Aug 10

Traveling Long Distances with the Chevy Volt

 

By Ashyia Hill

Editor’s Note: Ashyia contacted GM-Volt a few weeks ago, asked to post, got a few pointers from us on the topic, and submitted this yesterday.

For now, road tripping with a Chevy Volt is similar to taking a road trip with many other cars, in that you’ll probably find yourself relying on its ability to run on gasoline, rather than its ability to use electricity. You’ll still get decent fuel economy, but the goal down the proverbial road is to make it possible to take an entire long-distance trip on battery power alone.

With that said, the future is rapidly approaching, and more and more Volt owners are able to take long distance trips, plugging in as able at charging stations that are popping up across America. While some gas stations, garages, cities, grocery stores, and hotels have independent charging stations of their own, an easier way to find out where you can charge your vehicle is through the ChargePoint America program.

As many of you know, this program through Coulomb Technologies uses money from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act to create new charging stations in select areas around the country. The goal of the program, according to its Web site is “to accelerate the development and production of electric vehicles to substantially reduce petroleum consumption, reduce greenhouse gas production, and create jobs.”


Not exactly taking a long trip, but charging nonetheless, actress Alexandra Paul plugs in her Volt at the new GM Torrance Advanced Technology Center (ATC) in Torrance, Calif.

Thus far, the ChargePoint American program works out of Boston, MA; Sacramento, CA; Bellevue/Redmond, WA; San Jose/San Francisco Bay, CA; Los Angeles, CA; Austin, TX; Southern Michigan; New York, NY; Washington DC and Baltimore; and Orlando/Tampa, FL. If you’re planning to travel in any of these areas, you can use ChargePoint to find and use a charging station along your way.

If you have a smart phone, this is even easier, as you can use the ChargePoint app to get online and check out not only where the closest charging station is but also whether or not it’s currently in use. The program will also provide you with the ability to get a notification when your car is done charging and to avoid charging stations that are damaged or in repair, thus unusable at the moment.

In order to use the charging stations, you’ll need to apply for a ChargePass card and a monthly access plan. Soon, you’ll be able to use any Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) card to authorize a session or to pay remotely for charging sessions. You can sign up for your card at mychargepoint.net, which will also allow you to get text notifications if your car charging session is interrupted or if your vehicle is completely charged.

Right now, charging stations are free to use, which is part of the effort to encourage more people to buy cars like the Volt. You’ll still need a ChargePass to unlock the station, though, so it’s a good idea to apply for one of these cards before you take your Volt on a long distance trip.

Outside of the ChargePoint Network

More and more hotels, in particular, are installing charging points for their customers, as well. These aren’t shown in the ChargePoint network because they’re operating outside of it. However, planning your trip around these hotels can give you access to charging stations overnight or during the day, so you can top off with a Level I charge or possibly a Level II charge.

According to hospitalityworldnetwork.com, some of the latest hotels to offer free or paid charging stations for their customers include:

• The Ritz-Carlton, Charlotte
• Parc 55 Wyndham, San Francisco
• Hilton San Francisco Financial District Hotel
• Starwood Hotels and Resorts’ Element Hotels
• Grand Geneva Resort, Lake Geneva
• Hamilton Park Hotel and Conference Center, New Jersey
• Memphis Peabody Hotel

Beyond these few, other hotels across the country are randomly jumping on the bandwagon, though it’s still too early to assume anything. Best bet is to call ahead to hotels on your route to see if they have or will soon have a car charging station available. If not, ask if they’ll consider installing one for valuable customers like you in the future!

Google Maps Application

As the owner of a Volt, if you’re not already, you’re about to become very good friends with Google maps. The long-time supporter of electric vehicles has started showing charging stations for the Volt, as well as other types of electric cars, on its citywide maps. Just use maps.google.com to search for “electric car charging stations” in the city you’re in or are traveling to. To get these maps as accurate as possible, Google teamed up with the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, which supplied the company with a growing list of available charging stations.


In the works: More infrastructure to make “happy motoring” literally true for the first time in history.

As is the case with ChargePoint, many other public charging stations are free for now because they’re another amenity to attract customers to high-end hotels, other businesses, or the bill is still being taken care of by grants to encourage more people to buy electric vehicles. However, eventually, it’s expected you’ll need to pay to charge your Volt at various stations. In these cases, you might find it advantageous to set aside a credit card for your charging purposes, just as you would set one aside to pay for gas. Then, you can pay it off monthly while keeping tabs on a cost of operation. Eventually, some speculate that credit cards will offer cash-back and points perks for car-charging purchases just like they do now for gas purchases.

As you can see, traveling long distances in a Chevy Volt takes a bit of planning, but a growing list of resources maximize the EREV’s ability to run on grid power. Tools like Google maps and ChargePoint America can give you access to the latest information on where you can keep your charge topped off throughout your trip.

What do you think, Volt drivers? Have you attempted traveling long distances and used any of these resources? Can you add to our resource list? Are you optimistic about the possibilities for all-electric travel in coming years? How do we maximize our growing clout as a constituency to make more solutions come along faster?

This entry was posted on Wednesday, August 10th, 2011 at 5:55 am and is filed under General. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

COMMENTS: 78


  1. 1
    Loboc

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    Aug 10th, 2011 (7:49 am)

    Hi Ashyia!

    For a transition vehicle like Volt I think that remote charging stations are nice but more of a pain than useful. When I get my Volt, I envision using home or work charging. When I’m out on the open road I’m thinking I won’t be stopping for charging.

    Time will tell if road trip charging will be useful for a 30mi AER car.


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    Texas

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    Aug 10th, 2011 (8:32 am)

    I am very optimistic that we will soon be driving long distances using only electric power. Well, not “we” as in the US but soon in Israel, Denmark, Australia and China.

    What am I talking about? Just Google Better Place and then search the many videos by Shai Agassi.

    In less than 5 months Israel will start selling their all electric, swap capable cars to paying customers. The system is currently in full testing and has passed many milestones including the opening of the first commercial swap station and completing installation of hundreds of charging stations.

    Better Place Denmark has already announced the pricing and will be taking pre-orders for their service shortly.

    My prediction is that if China goes through with their current plans of installing this service throughout Southern China, the rest of the developed world must follow, or risk falling behind. Who wants to compete against a nation that has electrified transportation using an outdated fossil fuel powered infrastructure, just as Peak Oil results in unreasonable fuel prices?

    Of course, this Utopian dream can only happen if the global economy can be prevented from slipping down that unaccommodating resource bell curve. If the decline comes too quickly it may be better to spend our time learning how to ride horses and work draft animals.


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    Eco_Turbo

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    Aug 10th, 2011 (8:41 am)

    Always nice to see a hot! woman with a Volt.


  4. 4
    Bonaire

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    Aug 10th, 2011 (8:58 am)

    Better Place seems viable especially where gasoline is quite high in price and drivers don’t have 40-mile one-way commutes.

    The idea of a battery pack that is quick-replaced at a station is quite good if the infrastructure is right. Instead of a very high tech storage battery bolted into the underside of the car, like the Volt, Better Place will quick-swap your batteries with newly charged ones. Those batteries won’t be the $10K+ with thermal mangement types like on the Volt.

    I don’t think we could do this in the USA, though. We drive too far for the implemention and don’t have as much disposable time to get battery packs replaced on the road. Our solution is Level-3 charging with hope for a 50-mile or more charge in 1-hour as a possible goal. That only works for a car with 250 miles of AER driving (ie. Tesla S). To do a longer road trip, a BEV can only work with an infrastructure rolled out.

    So, get a Volt. on-board charging of an EREV needs nothing like a Better Place solution. Better Place is meant to deliver lower-cost BEV to city/regional drivers and not for 15,000+ mile per year drivers.

    I know most of us would not use Better Place if we had to get a battery pack replaced every day unless it was done at work for a very low cost. I can see buying a $18,000 BEV with a $4.00 daily swap charge to get a 50 mile battery “recharge” (ie. similar cost to driving a 50 mpg turbo-diesel econo-car). Over there, where gasoline and diesel prices are upwards of $8.50-9.00 per gallon, it makes more sense.

    EREV seems to continue to be the only way to go.


  5. 5
    Mark Z

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    Aug 10th, 2011 (9:47 am)

    Great article. With ChargePoint, the future is here today. When signing up with SPX for a CT500 at the home, a RFID tag was included for the ChargePoint charge stations. The home unit does NOT need the tag. I have enjoyed charging while shopping at Fashion Island and South Coast Plaza. The result was always more money spent shopping than filling up at a gas station. The pleasure of shopping is far more enjoyable than the task of filling up the tank.

    On the interstate, restaurants, museums, roadside attractions, national and regional parks, and all gift shops should consider installing charge stations to encourage a stop. Since an EV costs more than an equivalent ICE vehicle, the possibility of the EV owner spending more while charging during a visit should be considered.


  6. 6
    montgoss

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    Aug 10th, 2011 (9:58 am)

    I did a little Googlin’ the other day and found out a parking garage downtown in my city had installed several charging stations. This doesn’t show up on Google Maps or Coulomb’s maps. It is on this site though: http://carstations.com/

    From those maps, it seems Nissan is installing charging stations at most of their dealerships. I see 3 listed around me on that map (although the site could be wrong).


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    George S. Bower

     

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    Aug 10th, 2011 (10:02 am)

    Texas,

    Welcome back Texas!!
    Better place is definitely a cool concept.


  8. 8
    George S. Bower

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    Aug 10th, 2011 (10:14 am)

    I guess I must put in my vote once again for a fast charging port on the Volt. (I know, I know most everyone here thinks it’s dumb but it is not). For purists who keep track of their MPGe charging more is necessary to keep that MPGe up closer to the all electric MPGe of about 90.

    http://www.voltstats.net/

    current fleet avg:

    %EV=69
    MPGe=63

    current high
    %EV=99.4
    MPGe=89


  9. 9
    Nelson

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    Aug 10th, 2011 (10:15 am)

    Besides hotels/motels I find the best places for public charging stations are those that inherently require long term parking. Beaches, Theme Parks (Six Flags, Universal Studios, Disney….etc), Malls, Movie Theater complexes, Restaurants, Air port long-term parking lots.

    NPNS!
    Volt#671


  10. 10
    mikeinatl.

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    Aug 10th, 2011 (10:19 am)

    This is an excellent article. It’s very interesting to see how the electric charging infrastructure is growing.

    For now, I would not be at all concerned about where to charge on road trips unless I was in a Leaf, a golf cart or some other all-electric vehicle. If I had a VOLT, I would not be inclined to waste time charging while traveling. Probably only when I got to my destination, if available, would I charge. 40 miles is just not that much when you are traveling several hundred miles.

    But that is exactly why I would buy a VOLTEC-type vehicle. So I could go on long road trips without having to worry about where to charge. That “80/20″ rule will help me get mileage well into the triple digits at home. (I live 7 miles from my office.) But the “20%” part of my life is extremely important to me. I have to be able to ramble, roam and explore as I desire when the opportunity presents itself.

    Leaf = Limits.
    Volt = Freedom

    Keep up the good work Ms. Hill.
    Nicely done!


  11. 11
    DonC

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    Aug 10th, 2011 (10:42 am)

    Seems like a waste of time and resources that could be more profitably used elsewhere. The problem is that electric vehicles and long distances don’t mix. It takes too long to recharge. Even with DC charging, which you’ll never see anytime soon in hotels, you’d be driving for an hour and then charging for an hour. Basically the average person will never be going on road trips in their BEV.

    You can take the Volt on long trips but the question then becomes whether it matters. With the Volt, if you needed to go 400 miles you’d be using 10 gallons of gas. If you charge you’d use 9 gallons. Is saving one gallon on the occasional road trip worth any of this? If you’re at a hotel and there is an outlet then, yeah, plug in. But given the negligible benefit of charging, planning a trip around finding a plug just seems contrived and maybe even downright crazy.

    I’d be far more interested in what programs there might be for people living in apartments or condos who don’t have access to 120V much less 240v charging at home. Addressing this problem has a much larger payoff.


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    montgoss

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    Aug 10th, 2011 (10:56 am)

    DonC: I’d be far more interested in what programs there might be for people living in apartments or condos who don’t have access to 120V much less 240v charging at home. Addressing this problem has a much larger payoff.

    I think that problem will solve itself. The management for my apartment did a little research when I requested access for charging. They apparently found another apartment complex in the area that did offer this amenity. They didn’t tell me which other apartment that was, but they were happy to charge me for an electric outlet to keep me as a tenant.
    They plan to upgrade all of their car ports to have at least one electrical outlet for EV charging and will use this amenity in their marketing.

    In other words, competition will drive apartment complexes to accommodate EV charging.


  13. 13
    Noel Park

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    Aug 10th, 2011 (11:20 am)

    Eco_Turbo: Always nice to see a hot! woman with a Volt.

    #3

    Maybe politically incorrect, but absolutely true, LOL. Ooooooooooooohhh La La!!! +


  14. 14
    Loboc

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    Aug 10th, 2011 (11:21 am)

    montgoss: competition will drive apartment complexes to accommodate EV charging

    I think the same motivation will go for all the other places we stop for an hour or so to use/buy their products. We may get to the point that we install charging stations for our weekend guests as well (kind of like hitching posts). :)

    The old gas-station model is on the way out. Nobody wants them in their neighborhood anyway.


  15. 15
    kdawg

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    Aug 10th, 2011 (11:25 am)

    i dont thik I’d plan my trip around charging, but if I stopped somewhere that had an outlet, i’d plug in. Basically opportunity charging.


  16. 16
    Noel Park

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    Aug 10th, 2011 (11:26 am)

    DonC: If you’re at a hotel and there is an outlet then, yeah, plug in. But given the negligible benefit of charging, planning a trip around finding a plug just seems contrived and maybe even downright crazy.

    I’d be far more interested in what programs there might be for people living in apartments or condos who don’t have access to 120V much less 240v charging at home. Addressing this problem has a much larger payoff.

    #11

    I can only agree. +1

    OT but, if you haven’t already, check out the Motor Trend article Don posted on the forum yesterday. VERY cool!


  17. 17
    George S. Bower

     

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    Aug 10th, 2011 (11:31 am)

    DonC: Seems like a waste of time It takes too long to recharge.

    14 minutes to fill up the Volt’s battery doesn’t seem that long (if it had L3 chging).

    –especially if you have “much time and little to do”


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    N Riley

     

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    Aug 10th, 2011 (11:44 am)

    I suppose I should only say this: “Good commercial for ChargePoint and Coulomb Technologies”. Interesting report from a commercial standpoint. I assumed it would be about a personal experience using charging stations to go further than one charge could take you. OK, so we go a message from Coulomb Technologies instead.


  19. 19
    Steve

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    Aug 10th, 2011 (11:50 am)

    This is interesting and all, but I still think the killer feature of the Volt is when the need for a road trip come up, there’s no urgent need to find charging stations. It’s nice to have an app right now because there aren’t that many, but unlike a battery only car, it’s not a matter staying mobile or not.

    If I was on a road trip right now the only time I’d be thinking about finding a charge station would be when I’m deciding on accommodations for the night.


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    jeffhre

     

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    Aug 10th, 2011 (11:53 am)

    DonC: You can take the Volt on long trips but the question then becomes whether it matters. With the Volt, if you needed to go 400 miles you’d be using 10 gallons of gas. If you charge you’d use 9 gallons. Is saving one gallon on the occasional road trip worth any of this? If you’re at a hotel and there is an outlet then, yeah, plug in. But given the negligible benefit of charging, planning a trip around finding a plug just seems contrived and maybe even downright crazy.

    I’ve always thought if you really want to save gas, or energy if you have a battery as big as a Tesla, take a bus or a train for long trips.

    Half of that will not happen for me though, since I generally hate bus travel, at least as it was offered when I last tried it anyway. If my trip is not by bus or train, it makes sense to at least plan for the longer stops to be somewhere where an EREV or especially EV could recharge. When I travel I make plans to see and do things that are convenient and nearby. It doesn’t seem like insuring there are charging provisions for my longer stops would be any different.


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    theflew

     

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    Aug 10th, 2011 (12:01 pm)

    George S. Bower: I guess I must put in my vote once again for a fast charging port on the Volt. (I know, I know most everyone here thinks it’s dumbbut it is not). For purists who keep track of their MPGe charging more is necessary to keep that MPGe up closer to the all electric MPGe of about 90.

    http://www.voltstats.net/

    current fleet avg:

    %EV=69 MPGe=63

    current high %EV=99.4 MPGe=89

    Looking at your web page an interesting bit of information was some of the drivers with the highest % in EV have the lowest MPG(CS). I thought this was an error, but I realized this could because of maintenance mode. Basically burning gas to go nowhere. Likewise people with the lowest % in EV have some of the highest MPG (CS). Seems like you might want to remove the outliers from you fleet total. They are artificially lowering the MPG (CS). Granted if you had more data these would be little more than statistical anomalies that could be ignored.


  22. 22
    Mitch

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    Aug 10th, 2011 (12:12 pm)

    better place will not work well inthe USA. In Isreal, yes. Isreal is about 8000 sq. miles, the USA is 3.8 MILLION. Isreal is 290 miles long, and at its widest 85 miles. You could service the entire country with about 12 stations. you can fit isreal into the state of Florida 8 TIMES. if you space them in a simple grid (for ease) the USA is about 2000 miles wide. use 50 miles spacing its a grid of 1520 stations! and will be useless for PIP and Volt, drop it to every 10 miles to service ANY vehicle battery and you are talking 38,000 Stations, and they need to have a battery for every style and model.

    Nice concept, but unless there is a battery design standard for the concept, adopted by ALL amnufacturers, it will be implemetation failure in any large country (China, Canada, USA etc…)

    Develloping safe fast charge (5 minutes or less) is the better option.
    Otherwise nice article


  23. 23
    Chris C.

     

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    Aug 10th, 2011 (12:24 pm)

    I took my Volt on a long roadtrip two weeks ago, and I actually stopped at one of the stations you mention in this article — the charger at the The Ritz-Carlton in Charlotte. The staff was quite excited, as apparently I was the first EV to show up since the EVSE was installed and demo’d to them.

    Unfortunately, we couldn’t get it to work. We authorized, plugged in, unplugged, cycled feeder breakers, etc etc but no combination would actually get power flowing to the car. Oh well! I had to leave after 30 minutes of troubleshooting, but at least they knew they had a problem with the EVSE. I assume they got it fixed.

    As you mentioned, the ChargePoint site and mobile app ONLY shows their own chargers. And as most here know, there are several competing mapping sites. The best one I’ve found so far is http://carstations.com ; they include ALL charging stations, they have all the information I need, and (crucially) they accept feedback on each station. I gave them info and photos on the half dozen stations I stopped at on my roadtrip through the southeast, for example this nice little site near Knoxville:

    http://carstations.com/8882

    That’s my Volt in the photo :)

    Regarding using Google Maps to search for an EVSE, my initial experience with them on that has been frankly horrible. It just doesn’t work, with plenty of false positives and even some false negatives.

    I’m looking forward to having more stations in my own hometown of Atlanta. My roadtrip showed me that we (in Atlanta) are falling well behind a lot of other towns. There were DOZENS of public chargers in Knoxville, Charlotte, Greenville, Raleigh … and a grand total of TWO in Atlanta. (I don’t count the Nissan dealer EVSEs, though)


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    George S. Bower

     

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    Aug 10th, 2011 (12:25 pm)

    Noel Park: #11

    I can only agree.+1

    OT but, if you haven’t already, check out the Motor Trend article Don posted on the forum yesterday.VERY cool!

    I went back and looked for the article but could not find a link.
    Do you have a link??


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    George S. Bower

     

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    Aug 10th, 2011 (12:31 pm)

    Mitch,

    Mitch,

    It’s Israel


  26. 26
    James

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    Aug 10th, 2011 (12:35 pm)

    Great topic today!

    It’s true we all need to call and write our local businesses and suggest how good it would be for them to install charging stations. Motel chains need ‘em. Parking lots and garages are naturals for charging. Shopping malls and cineplexes are perfect for a top-up of AC since cars sit in those lots for over an hour. In this world of competition where Lowe’s Hardware is down the road from Home Depot – you bet I’ll frequent the one where I can charge my car in their lot. WalMart, Target, Rite Aid, Walgreen’s take note!

    The Volt needs onboard charge station locator information like Leaf on it’s display since using a smartphone while in motion is a no-no. For the next five years, having a CS mode is perfect. It’ll take time for charge locations to replicate to the point where they’ll be readily available when needed. Preplanning will always be necessary, but going far out of one’s way to recharge is unlikely. I’m excited about how many options there can be to fill up. I hate breathing gas fumes while at the pump, how great to fill up with clean energy while out on the road!

    I agree Better Place has it’s place yet I cannot see this expensive infrastructure meeting the needs of the masses. The cost of installing a battery exchange station is so much more than a simple charge station added to the large footprint all make BP’s proposition complex. It’s all good though, each charge solution having it’s place. .

    Fast chargers can someday make pure electric long distance trips more of a reality, but until then the Volt’s solution makes the most sense. For a full day’s driving starting off the day with a full pack and charging up at the motel for the next stretch is great. Add lunch with a quick charge or a side trip to a shopping mall with juice would be fantastic, and then a rest after 100 miles more at the off-freeway EV charging rest stop – perfect!!

    PUMP OUT THE VOLTECS! ,

    James


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    George S. Bower

     

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    Aug 10th, 2011 (12:39 pm)

    theflew: drivers with the highest % in EV have the lowest MPG(CS).

    It is not my site.
    but you point out an interesting trend… it could also be the fact that the RE is coming on for a short time so warm up is killing the csmode.


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    George S. Bower

     

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    Aug 10th, 2011 (12:46 pm)

    Chris C.,

    “”that’s my Volt in the photo”"

    where is the driver??
    What does he look like??

    I have a friend and ex work mate of 20 years that lives in Greensville, SC and works for GE. I guess Greensville is pretty “GREEN”


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    DonC

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    Aug 10th, 2011 (1:06 pm)

    George S. Bower: –especially if you have “much time and little to do”

    You got it. But most people have “little time and much to do”!

    Case in point. Over on the Leaf forum some guy drove his Leaf to Yosemite and back. It was something of an ordeal or an adventure, depending on how you want to look at it. He seemed happy but I’m thinking 99.9% of the public wouldn’t be.

    Here is the link to the Motor Trend article: http://www.motortrend.com/features/travel/1110_volting_across_america/index.html


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    T 1

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    Aug 10th, 2011 (1:21 pm)

    Steve: This is interesting and all, but I still think the killer feature of the Volt is when the need for a road trip come up, there’s no urgent need to find charging stations. It’s nice to have an app right now because there aren’t that many, but unlike a battery only car, it’s not a matter staying mobile or not.
    If I was on a road trip right now the only time I’d be thinking about finding a charge station would be when I’m deciding on accommodations for the night.

    Thanks for resetting the discussion. Only when batteries are much better and the country is blanketed with fast-charge stations, will I consider buying an electric-only vehicle.


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    Mitch

     

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    Aug 10th, 2011 (2:14 pm)

    George S. Bower,

    Thanks…but I really have no idea why its like that..I spelled it correctly, hell I lived there for 2 years….

    Oh well..technology…gremlin inthe machine..

    Thanks, and My sincere apologies to Israel,and her people

    Mitch


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    Neil

     

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    Aug 10th, 2011 (2:17 pm)

    I’ve been told by a District Manager for Cracker Barrel (The Old Country Store) restaurants that they have plans underway to install charging stations at their stores. Many folks know that CB has very convenient locations along the highway in the South and East.


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    Jackson

     

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    Aug 10th, 2011 (2:37 pm)

    Purely electric vehicles still suffer from a chicken-and-egg problem: The nationwide network of chargers needed to make EVs practical as primary transportation will not be installed until there are sufficient numbers of them; but few will buy EVs until such a network exists. The potential mass appeal of EREV, REEV and similar systems is not limited by this.

    Given the EV advocates who decry EREV for carrying an engine, it is ironic that these very vehicles are what will make the nationwide network of chargers useful and practical before it is completed. Volt and it’s descendents will benefit from such chargers, but are not stuck without them. It will be mostly range-extended vehicles which can show up and actually use widely scattered chargers.

    Once the benefits of EREV are widely experienced, enthusiasts will drive the proliferation and usage of public charging, as we’ve already begun to see; allowing the nationwide network to grow as slowly as it needs to. Because the EREV owner always has a choice, costs for the service will need to be kept below the equivalent cost in gasoline (as opposed to the pure EV owner, who is a captive customer for whatever the market will bear).

    It is the pure EV industry which will benefit from the EREV … eventually.


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    Aug 10th, 2011 (2:58 pm)

    J1772 will prove to be unsustainable if EVs prove as popular as we hope. Let’s suppose that 2% of the vehicles ar EVs. How many charging stations would be needed at Disneyworld, or Walmart? The price of these devices will prevent them being installed in the kind of quantities that are needed. $1000+ plus installation is prohibitive for the number that will be needed.

    Then there is the risk of theft and vandalism. What is the life expectancy of a long copper cable with a $100+ connector which is guaranteed to not be live if a vehicle isn’t plugged in? At some point rationality will set in and these will all have to be augmented or replaced with the female socket they should have been designed with in the beginning.


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    Aug 10th, 2011 (3:14 pm)

    storm: J1772 will prove to be unsustainable if EVs prove as popular as we hope. Let’s suppose that 2% of the vehicles ar EVs. How many charging stations would be needed at Disneyworld, or Walmart? The price of these devices will prevent them being installed in the kind of quantities that are needed. $1000+ plus installation is prohibitive for the number that will be needed.

    Then there is the risk of theft and vandalism. What is the life expectancy of a long copper cable with a $100+ connector which is guaranteed to not be live if a vehicle isn’t plugged in? At some point rationality will set in and these will all have to be augmented or replaced with thefemale socket they should have been designed with in the beginning.

    I agree that the female socket should have been part of the standard to begin with.

    However, in the specific case of Disney World, visitors will be parking for at least a full day; making a simple 110V connection a compelling draw for even pure EV owners (and much less expensive to install per space). Security for the Disney parking lot would hopefully deter a lot of the vandalism. This would also be true at other theme parks, and perhaps anyplace that installation and current costs could be justified solely as marketing (building business, or appearing “green”). This is not a huge segment of the overall charging network needed, I admit; but it illustrates how opportunity charging can work “outside the box” of the Charge Point paradigm.


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    Aug 10th, 2011 (3:28 pm)

    Neil: I’ve been told by a District Manager for Cracker Barrel (The Old Country Store) restaurants that they have plans underway to install charging stations at their stores. Many folks know that CB has very convenient locations along the highway in the South and East.

    Will it be made out of wicker? ;-)


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    Aug 10th, 2011 (3:36 pm)

    T 1: Only when … the country is blanketed with fast-charge stations, will I consider buying an electric-only vehicle.

    Fair enough. So install a fast-charge station 30 miles from your house on a route you often use or at your place of work as your part and charge a nomnal hourly convenience fee. Or are you one of those folks that hates making money?

    There are huge opportunities and a slack economy right this second.

    Yes, we all want more energy dense, lighter, cheaper power packs.


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    Aug 10th, 2011 (3:37 pm)

    Jackson: It is the pure EV industry which will benefit from the EREV … eventually.

    #33

    Nice comment. +1


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    Aug 10th, 2011 (3:44 pm)

    Chris C.: http://carstations.com/8882

    #23

    I checked it out. It is really pathetic how few charging stations there are in “car culture capitol” SoCal. And the majority of the 240v ones still have the obsolete paddle plugs. It appears that literally the majority of J1772 240v stations are at Nissan dealers. All credit to them, but I’m too shy to pull in in my Volt.

    Actually our Chevy dealer has one which does not show on the website. Does that mean it’s not open to the public? Anyway, desperate Leaf owners can check out George Chevrolet at Lakewood Blvd. and the 91 freeway in beautiful Bellflower.


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    Aug 10th, 2011 (4:00 pm)

    EVO: Fair enough. So install a fast-charge station 30 miles from your house on a route you often use or at your place of work as your part and charge a nomnal hourly convenience fee. Or are you one of those folks that hates making money?
    There are huge opportunities and a slack economy right this second.
    Yes, we all want more energy dense, lighter, cheaper power packs.

    Thanks.
    No thanks.
    lol
    Maybe and yes (OT: if anyone’s thinking of refinancing their home, the 10 year Treasury is down to 2.08% as I write this. Wow!)
    Darn straight–it’s still about the batteries.


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    Aug 10th, 2011 (4:06 pm)

    T 1,

    Fair enough again. You are one of those people that hates making money, which is bizarre in the US. ;)

    You can use your convenience (charging) station any time when vacant or reserve your convenience (charging) station in advance for the times that you want to use it and the rest of time it can make money for you when other folks use it. How many things can you say that about?

    For North Americans, it’s all about the convenience and we’ll pay through the nose for it.


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    Aug 10th, 2011 (4:06 pm)

    EVO: Fair enough. So install a fast-charge station 30 miles from your house on a route you often use or at your place of work as your part and charge a nomnal hourly convenience fee.

    There are huge opportunities and a slack economy right this second.

    Interesting idea. Could be a small entrepreneur opportunity, like other kinds of vending machines. Your own use could be a justification for getting your toe wet, and as EV and EREV penetration increases, the installation would begin to pay for itself. Lather, rinse, repeat. You’d have to be poised to bail before the electric utilities get into the act (I expect this to be the ultimate fate of the public charge station; probably not anytime soon).

    This wouldn’t convince me to buy a full EV, however. The point of today’s article is long distance travel along routes one doesn’t often use.


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    Aug 10th, 2011 (4:20 pm)

    Jackson: Interesting idea.Could be a small entrepreneur opportunity, like other kinds of vending machines.Your own use could be a justification for getting your toe wet, and as EV and EREV penetration increases, the installation would begin to pay for itself.Lather, rinse, repeat.You’d have to be poised to bail before the electric utilities get into the act (I expect this to be the ultimate fate of the public charge station; probably not anytime soon).

    This wouldn’t convince me to buy a full EV, however.The point of today’s article is long distance travel along routes one doesn’t often use.

    Your vending machine analogy is excellent.

    No worries from utilities – see vending machines and private gas stations.

    It’s to convince T1, not you, who asked for a blanket of stations for own use. Each person doing one cheap one themself would put start the blanket exactly where it is most desired immediately. Then let bigger players fill in the rest. No need to lather, rinse, repeat, unless you like boatloads of money. QED.


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    Aug 10th, 2011 (4:21 pm)

    EVO: Fair enough again. You are one of those people that hates making money, which is bizarre in the US.

    For North Americans, it’s all about the convenience and we’ll pay through the nose for it.

    Thanks again.
    Nice try but completely wrong, and yes, it would be.
    Depends, and our noses are getting a lot smaller. Perhaps you should also sell nasal spray. 8^)


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    Aug 10th, 2011 (4:37 pm)

    if they “charge” for “charging”, what would be the payback period? If it was 1 year or less, you’d think they would pop up everywhere. maybe they will. most are “free” now.


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    Aug 10th, 2011 (4:37 pm)

    Jackson and T1:

    It’s simply exactly how gas stations got going for full gassers back in the day. Except in this case the infrastructure is already 99.9% in place (electric panels and outlets are everywhere), it’s just extra convenient for the new station owners and users to have an on-line billing and interaction, the bulk of the initial low cost and set up.


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    Aug 10th, 2011 (4:45 pm)

    Volt #555 is still operating within 60 miles of home base. After sevens months of driving. Have logged 7400 miles @ 430mpg. A total of $70 spent on gas with the tank currently displaying 260 miles range ready to use if needed.

    It’s good to see Alexandra Paul enjoying her Volt. I was fortunate to be driving my Volt on the freeway as Alexandra and husband passed in the fast lane. Very nice smile and a friendly wave from Alexandra.

    Took my 2002 CR-V out for a drive last week. Don’t use it much anymore. Got in, turned the key, and v room bang bang bang. Shifted into drive ‘clunk’. The Honda felt Stone Age and very old school to drive.
    How long has fire-to-fuel car technology been in vogue now? Over 100 years? With nearly all other technology being updated, upgraded, or fully replaced within 20 years.

    The Volt is a pleasure to drive and maybe the coolest ride on the road today.

    =D-Volt


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    Aug 10th, 2011 (4:47 pm)

    kdawg,

    You can do the math easily, but one of infinite scanarios:

    If a level 1 plug in to regular outlet station costs $500 (ClipperCreek, Lowe’s?, etc…) plus say $150 for annual on-line services, the payback at charging $1 an hour would be 650 hours, about 6 months, if it was used 24 hours a day. You probably guarantee yourself at least 2 hours a day of that yourself, which dramatically reduces uncertainty and the rest depends on getting your co-workers/employees and neighbors to get a plug in vehicle and use your station when you aren’t.

    This is like falling off a log to make $ or at worst to provide yourself a nice service at low to no cost.


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    Aug 10th, 2011 (5:03 pm)

    EVO: You can do the math easily, but one of infinite scanarios:

    That’s pretty much what my question was. I wanted to see what numbers people inserted for the variables.


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    Aug 10th, 2011 (5:07 pm)

    DonC: Here is the link to the Motor Trend article

    Lol. ROFLMAO.

    The article is great! The comments are way too funny!


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    Aug 10th, 2011 (5:13 pm)

    DonC: Seems like a waste of time and resources that could be more profitably used elsewhere. The problem is that electric vehicles and long distances don’t mix. It takes too long to recharge. Even with DC charging, which you’ll never see anytime soon in hotels, you’d be driving for an hour and then charging for an hour. Basically the average person will never be going on road trips in their BEV.You can take the Volt on long trips but the question then becomes whether it matters. With the Volt, if you needed to go 400 miles you’d be using 10 gallons of gas. If you charge you’d use 9 gallons. Is saving one gallon on the occasional road trip worth any of this? If you’re at a hotel and there is an outlet then, yeah, plug in. But given the negligible benefit of charging, planning a trip around finding a plug just seems contrived and maybe even downright crazy.I’d be far more interested in what programs there might be for people living in apartments or condos who don’t have access to 120V much less 240v charging at home. Addressing this problem has a much larger payoff.

    You make the valid point. Being that we still own our Prius – I look forward to when I can buy a new Volt, but now will keep the Toyota because it’s payed for and still makes a lot of sense for longer hauls – say the car trips I like to take around the state with my family. I can eek 48-55 mpg out of my 2007, and it likes to be weighed down and go long down the highway. A Volt makes a bit less sense on long trips as you point out – UNLESS the charge point network proliferates, THEN the Volt makes more sense and getting 75 mpg on the open road is a possibility. Governer Gregoire has teamed up with gov’mt grants to place “quick charge” stations all along our state’s longest, busiest interstate corridor. This makes sense if I can hit one for an hour or so to supplement the rest of the energy I’m using. It makes the Volt a better value proposition and all ’rounder. At some point, the Prius can be sold and the Volt become a better long hauler than it was.

    It makes me also wonder if, like aftermarket merchants sell high performance parts to upgrade stock cars, will there be an aftermarket to ” hop up ” your Volt, PIP, Fisker Karma or C-Max Energi to get higher efficiency in CS mode?

    I’ll still dream about a top-mileage Tesla Model S, but be happy with my PHEV/EREV. Plus, the Tesla can’t keep going once it’s range has expired.

    RECHARGE! ,

    James


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    Aug 10th, 2011 (5:15 pm)

    kdawg,

    In general, fast charging stations cost more, as does providing your own power source or offsetting.

    If you’re a real cheap-azzzz, you can use a used napkin, crayon and bubble gum over any existing exterior outlet you hang out near, post the location on the PlugShare app, and collect cash, all for free in which case the payback is instantaneous.

    If you want a showcase, integrated one stop shopping/manufactured industrial design solar charging stations can be tens of thousands or more.

    Most of us regular folks will do (if we haven’t already) something in between, I expect.

    The station owner gets to pick how cheap-azzzzz they look to their friends and family.


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    Aug 10th, 2011 (5:30 pm)

    DonC: the average person

    That only leaves the 99.99% of the population who are not average. Bummer.

    There is no one size fits all (hint: there never was). What is already emerging are several, DIFFERENT patterns and charge levels that address incidental, partial and convenience use, individual and related use, neighborhood, city planning, regional, internodal and (gasp) even long distance uses DIFFERENTLY. Some of it is planned and funded, some of it commercial and strategic, some of it individual and highly organic and they ALL interact in positive synergies.

    Resources and time are miniscule and payback is monumental compared to the last century and a half blown on gas.

    kewl, I say.


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    Aug 10th, 2011 (5:45 pm)

    BTW, primarily traveling long distance in a straight line at fairly constant high speed is best matched with turbo (bio)diesel, with plug in hybrid for the variable speed, delightful full stop launches and accelerations and efficient decelerations use and long parking with recharging opportunities at both ends of the travel, IMHO.


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    Aug 10th, 2011 (6:14 pm)

    What is needed for a practical over-the-road BEV?

    1) Very high power DC charging in relatively short times, with high availability,

    -or-

    2) A range equivalent to a day’s travel at highway speed, and some means of replacing that charge overnight (at a hotel). This will require at least a level III charger, or a lower-power version of option #1.

    3) Possibly some combination of 1&2.

    Capability #1 may not even be possible in less than 30 minutes for any range topping 300 miles; and certainly won’t appear in enough places in the near future to make this a practical alternative to EREV, if ever.

    Capability #2 may be more do-able, but not before much cheaper, more energy dense batteries hit the market. The overnight recharging availability will still be spotty at best, for years. A higher eventual penetration for this capability may make a more-sparse, high speed DC charging infrastructure (capability #1) tolerable.

    The range required for a day’s over-the-road driving will also mean that the EV won’t be fully recharged overnight at your house. This might not be a show-stopper if the full overnight capability of your home service is used every night to gradually replace the charge (assuming this exceeds your daily range use). I’m thinking that some form of level III or IV (public) charging will still be needed on a semi-regular basis.

    These 3 scenarios must wait on future technology, and will still have to compete with EREV every step of the way. Cheaper, more energy-dense batteries (necessary to increase the range of a BEV) will lower the costs for an EREV30 – 40 to the point that pure gassers may cease to make sense for all but niche or occasional use. I believe that it will also allow for a reasonably priced EREV100 (a range based on the overnight charge you could get at 220V in your home garage). This will make the pure BEV, based on the above scenarios, a hard sell until liquid fuel becomes almost unobtainable.

    Of course, the BEV will become more capable of solving more problems for more people moving forward, but it still won’t be able to displace the EREV for long distances; not for a very long time.


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    Aug 10th, 2011 (6:18 pm)

    EVO: For North Americans, it’s all about the convenience and we’ll pay through the nose for it.

    #41

    Speak for yourself.


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    Aug 10th, 2011 (6:20 pm)

    Dave K.: The Volt is a pleasure to drive and maybe the coolest ride on the road today.

    #47

    Amen. +1


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    Aug 10th, 2011 (6:24 pm)

    Noel Park,

    So you exclusively use public transportation or walk. then?

    I’m simply using a meme from yesterday (see post #69 in prior thread) that no one argued against.


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    Aug 10th, 2011 (6:28 pm)

    James,

    James, DonC,

    I have to make 150 mile runs down to Phx from home for shopping. There are some quick charge stations in Phx along my route. Just one 14 minute top off would dramatically increase my MPG on that 150 mile round trip.

    Gee, If the Volt only had a quick charge port (L3)!!!

    Seems like a good bang for the buck GM.

    Lots cheaper than a more efficient range extender.


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    Aug 10th, 2011 (7:28 pm)

    George S. Bower: James,James, DonC,I have to make 150 mile runs down to Phx from home for shopping. There are some quick charge stations in Phx along my route. Just one 14 minute top off would dramatically increase my MPG on that 150 mile round trip.Gee, If the Volt only had a quick charge port (L3)!!!Seems like a good bang for the buck GM.Lots cheaper than a more efficient range extender.

    True that. I think Phoenix along with Seattle, Portland and Tennessee got a good share of gov’mt stimuli for public charging stations.

    For today and the near future – stringing along charges to go the cheapest, cleanest and most efficient route can be kind of a challenge/game so to speak. Especially when many of the charges are free…FREE…FREE FROM OIL, FREE TO BE SMOG FREE…. FREEEE! lol, Sorry, I lost it for a second there just imagining freedom from petroleum. ; ) I’ve had my hybrid for four years now and still don’t tire of the little “game” of semi-hypermiling. My kind of hypermiling entails trying not to piss off everyone behind me along the way.

    GM has to add a quick charge port to Volt and EV Spark if Leaf has one, don’t they? I’m sure they’re waiting for a standard to be decided upon. Even so, Nissan tells me their current fixture could be used with an adapter or an aftermarket type connection could be wired in near the rear fender. Not exactly an elegant solution.

    QUICK RECHARGE! ,

    James


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    Aug 10th, 2011 (7:39 pm)

    Hey Volt fans I was wondering what GM head quarters looked like on the inside and look what I found a Volt being wielded by a robotic arm enjoy everybody. http://vimeo.com/15415324


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    Aug 10th, 2011 (7:43 pm)

    Wouldn’t it be just dandy if ICE cars become the niche vehicle – for offroad racing – extreme long distance or endurance racing, etc., and electric and electric-assist is the norm?

    With new 54 mpg C.A.F.E. requirements this may be the way it plays out. Hope so!

    Electric drag racing, Bonneville Salt Flat runs, motorcycle racing and K.E.R.S. e-boost in all types of race cars seems to be growing each year. IMO those are the things that will springboard open minds and new solutions to kissing the Arabs and Venezuelans sayonara.

    QUICK RECHARGE! ,

    James


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    Aug 10th, 2011 (8:23 pm)

    Also her’s a a video of probably the most legendary car of America. The Ford Model T. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wA2P76gQUCo&feature=fvwrel


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    Aug 10th, 2011 (8:30 pm)

    James quote:

    “My kind of hypermiling entails trying not to piss off everyone behind me along the way.”

    absolutely,, and there is a flip side story of that from my brother in law Brent is that: he hates Prius drivers because they are going WAY OVER the speed limit since it is so much more economical to drive.

    I know.
    that’s what I do.!

    and of course Volt Drivers are just as guilty.


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    Aug 10th, 2011 (8:43 pm)

    George S. Bower: Gee, If the Volt only had a quick charge port (L3)!!!
    Seems like a good bang for the buck GM.

    DC charging? Neither the Volt nor the Leaf supports 6.6 kW charging, presumably because of concerns about premature battery degradation. Personally I’d rather preserve the battery than get slightly better MPG on the occasional 150 mile trip. Ending up with a kaput battery wouldn’t be good bang for the buck IMHO.


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    Aug 10th, 2011 (8:53 pm)

    Sean,

    Pretty good:
    “”a car off the line every 10 seconds”"

    And, as in DonC’s link,, the new Volt plant is right next to the plant where they made the T.

    GM is what America’s past is all about.

    You needed to own a muscle car or especially a “Rat Motor” to know

    Anyone suggesting that the government should have let GM go down is:

    Anti American??

    JMHO sorry for the rant,.


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    Aug 10th, 2011 (8:57 pm)

    Jackson: Security for the Disney parking lot would hopefully deter a lot of the vandalism.

    I think theft is a much bigger problem than vandalism in these types of lots. Good point about 120V. However, the problem generally is that the business has to upgrade their service even for multiple 120V chargers. Upgrading is quite expensive but if you’re paying for it then whether you put in 240V or 120V chargers probably doesn’t matter that much.


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    Aug 10th, 2011 (9:04 pm)

    DonC,

    DonC,
    The Leaf l3 chgr is 50KW.
    yes?


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    Aug 10th, 2011 (9:38 pm)

    Bonaire,

    For all those that agree with Bonaire’s post #4, please Google and Youtube Shai agassi (Better Place returns too many unrelated topics).

    After watching one of Shai’s explainations you will see how little this poster actually understands about the Better Place system.

    Or, simply wait a short while because the system will be up and running in three countries (uncluding the huge “island” called Australia) in 2012. The proof will be in the pudding. Just a few comments to clear up the poster’s “facts” about Better Place

    1) Battery is much larger than the Volt’s battery, approximately 120 miles of range
    2) Swap time takes less than one minute (can watch it in the videos)
    3) Initial price of the car will soon cost less than gas powered ones (subsidized like cell phone)
    4) Designed for long distance driving, not city – the more you drive, the more Better Place likes it. They tested the system in Tokyo using taxis
    5) They expect drivers to use the swap stations less times per year than people currently fill up their gas tanks (if you must go more often, Better Place claims it makes the system less convenient than traditional transportation).
    6) The cost of driving per mile comes to about $1.50 / gallon equivilent. Far less than the current cost of driving in the US, not to mention Europe and most of the rest of the world.

    Thus, cheaper, cleaner, more sustainable and more convenient than current fossil fuel powered personal transportation. This is how the Better Place model differentiates itself from traditional EVs and plug-in hybrids.


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    Aug 10th, 2011 (9:52 pm)

    James: Wouldn’t it be just dandy if ICE cars become the niche vehicle – for offroad racing – extreme long distance or endurance racing, etc., and electric and electric-assist is the norm?

    Electric drag racing, Bonneville Salt Flat runs, motorcycle racing and K.E.R.S. e-boost in all types of race cars seems to be growing each year. IMO those are the things that will springboard open minds and new solutions.

    QUICK RECHARGE! ,

    James

    That’s it, Not only does it make local driving more energy efficient,, it makes for a great “topping plant” for high performance ICE vehicles.


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    Aug 10th, 2011 (9:58 pm)

    Texas,

    Texas quote:

    “”(uncluding the huge “island” called Australia)’”"

    Don’t ever refer their CONTINENT as an island. I learned the hard way on BNC dot com.

    Well I have an excuse!


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    Aug 11th, 2011 (12:18 am)

    EVO: kdawg,

    You can do the math easily, but one of infinite scanarios:

    If a level 1 plug in to regular outlet station costs $500 (ClipperCreek, Lowe’s?, etc…) plus say $150 for annual on-line services, the payback at charging $1 an hour would be 650 hours, about 6 months, if it was used 24 hoursa day. You probably guarantee yourself at least 2 hours a day of that yourself, which dramatically reduces uncertainty and the rest depends on getting your co-workers/employees and neighbors to get a plug in vehicle and use your station when you aren’t.

    This is like falling off a log to make $ or at worst to provide yourself a nice service at low to no cost.

    The cost of a business involves much more the the cost of a single piece of equipment.


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    James

     

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    Aug 11th, 2011 (12:20 am)

    George S. Bower:

    I do think about getting a radar detector in the Prius — Because I’ve found loping or lugging it doesn’t reap the best mileage. Instead I find myself flooring it when others dog it – such as just before an upgrade or at the base of hills. Cracks me up V-8 SUV drivers who SLOW DOWN before a hill, then GAS IT ALL THE WAY UP! I live on a hillside and see it daily.

    Momentum makes the grade – increase speed in a hybrid at the right times and ease over the rises or make hillclimbs less impactful on the EM PEE GEEZ. I go past a big speedtrap in my area daily and they commonly pull people over for going 3 – 5 over. It seems only a matter of time for me, because it’s a stretch of straight with slight rolling ups and downs – kills Prius drivers who don’t get how to use momentum – yet if I get nailed by a motorcycle cop, all my economizing will be for naught on my wallet… Should I get an Escort or Passport Solo or Valentine One? Guess I can use it for the Volt when I get it… That will be a rocket compared to the puny Prius!

    RECHARGE! ,

    James


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    EVO

     

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    Aug 11th, 2011 (10:11 am)

    jeffhre,

    Less than you might imagine, especially if you already have a business.


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    Raymondjram

     

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    Aug 11th, 2011 (1:21 pm)

    George S. Bower: Texas,

    Texas quote:

    “”(uncluding the huge “island” called Australia)’””

    Don’t ever refer their CONTINENT as an island. I learned the hard way on BNC dot com.

    Well I have an excuse!

    If an island is a land mass surrounded by water, everybody on planet Earth is living on an island! Now, the size of the island may be what determines the difference between an island and a continent.

    I lived on an island all my life (first in Manhattan , then Puerto Rico). Seeing water nearby is a great feeling, anyway.

    Raymond


  76. 76
    EVO

     

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    Aug 11th, 2011 (7:05 pm)

    James: Wouldn’t it be just dandy if ICE cars become the niche vehicle – for offroad racing – extreme long distance or endurance racing, etc., and electric and electric-assist is the norm?

    Nope, won’t happen, as electric drive, solo and assist (blended with ICEs/tubines), is already succeeding there too. Full gassers are now quaint mid century relics, even the new ones off the line.

    Hate to bust your bubble, but:

    1. off road – 16″ class AMA offroad minimoto SX, electrics swept the podium last year, so this year they gave the full gassers a huge handicap lead and the electrics still caught up by the end of the race. One off electric race bikes are now being produced that are fully competitive with the best of the 250cc full gassers, admittedly in sprint races.
    http://www.minimotosx.com/uncategorized/electric-versus-gas-showdown-at-minimotosx/

    2. extreme long distance or endurance racing – diesel hybrid with regen braking – that’s already happening in LeMans and other 24 hour races. A hybrid already lead a pack of full gassers for the bulk of one 24 hour race. Way back in 2009, the winning team of a full electric off road endurance race already went 500 miles within 24 hours.
    http://www.thecheckeredflag.co.uk/2010/05/porsche-hybrid-survives-the-norschleife-night-to-lead/
    http://www.motorcycle-usa.com Motorcycle-Article 24-Hours-of-Electricross-Results.aspx

    3. Both: off road endurance – plug in diesel hybrids with KERS and quick swap power packs if needed mean you could finish the Baja 1000 and have fuel left in the tank and the torque and smooth acceleration would be welcome in bad terrain.

    4. Full EVs may be temporarily specialized vehicles as charging builds out and power pack tech improves, but full gassers are stone age. Period. Blended drivetrains will be the bulk of desirable drivetrains, for family, work and racing, sooner rather than later.

    Reality has already passed what most folks think is the future – electrics are that fast. Even enthusiasts like you are clearly having a hard time keeping up now. Jump on or get run over.


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    storm

     

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    Aug 11th, 2011 (7:13 pm)

    DonC: I think theft is a much bigger problem than vandalism in these types of lots. Good point about 120V. However, the problem generally is that the business has to upgrade their service even for multiple 120V chargers. Upgrading is quite expensive but if you’re paying for it then whether you put in 240V or 120V chargers probably doesn’t matter that much.

    Don,
    The 220 J1772 costs around $1000. A 110 outlet costs $5. The installation costs would be similar, but the outrageous cost of the J1772 charging station will be a real impediment to installing enough of them to handle the numbers we hope will be needed.


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    bcirce

     

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    Aug 14th, 2011 (11:47 am)

    I drove the Volt from Miami to Albany NY and back. My lifetime went from 74.3 down to 54 :( But, every hotel I stayed at allowed me to plug in :)