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Fuel Costs?

Puma2020

Member
Jun 16, 2020
418
444
New Hampshire, USA
Keeping in mind that I haven't been able to take long
trip due to some kind of pandemic, I decided to figure out what
was the fuel cost of driving the Tesla after my first 10 months.

My lifetime average due to mostly slow (35 to 50 mph roads) in NH is 239 wh/mi. Reaching the forums,
most highway commutes seem to be in the 280-300 wh/mi range.
It could be lower/better if I didn't launch myself but what fun would that be?

I only supercharged a few times in the first 10 months.
The first time was just a test (to prove everything was set up and I could supercharge)
8 kWh @ $0.28 = $2.24
In July, heading up to Mt Washington auto road, I put
20 kWh @ $0.26 = $5.20
and in September, I had 2 supercharging events
10 kWh @ $0.25 (to make sure I made it home, it was
really close and I was going by a supercharger so why chance it) = $2.50

43 kWh @ 0.26 (we decided last minute to go leaf peeping and I hadn't charged up the car the night
before) = $11.18

Total of 81 kWh.The car shows that I have added 1,358
kWh total for the 5,680 miles. Minus 81 means 1,277
kWh from home charging. Ignoring any solar aspect,
we'll use the standard rate of $0.15/kWh for home charging = $191.55

191.55 + 11.18 + 2.5 + 5.2 + 2.24 = 212.67

212.67 / 5680 = $0.037 per mile.
or 5680 / 212.67 = 26.7 miles per dollar.

With gas at $2.50/gallon, you would need to have a car
that provides 66.75 MPG to have the same economy.
At $2.75/gallon, you'd need 73.425 MPG
At $3/gallon, you'd need 80.1 MPG.

That is not factoring in other things such as oil
changes that a Tesla doesn't need. Assuming tire costs
and insurance is roughly the same for each car.

That's a bit lower than I expected. Solar, of course,
provides a lot more benefits but until I reach the ROI,
and break even (roughly 7.5 years), I just had to pay up
front instead of once in a while. After I reach ROI, the
charging is basically free.
 

jcanoe

Active Member
Oct 2, 2020
3,212
3,185
Maryland
Currently my fuel (electricity) cost for my Model Y is zero. I charge for free, for up to 2 hours, when parked at a local shopping center. Most days I use the level 2 public charging station (200V/30A) for between 1 hour and 90 minutes. When I do charge at home my cost is approx. $0.15 per kWh. I have not taken any trips where I have needed to use a Supercharger.

There are a number of plug-in hybrid vehicles that exceed 80 MPGe, for mixed use of electricity and gas. My Chevy Volt had a lifetime MPGe of 99 MPGe. I rarely needed to use any gas when driving the Volt due to the Volt's 53 mile range on battery alone. There were things about driving the Volt that I did not like including the cramped rear seating. The Volt was not a vehicle I wanted to drive on a long trip due to cabin room, comfort features and road noise. Although the Volt used almost no gas, unless for a trip, there was still the need to periodically change the oil, have the Volt tested for emissions. For road trips the ability to travel beyond 400 miles before refueling with gas is more convenient than always having to seek out a Supercharger. Still, I am glad I made the switch to the Tesla Model Y. I don't miss much about Volt (I miss the Volt's heated steering wheel, CarPlay.)
 

sgalla04

Member
Mar 24, 2021
546
523
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
@Puma2020 great analysis! One thing to note that I don't think a lot of people consider however, is the Wall to Wheels efficiency and Phantom drain. Check out that YouTube video starting at 4 min. He makes a good point that you are probably losing about 10% of electricity to heat and phantom drain. So to be a bit more accurate, you are probably spending an additional 10% on home charging or $0.165/kWh or $210.71 or $0.041/mile, 24.50 miles per dollar.

Where I live electric is about $0.145/kWh and gas is about $3.00/gal so your assessment fit my situation nicely. Therefore for me it looks like 73.5 MGPe if I had similar charging habits. Interestingly enough, my 2018 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV is rated 74 MPGe. So this analysis would say at current prices, the cars should cost me about the same not including maintenance. I did spend a little bit more on electricity on my PHEV though because when I was commuting to work and charging at their level 2 charger, I was spending about twice my home rate or $0.88 each time to charge and get me 25 miles to drive home. Still better than gas and I sometimes went a few months without getting gas on a 50 mile/day commute 4 days a week.

Another interesting bit is that PECO (my electric company) will be going to super off-peak rates 12 AM - 6 AM starting in September, which might be a 50% reduction in price. Would still have an impact on a PHEV too, but to @jcanoe's point I will miss Android Auto and blind spot warning from the side mirrors, but way too excited for the performance, tech, software, EV community, no more ICE, and Autopilot.

I really wanted the Model Y in 2018, but couldn't wait until its release because of my new job and not wanting to drive a 2006 Honda Civic with non-working AC. I needed a new car with AWD the the PHEV has served me well. Now that I'll be going back to the office over the summer and the MY has gotten a bit better in fit & finish, new console, heated steering wheel, double paned windows, etc. I figured the time is now!
 
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jcanoe

Active Member
Oct 2, 2020
3,212
3,185
Maryland
@Puma2020 great analysis! One thing to note that I don't think a lot of people consider however, is the Wall to Wheels efficiency and Phantom drain. Check out that YouTube video starting at 4 min. He makes a good point that you are probably losing about 10% of electricity to heat and phantom drain. So to be a bit more accurate, you are probably spending an additional 10% on home charging or $0.165/kWh or $210.71 or $0.041/mile, 24.50 miles per dollar.

Where I live electric is about $0.145/kWh and gas is about $3.00/gal so your assessment fit my situation nicely. Therefore for me it looks like 73.5 MGPe if I had similar charging habits. Interestingly enough, my 2018 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV is rated 74 MPGe. So this analysis would say at current prices, the cars should cost me about the same not including maintenance. I did spend a little bit more on electricity on my PHEV though because when I was commuting to work and charging at their level 2 charger, I was spending about twice my home rate or $0.88 each time to charge and get me 25 miles to drive home. Still better than gas and I sometimes went a few months without getting gas on a 50 mile/day commute 4 days a week.

Another interesting bit is that PECO (my electric company) will be going to super off-peak rates 12 AM - 6 AM starting in September, which might be a 50% reduction in price. Would still have an impact on a PHEV too, but to @jcanoe's point I will miss Android Auto and blind spot warning from the side mirrors, but way too excited for the performance, tech, software, EV community, no more ICE, and Autopilot.

I really wanted the Model Y in 2018, but couldn't wait until its release because of my new job and not wanting to drive a 2006 Honda Civic with non-working AC. I needed a new car with AWD the the PHEV has served me well. Now that I'll be going back to the office over the summer and the MY has gotten a bit better in fit & finish, new console, heated steering wheel, double paned windows, etc. I figured the time is now!
I forgot that the Volt also had the blind spot warning light in the side mirrors and the cross traffic alert when backing up. So there are three things I miss having: heated steering wheel (now standard on Model Y), CarPlay and Blind Spot Warning w/Cross Traffic Alert.
 
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Johnny Vector

Member
Jun 21, 2020
241
362
Maryland
I forgot that the Volt also had the blind spot warning light in the side mirrors and the cross traffic alert when backing up. So there are three things I miss having: heated steering wheel (now standard on Model Y), CarPlay and Blind Spot Warning w/Cross Traffic Alert.
Did it also have the 360° overhead camera view, like the Bolt? That's one reason I often like to drive the Bolt rather than the MY when going into the city where I'll have to squeeze into a parallel parking space.
 

sgalla04

Member
Mar 24, 2021
546
523
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Did it also have the 360° overhead camera view, like the Bolt? That's one reason I often like to drive the Bolt rather than the MY when going into the city where I'll have to squeeze into a parallel parking space.
Not sure about the Volt, but my Outlander PHEV has that and it’s nice, but actually I’ll miss the front bumper camera the most. I like being able to get to about 2” to the wall in my garage. I garage fitted a MY and was able to guess once the sensors said it was 12” away, I just went a bit further. But it would be nice to visually see what I am parking up to.
 
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jcanoe

Active Member
Oct 2, 2020
3,212
3,185
Maryland
Did it also have the , like the Bolt? That's one reason I often like to drive the Bolt rather than the MY when going into the city where I'll have to squeeze into a parallel parking space.
No; the Volt never had the 360° overhead camera view. My 2017 Volt Premier had the Automated Parking Assist feature, was very useful when parallel parking. All you had to do was shift and control the forward and backard motion with your foot on the brake pedal; the Volt would automatically steer into the parking space. The perpendicular parking feature never worked well in my experience. The Volt would end up as if parked by a drunken driver every time I attempted to use that feature.

The 2017 to 2019 Volt Premier could be configured with adaptive cruise control (ACC). My 2017 Chevy Volt Premier had the ACC and after pure electric driving the ACC was my favorite thing about my Volt.
 
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mark95476

Active Member
Jun 21, 2020
1,699
1,036
Bay Area CA
My fuelling costs had dropped to about 1/3 with my Tesla. My old gasser took premium and that's getting close to $5 in the Bay Area.

Flying has been dramatically reduced so rewards credit cards have allow fuelling charges to be used for travel credits. I was pleasantly surprised to see ChargePoint being reimbursed.

CSR_Chargepoint_credit.jpg
 
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GregW

Member
Nov 19, 2015
30
40
La Jolla, Ca
I've seen these fuel savings calculations many times. It definitely depends on fuel (gas) costs in the areas you usually drive most. In Calif you can easily pay $4.00+/gallon. My Tesla Y costs for energy are probably 75% less than gasoline costs would be with a similar vehicle, when charging at home. On the road with Supercharging, about 1/2 as much.
 

Exelion

Member
Feb 21, 2021
225
286
Los Angeles, CA
You guys have really good prices for your electricity. I saw fifteen cents....fourteen and a half cents......the only way i can get as low as $.23 is during the winter when the AC isn’t on constantly. Otherwise (which is almost all the time) it’s typically $.30 and sometimes $.37 per kW!

Twenty-five cents/kW supercharging doesn’t look so bad anymore.

Sure, gas is expensive here at about $4.00 a gallon but when supercharging can be cheaper than charging at home, the savings isn’t all that much.
 

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sgalla04

Member
Mar 24, 2021
546
523
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
In Pennsylvania you can actually shop around for better generation rates than what PECO offers. @Exelion encouraged me to log in to my account...I actually have been getting a lower rate from Cirro Energy and my total energy rate is $0.06609 + $0.05501 = $0.1211/kWh. I'm excited for when they begin the super off-peak rate program starting in September 2021. Hopefully it will only be ~$0.060/kWh to charge overnight.

1619007596974.png
 
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HappyDude

Member
Feb 7, 2021
59
50
Phoenix, AZ
My off peak is 8pm to 3pm at $0.05230 per kWh.

They try and claw it back with an on peak demand charge of $17.438 Per kW plus 0.08683 per kWh. I do pretty good at minimizing on peak demand but it only takes one high use hour on peak hour in a month to blow up your demand charge.
 
Mar 8, 2021
78
73
Las Cruces, NM
When I built my home 3 years ago it turns out we grossly overestimated the yearly electrical consumption. So now I have in excess of 5000 kWh per year production. Enough to power all my transportation needs with plenty to spare. It was what drove me to check out Tesla. But after the doing test drives in the MY & M3P the free power takes a distant second place compared to the smile driving these cars puts on my face :)
 

Exelion

Member
Feb 21, 2021
225
286
Los Angeles, CA
For those with huge peak and off-peak price differences, wouldn’t that make a really good case for home batteries like Tesla PowerWall (no solar)? Run the house and charge the batteries during non-peak, and when it’s peak time switch over to batteries?
 

jcanoe

Active Member
Oct 2, 2020
3,212
3,185
Maryland
For those with huge peak and off-peak price differences, wouldn’t that make a really good case for home batteries like Tesla PowerWall (no solar)? Run the house and charge the batteries during non-peak, and when it’s peak time switch over to batteries?
It would have to be other than the Tesla Powerwall system. I read that Tesla will only sell the residential Powerwall system as part of a home solar panel system. Also, assuming a moderate sized battery system costs ~$20k it would not be cost effective. The payback period would be more than a decade.
 

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