old 11-10-2019, 10:33 AM
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And how did you arrive at that statement?
Seriously? Because most households don't do road trips in two vehicles simultaneously? Therefore they only need one with longer range? Therefore the second one that was purchased because it was needed for a second commute and dragging the kids from soccer to music lessons only needs enough range for the second commute and music lessons?
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Old 11-10-2019, 11:00 AM
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And a vehicle that is only adequate for most of their trips is inadequate.
That's a ridiculous statement. No vehicle is adequate for all trips. I can't drive to England, I have to take a plane. I can't pack all my belongings in my car, so next time I move, I need to rent a truck or hire a mover. My car can't take me home from a bar after I've had a few drinks, or after I've been sedated for a medical test. I can't drive to the middle of a lake, I need another type of vehicle for that.

So the real question is, does your new car need to do everything your current gas-powered car can do? Or will you accept something that's better in some respects, but worse in others? Many people today make the latter choice. Some people buy 2-seater sports cars, even though it can't carry their entire family. Some people buy small cars for commuting, even if it means they need to also keep their SUV for towing their boat. Others buy an SUV that can tow their boat, and also use it for commuting, and live with poor gas mileage. Everything is a compromise, and electric vehicles are a reasonable compromise for many people.
  #541  
Old 11-10-2019, 11:16 AM
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That's a ridiculous statement. No vehicle is adequate for all trips. I can't drive to England, I have to take a plane. I can't pack all my belongings in my car, so next time I move, I need to rent a truck or hire a mover. My car can't take me home from a bar after I've had a few drinks, or after I've been sedated for a medical test. I can't drive to the middle of a lake, I need another type of vehicle for that.

So the real question is, does your new car need to do everything your current gas-powered car can do? Or will you accept something that's better in some respects, but worse in others? Many people today make the latter choice. Some people buy 2-seater sports cars, even though it can't carry their entire family. Some people buy small cars for commuting, even if it means they need to also keep their SUV for towing their boat. Others buy an SUV that can tow their boat, and also use it for commuting, and live with poor gas mileage. Everything is a compromise, and electric vehicles are a reasonable compromise for many people.
Well, but it's not ridiculous to want your car to do the uncommon but fairly normal trips that people tend to make a few times a year - 300 miles to grandma's at Thanksgiving, or 450 miles to take the kid off to college, or the two-day drive to your vacation destination. I'm pretty sure that's the sort of thing Ruken was talking about. However, I had also addressed it in the post he was responding to, which made his response confusing to me.
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Old 11-10-2019, 12:48 PM
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Seriously? Because most households don't do road trips in two vehicles simultaneously? Therefore they only need one with longer range? Therefore the second one that was purchased because it was needed for a second commute and dragging the kids from soccer to music lessons only needs enough range for the second commute and music lessons?
Seriously, because having multiple cars often means multiple drivers. Not everyone lives in a commune and travels together on the love bus.

When I was a teenager living at home I had my own life to live and it often involved road trips independent of my parents.

This is why I keep harping on battery technology. It's GOING to change. The EV group keeps talking as if it isn't. 8000 tiny batteries welded together is not the future. They're the batteries currently available and fill the niche market's needs reasonably well but I don't see them as the battery that replaces the ICE car.

It's probably a good thing we don't have the next generation battery available now. I think the changeover to EV's is going to be an evolutionary event comparable to cell phones and the infrastructure needs to be ahead of it.

Last edited by Magiver; 11-10-2019 at 12:49 PM.
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Old 11-10-2019, 01:55 PM
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This is why I keep harping on battery technology. It's GOING to change. The EV group keeps talking as if it isn't.
Of course it'll change, but it's already good enough that a significant percentage of households can replace at least one vehicle with an EV without incurring any inconvenience. I don't know what that percentage is exactly, I grant you that it's 100%, but it's way higher than the current rate of ownership. I'd guess at least 30% of US households.
  #544  
Old 11-10-2019, 02:00 PM
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I'm so jealous of these people who get to take road trips so often that they need a special road trip car. I'm serious. I tried to take a 1000 miles road trip this coming Thanksgiving, but then flight prices dropped, and I just couldn't justify it. Maybe when the kid is a bit older.

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Another factor. Tesla charges an average of $0.26 a kilo-watt hour at supercharger.

The 5-year average gasoline price is $2.70. (and unfortunately, in California where gas is expensive, so is electricity)

Traveling by supercharger, assuming 300 watt hours/mile (there are charging losses), this is equivalent in cost to a car that gets 34.6 miles per gallon.

Or you can go get a Rav4 hybrid, which has more competitive acceleration than previous hybrids, and is bigger inside, and has more ground clearance, and is a little cheaper, and is likely more reliable than Tesla - and get 40 mpg all the time. There's only a cost savings with an EV if you charge at home. Oh, and it has a tank range of 580 miles. (though in practice you only get 460 miles, the car starts to bully you with a flashing fuel light when you have 3 gallons left)

Huh.
Most EV charging is at home. I guess if I was some road trip superman, who was off driving 3 weeks per month it might matter. Most nights of the week, where is your car? And maybe for you it is at a different hookup or whatever, but for the vast swaths of suburban middle America, it is sitting at home.

In 14 months of ownership my car has 12,859 miles, and has used 3068kW of power. If all of that charging had been at home it would have cost me $250. At $2.70/gallon, I'd need a car getting 135+ MPG to match the cost. Even something getting 55 MPG would cost me $630 in gas for the same distance. I've actually spent less on charging than $250, because I've gotten about $40 in free charging between work and Tesla referral rewards miles. Compared to my old car (26 MPG), I've already saved more than the cost of installing a high voltage charging outlet.

The more you drive, the more an EV makes sense. That is assuming: less than 250 miles per day, most days start and end from home.

Our family's EV is our primary car. Like I said, in 14 months nearly 13,000 miles. Our secondary car, an old Chevy Suburban, has had 5000 miles put on in 24 months, and that includes the 1000 mile trip to get it home.

Re: renting a car for roadtrips. Four times in the last five or six years we've rented a car for a road trip. Not because of the EV, but because we needed something that could seat seven (pre-Suburban) or because the road trip didn't start at home, but someplace we flew. Each time it was no big deal. I went to the Costco Travel website, put in my dates, and picked the full size SUV or minivan. Each time it cost about $500 for a week. For the local rentals I went to the office a few miles away and got the car. For the remote ones it was waiting for me at the airport.

If I didn't need a seven passenger car, it would have been much less than $500. For hypothetical, renting a Ford Fusion for the week of spring break in March will cost me $210. For a once a year road trip, that is not a big deal. That is lots of miles I'm not putting on my own car. If we decide to do another seven passenger road trip from home, I'm really not sure if I'd take my Suburban, or rent one.

If you take 400 mile road trips every month, to places that don't have convenient fast charging, then don't only drive an EV. If you drive 300+ miles every day, then don't use an EV. If you only can afford $5000 for car, then unless a used Leaf fits into your life, don't get an EV. If you want to take frequent road trips with convenient supercharging, but can't afford a Tesla, then don't get an EV. If you have no place to charge, then don't get an EV. If you think rolling coal is funny, then don't get an EV.

You should consider an EV if you plan to spend $20,000 (used) or $35,000+ (new) on your next car; if you have a place where home charging is available or can be installed easily; if most of your miles are commuting or around town; if you don't mind taking 30 minutes for lunch on road trips (on those seven people road trips a gas stop takes 40 minutes, and we stop much more often than necessary for just gas).

And finally, not that anybody has read this far, Teslas are American muscle cars. If you like something that launches very hard, but cruises comfortably, a dual motor Tesla will satisfy. Even a non-performance dual motor will do 0-60 in under 4.5 seconds. Forget all of the other reasons to buy an EV; the driving experience alone is a very strong argument in favor of them.
  #545  
Old 11-10-2019, 02:24 PM
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Seriously? Because most households don't do road trips in two vehicles simultaneously? Therefore they only need one with longer range? Therefore the second one that was purchased because it was needed for a second commute and dragging the kids from soccer to music lessons only needs enough range for the second commute and music lessons?
Please don't think I'm dissing electric vehicles or the people that own them. I think it's a great idea.

My Wife and I need two very capable 4x4's six months out of the year. We can't trade or share vehicles. It doesn't work that way. We each need one. Every day 6 months out of the year.

As far as long road trips go (we did a 4000 mile one last spring), we generally take the newer car. One thousand mile days are not unusual for a trip. An extra hour in route would really, really suck.

Now before anyone says, of course, for some people it's not there yet. I just want to set a reminder to stop telling people that an EV WILL work. All you have to do is trade cars, combine trips ad-nauseum. It would not work for us. Not at all.
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  #546  
Old 11-10-2019, 02:34 PM
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Now before anyone says, of course, for some people it's not there yet. I just want to set a reminder to stop telling people that an EV WILL work. All you have to do is trade cars, combine trips ad-nauseum. It would not work for us. Not at all.
It sounds like an EV would not work for you and your wife. I get that. Before I bought an EV, I thought "what if I want to drive to Spokane, or San Francisco?" Then I realized I haven't taken a trip of that distance in 10 years. If I want to do s such a trip in the next 10 years, I guess I'll figure something out. For us, it would be has easy as taking the wife's Prius Prime. If that didn't work, (or she upgrades to a full EV) maybe we fly, or stop for charging, or rent a car. Once every 10 years or so I can endure some hassle in exchange for the daily bliss of driving an EV.

Not everyone is like us, and many people have very good reasons for not getting an EV. As others have said, I think they would work pretty good for a sizeable percentage of Americans.
  #547  
Old 11-10-2019, 03:14 PM
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Please don't think I'm dissing electric vehicles or the people that own them. I think it's a great idea.

My Wife and I need two very capable 4x4's six months out of the year. We can't trade or share vehicles. It doesn't work that way. We each need one. Every day 6 months out of the year.

As far as long road trips go (we did a 4000 mile one last spring), we generally take the newer car. One thousand mile days are not unusual for a trip. An extra hour in route would really, really suck.

Now before anyone says, of course, for some people it's not there yet. I just want to set a reminder to stop telling people that an EV WILL work. All you have to do is trade cars, combine trips ad-nauseum. It would not work for us. Not at all.
Sure, but you're a pretty well established edge case. Most ICE vehicles won't work for you, either.

You know, this is the sort of thing the OP is actually complaining about - I make what ought to be an uncontroversial point, that most households with multiple vehicles don't need both vehicles to have range beyond what current EVs have - and multiple people crawl out of the woodwork claiming that no that can't be right because when they were in college they went on a road trip at the same time their parents were vacationing and oh hey me and my wife both commute 150 miles a day in opposite directions.

That's nice. All I was saying was that EVs could replace some significant number of ICEs right now without any additional charging infrastructure beyond power outlets in garages. That EVs are already "there" for a big enough slice of the market that they could have 10-20% market share in their current form without even looking at L3 chargers and no one would have to make any sacrifices. Add in a reasonably thorough L3 network (and they're even being built out in my neck of the woods, which is one of the last places you'd expect them) and that number is much, much higher.
  #548  
Old 11-10-2019, 06:11 PM
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The issue isn’t your manipulation of numbers, it is your manipulation of numbers.
Then prove it. I gave numbers. So far you have given nothing but hot air.

My claim : there are not cost savings in fuel if you don't have a place to charge it. Like most apartment dwellers and even duplex renters.
  #549  
Old 11-10-2019, 06:12 PM
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The issue isn’t your manipulation of numbers, it is your manipulation of numbers.
Then prove it. I gave numbers. So far you have given nothing but hot air.

My claim : there are not cost savings in fuel if you don't have a place to charge it. Like most apartment dwellers and even duplex renters.

This is approximately 20% of Americans. Surprisingly small, actually.
  #550  
Old 11-10-2019, 06:31 PM
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I don't think even the most enthusiastic of EV supporters in this thread think it makes any sense to purchase an EV if you can't do home charging, so it seems a bit odd to focus on that case.
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