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San Diego
Electric Car Insider Magazine
Interests: electric cars, electric motorcycles, electric bikes, electric vehicles
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OP> “ The authors assert that “zero emissions” BEVs will not replace IC engines in commercial transport to any significant degree because of the weight, size and cost of the batteries required. ” After buying a Tesla Model S (265 mile range) Model 3 (315 mi), Jaguar I-Pace (220 mi), Hyundai Kona Electric (258 mi) I can confidently say that I will never purchase another petroleum burning vehicle. I’ve driven long distances on both coasts in all these vehicles. Pure electrics work just fine, and the TCO is lower than comparable gas vehicles. Now it’s just a matter of awareness and education (and volume production).
This is an exciting milestone, and I applaud the effort, but Electrify America’s production chargers along I-90 in NY have been derated. A recent charge of my Jaguar I-Pace on a 350kW Charger was at only 25kW, less than EA’s 150kW chargers which managed 75kW on the same trip. More concerning is the reliability of the chargers. Several of the newly installed chargers were out of service. Hope they get that fixed soon.
Clever symbolism in the locations for the intro. A shame I missed them by two weeks, was just at Niagara for an Electric Car Guest Drive. Bravo, Porsche, on the development of an exciting addition to the EV line-up.
Exciting development. A viable Li metal battery will be a decisive win for electric transportation.
A good move for GM, but unclear from the article if the charge station status info will be available within the car’s navigation system, as it is with Tesla’s huge nav screen, or just on the mobile app. Hope this signals future investment in charging infrastructure by GM. They’ll need to control their own destiny with tight integration with in-dash nav to have a competitive EV offering. Long distance travel in a Tesla is effortless.
Encouraging to see Audi deliver a long range battery electric car. More encouraging to see them produce models with a variety of battery sized and price points. But shorter range versions make public charging infrastructure and good navigation systems all the more important. VW Group’s Electrify America is delivering, but in somewhat halting fashion. On a recent trip an i-Pace from Buffalo to the Catskills and then to Detroit, many of the brand new chargers (only weeks old) did not work, or were balky, or worked at curtailed speeds. I’ve never seen that level of outage at Supercharger stations. Hopefully as more of these Audis are deployed, the VW’s urgency to make the network reliable increases. The success of Tesla’s Supercharger network appears all the more impressive.
It will be a while before Tesla has any credible competition. I’m sitting in my new Jaguar I-Pace at an Electrify America charger whose nameplate says 350kW. All impressive brands. Neither, either independently or together, holds a candle to my Model S or Model 3 with the Supercharger network. I’ll be pleased when someone makes a credible contender. Tesla has an incredible lead.
Appears that the Honda e will compete with the new electric Mini. It may be slim pickings though. To see how 115-125 mile EVs sell, the sales numbers for the Ford Focus electric may be instructive: 516 for 2018 (discontinued mid-year after selling in the double digits per mo). The even less capable Honda Clarity Electric and Fiat 500e are in double digits for each month this year. Chevy Bolt, Nissan Leaf Plus, Hyundai Kona, Kia Niro, 2020 Soul EV, Tesla Model 3 will all go nearly twice the distance on a charge. Hard to see this being a car that brings people onto the dealer lot the way the heavily discounted Fit EV did several years ago.
I like the Mini styling, driving dynamics and configuration, but this model, with only 32kWh battery, has incredibly disappointing range. The 2020 Soul EV got a 64kWh battery to bring it on par with the 240 mile Niro and compete with the 258 mile Kona and 226 mile Leaf. Even the tiny Renault Zoe got 52kWh, also join the 200+ mile club. The far more capable Tesla Model 3 will continue to walk away with 3/4 of the EV market in this price range. Hope the new BMW leadership recognizes that 200+ miles is the new standard for EVs. People want EVs. They just don’t want EVs from companies with insufficient vision, motivation and capability to deliver a competitive product.
Fun retro styling. I am wondering if it will be competition/replacement for the Fiat 500e or VW eGolf. I guess it will come down to price and volume.
Here’s another data point, posted on GCR and reported by PV Magazine: “The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP) Board of Commissioners is expected to approve a two-phase 25-year power purchase agreement (PPA) priced at 1.997¢/kWh for 400 MWac / 530 MWdc of solar electricity, and 1.3¢/kWh for electricity from a 400 MW / 800 MWh energy storage system. The project, the Eland Solar & Storage Center, would be the cheapest solar rate in the country, and one of the cheapest in the world.”
The OP mentioned nothing about operating costs (information which seems to be hard to find about the Bloom Servers). I was curious about what electricity produced by these servers would cost. As Harvey points out, the original “surplus” renewable electricity will have to be very cheap. Harvey didn’t supply supporting data for his speculations, so whether it’s $0.025 or $0.0005 will be left to people willing to dig up reliable sources and make their own analysis. The pricing and reliable availability (capacity factor of the electrolyzer) of the “surplus” electricity will determine the viability of H2 fed Bloom Servers. I’d love to see some data on the floor pricing of that “surplus” RE.
NREL study breaks down cost of electricity produced with hydrogen from electrolysis: Models efficiency at 54.3kWh/kg.
Would hydrogen produced from “surplus” electricity be economically competitive if the electrolyzer equipment used to produce it was only operating at partial capacity? Would it be cost competitive with pumped hydro or one of the other newer gravity storage schemes now entering production? Given the low round-trip efficiency, it seems unlikely.
The timing on this optimistic IEA hydrogen report could hardly be worse. FCV drivers in Norway and California are currently using ICE loaner cars because the fueling infrastructure has been crippled by explosions in those regions. Battery electrics and plug-in hybrids don’t face the same single point of failure problem on fuel delivery. Anyone previously considering FCVs for daily transportation must surely pause to consider if H2 can be considered a reliable transportation fuel.
> Tesla cars are very expensive to insure Sadly true. Tesla is working on a new insurance product and factory owned body shops to address that issue.
Buried in that butter-smooth marketing speak was this insight: “sales methods with a new approach will also be needed. ” Maybe the slumbering giant is waking up.
Hyper cars are kinetic art + engineering. Dr. Frank Walliser, Porsche 918 Spyder Project Manager explained to me at the LA Auto Show: “It is to show what is possible”. As Tesla has demonstrated, establishing an aspirational pinnacle inspires and creates demand.
Bravo, BC. This is what leadership looks like.
No mention of the cost efficiencies of two extra fuel cells vs simply fitting a larger battery. As batteries drop below $100/kW, that will be a hard act to beat with an extra fuel cell or two, along with attendant pumps and storage tank. I imagine they must be thinking about large vehicles that have room for really large tanks, like Semis.
Toyota knows what they’re doing, certainly. It’s just not necessarily in the customer’s or public policy interest, it’s in Toyota’s interest. That’s capitalism. If Toyota has “THE” answer, why is every other truck manufacturer except Nicola producing battery electric or PHEV trucks? (Nicola, perhaps tellingly, recently announced a BEV). Freightliner, Cummins, Peterbilt, Fuso, Mack, and dare I say Tesla in Davemart’s presence, know what they are doing too. I think there’s a better case to be made for H2 for drayage tractors than for cars, but at $14-16 per kg, that’s a steep grade.
The Beaver has a 2,100 lb useful load, so with a 1,000 lb battery, they’ll get 30 minutes of flight with a 30 min reserve. That may seem unworkable, but that’s the kind of mission they fly. Other interviews with McDougall confirm that. They have longer turn times at the dock, enabling practical fast charging. As battery energy density improves, they’ll be able to service more of their routes and add some seats back for the shorter hops.
Certainly solar is only part of the solution. But if your grid mix is less than ideal, a combo EV/PV purchase moves you closer to the goal, and saves you money. Payback periods for residential can be as low as 6 years now if you’re a savvy consumer and get competitive installation bids. Important point is that a consumer can make a personal choice. The aggregate of these personal choices can move the needle on air quality.
Surprising to see Mini playing catch-up after have such an early lead with the original Mini Electric.
Another authoritative argument for the removal of coal from the electric grid energy mix, and for purchasing solar with that EV.