Electric Vehicles: What have you spotted?

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mickthemaverick
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Re: Electric Vehicles: What have you spotted?

Post by mickthemaverick »

NewcastleFalcon wrote:
31 Jul 2020, 22:01
mickthemaverick wrote:
31 Jul 2020, 21:47
The Taxi again!! I think he must live nearby, and a blue/green metallic ION I believe. Not seen that around here before but it drove down our road as I was walking out to the car! Nearly forgot to mention it. :)
Might be this one Mick sold by a Watford Dealer

https://www.tnarmstrong.co.uk/showroom/ ... /pricedesc

REgards Neil
Certainly a possibility!! I almost missed it because I was looking at my wallet walking up the path and only noticed it as I looked up when I felt movement!! :-D

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Re: Electric Vehicles: What have you spotted?

Post by NewcastleFalcon »

White Tesla Model 3 69 reg doing a reverse into a parking place.

I did notice one thing which that one had in common with my bargain basement micra.

It only had one reversing light.

https://teslamotorsclub.com/tmc/threads ... -3.159360/

Yes you can have 25 points if you happen to spot the one reversing light on a TESLA phenonemon in real life! :-D
(50 Points for a picture)


Regards Neil

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Re: Electric Vehicles: What have you spotted?

Post by Mandrake »

I’ve noticed a lot of cars these days especially small cheap ones only have one reversing light and one rear fog light. Seems like a case of excessive penny pinching to me!

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Re: Electric Vehicles: What have you spotted?

Post by NewcastleFalcon »

Mandrake wrote:
01 Aug 2020, 12:53
I’ve noticed a lot of cars these days especially small cheap ones only have one reversing light and one rear fog light. Seems like a case of excessive penny pinching to me!
Got a quick question for you Simon. I have never plugged in the 43kW AC charger at a charing point where the DC is being occupied. Its a type 2 plug which could plug into the AC charging socket of the Leaf...but would this be a bad thing to do, or would the car quite happily just draw the 6.6kW the charger can cope with no adverse effects.

Not planning to do it, but there are times when a quick plug in of the AC would give us enough to get home without having to wait for the DC user to finish or find another charge point.

REgards Neil

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Re: Electric Vehicles: What have you spotted?

Post by Mandrake »

NewcastleFalcon wrote:
01 Aug 2020, 13:05
Mandrake wrote:
01 Aug 2020, 12:53
I’ve noticed a lot of cars these days especially small cheap ones only have one reversing light and one rear fog light. Seems like a case of excessive penny pinching to me!
Got a quick question for you Simon. I have never plugged in the 43kW AC charger at a charing point where the DC is being occupied. Its a type 2 plug which could plug into the AC charging socket of the Leaf...but would this be a bad thing to do, or would the car quite happily just draw the 6.6kW the charger can cope with no adverse effects.

Not planning to do it, but there are times when a quick plug in of the AC would give us enough to get home without having to wait for the DC user to finish or find another charge point.
Does your Leaf have the optional upgraded 6.6kW charger like mine or is it 3.3kW ?

Either way you won't be able to use the AC connector on a rapid charger on a 24 or 30kWh Leaf - this is because the cable is tethered to the charger and has a Type 2 connector on it, while our older Leaf's have Type 1 connectors. (Nissan switched to a Type 2 connector on the 40kWh Leaf and later to comply with new EU regulations which forced them to do so)

While you can actually buy adaptor plugs and some people do, they are technically illegal to use as they don't comply with the safety standards set down for EV charging which don't allow such adaptors due to them defeating some of the normal safety interlocks.

Most AC charge points in the UK (pretty much all except those attached to rapid chargers and Tesla destination chargers at hotels) are untethered or socketed types where you provide your own cable to plug into the socket - these sockets are all Type 2, however they can supply both Type 1 and Type 2 cars as long as you use the right cable - the AC cable in your Leaf is a Type 2 to Type 1 cable and this is allowed in the standards. A Type 2 car would have a Type 2 to Type 2 cable.

Assuming that you could plug your Leaf into the 43kW AC socket on the rapid charger using an adaptor it would still be generally frowned on to charge at 3kW or 6kW on a 43kW output designed for the Zoe to use at high charging speeds. A lot of BEV drivers get a real bee in their bonnet to find a rapid charger "blocked" by a someone charging for hours at 3kW on a rapid charger (especially if it's a hybrid) as some don't allow even AC/DC at the same time. It's certainly not going to make you any friends! :twisted:

Up this way at least most rapid chargers are also accompanied by separate but nearby 7 or 22kW AC posts, so you could use one of them while you wait for someone to finish on the rapid charger. If your car is 6kW AC then it will add about 24 miles of range per hour of charging on AC. A lot slower than the rapid charger but certainly better than nothing if your charge level is down to brown pants level and you couldn't make it to another charger !

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Re: Electric Vehicles: What have you spotted?

Post by mickthemaverick »

I don't want to be negative here but I'm going to. As a true "in the veins petrol head" my only real problem with electric cars up till now has been the range and time to recharge issue. Having read that answer Simon, I now have another significant problem. SWMBO is a first order technophobe, she uses a Doro non smartphone to make telehone calls on because the callboxes have gone. She completely refuses to use anything which has been invented since 1960. I have to switch on the pc and go to her email inbox so she can use the "button thingy" to read her letters. She has, on dentist advice, adopted the use of an electric toothbrush but I have to plug in a shaver adapter for her to charge it as she "is never sure which way it goes!!" What chance would she have of charging the car if it is anything more difficult than plugging a standard lead into a standard socket? I'll tell you, no chance!!! Hence she would not use the car which would mean she would have a petrol car in the garage. So in that case, as an "in the veins petrol head" am I going to use the electric car when there is a petrol engine available in the garage? Of course not!!!! Luckily for me I doubt I'll live to see the day when that choice will be denied me so I shall spend my time luxuriating in V8 and V12 dreams while driving in line 4s for 250 miles between 5 minute stops. Sorry chaps, but that's the way it is!! :-D

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Re: Electric Vehicles: What have you spotted?

Post by myglaren »

Mandrake wrote:
01 Aug 2020, 12:53
I’ve noticed a lot of cars these days especially small cheap ones only have one reversing light and one rear fog light. Seems like a case of excessive penny pinching to me!
Nothing new Simon, been like that for years particularly base models.
Often possible to get them both working as the clusters are mirror images but no wiring for the second bulb.

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Re: Electric Vehicles: What have you spotted?

Post by NewcastleFalcon »

mickthemaverick wrote:
01 Aug 2020, 13:53
What chance would she have of charging the car if it is anything more difficult than plugging a standard lead into a standard socket? I'll tell you, no chance!!!
Really MIck it is not much more than that! :-D

Remember the days before we all got used to self service petrol. The number of things the petrol attendant used to have to twiddle to get the pump into action. It becomes a matter of course, and it doesnt stop the occasional petrol instead of diesel cock up!

Regards Neil

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Re: Electric Vehicles: What have you spotted?

Post by mickthemaverick »

NewcastleFalcon wrote:
01 Aug 2020, 14:25
mickthemaverick wrote:
01 Aug 2020, 13:53
What chance would she have of charging the car if it is anything more difficult than plugging a standard lead into a standard socket? I'll tell you, no chance!!!
Really MIck it is not much more than that! :-D

Regards Neil
Of course it isn't and it certainly isn't an issue for me but it would be for her and that is the problem. It really is difficult to understand how technophobic some people are until you meet one and I honestly think that the differing types of charger available alone is sufficient to put many people off. Perhaps the solution would be to re-introduce the pump attendant as a plug attendant to overcome the issue for the technophobic. That of course would increase the cost and further reduce the attraction so not viable. However until one connection system is adopted universally for the good of the planet rather than the good of the manufacturers I honestly think it will remain as an inhibiting factor for many. :)

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Re: Electric Vehicles: What have you spotted?

Post by Mandrake »

I feel a need to state the obvious here - EV's are still in the "early adopters" phase. "Mass produced" modern EV's as we know them today only really started in 2011 with the Leaf. (2010 if you count the i-Miev which was produced in small numbers) That's less than a decade. To put that into perspective when I moved to the UK in 2009 EV's really weren't a thing at the time and it has all happened since then.

Depending on your usage requirements they are not currently a direct substitute for petrol or diesel cars, at least not as an only car. Switching to an EV is not like switching between petrol and diesel, it is a significantly different mindset and way of doing things.

They currently cost more up front (at least new) have shorter range and take longer to fuel than petrol/diesel cars. The public charging infrastructure is still very immature. There are lots of charging locations but there are not enough chargers per site, and they are not nearly as reliable or user friendly as they should be. There is too much fragmentation between different networks and too many networks wanting you to treat their chargers as a loyalty scheme with a membership card instead of just offering contactless payment. Heaters on EV's use power and reduce range in winter while heating on ICE vehicles is "free" due to the engine throwing away so much waste heat. Batteries on EV's do degrade and lose range over time and are also the most expensive part of the car by far, at least at the moment.

But EV's have their advantages too, even now, otherwise nobody would buy them. If you have a driveway and can install a charger and drive within the range of the car you may never need to visit a service station again - you can have a full "tank" every morning if you like, and at less than 1/4th of the cost of diesel per mile.

Aside from no tailpipe emissions and no worries about a failed emissions test, they have very low (almost no) maintenance requirements - regular maintenance for most EV's is pretty much just wiper blades, screen wash, tyres and pollen filter. Eventually at a higher mileage brake discs/pads will need doing, suspension joints/shock absorbers etc.

But none of the regular maintenance and repairs associated with an ICE engine, gearbox or exhaust system. No turbos to blow. No EGR system. No expensive catalytic converters, no DPF to block up, no exhausts to rot away and need replacing, no oil, filter and coolant changes, no emissions systems like Adblue, no spark plugs, no leaky diesel injectors, no timing or auxillary belt to snap or replace, no head gasket to blow, no power steering rack to spring a leak, (all EV's use electric power steering) no clutch to wear out and need replacing, no highly complex automatic gearbox with a limited life span which is very expensive to overhaul and so on. There is a long list of things which go wrong on ICE cars that we all take for granted that simply don't exist or have an analogue on an EV.

The motor has one moving part - a rotor with a couple of bearings supporting it. The gearbox is a simple single speed reduction - usually consisting of an input and output gear with an idler gear in between them, followed by a normal differential. No mechanism to support changing gear ratios, no clutch. A gear isn't even needed for reverse - the motor just spins backwards! The motor and gearbox in most EV's is maintenance free and bullet proof and almost never fails even at very high mileages.

While the heater in an EV uses power, a heat pump reduces the power required greatly, and you have the advantage that you can "pre-heat" the car while still plugged in (no more scraping ice in the mornings, just jump into a defrosted toasty warm car) and can also run the heater or AC while you're parked waiting for someone without "idling" an engine. (you can stay warm or cool in no-idling areas with little noise and no emissions...)

BEV's are in general, much nicer and more relaxing to drive than their ICE counterparts especially in commuting traffic. Maybe not as "exciting" and viceral if you like the roar of a combustion engine, but super smooth, extremely responsive to the throttle and very quiet, even in something as common as a Nissan Leaf. There is no doubt that my Leaf is a much quieter car than the Xanita, and has a much smoother drivetrain. (The Xantia handily beats it on ride smoothness however)

While I still enjoy driving the V6 petrol, I also enjoy the smooth responsive, effortless torque of an electric motor, even on the relatively modest 80kW motor in the Leaf. I certainly don't enjoy driving a small 1.3 litre 3 cylinder turbo petrol, nor do I enjoy driving a Diesel. While there are some fine examples of higher performance combustion engines that are fun to drive the reality is that most people drive diesel or small petrol engines that are not fun to drive - they're noisy, they vibrate a lot, (especially 3 cylinders) they have grabby clutches that are hard to master and easy to stall, they just don't sound nice like a V6 etc... The loaner 208 I've had from Peugeot a couple of times was a nice enough car hobbled by a horrible gutless noisy motor and rough gearbox, these are the kinds of cars a lot of people drive and for them, the effortless smooth torque of an EV would be a true revelation. The low to mid performance versions of the 208 are not even in the same league as a bog standard Leaf in refinement, smoothness, effortless torque and quietness.

A lot of people who start driving EV's find it difficult to switch back, and I put myself in that category. I will keep my Xantia for as long as I can and enjoy its lovely V6 engine and sublime ride and handling, but it will be a weekend and occasional use car, while the Leaf will be the daily driver. And I can't imagine going back to having no EV at all. When it was time for the Ion to go it was not a matter of wheter I replaced it with another EV, just what kind of EV.

EV's have their limitations at the moment but things are improving by the day. New prices will come down, (demand exceeding supply is keeping them artificially high at the moment) range is steadily going up, such that something like a Kia e-Niro can do a genuine 250-300 miles with ease, charging speeds are getting faster so charging times are going down, (150kW chargers are starting to go in where 50kW was the norm before) battery longevity is improving due to increased battery size and active cooling, (many hundreds of thousands of miles are possible with the latest batteries) batteries are getting smaller, cheaper and lighter, and have already improved by a factor of 5 in the last 10 years, and with batteries being an area of intense research it will continue to improve.

The public charging situation is a bit of a mess at the moment but it will sort itself out. In a few years chargers will all be accessible with contactless payment, will be in clusters, will be faster, more reliable and easier to use. To the point where you just wave a debit card at the machine and put the plug in the car - which is exactly how Instavolt already is today. And if you have home charging you would only use the public charging network occasionally on long trips anyway and do the majority of your charging overnight at home when you're tucked up in bed as I do.

Performance is going up and up - even the Kia - not a brand you associate with high performance is offering 150kW and 395Nm of torque on what is a small family crossover SUV not much larger than a Leaf - it's faster in a straight line than the Xantia V6 - a lot faster... and lets not even mention Tesla, who don't make any slow cars. :)

If you extrapolate the trends it's not too many years away until nearly all the current shortcomings of EV's and the infrastructure around them are addressed and the question then becomes trying to justify why a car purchase should be an ICE instead of an EV...

For those who can charge at home and have modest range requirements, such as me, even a 2nd hand EV like the Leaf can do 95% of all my driving, with minimal if any inconvenience and many benefits. For those with more demanding needs its only a matter of when, not if, EV's can meet those needs.
Last edited by Mandrake on 01 Aug 2020, 16:07, edited 3 times in total.

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Re: Electric Vehicles: What have you spotted?

Post by mickthemaverick »

I totally agree with virtually everything you have said there Simon, however your very last line is the one that matters to me:

"For those with more demanding needs its only a matter of when, not if, EV's can meet those needs."

The issue for Swmbo is creeping arthritis and I think her incapacity to drive will come before the time you refer to. As for me, I am already living on much appreciated borrowed time if my paternal family history is anything to go by, and therefore I will be very pleasantly surprised if that time does arrive for me.
I am confident that the future will see an electric automatic driverless car world at some point but I sincerely hope I won't be here to see it!! Now where did I put the key to the RF900 ? :-D

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Re: Electric Vehicles: What have you spotted?

Post by Mandrake »

mickthemaverick wrote:
01 Aug 2020, 15:59
I totally agree with virtually everything you have said there Simon, however your very last line is the one that matters to me:

"For those with more demanding needs its only a matter of when, not if, EV's can meet those needs."

The issue for Swmbo is creeping arthritis and I think her incapacity to drive will come before the time you refer to. As for me, I am already living on much appreciated borrowed time if my paternal family history is anything to go by, and therefore I will be very pleasantly surprised if that time does arrive for me.
I am confident that the future will see an electric automatic driverless car world at some point but I sincerely hope I won't be here to see it!! Now where did I put the key to the RF900 ? :-D
For someone with a physical impediment which makes driving a car more difficult, a BEV is definitely an easier and less stressful car to drive than an ICE, and especially a manual ICE. They are much easier to drive in general, which may be why a lot of "non-car" people who just want to get from A-B smoothly and without fuss and don't enjoy the mechanics of driving a car like gear changing like driving BEV's.

No clutch pedal, no gears to change and zero chance of stalling the car when trying to cross a busy junction. Smooth and effortless pull away with lots of get up and go available instantaneously if needed to get out of trouble. Ability to slow down the car at a decent rate using regenerative braking just by lifting the accelerator pedal which means less dancing back and forth between brake and accelerator pedals in city traffic. None of the unpredictability of an ICE auto gearbox when you never quite know if it will change up or down at an inopertune moment and leave you in a spot of bother. So from that perspective a BEV is the ideal car for anyone with any physical difficulties driving a car.

On the other hand, handling of the thick heavy cables and large connectors used when using public rapid chargers could be an issue. I'm a six foot male who while not particularly strong is not a weakling either, and I still find Chademo/CCS rapid charging cables somewhat heavy and cumbersome to use, especially those that are configured in a way where they lie on the ground instead of hanging down from a pole. I can certainly see there will be people who are a bit more frail who still drive cars who will struggle with rapid charger cables or be unable to use them. Whether that's something which can be addressed with thinner, lighter water cooled cables remains to be seen.

Although again, if you can charge at home, a home charging cable is much lighter and more managable (lighter than a petrol pump hose) so if the car is typically making short trips use of a rapid charger may be rare or unnecessary.

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Re: Electric Vehicles: What have you spotted?

Post by mickthemaverick »

I hadn't even thought about the heavy cable issue as I was not aware of that myself having only run the hybrid. My points here are not general arguments at all, as I agree that for the average disadvantaged person a BEV is definitely an easier option, however for our case there are more obvious reasons why it won't work. SWMBO will not drive either of my current cars BECAUSE they are automatic. They are not what she learnt on, involve accepting a different technology and don't make her feel in control! (A mute point!!!) As I say until you actually interract with a first degree technophobe it is hard to accept!! She will not use a food mixer, a george foreman grill, a cordless phone (though I have convinced her that it is the same as using her Doro and she is getting there!) any form of device she has been given to aid her with jar opening etc., a cd player, the tv remote other than to change channel and then only if she knows the channel number and can just tap it in, etc. etc so you see a BEV just isn't going to be any use to her. Consequently we will run an ICE car and therefor I'll choose that every time! :-D

PS Of course if the time comes when she cannot drive at all then I will happily look at the option of replacing my ICE with a BEV not having to worry about her being out and running out of amps!! :-D

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Re: Electric Vehicles: What have you spotted?

Post by white exec »

Two excellent posts there, Simon. It is early days yet, and BEV progress and capability has been impressive.
Tesla aside, Kia and Nissan have really stepped up to the plate, and models from some of the newercomers like Honda, and even China's MG, are heading in the right direction.

Ease of driving has to be a big plus, and I don't think we've necessarily seem the last of contactless (inductive) charging, either over a pad/loop, or on-the-go. In any case, as battery capacity/range becomes less of an issue, so does charging.

What is needed urgently is some global standardisation on charging connectors. It is crazy that there should be multiple types of cable/connector. Such a situtation was long seen off for domestic and industrial power connection (at country level at least), and the equipment developed to be able to differentiate according to its voltage/current/frequency requirements. Phone and mobile device charging is a good example of where international authorities have stepped in and made standards mandatory, leaving only some laggards (like Apple) attempting to make their products non-standard proprietory. I appreciate that were talking about a different league of current handling with BEVs, but this is of little consequence. A good universal charger would simply be able to identify the vehicle being connected to it and deliver the charge accordingly . . . the vehicle equivalent of USB.

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Re: Electric Vehicles: What have you spotted?

Post by Mandrake »

In the UK / EU charging standards have already been mandated - Type 2 for AC and CCS for DC are the official standards and are required to be supported by manufacturers selling into these markets going forward since about 2019.

Tesla adopted CCS for the Model 3 and Model Y in the EU/UK (after using proprietary DC charging on the Model S/X) and even long time Chademo hold out Nissan will be shipping their new Ariya BEV with CCS. Kia originally used Chademo but switched to CCS a couple of years ago. Game set and match for CCS.

However rapid chargers are likely to continue to support Chademo for many years to come to service the legacy cars which use Chademo - chiefly the Leaf, but also the Mitsubishi Outlander, i-Miev/Ion/C-Zero and early Kia Soul models among others.

By the time all the Chademo cars are off the road however Chademo will go away everywhere except Japan. There is already at least one new rapid charging network - Ionity, which has only CCS, so Chademo's days are definitely numbered.

While I would still buy a Chademo equipped car today (and just did!) I probably would not 5 years from now. The next EV I replace the Leaf with will be CCS.