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Dr. Strange Love - you still don't get it, do you? VW is the scapegoat. As this article so clearly explains, VW is actually the least offender. And the real scandal is the incompetence and/or corruption that has clearly been rampant within the authorities whose job it is to protect us and the environment. I don't know whether it is because they were hopelessly incompetent, or because they were lobbied and perhaps paid by manufacturers, that the tests are so utterly incapable of measuring the only RELEVANT thing - namely how the vehicles behave in the real world. But it certainly is telling that most cars emit more than 1000% of what they are supposed to. Any rudimentary attempt to test almost any single vehicle in somewhat more realistic conditions would have sufficed to arouse suspicion. The goal of this regulation is after all to prevent people from getting sick and dying prematurely because the air they breathe is so polluted - NOT to satisfy some random set of conditions in a lab. And the regulator has done an incomprehensibly bad job to ensure the rules they came up with relevant and checking that manufacturers complied. And THAT is what ought to be the fallout from dieselgate. I am so thankful that someone is FINALLY saying some critical words about the role of government in this mess. I have been saying since the scandal broke that this is where the true scandal and important problem is located. Even if VW had been the worst offender rather than the least, this would remain true.
It will be very interesting to see - in Paris - what happens to torque and power in next year's LEAF and ZOE. A facelift for the LEAF is widely expected which should bring better looks and improved aero, along with an upgraded battery pack with 40 kWh user-exploitable (from ~46 kWh gross capacity), and the ZOE allegedly gets that same pack. But I haven't seen any information yet on torque and power levels. Presumably these will also rise, since that is quite easy and inexpensive to do with the new, more powerful pack. Unless Nissan and Renault increase torque and power the Bolt/Ampera-e is probably the king in 2017. But if the Japanese and French brands get close on performance, it will be a three-way battle - with the ZOE likely being the best car, but only available in Europe. I reckon the new LEAF will be very close to the Bolt's range in the conditions where you need it - travelling on highways at near-constant, high speed. The current LEAF already has a much lower coefficient of drag than the Bolt, and with better aero (as well as better looks!) the LEAF will be much closer to the Bolt in these conditions than the 46 vs 60 kWh capacities would lead one to believe. For someone like me, who doesn't go on long trips very often, the lower price of LEAF/ZOE may then win the day. The ZOE also has by far the best onboard charger. I wish Nissan would equip the LEAF with one as well. Today, ZOE owners can charge at 43 kW for less than half the price per minute than my LEAF has to pay for CHAdeMO - and I have hardly seen rates above 40 kW...
This certainly looks promising. The advent of commercial Li-S cells with decent cyclability would truly revolutionize batteries and be of huge service not only in transportation, but also in grid buffering (whether distributed in people's homes or at utilities) and therefore in enabling the greening of electricity everywhere. Cyclability is clearly worse than for current li-ion batteries in these results, but that probably won't matter very much. Making a battery pack of the same size and weight as current li-ion packs, but with 8-10 times the capacity, would still cost much *less*. So even after losing a lot of capacity the "original price per remaining kWh" beats current technology hands down. A car like the LEAF could pack 150 kWh in the existing space with room to spare, and weight saved, and after 50% capacity fade still have an extremely useable 75 kWh left to play with. Note: I am very far from an expert. I feel it necessary to mention it since I have noticed that the standard of comments on this site is rather elevated compared to most EV forums I read..!
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Aug 14, 2016