> What would be the range of an electric car carrying 4 people, 50 pounds of luggage, with headlights, air-con and ICE operating, in hilly terrain?
That would depend on WHICH EV you're in. My family of four with several hundred pounds of luggage, headlights and AC on regularly drives ~100 miles. And that car was designed for the 1996 model year - a Rav4EV. As for what the range of an EV would be with the ICE operating is beyond me. I've never owned an EV with an ICE.
Surely you jest. As you tow your boat on family outings (meaning that you obviously are not using your boat to make a living), you complain that EVs are “lifestyle choices” and toys for the very rich? Your boat is a lifestyle choice that only the rich can choose.
What would happen if you traded in your toy boat for an EV to commute in? You'd save money and avoid polluting my air and water, is what.
I want to know if any of these electric vehicles will allow me to tow my boat through the Ozarks with my wife and three kids along. I cannot afford to have a separate vehicle to commute. These things are not just vehicles, they are a lifestyle choice for all but the very rich who can afford multiple toys and until they allow my scenario they will never be anything other than curiosties sold to a select niche market.
I worked at the GM Technical Center for a few years and I remember clearly an item that appeared in the company news one morning. It was in reference to a reported problem in some of the early EV1"s. The summary was that these were not fires really, just "thermal events." (We all had a good laugh over that one.) It was very clear to me from the beginning that those out on lease were really hand built prototypes offered for extended real world testing, never intended for actual production. Your description of how they were built makes that clear. They could never sell those for the cost of production. Rationalizing the production would require a massive investment which could be justified only by large volume demand. The resulting vehicle would have to be very different from the EV1 we knew.
As far as true utility goes, I don't have any doubt that the Tesla wins hands down over anything else that is actually available. The others, so far, are strictly pie in the sky. No available electric, nor any being proposed, would allow me to get into my car, east of Phoenix, in the morning and make the 700 mile trip to Palo Alto, CA in time for dinner with one fuel stop, as I do with my Volvo V70. And I step out of it ready to walk to a restaurant with no pain or stiffness whatsoever. It also transported a few hundred pounds of cargo when I moved here from Michigan.
The range of today's electrics, other than Tesla, would not get me to downtown Phoenix and back. That doesn't even consider driving at freeway speed with the A/C on in 115 degree summer weather. Consider how far you would be likely to go driving around Detroit in the winter with the heater and defrosters on.
We are not there yet, and certainly were not there with the EV1.
I agree about the turbine electric generator. There you've got a nice little machine, it burns practically anything, has immense power to weight, super efficient, perfect for powering an EV. Actually, I wonder why diesel electric trains or container ships don't run turbines? I guess I don't know everything about them.
Hey if you like the teardrop you should see the Aptera, supposedly has Cd=0.15, compared to 0.16 for Edison 2 or 0.19 for EV1 or 0.24 for Mercedes Benz. Aptera did not win the Automotive X-prize however, that went to Edison 2 at 102.5 mpg. I like the looks of the Aptera, if they ever get it into the showrooms I'll seriously consider it.
Chrysler was building two vehicles. The first a pure EV minivan built from production units. Lets just say it was inpressive however, never when beyond inital build and testing partically due to California droping the Clean Air based requirements. The second unit was an aluminum Neon with a 3 cylinder advanced desel engine. The test track runs showed a car that out performed a stock neon and exceeded 90+ MPH. What happend to those vehicles? they went to the same crusher the EV-1 ended up at. Now what the auto industry is back sayingthey can't build cars like they did back in the 90s.
BTW.......FORD also had a program focused on pure EV light duty trucks.
... and right there is your answer as to why cars today have such bad cd's. I am no aerospace engineer but what I do know hints at the fact that most cars would be more aerodynamic in reverse. What most people don't realise is that the sharp end of a 747 is at the back not the front, but we all want cars with sharp noses, and slinky lines, the safety guys all want us to be practically standing up when we drive so we don't end up a crumpled mess in the footwell and so the airbags can work, and the greenies want our cars to be electric (read: stuffed with batteries full of toxic, unstable stuff like Li.). All this adds to the cross-sectional area of the vehicle which means we have to move more air out of the way to move. I am all for electric vehicles but rather powered by super efficient turbine-electric generators that can burn any number of renewable gases super efficiently that can be dissipated quickly in the event of an accident. Not like the 600Vdc deathtraps currently residing in electric vehicles. Wait until these batteries become more ubiquitous. Then we will see how "Green" they are. What do you do if you see a burning car with a boot full of Li. I would run... far..
GM tracked down and destroyed all but a few of the EV-1's and the few that remained were disabled so they couldn't run.
As to it's looks, they were a bit of a compromise between the designers and the suits. A perfact shape whould have been a teardrop. I had read that the suits decried the expense of making the underside aerodymic. "Why," they cried, "the owner won't see it." They designers returned with, "Yes, but the air will." A response that do doubt went over the suit's heads.
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