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Advice for potential Roadster owner

Discussion in 'Roadster' started by fraccy, Aug 2, 2011.

  1. fraccy

    fraccy Member

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    Hi,

    First thanks for this resource, trying to find real facts about the Roadster would be a great deal more difficult otherwise.

    I've bored my poor sales guy here in the UK to death with all my questions. I've tried to pick up as much as I can from the various threads here, but I'm just going to ask my remaining concerns directly if I may! (deposit goes down today if I can find the answers!):

    - Having owned a Roadster and experienced Tesla's attitude, does your instinct/understanding of the car tell you that a replacement battery in 7-10 years will be like-for-like, or, that Tesla will upgrade them to newer cells? I see newer cells going in the Model S, but will the Roadster's custom pack mean it will require expensive re-engineering that they will never do? I ask because I can see the Roadster is going to be different to every other car they produce in future, a bit of a prototype. Is it going to be economically viable for such a tiny market? How future proof are you expecting your Roadster to be or will it be on a scrap heap in 10 years?

    - In the UK and Europe I hear Mennekes will become/is becoming a predominant standard for public charging points. Are Roadster owners over here anticipating a solution being provided by Tesla? I have seen a few threads on the subject. Is there frustration with how Tesla react to the market for Roadster owners or are you perfectly happy? Are they taking care of your interests?

    - Do you find the range in practice as good, worse, or better, than you anticipated before purchase?

    Many thanks in advance your experiences are invaluable!
     
  2. Scene

    Scene Member

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    Hi Fraccy,

    I've had a Roadster (in the UK) since April. I love it because I wanted a commuting 'sports' car that was different (used to drive a Maserati), and the spec and range matches my normal requirements.

    1. Nobody is entirely sure what will happen with regards to the replacement battery. I suspect that Tesla will manufacture a compatible replacement which is effectively an upgrade (as the older, lower capacity, cells may no longer be available). However ten years is a long time in the EV world.... The questions really are how much can they 'upgrade' the pack without having to replace the PEM (which I assume they won't re-design), and where will Tesla be in ten years (i.e. what about Roadster support if they are 'absorbed' by Toyota)?

    2. I have no experience of public charge points. Currently I don't even own a UMC! I commute a short distance to my office every day and charge at home. Quite often I drive 120 miles (at high-speed) and again charge on my return. I am considering buying a UMC as charging after such long journeys takes a considerable time, and have already had a 32A socket fitted outside. I just don't understand public charge points (at the current time): they would only ever be useful if you can leave the car there for several hours (whilst you are at work), or they offer a very fast charge....and who wants to carry around a boot full of cables and adapters! So, my thoughts are simply that you should only purchase an EV if it matches your lifestyle and you really only need to charge at home (or work), as currently anything else is hassle - unless you want to be a pioneer. For me, the Tesla matches perfectly (and the company car tax incentives came in handy too!). Its a fantastic machine. I am addicted to the acceleration. If, however, I was doing round trips of >140 miles on a regular basis I wouldn't recommend it (personally) because I like driving fast without range anxiety!

    3. The range is exactly as anticipated. I generally only use Standard mode. After a charge I have approx 190 ideal miles (which means >210 if you count the reserve). If I zip down a motorway on a 110 mile round trip I will return home with approx 30 ideal (50 max) miles left. Obviously you can vastly improve this if you drive more sedately and are careful with the acceleration (less fun though).

    Ray.
     
  3. Doug_G

    Doug_G Lead Moderator

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    Range is as advertised. Perhaps even slightly conservative.

    For my first road trip I went to some effort to calculate everything out in advance, using the spreadsheet data from Tesla. I planned out my Wh/km, speed, charging stops, etc. In the real world it followed the numbers very accurately. It was bang-on going westbound and slightly conservative going eastbound; I suspect the small difference was due to the prevailing winds!
     
  4. NigelM

    NigelM Recovering Member

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    Or the rotation of the Earth?
     
  5. fraccy

    fraccy Member

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    Thank you very much this was very helpful.

    Deposit down!

    .... ok its now been 2 hours 47 minutes since I ordered........ eek! 2 hours 48 minutes........

    Does the wait get any easier? :crying:
     
  6. NigelM

    NigelM Recovering Member

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    #6 NigelM, Aug 2, 2011
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2011
  7. vfx

    vfx Well-Known Member

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    Try waiting 2 years!
     
  8. AndrewBissell

    AndrewBissell Member

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    #8 AndrewBissell, Aug 2, 2011
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2011
    Formatting bug has hit this post - sorry!

    Just a note to say hi to both Scene and Fraccy from a fellow UK owner. Whereabouts do you each live? I'm in Edinburgh, and have taken my Roadster as far south as Goodwood and as far north as Aviemore and Aberdeen. Pretty much all the questions are answered, but I'd like to comment on charging away from home:- There are publicly accessible Tesla High Power Wall Connectors (HPCs) that connect directly to the car and recharge it (from empty) in about 4 hours at:Taunton (Castle Hotel); London Heathrow (Heathrow Windsor Marriott); Nottingham (Q Hotels Nottingham Belfry); Durham (Raddison Blu Durham); Cumbria (Tebay Westmorland Services on M6 Northbound, accessible from Southbound); Edinburgh (Dalmahoy Marriott); Aviemore (Macdonald Aviemore Highland Resort.) I've charged at all these bar Taunton and Tebay. Kevin Sharpe and David Peilow have charged at them all bar Tebay. Tebay has been tested by an owner. The network these form means you can drive between them without range issues, and hence can reach most of the UK with one or two recharge stops of 2-4 hours each. You don't need to carry a special cable at all. If you do buy and carry a UMC then you can add all the places that have a standard blue 32A "commando" (aka IEC 60309) connector, including: Arden Hotel at Birmingham NEC; Scarlet Hotel and Sennen Inn in Cornwall; Malmaison Hotel and Dynamic Earth in Edinburgh; Montpelier Chapter Hotel in Cheltenham; Others in the Zerocarbonworld network 32A allows a full charge overnight. What is currently difficult is to link to the growing number of 32A Mennekes type 2 sockets, for example the ones ecotricity is installing at Welcome Break locations on the motorway network. For this Tesla really need to produce a Mennekes to Tesla cable, which is so far missing. However, with current HPC network and a UMC the UK is pretty much fully open for Roadsters. Hope you find the spirit of adventure and set off!
     
  9. hcsharp

    hcsharp Active Member

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    I'm pretty sure the CDC has recognized "roadster sickness" as a real disease by now. Once you drive one you can't eat, you can't sleep. You're all but useless at work. As far as I know there's only one cure. Best medicine I've ever had!
     
  10. TEG

    TEG TMC Moderator

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    Some of us are chronically afflicted and cannot afford the cure.
     
  11. bolosky

    bolosky Member

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    For me, it varies with the season. In the summer (in Seattle where it doesn't seem to get very hot anymore) the range is right on, or even a little conservative at least for mixed city/highway driving. Up into the mountains at 70MPH will, of course, cost you range. In the winter, the range is worse than advertised. I think that most of the winter difference is running the heat (which sucks down quite a bit of power), but I'm not convinced that that's all of it.
     
  12. fraccy

    fraccy Member

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    #12 fraccy, Aug 3, 2011
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2011
    The first few hours of pacing up and down has at least subsided I'm pleased to say. That would have got very boring very quickly.

    vfx you waited 2 YEARS?? <gulp> I think I might be able to just about manage 2 days.. :crying:

    AndrewBissell: I'm based in Reading. Thanks for that list of HPCs, I'd been given the following just recently (sorry this is getting more and more UK specific!):

    Castle Hotel – Taunton
    Heathrow Marriot – Windsor/Heathrow
    Belfry Hotel – Nottingham
    Radission Blu Hotel – Durham
    Westmorland Services – Tebay
    Dalmahoy Resort – Edinburgh
    Macdonald Resort – Aviemore
    Ashford Interntational Hotel – Ashford Coming Soon
    Moat House Hotel – Birmingham Coming Soon

    re: the Mennekes adaptor in the UK, Gian who I've been talking to was appalled when I told him the operator of a UK EV network I'd just spoken to had told me adamantly that the Roadster would never be able to draw 32A from a Mennekes/Mode 3 (sorry if thats the wrong terminology, all new to me). I realise I'll charge at home 99.9% of the time, but it'd be annoying to have all these public spots and only get 13A while others were getting 32. Hes now going to prove it to me with an adaptor before delivery of my Roadster, so anyone interested in this in the UK, this /is/ going to be available very shortly.

    16 hours and 8 minutes.... I don't even have a status page to stare at yet :eek:
     
  13. AndrewBissell

    AndrewBissell Member

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    Hi Fraccy, great to hear that you did get that list of UK HPCs already (from Gian I presume). Even better news that the Mennekes adapter cable is being pursued by Tesla.

    I totally concur that 99% plus of the time you will be charging at home, but it's great to know that at a time of need or desire the open road is accessible.

    Finally - do consider a UMC as there are lots of 32A stations already open to us (some of which I listed before).
     
  14. fraccy

    fraccy Member

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    This is all sounding very reassuring. One of the hardest things I found when looking into the Roadster was understanding that this affects all cars in the same way, just the ICE ones get away with it because noone really measures how fast their tank empties. How cold does it get in Seattle? We had a chilly winter here in the UK last year but it was fairly exceptional, and its rare for it to stay below freezing during the day. Just how cold is cold?
     
  15. fraccy

    fraccy Member

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    I've already scribbled those ones you mentioned down, thankyou. Where do you find these is there a map? I looked at the openchargemap.org but it just seems to list Nissan dealerships (which I assume are no use?)
     
  16. raymond

    raymond Member

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    With the new USA health care system and with Elon and Obama being sort-of buddies, this terrible chronic affliction must surely be covered!
     
  17. S-2000 Roadster

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    That's right! A custom Tesla Roadster is less expensive than many cancer treatments, and certainly cheaper than brain surgery, so I don't see why they couldn't afford it. Just continue the trend where half of Americans pay negative income tax and 1% of the top earners carry 28% of the federal tax collections, as that latter number continues to grow. If that fails, continue to print more money (doubling the circulation of U.S. Dollars only causes prices of goods to inflate to double their previous value, so it's a small price to pay). :cursing:
     
  18. bolosky

    bolosky Member

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    It sounds pretty comparable to the UK. We always get some days below freezing, but usually it gets above in the daytime. Sometimes it snows, usually it melts the same day but not always. There are lots of 40F (~4C) drizzly days.

    While fast/mountain driving affects all cars the same way (well, mountain maybe a little less for EV because of regen), heat in an EV is WAY different than in an ICE. The downside of having a really efficient powertrain is that there isn't much heat generated; the energy is mostly going to motion. While this is usually a good thing, the "waste' heat from an ICE is what powers the cabin heater. In an EV, you have to draw energy from the battery pack to heat the cabin, and that can be quite expensive (several kW when it's cranked all the way up).
     
  19. S-2000 Roadster

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    Good point. How much energy is stored in 10 gallons of gasoline? How much energy is stored in the 6,831 cells of the Tesla ESS? My rough guess is that the typical compact car stores about 4 times as much energy as the Roadster, but it wastes most of it while driving 300 miles. That waste means you get heat for free, even when you don't want it. The Roadster needs every bit of its energy to drive 245 miles, so any heat that you want will reduce that range.
     
  20. TEG

    TEG TMC Moderator

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    Roadster gets rated at something like 120MPGe. So, for ~240mile range, it works out to energy equivalent of about 2 gallons of gasoline. (I have seen similar equivalences calculated different ways).
    A typical ICE car probably has a 10+ gallon tank, so it is more like 5x+ more energy in the gasoline vehicle.

    From:
    Energy Efficiency of Tesla Electric Vehicles | Tesla Motors
     

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