TMC is an independent, primarily volunteer organization that relies on ad revenue to cover its operating costs. Please consider whitelisting TMC on your ad blocker and becoming a Supporting Member. For more info: Support TMC

I made it to the Hunter Valley And back... Twice! yay!

Discussion in 'Australia & New Zealand' started by jakevanle, Jan 18, 2015.

  1. jakevanle

    jakevanle Member

    Jan 18, 2015
    Sydney, NSW, Australia
    Met Dborn charging when I got back on Sunday, Gave him a Bottle of Verdello I picked up, best Verdello I've ever had

    I would like to thank him for introducing me to this Forum... Note that David has given me more information about my car than the all the monkeys I've spoken to at Tesla, I will go into detail about that later

    Summary of the Trip

    1. I had 4 people in the car, myself my partner and my two daughters, total mass approx 185kg plus luggage so about 210kg altogether
    2. Aircon was full on the whole way
    3. Music was fully pumping the whole way
    4. Full Charge
    5. Distance from St Leonards Charging station was 151km, so return 302km as calculated by the GPS
    6. Driving? As careful as I can, rarely used the brake
    Things I had to consider on making this trip I did don’t have to consider when driving a petrol car:

    • I had the number to a towing company
    • I could not make this trip I got stuck in traffic too long
    • There was no service station that could help me
    • I could not drive around the Hunter Valley. Straight there and back
    • I knew I would drive around Hunter Valley anyway and have to stop where the Kids asked to stop, Namely the Famous Hunter Valley Gardens, The Chocolate Factory, Mango side of the road shops, and basically anything that interest the kids
    • I assumed that the range prediction was accurate. (I know in my Lexus when I hit 0 km I still have 75km or so left in the tank, I do not think this is the case with the Tesla
    • I would not be charging it overnight
    • It would be stressful, suicide with the Tesla was not an option as there is no tail pipe to connect my hose to. (joke)
    Travel Itinerary:

    1. I drove into Tesla at St Leonards for a full charge
    2. I asked where to get a coffee, they said whats wrong with the coffee in the Tesla dealership that you can make yourself from a pod. (this is the first indication that Tesla staff in Australia are absolutely clueless)
    3. I got directed to a cafe down the road, as SBS (sex before soccer) TV station next door was closed
    4. The cafe which i was directed to by Tesla staff which apparently knew the area, was not only under renovation but was closed on Saturday
    5. We walked further down and found one that was open and sat down for coffee and drinks.
    6. I spoke to Sales rep there, told him where I was going. He could not give me an answer if I could make it
    7. Out came a guy dressed very casual, obviously an Engineer, namely Peter.
    8. I told him that it was 190km to there (I assumed Air Con would eat up some milage) He told me it is possible if I stuck to 88km per hour. I thought in my head “seriously, what a stupid solution”
    9. Range said 500km, so I thought I had 200km to spare for this trip. I should be able to make it easy.
    10. So we left, I ignored his stupid unpractical advice
    11. Not much traffic, we stopped at the Markets near the service station
    12. We had to stop at the chocolate factory
    13. we checked in at Pokobolkin Villiage with a little over half a charge. Great! Looks like I should have no problems Driving back
    14. Drove to Hunter Valley Gardens that night for the Christmas Lights Spectacular with the Mega Bugs
    15. It rained out so we had to leave early icon_sad.gif
    16. Drove Back to our hotel room
    17. Left the car overnight
    18. Drove to Harrigans in the morning for breakfast at 10am
    19. Stopped at a winery on the way back
    20. Not much traffic made it back to St Leonards with around 50km left to spare
    21. Note that I would have probably had to come back in a Tow Truck if the distance was actually 190km as I quoted to Peter the Engineer at Tesla. There were several serious Information Fails by Tesla.
    So that is the first attempted road trip with a Tesla p85 to the Hunter Valley and back on one charge, So i can safely say if you don’t plan to go anywhere when you get to the Hunter Valley, and assuming there is not too much traffic you can actually make it back!
    I was forced to drive very efficiently otherwise a tow truck would be the only option back!
    We had a great time with my children in the Hunter Valley and the children absolutely love the new car. It was still very stressful and it did take a bit of concentration to drive without using any brakes, paying attention to all terrain approaches etc.

    So if you try it Tesla Owners let me know of your success / failure.
    Some more advice… don’t Bother asking the people who work for Tesla here in Australia for any advice, they have no idea what its like to own a Tesla or Live with one, so they have no product experience or knowledge. They also have no travel knowledge which I will explain later
    – Jake
  2. houdini

    houdini Member

    Mar 11, 2014
    #2 houdini, Jan 22, 2015
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2015
    A key issue here is that Tesla pays their staff very low wages so effectively anyone who works at a Tesla Centre could never afford a Tesla. I'm guessing to work for Tesla has a similar appeal to working for a Charity or NGO so people want to work for a Company that's changing the World rather than work for wages. This probably lasts for a year or two.

    A Tesla sales person is on $50K pa and even someone like an Owner Advisor is on $65K or something. It's reported a Product Specialist gets $13.58 per hour ( So can you really see someone getting finance for a $140K car? Therefore they know what they learn in the "intensive" Tesla induction training and that's about it. Maybe they get to fang home in a demo car every so often but that's not like living with one.

    When I bought my EV I just took it for granted I would know more than everyone in the dealership and that was true. If you need help with these types of vehicles you go to other owners and/or forums because the chances of finding the 1 in 10 Company employee that knows a lot about the car is slim.
  3. heosat

    heosat Member

    Jul 10, 2013
    Just ask on here next time. I've done that trip twice already and haven't had a care in the world, even with 4 adults.
  4. timpoo

    timpoo Member

    Mar 30, 2014
    Melbourne, Australia
    Congrats on making the trip mate!

    I know Matta and I would have no hope of making it that far - am I right Matta? :D

    Jake - the planning and concentration required is all part of the fun of being an early adopter ;) As heosat said, ask here for advice - the Tesla guys are still getting their heads around it all. Don't forget - they've probably had less time than us learning about the car! I'm sure expertise will increase in time. They should probably know where the cafes and stuff are around St Leonards though.
  5. LGGD

    LGGD Active Member

    May 29, 2014
    Gold Coast
    I don't think naming (and defaming) a Tesla staff member is appropriate for a public forum.

    If your car is stating 500k range then you have it set to rated range. The only way to achieve rated range would be to drive around 80-90kph on flat ground. Just as the only way to achieve the stated best fuel economy of an ICE is in similar conditions.

    My first suggestion would be to change your range display to 'Typical'. This will give you a more accurate indication of what is achievable.

    Peronally, none of the staff at my local Porsche dealership own Porsches and certainly none of the staff at my helicopter supplier owned one of their products either. I don't think that an observation that none of the staff at Tesla here own Tesla's right now is of any relevance compared to the normal situation at high-end car dealerships.

    At the moment there are no Superchargers outside of Sydney and there are no mobile charging cables. Both of these situations will change and the issues that concern you will start to evaporate. Not exactly sure why you need to begin and end your trip at the showroom. Do you not have a wall connector installed at your place of residence?

    I guess it would be nice though to be able to drop into your car dealership for a free tank of fuel whenever desired though - I assume this is what you are doing.

    As with your Lexus, your Tesla does have additional range after 0k. Also like you Lexus, I doubt any staff member would tell you exactly how much.

    As Heosat said, there is a wealth of information to be found on this forum and other places on the internet, so much so that it is possible to be quite expert even before taking delivery.

    Most of us have a pretty reasonable understanding of the ins and outs of ICE vehicles, they have been around for over a century and we all grew up with them. An EV is a essentially a tabula rasa and there is much to learn about the advantages and differences between it and an ICE. In time, this knowledge will become second nature, my children will grow up 'natives' in the EV world and anything to do with an EV will be common knowledge for them. As ICEs are for us. Hopefully an ICE will make as much sense to them when they grow up as a rotary dial telephone or a cassette tape.

    Welcome to the future, enjoy the experience and the incredible opportunity of being there now.
  6. heosat

    heosat Member

    Jul 10, 2013
  7. Mark E

    Mark E Member

    Jun 27, 2012
    Sydney NSW
    Excellent. I really appreciate the lists of where Tesla chargers are likely. So far I've been fairly timid - plus no real time. I'm hanging out for a supercharger to make Pt. Macquarie feasible - a destination charger would be great. Ive been invited up at Easter but won't be able to do it.
  8. doctorwho

    doctorwho Member

    Jan 3, 2014
    Eurobin, Victoria. Australia
    I'd be very concerned of you didn't make it as I'll be doing routine 320km trips up the Hume Hwy in an S85. How much charge did you have left?
  9. Higgy

    Higgy Member

    Mar 20, 2014
    Melbourne Australia
    Jakevanle, I recommend you check out

    - - - Updated - - -

    Those rates are sourced from the US - our minimum wages are higher than these purported rates for a PS. I doubt there is much of a comparison.

    The minimum wage in America (depending on the State is circa $US7.25, in Australia it is $AUD16.87).
  10. Gabz

    Gabz Member

    Jul 28, 2014
    Newcastle NSW

    In Peters defence he gave you the correct advice regardless of how unpractical you thought it was. the solution to get more range out of ANY car is the drop your cursing speed. not sure where he got 88km/h from but yes driving the F3 at 80 , 90 or 100km/h will use less fuel or electricity than 110km/h.

    the pro tip which takes into account the many variables included driving style is to look at range to empty (which in a tesla it seems the "typical" one is more truthful) and set the gps so you get distance to destination and drive at a speed that ensures that range to empty is bigger than distance to destination.
  11. jakevanle

    jakevanle Member

    Jan 18, 2015
    Sydney, NSW, Australia
    Thanks for your help guys!

    I got cocky and did a second trip, this time with just me and my partner.... made it back to St. Leonards with 13km to spare... no air con on the way back....

    My fault really, I met a GTR on the way there uh oh... .heh

Share This Page

  • About Us

    Formed in 2006, Tesla Motors Club (TMC) was the first independent online Tesla community. Today it remains the largest and most dynamic community of Tesla enthusiasts. Learn more.
  • Do you value your experience at TMC? Consider becoming a Supporting Member of Tesla Motors Club. As a thank you for your contribution, you'll get nearly no ads in the Community and Groups sections. Additional perks are available depending on the level of contribution. Please visit the Account Upgrades page for more details.