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Highway distance driving

K

kiloecho78

Guest
My wife and I are moving to Austin, TX in June and will be caravanning our MS75D behind our Ford Explorer (hauling a moving trailer). I'm hoping someone can give me an account of their experience driving the model S at near the range limit particularly between Wilcox, AZ & El Paso, TX and/or between Van Horn, TX & Ozona, TX. Both of these segments require 223 & 229 miles respectively which is about the max number of miles I've been able to achieve on my daily commute up some steep hills and in traffic. I realize I can stop in Deming, NM and Iraan, TX if necessary, but I would like to avoid as many stops as possible. So if any of you have actually done this PLEASE let me know how difficult it was, your speed over the stretch, etc. Any information would be greatly appreciated.
 
K

kiloecho78

Guest
I bet if you draft the trailer, which should be traveling at 55 anyway, you should have no problems. Try it before hand just drafting the truck at 55 and see how much your wh/m improves. This should help you estimate how much you can stretch the range.

When you say the trailer should be traveling at 55, are you referring to the California towing vehicle speed limit or is that your opinion? In Texas, unless otherwise posted, they do not attempt to create such a huge difference in the rate of speed of vehicles on the interstates. Granted we were never planning to have the Tesla do 70 Noh during this segment, but 55 is lower than I have estimated. Also being close enough to draft another vehicle will get you ticketed, I know from personal experience.
 
So for the leg from Wilcox to El Paso, just plan to stop in Deming, it's only 1 mile off the freeway and I think you'll want to stop for a bit after driving for a couple of hours, I need a break anyway . For the leg from Van Horn to Ozona- We detoured through Midland the last time in our S85, I would suggest doing this in the day time though, Lots of Deer sightings on the leg from Midland to Ozona. If you insist on going on I-10 from Van Horn to Ozona, you'll have to slow significantly after making sure you have a full charge at Van Horn. I would bet you can't go over 50MPH(speed limit is 80MPH in this part of I-10) - but try using one of the tools to do the calculations- ( a better route planner or ev trip planner) they are pretty accurate if you input the data ( estimated weight, temperature, winds, tire size etc) The only thing you have going for you is the wind will likely be aiding you since you are traveling west to east. Good luck and make sure you post you success ( or failure) for all of us to see.
 
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On flatish ground going ~65 MPH sustained on interstate conditions, I repeatedly get well over 250 miles of range in my S75D. I usually run less than 250 wh/m of consumption on trips like that.

Orlando%20trip.jpg
 
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Our experience when on a road trip is that weather can change all of your plans. A headwind or rain/snow sucks power faster and a charging plan needs to be in place for a stop along the route. We carry a CHAdeMO adapter to have high speed charging access if required where there may not be Superchargers.

You need to plan for the worst case even if it never happens. Touring with an EV is much like a sailboat journey where weather determines the plan. Committing to an arrival time is always a mistake.
 
K

kiloecho78

Guest
So for the leg from Wilcox to El Paso, just plan to stop in Deming, it's only 1 mile off the freeway and I think you'll want to stop for a bit after driving for a couple of hours, I need a break anyway . For the leg from Van Horn to Ozona- We detoured through Midland the last time in our S85, I would suggest doing this in the day time though, Lots of Deer sightings on the leg from Midland to Ozona. If you insist on going on I-10 from Van Horn to Ozona, you'll have to slow significantly after making sure you have a full charge at Van Horn. I would bet you can't go over 50MPH(speed limit is 80MPH in this part of I-10) - but try using one of the tools to do the calculations- ( a better route planner or ev trip planner) they are pretty accurate if you input the data ( estimated weight, temperature, winds, tire size etc) The only thing you have going for you is the wind will likely be aiding you since you are traveling west to east. Good luck and make sure you post you success ( or failure) for all of us to see.

I'm trying to avoid adding unnecessary miles and time to my trip so I'm pretty well set on going I-10 if it's possible. What tools are you referring to here?
 
K

kiloecho78

Guest
On flatish ground going ~65 MPH sustained on interstate conditions, I repeatedly get well over 250 miles of range in my S75D. I usually run less than 250 wh/m of consumption on trips like that.

Orlando%20trip.jpg

I do notice that once I get away from the congestion and out on open highway that my consumption flattens out like you're showing here, this gives me some pretty good insight that what I'm expecting is in fact true. Thanks.
 
I'm trying to avoid adding unnecessary miles and time to my trip so I'm pretty well set on going I-10 if it's possible. What tools are you referring to here?

He mentioned "( a better route planner or ev trip planner)". I used both too on my road trip and they were very accurate. If you use them you could obtain the minimum travel (including stops) time for your trip with the planned stops and charge to %.

A Better Routeplanner
EV Trip Planner
 
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I do notice that once I get away from the congestion and out on open highway that my consumption flattens out like you're showing here, this gives me some pretty good insight that what I'm expecting is in fact true. Thanks.
That particular leg that resulted in the consumption that I posted also included a bathroom stop in the middle. If it would have been straight through, it would have been even better.
 
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Drove the I-10 W to E in January with our P85D. Just watched the energy graph and kept our consumption above the line. We had good weather conditions and reduced speeds at times to 55-60 MPH. Going west we did stop in Balmorhea at the trailer park at City Hall for an extra 35 miles. Your car will keep you informed—“Reduce your speed to xxxx to reach your destination”. Of course the car doesn’t account for elevation changes, wind or rain so we always run ev trip planner when concerned about the leg of any trip that does not give us a 25 mile plus 20% cushion. We have a range on our 50K millage 2015 MS of 249 at 100%. Needless to say we charged to that at Van Horn! Arrived at Ozona with 25 mi. after increasing our speed for the last hour. Husband drives slower than I do so this was his leg!
 
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K

kiloecho78

Guest
Drove the I-10 W to E in January with our P85D. Just watched the energy graph and kept our consumption above the line. We had good weather conditions and reduced speeds at times to 55-60 MPH. Going west we did stop in Balmorhea at the trailer park at City Hall for an extra 35 miles. Your car will keep you informed—“Reduce your speed to xxxx to reach your destination”. Of course the car doesn’t account for elevation changes, wind or rain so we always run ev trip planner when concerned about the leg of any trip that does not give us a 25 mile plus 20% cushion. We have a range on our 50K millage 2015 MS of 249 at 100%. Needless to say we charged to that at Van Horn! Arrived at Ozona with 25 mi. after increasing our speed for the last hour. Husband drives slower than I do so this was his leg!

Thank you for the reply. All of my calculations and practice are showing me that this is possible but actually doing it is sometimes another story. My wife will be driving the Tesla for all but the two segments I've mentioned here. For these I'll take over since I've got the patience and practice (plus as an engineer I can do calculations on the fly ;)).
 
K

kiloecho78

Guest
I've found that drafting a semi (or in your case a trailer) shows a reduction in drag even with AP set at its maximum distance. There's no need to follow at an unsafe distance in order to see a benefit.

Mythbusters did a segment on this a while back and it they were able to show an 11% increase in efficiency when drafting about 100 ft behind the 18-wheeler (which at 65 mph is the minimum safe following distance). So you're right there would be a benefit in this, however a boxy 18-wheeler displaces a LOT more wind than my Explorer towing a Kendon trailer with two sport bikes will. If I see that battery start to look like it's not going to make it, you can bet I'm gonna get real cozy with the slowest moving 18-wheeler or RV that I can find.
 
When you say the trailer should be traveling at 55, are you referring to the California towing vehicle speed limit or is that your opinion? In Texas, unless otherwise posted, they do not attempt to create such a huge difference in the rate of speed of vehicles on the interstates. Granted we were never planning to have the Tesla do 70 Noh during this segment, but 55 is lower than I have estimated. Also being close enough to draft another vehicle will get you ticketed, I know from personal experience.

If you own the trailer and know that it’s sound at higher speeds do what you want. The rental trailers that I’ve seen recently are probably not safe at 55. Also remember stopping distances get longer at higher speed. I’ve had enough idiots pull in front of me and then slow down while I was towing my boat. The tend to realize they messed up when they hear squealing tires.
You don’t have to be right behind the trailer to get some benefit from drafting. Having the following distance set to 3 you’ll still see improved wh/m versus nobody in front of you.
 

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