Electric cars-Conversions

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Mandrake
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Re: Electric cars/vans/bikes-Conversions/Secondhand..etc

Post by Mandrake »

Pity it had to be a Cactus though. :-D

And I'll believe it when I see them on the roads. A lot of manufacturers are making empty promises about timelines for delivery of EV's of late. All that matters is when the rubber finally hits the road. :wink:

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van ordinaire
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Re: Electric cars/vans/bikes-Conversions/Secondhand..etc

Post by van ordinaire »

Apparently there's a cabbie in Oslo immensley proud of the fact that when he started using a Tesla in 2008 he became the 1st electric cab driver in the world - about 100 years after the original electric cabs appeared on the streets of London!

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Re: Electric cars/vans/bikes-Conversions/Secondhand..etc

Post by NewcastleFalcon »

van ordinaire wrote:
13 Nov 2018, 23:54
Apparently there's a cabbie in Oslo immensley proud of the fact that when he started using a Tesla in 2008 he became the 1st electric cab driver in the world - about 100 years after the original electric cabs appeared on the streets of London!

temp4.jpg
bit extra information here
http://thechargingpoint.azurewebsites.n ... -1897.html

"The way in which it was recharged was also novel; more than 100 years before Better Place launched its first electric car battery swapping station in Israel, the London Electrical Cab Company was utilising a similar system in London. Bersey taxis returned to base when their power got low, and by way of a hydraulic lifting system the tired battery could be replaced with a full one in a matter of minutes."
Regards Neil

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white exec
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Re: Electric cars/vans/bikes-Conversions/Secondhand..etc

Post by white exec »

How fitting for this to be recalled on a Citroen forum: the lifting of heavy but vital lumps by hydraulic means!
In London, there was something like 'The London Hydraulic Company', who provided a piped mains supply of high-pressure water, for powering a range of commercial devices, including many lifts in buildings and on the underground railway. Tall water towers were a common sight in London right up to the 1950s and beyond, where gravity was used to store pressure.

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Re: Electric cars/vans/bikes-Conversions/Secondhand..etc

Post by Wookey »

To give this thread a faint French Car tinge - here is the 1988/89 Peugeot pikes-peak (Ari Vatenen and Bobby Unser) video showing what it used be like before the tarmac, (and now before electric took over). A very fine bit of driving, and nicely made video:


Also the i-pace is a nice car, but it's actually also very inefficient. No-one worries much about EV efficiency , but they should. Compare how much battery you need to do 200 miles in an i-pace vs 200 miles in a Hyundai Kona.


The Kona is much better engineering for normal (on-road) use. I reckon the Kona (or very similar Niro) is the best EV you can get at the moment, and would suit a _lot_ of people. Main catch seems to be actually getting one in less than 6months/a year due to battery supply shortages.
Last edited by myglaren on 15 Nov 2018, 17:45, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: YouTube links

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Re: Electric cars/vans/bikes-Conversions/Secondhand..etc

Post by NewcastleFalcon »

Wookey wrote:
15 Nov 2018, 16:46
Also the i-pace is a nice car, but it's actually also very inefficient. No-one worries much about EV efficiency , but they should. Compare how much battery you need to do 200 miles in an i-pace vs 200 miles in a Hyundai Kona.

The Kona is much better engineering for normal (on-road) use. I reckon the Kona (or very similar Niro) is the best EV you can get at the moment, and would suit a _lot_ of people. Main catch seems to be actually getting one in less than 6months/a year due to battery supply shortages.


I liked the description of the I-Pace as an "Electron Guzzler" :-D

Thanks Wookey another one to add to the list for the electric car spotter
https://www.hyundai.co.uk/new-cars/kona-electric
Combining expansive space and head-turning good looks. With an exceptional electric driving range of up to 300 miles, the KONA Electric gives you the best of both worlds – with no compromises. This cutting-edge new electric SUV is available in three trim levels – SE, Premium and Premium SE

This one's in Tangerine Cornet! (if the link works)

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Re: Electric cars/vans/bikes-Conversions/Secondhand..etc

Post by Mandrake »

In many ways the Kona is a fine EV, and the first truly long range (250-300 miles for the 64kWh version) EV available at an "affordable" price. Still a very expensive car compared to a similar spec ICE though, in the low £30k range depending on spec, albeit before government grants. May be a great car to pick up second hand when it's 5+ years old though, and it's definitely one of the current crop of EV's on my "keep an eye on" list a few years from now when they get older and go into the second hand market.

The 64kWh battery is probably the killer feature - it will do a realistic 250 miles with ease in normal driving. It's also the second most efficient EV on the market in terms of miles/kWh - only the Hyundai Ioniq bests it slightly, and it beats out even the Tesla Model 3 which itself is very efficient. Owners who have them are reporting as high as 300 miles if you drive conservatively and still above about 220 miles even if you drive it like you stole it, with 250 miles being the average attainable range with normal driving - and when you consider that my Xantia V6 will only do 250-300 miles on a tank that's plenty for me even for trips...

Furthermore, unlike say the Leaf, it has proper thermal management for the battery with both battery cooling and heating as demanded by conditions, using liquid glycol cooling, similar to what Tesla do. This gives two major advantages over a car without thermal management of the battery - much faster and more consistent rapid charging speeds, and much better efficiency in sub zero conditions.

To be able to rapid charge at maximum speed especially after 200+ miles of motorway driving you need a battery with active cooling. The 40kWh Leaf is limited to 43kW at most and for second and subsequent rapid charges on a long journey the battery temperature will cause the charge rate to be throttled back as low as 20kW due to overheating, which is painfully slow. On a 100/150kW CCS rapid charger the Kona will charge at up to 76kW, can maintain that rate up to about 80% charge, and can drive and charge over and over without any overheating slowing down the charging rate due to the battery cooling.

Granted, there are no 100/150kW rapid chargers in the UK yet, all CCS here is still 50kW so for the moment the Kona in the UK is limited to 50kW, but there is already wide deployment of 150kW CCS in parts of Europe and we'll start seeing it in the UK in the next couple of years. So by the time it's a 5 year old second hand purchase the charging speeds will be faster than what it can do now as the charging infrastructure here will have caught up with the car! Meanwhile today's 40kWh Leaf will still be forever stuck charging between 20-43kW and suffering from overheating.

The battery heater is important in the winter for two reasons. One is that the efficiency and usable capacity of a Lithium Ion battery drops off quite a lot below about 0C. So you will get a significant loss of range in the order of maybe 20% just due to the battery being cold in the winter before you even factor in heater use. My Ion has no battery heater and I definitely notice a significant drop in range when it gets down to about -5C that isn't entirely accounted for by the heater.

It turns out that below a certain temperature the energy spent heating the battery using power from the battery itself is less than the gain in efficiency of the battery operating at warmer temperatures, so it is a net win for cold weather driving range to consume energy warming the battery up. As well as that you can preheat the battery while the car is still plugged into mains AC, so the preheating doesn't waste any of your charge. Once it's warm driving is usually enough to keep it warm enough so the heater doesn't have to run for the entire journey, just at the start.

But there's another important reason to have a battery heater - Lithium Ion batteries cannot be rapid charged below freezing. Below about 5-10C the charge rate of a battery has to be reduced to avoid dendrite formation, and below approximately 0C it has to be drastically reduced to very slow speeds to protect the battery. Below about -10C it's not possible to charge a Lithium Ion battery at all as any charging would be harmful to the battery due to dendrite formation.

I notice this effect in winter in my Ion - rapid charging speeds are about half what they are in summer when its below freezing outside as it has no battery heater. It's not as big an issue as it might sound at first because the cells are nearly always at a significantly higher temperature than ambient due to their location under the car and the fact that they warm up naturally with both charging and driving, and have a high thermal mass so once warm they don't tend to cool quickly. Unlike the windows the cells aren't exposed to cold night sky.

So as long as the car is driven every day, even if day time temperatures never poke above freezing it's not a major issue because the cells will always be 5-10C or so. But if you left the car unused for a couple of days in a row and temperatures were consistently well below freezing you might be in trouble, if the car was not already charged after last use when the cells were still warm.

A battery heater solves this problem by warming the battery up to a temperature where it's not just safe to charge, but where it will charge quickly, so a car with a battery heater is capable of rapid charging at full speed even in freezing conditions.

Another reason to have thermal management for the battery is that keeping the battery temperature within a narrow comfortable range is a key part of ensuring longevity of the cells, as excessive temperature is one of the major things that causes age related capacity degradation of Lithium Ion cells, especially when the cells are nearly fully charged. So chances are that the batteries in Kona's will be in a lot better state of health at 5 and 10 years old than they would be in a Leaf with no thermal management of the battery.

In terms of performance the Kona is pretty good too - although its a heavy 1685Kg, it has 201hp and 291lb-ft of torque and a 0-60 time of 7.6 seconds, so it's no slouch. Being front wheel drive with loads of torque they've gained a reputation for having problems with traction and wheelspin if you get too pushy with the throttle... :lol: This is certainly no Peugeot Ion with a 0-60 time of 15.9 seconds...

I'm not a massive fan of the compact SUV style of cars, but as they go I actually don't mind the looks of the Kona while I find it's Kia Niro stable mate a lot more ugly. They look like a big car in pictures due to the styling but in real life they're actually not, they're smaller than they look.

In terms of accommodation the consensus seems to be that rear leg room and boot size are OK but a bit smaller than many people would like. It's not a car for a 6 footer to sit behind a 6 footer in comfort. I don't have the exact measurements but I get the impression from photos that the Xantia has better rear leg room and a larger boot than the Kona. Kia are releasing an EV version of the Niro which is their compact SUV - it will probably have the same electric drive train but has a bit more rear leg room and a larger boot, but in my opinion is UGLY! :twisted:

So would I buy one second hand 5 years from now ? Depends how much they cost by then and what else is around of course, but I possibly would. My main concerns would be rear leg room and boot space, but I seldom need the full boot space of the Xantia and spend 90% of my time driving in the far more cramped Ion, so if the boot was a little bit smaller than the Xantia I could live with it if it met my other needs well.

The big downside of the Kona is availability! Only 1000 were allocated to the UK for the first year of production, with less than 5,000 vehicles worldwide most selling in Korea and Norway. By comparison Tesla are currently producing 5,000 Model 3's per week, or about 50x the number of EV's Hyundai are producing. Those that ordered a few months ago have got theirs now but if you tried to order one today you'd be waiting 6 months.

Nobody really knows why Hyundai's production numbers are so low when the car is really a very good EV - speculation is that they simply can't get enough batteries because unlike Tesla who makes their own with the assistance of Panasonic staff working in their Gigafactory, Hyundai buy theirs from LG chem just like most other EV makers... so they are all competing with each other as customers of LG chem.

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Re: Electric cars/vans/bikes-Conversions/Secondhand..etc

Post by Wookey »

As mandrake says, rear passenger and boot space are a bit stingy in the Kona. Depends how much of the time you actually have 3-4 adults in your car (I don't see many used like that!), or a load of stuff. The Niro is about 20cm longer, but they are _very_ similar, with exactly the same electrics. Personally I couldn't care less what it looks like



Oh and comparing 1000 for the UK with 5000/wk worldwide production isn't like for like. What is the worldwide production of the Kona/Niro? And you can't buy a Tesla model 3 in the UK at all yet, so actually it doesn't usefully have better availability here. Same as you can't buy a Bolt, which is a pity because that the was the previous useful-range, not-as-expensive-as-Tesla, best-buy.

Cars not actually available in RHD and/or your country might as well not exist, unless you want to go in for the whole grey import thing.
Last edited by myglaren on 16 Nov 2018, 19:51, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: YouTube link

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Re: Electric cars/vans/bikes-Conversions/Secondhand..etc

Post by Mandrake »

Wookey wrote:
16 Nov 2018, 13:39
Oh and comparing 1000 for the UK with 5000/wk worldwide production isn't like for like. What is the worldwide production of the Kona/Niro?
No I said that the worldwide production of the Kona for the first year is only going to be about 5000 cars, (it may be slightly more but definitely less than 10,000) with 1000 Going to the UK. So the point that Tesla currently make 5000 Model 3's a week worldwide production is a valid comparison. Both are worldwide numbers. Also Tesla are continuing to crank them out at a continuous and increasing rate while Hyundai have produced a batch of about 5000 and basically run out of batteries to make any more for a while. Rumour is they are seriously constrained by battery supply from LG chem, the same as they were with the Ioniq which also had very long wait times and low production numbers.
And you can't buy a Tesla model 3 in the UK at all yet, so actually it doesn't usefully have better availability here. Same as you can't buy a Bolt, which is a pity because that the was the previous useful-range, not-as-expensive-as-Tesla, best-buy.

Cars not actually available in RHD and/or your country might as well not exist, unless you want to go in for the whole grey import thing.

Forget about the Bolt, it's never coming to the UK.

However display Model 3's are coming into the UK right now and they have been confirmed to be on sale here by about June next year and in far greater numbers than the Kona.

If you order a Kona today you will be waiting until after the Model 3 launches here to receive it! :wink: So in actual fact the Kona is the car that you can't really buy in the UK today, if you didn't pre-order one earlier this year. Not unless you want to wait until after you could get a Model 3 for the actual delivery of the Kona.

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Re: Electric cars/vans/bikes-Conversions/Secondhand..etc

Post by GiveMeABreak »

An interesting article on this morning concerning the supply of Lithium used in the making of the batteries for electric cars - and the impact on the environment in Countries like Bolivia that has the largest reserves - some 40%.

Going for something like 20k Euros a tonne - of course the Bolivian government are ramping up supply to get the money in, Trouble is the massive amount of water it takes to extract it means the river beds and the ground water for the local farmers are now drying up and they can't now produce their crops! So the next time anyone goes on about how good these cars are on the environment, this sort of environmental damage is another thing to consider and the impact in the indigenous population.

The article:

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Re: Electric cars/vans/bikes-Conversions/Secondhand..etc

Post by NewcastleFalcon »

Early generation French Electrics

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Post by CitroJim »

I'd like one of those electric Saxos :)

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Re: Electric cars/vans/bikes-Conversions/Secondhand..etc

Post by Mandrake »

Wow, Ni-Cad batteries in those cars. That takes me back. Is it even legal to buy Ni-Cads these days given the toxicity of Cadmium ? :lol:

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Post by CitroJim »

Ni-Cds? Zut Alors! They are bloody horrible things :evil: I remember them from the days when they were fairly new and they were bloody awful then...

I have painful memories of them...

Why are they now using them again? Energy density?

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Re: Electric cars/vans/bikes-Conversions/Secondhand..etc

Post by Mandrake »

CitroJim wrote:
29 Nov 2018, 12:56
Why are they now using them again? Energy density?

They're not. :) Those designs above are all from the 90's! No modern EV's use NiCads. Energy density of Lithium Ion is far greater than NiCad anyway.