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BMW i3 at a Supercharger

Discussion in 'Electric Vehicles' started by johnmodels, Aug 29, 2014.

  1. johnmodels

    johnmodels Member

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    About a week ago I was at the Supercharger at San Juan Capistrano, CA charging up and a BMW i3 pulled in next to me in a Supercharger slot. I thought to myself, "This will be interesting". The car looked new and was driven by a man about 40 years old and had his son, about 5 years old, in the back. He pulled out the Supercharger cable and looked at the plug with a confused look on his face. He then looked at the plug on his car and went back to look at the Supercharger plug. I felt I needed to stage an intervention.

    So I introduced myself to the man and explained that this was only for Tesla's and that his i3 would not be able to charge here. He was a pretty ticked off. He told me that the dealership told him that there were 6 "hi-power" chargers in the area that he could charge his car. He then proceeded to mess with his phone to show them on a map to me. After a few minutes of fiddling with apps he found the Charge point app and showed me the "combo" chargers that BMW told him were the "hi powered" chargers. I told him that some had combos and others didn't. I then explained the costs, opening a Charge point account and my experiences and times needed to charge. He had not set up a charging system at his house.

    He was getting more and more ticked off with every minute that passed. His wife then rolled up in their SUV, who I guess was following him in his journey to get his car charged. He had about 20 miles of EV range and with a "full" tank of gas he would get about 40 more miles in normal driving. I was feeling range anxiety for him, and I didn't own the car.

    He then told me that he owned the car for about a week and replaced his x5 with the i3. There was an absence of excitement in his voice that you'd expect from someone telling you that. We chatted a few more minutes and he was off to find the next Charge point. The funniest part of this story was his last sentence he said to me!

    "I should have bought a F-ing Tesla" And he drove off.

    (no exaggeration!)

    John
     
  2. Zextraterrestrial

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    hehehe, wow
    priceless
     
  3. MassModel3

    MassModel3 Member

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    OMG... I read this to my wife and we LAUGHED and LAUGHED!!!! Too funny! And I'll bet it happens all the time.
     
  4. DiversifiedOne

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    LOL! Sounds like a terrific job of customer education (what is home charging?).

    Precisely the reason why Tesla refuses to sell through dealers!
     
  5. stephenpace

    stephenpace VIN S00219

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    Ouch. This sounds like a dealer education issue. Similar to Tesla Delivery Specialists, BMW should be providing realistic run-throughs of the car and explaining a bit more about charging. They could also recommend signing up for the various charging networks when they order the car and reaffirm that when they get it.
     
  6. Zextraterrestrial

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    I think they don't actually know about their own car. could be a bit of a problem there?
    I asked a bunch of questions at the test drive event here and got a lot of random answers(not to my questions) and blank looks. this was the test drive team too, not the local dealership folks(who were interested in the Tesla)
     
  7. Gizmotoy

    Gizmotoy Active Member

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    Exactly. It really highlight exactly why Tesla didn't want to farm out sales to existing dealerships. The knowledge required just isn't there, and an incorrect statement or two about charging can have a tremendous impact on customer satisfaction. I can almost hear the guy's "but they told me this would work" annoyance from here.
     
  8. theheff

    theheff Member

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    #8 theheff, Aug 29, 2014
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2014
    Had the exact same thing happen to me while supercharging a few weeks ago... a lady drove up to charge her Nissan Leaf in one of the open Supercharger spots. At first, she drove all the way in, and since the Supercharger is on the side of the parking spot, the cable wouldn't reach around to the charging port on the front of the Leaf. She then backed it out and left the car hanging out of the spot while trying to fit the Tesla charger into one of the Leaf ports. She must have tried for a few minutes to make it fit. Eventually, I helped her out and explained that she would have better luck at one of the nearby Nissan dealerships. It was just an awkward situation and I didn't want to be the bringer of bad news, but I also couldn't look away.
     
  9. cpa

    cpa Member

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    And NADA advances the theory that independent automobile dealers are there to help and protect the consumer! Yeah, right.
     
  10. gaswalla

    gaswalla P4201/85/airsusp/pano/19i

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    Ha ha. Hope he tells all his friends!
     
  11. MSEV

    MSEV Member

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    For a while, over the summer, when I hadn't figured it out about owning a Tesla, I wanted to get an i3. Very nice car, a lot of carbon fiber. Took one for a test drive. I liked it. Though it said 67 miles left, it ran out of energy, right on the edge of a huge intersection. The good news is it wasn't in the middle of the huge intersection. We had to be towed back on a flatbed trailer. I think it is probably a good car--couldn't any car have something wrong with its software or a part? The sad thing is they never explained to me why it did that, they just said it needed a charge. But why did it say 67 miles of range? I was never told. And that is a part of the electric car Odyssey that led to wanting a Leaf. But when I drove it, everything went well. But I started figuring out all the things I couldn't do with it and ordered a Tesla.
     
  12. Cobra Kai

    Cobra Kai Member

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    It is amazing how many people are misinformed or mislead by others (dealers)! I couldn't even imagine the amount of range anxiety I would have if I purchased an EV not named Tesla! They are strictly city cars, and I don't think people wrap their head around that enough.

    This is where Tesla really comes through and shows vision and practicality... with the roll-out of supercharging stations and hundreds of destination HPWC charging spots (which most people haven't paid attention to.... dual chargers looks almost essential now to new tesla buyers because of this)

    BWM, Audi, and Mercedes are so far behind in that respect, and it doesn't appear they are going to do anything about it anytime soon...
     
  13. wraithnot

    wraithnot Model S VIN #5785

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    You sir know how to tell a story! That made my day :)
     
  14. Jaff

    Jaff Active Member

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    Howzat go again ..."the ultimate driving machine"...:wink:
     
  15. birdsaresmarter

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    But this is really, really sad. This is the perfect example of the net value of that dealer franchise protectionist argument and what this consumer got out of it.
     
  16. TexasEV

    TexasEV Active Member

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    #16 TexasEV, Aug 29, 2014
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2014
    If the destination is a hotel, single charger is just fine for overnight charging, same as it is at home. Dual chargers are useful mostly for destinations that are day trips. Also realize not all of the destination HPWCs are on 100A circuits. Some are only on 50A or something in between.
     
  17. capt601

    capt601 Vin02324

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    Except the dual chargers will allow more people to charge in a time period. Which is better for everyone. Sitting at a charger when your car is full does not help anyone else out.
     
  18. Vitaman

    Vitaman Member

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    Horses for courses.
    The i3 is a wonderful car. Super fun to drive, innovative design, and well constructed.
    It has a brilliant auto parallel park feature, and great acceleration.
    You just have to know you have an 80 mile tank in it.
    My wife would not trade it for a Tesla (we will see if she sings the same tune in November), and likes it better than any car she has ever driven.
     
  19. ecarfan

    ecarfan Well-Known Member

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    I continue to recommend that Model S buyers get dual chargers. You spend half the time charging at a HPWC that was set up properly at the full rated amperage, thus making the charger available to more cars.

    If a destination installs an HPWC at 50A or less they should have just installed a NEMA 10-50 and not wasted an HPWC on a low amp circuit.

    In the future there will be more and more high amperage HPWCs available, and you won't be able to take full advantage of them with a single 10kW charger.
     

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