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Business Case for Better Range

Discussion in 'TSLA Investor Discussions' started by FANGO, Mar 5, 2014.

  1. FANGO

    FANGO Active Member

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    #1 FANGO, Mar 5, 2014
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2014
    I expect this not to happen.

    edit: this thread has a strange title considering it says it was started by me (it wasn't, my comments were moved here from another thread), and I don't think there is a business case for "better" range. Regardless, I've stopped commenting on the thread because people started getting far too emotional.
     
  2. Monsoon

    Monsoon Member

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    Let the debate begin. (Keep it polite.)
     
  3. JRP3

    JRP3 Hyperactive Member

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    We already had this debate. FANGO has clearly stated he does not expect nor want a vehicle with more than 300 miles of range. Most people disagree and expect we'll see 400 miles or more at some point.
     
  4. Robert.Boston

    Robert.Boston Model S VIN P01536

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    I just drove home to Boston from Baltimore last night. As long as I was in "SuperCharger world" the 85kWh pack was fully sufficient. But there's a missing SC on the route to Boston (at least, along the usual route), which makes the last leg tight. But I'm thinking that the full build-out of the SC will make packs above 100kWh unneeded by most consumers. Of course, there are folks who live in big states that will never have great SC access (e.g. Montana), for whom a super-sized battery would be a nice feature.
     
  5. Theshadows

    Theshadows Active Member

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    I think you are right. I have a round trip that I make often though that is 110 miles each way. In the summer it should be no problem. I can do it with the cold weather but I have to keep it at 55 on I80 where traffic is going 75-80. Even in the summer I might be hard pressed to do 75
     
  6. austinEV

    austinEV Active Member

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    I think that is the issue. in a mild climate 85kWh is a nice 265 mile range. In the bitter cold it's lower. If I could have gotten 100kWh for an extra 10k I probably would have just to have the luxury of going from 5 white-knuckle days a year to zero.

    Many have speculated that the Model X will probably have a "bigger" pack to not decrease range, despite the vehicle being larger with more drag. The "bigger" ness can be achieved with higher capacity cells in time, not adding weight. When that time comes it would be sensible to offer it has a high-margin upgrade to new Model S as well, but they will NEVER say that early for fear of the much-mentioned "Osbourning" of current sales.
     
  7. hershey101

    hershey101 Member

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    Right now, with fairly cold temps. in NY (~20 F), I'm consuming about 1.5x the rated power consumption. So I get roughly a 35% drop in range. I agree 265 mi in the winter is really 190 to 200. Plus, I payed 100K for a car, I'm really not planning on driving it 55 mph on the freeways. If I wanted to drive a car at 55, I could have gotten a prius. I want to set my car on cruise control at 75-80mph on the highway and take road trips w/o an issue (maybe faster if there are no cops :p). So I agree, bigger battery packs would be greatly appreciated, and in some cases, very much required for long drives.
     
  8. kcveins

    kcveins delivery 2/7

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    In real winter conditions (here in Chicago) I have found that a range charge really gives me only about 130-140 miles (travelling 65-70 mph, mostly non-snow packed roads, temps in the 0-15 F range). I would love to have a bigger pack to enable stress free travel.
     
  9. hershey101

    hershey101 Member

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    Yea, I realistically only get 140 miles or so, but I don't do a full charge, I only charge ~75% of the pack... It doesn't matter for me, I live 3 miles away from the new supercharger in LI :D Free charging every day!
     
  10. kenliles

    kenliles Active Member

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    Won't be long and SC proximity will be an MLS property value enhancement
     
  11. sleepyhead

    sleepyhead Active Member

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    I completely agree with this. If somebody wants to drive cross country at 80 mph, then they shouldn't be hampered. A 400 mile range is a minimum that I would like to see for the top end (eventually).

    265 miles of range does not cut it for road trips in the long run. It sounds great in theory, but it is a limitation that will annoy more than a few people. If we really want the world to go 100%EV then putting superchargers every 30 miles is a good start, but even then 265 is not enough.

    I talked to a guy the other day and he said that he loves the car. Of course he had to say that he saw it on fire on TV. I told him that it was in an accident. His response was that there were no other cars around. So I told him that the car ran over a trailer hitch that pierced the battery pack. He was genuinely shocked to find that out; I think he thought that the car spontaneously combusted.

    And finally, he said that "I need one wit 1,000 miles of range, I am in medical sales."

    Maybe he doesn't need 1,000 miles, but 265 definitely would not cut it for him.
     
  12. FANGO

    FANGO Active Member

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    #12 FANGO, Mar 6, 2014
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2014
    This is exactly why I expect it not to happen. When cars had 100 mile ranges, people said they needed a 200 mile range (or whatever). Now with a car with a near-300 mile range, people will say 500 (or whatever). Then if it's 500, people will say 1,000. And so on. The numbers people throw out are completely arbitrary. People simply don't know how much they drive, and the ones that think this way won't get the car until EVs become normal to them. Which will happen as the rest of us drive them and show the world how much better they are and how they work despite not having the things they think they need.

    A lot of people also think their gas cars go 600 miles between fillups or something, but compared to cars in it's class, the Model S is right smack-dab in the middle of them all in terms of how far it can go on a single charge. Or that they routinely drive over 300 miles a stretch without stopping, and last time this conversation came up here, everyone responded saying they did it once when they were young and will never do it again. Some people are just looking for an excuse.

    Meanwhile, huge batteries are larger, more expensive, make the car slower, handle worse, less safe, brake worse, less efficient, etc. etc. etc. Manufacturers want to keep costs down and want to make cars better, and all of these things need to be compromised in order to add more range to a car. Manufacturers have looked at data of how people use their cars, and particularly Tesla has a lot of this data. They will know that a vanishingly tiny percentage of the population would ever use any more than the current range of the Model S in a day, and they will target the 99.9% of drivers rather than the .1% of drivers because it would be silly to focus on a niche when you are trying to make a mass-market car.

    The focus will be on supercharging, and possibly on giving people some sort of buffer for weather (though Bjorn did what, 250 miles in heavy snow and mountains?) through some kind of technological improvement which may or may not be a larger battery (I could see them going with a larger one to make up for higher weight on the X, then later migrating it into the S, because why not), but we will not see ever-increasing ranges on mass market cars - the same way we don't see ever-increasing gas tank sizes.
     
  13. Theshadows

    Theshadows Active Member

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    There is not a supercharger slated for installation on the route that I take. I will be shocked if there ever is. It's mountainous and in the cold if I had a true 265 mile range while going 75mph on the highway I would be happy. To get my cold mountainous round trip at 75mph I would need a slightly bigger battery. Because of this and that I had to run an errand before my trip yesterday I ended up taking the VW Golf.

    Besides, the client I met is easily a deca millionaire that loves technology. With that bigger pack I could have showed him the car and taken him for a 5 mile spirited drive and probably sold a P100+. ;)
     
  14. sleepyhead

    sleepyhead Active Member

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    Exactly. Some people don't get that the 265 range is more like 150 in the cold when going up elevations and going above 65 mph. Add some spirited driving on your way and you are looking at 100 mile range.
     
  15. JRP3

    JRP3 Hyperactive Member

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    Except we all know batteries will get cheaper and more energy dense, (lighter). That would allow more range at similar or even lighter weight than the current Model S, which is quite fast enough, handles well enough, brakes well enough, and is efficient enough for most people, and good enough to garner rave reviews. Quite simply, enough people will want more range that it will be offered when practical to do so.
     
  16. DaveT

    DaveT Searcher of green pastures

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    Fango, are you aware that Elon mentioned a possible 500 mile range battery for the future in his April 26, 2013 conference call on service/loaners?

    Paul Eisenstein Detroit Bureau: Will this service policy also be consistent with Model X and BlueStar? Will the battery upgradeable? If you wanted to swap for a 400 mile battery.

    Elon: What about a 500 mile battery? There is a good chance that this will occur. Step changes will happen in 4-5 years. Like roadster to Model S. This would allow to put a LOT more range. So that's probably more likely than not.I love upgrades. Today is not about that, but that would be a good thing to do in the future.

    Live Blog Tesla Announcement April 26 - Elon Musk | Forums | Tesla Motors
     
  17. AlMc

    AlMc 'Senior Moments' member

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    While I do not have a source, Elon mentioned that the 500 mile battery was already possible but cost prohibitive, in his estimation, at this time in TM/Lithium battery history. While I know this is a politician's answer but I agree with BOTH sides of this argument. I am quite happy with my 175-265 mile; cold-warm weather current range but will welcome the ability to upgrade to a 275/400 mile cold/warm weather battery in 3-4 years. The SC roll out makes long distance travel possible, with a little inconvenience/time increase but represents a critical moment in the acceptance of EVs into mainstream use and thought.
     
  18. sub

    sub Member

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    If the Gigafactory drops battery prices by 30-40%, then theoretically the distance in the Model S can be increased by that much and sold for the same price as today. That gets it to the 325 range, not bad. Add an option to add another 100 miles for 10k and I think it would sell well, I'll take one.
     
  19. JRP3

    JRP3 Hyperactive Member

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    Density would also have to increase as much or you'd be adding 30-40% more battery weight and volume as well.
     
  20. 30seconds

    30seconds Active Member

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    JRP -- do you know of any source or Elon discussion around expected increases in density? I've seen lots on the cost aspect, but can't find anything about density. I'm trying to figure a reasonable timeframe for a 20% increase in energy density vs current model S pack
     

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