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

If car companies can't invent a viable EV solution to compete, what happens to Elon's vison?

Discussion in 'Model 3' started by weak_pig, Apr 8, 2016.

  1. Pdub2015

    Pdub2015 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2015
    Messages:
    210
    Location:
    Wheaton, MD
    ^^ This. Until we see some massive movement on the charging infrastructure side, BEVs won't have a chance to replace ICE vehicles.
     
  2. AUSinator

    AUSinator Member

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2015
    Messages:
    175
    Location:
    Australia
    Disagree I think about 12 years from now 50% of all cars sold in the develop world including China and possible India will be BEV. By 2022-2024 BEV's will be cheaper to manufacture than ICE's and almost every person who buys a good BEV doesn't want to ever go back to ICE's as it's so much better. Charging infrastructure will come fast as it's cheap. Next year Tesla will have 2 times the super chargers as now then 2-3 years later they will have again 2 times the infrastructure and not to mention that's just Tesla. There will be lots of other companies installing super charges even in apartment blocks.
     
  3. Pdub2015

    Pdub2015 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2015
    Messages:
    210
    Location:
    Wheaton, MD
    @AUSinator: yes, the supercharger build out will be massively helpful, but what's really needed is more "at home" and "at work" charging capacity. For some of the major metropolitan areas, this will require considerable redesign, particularly in urban environments where "first come, first served" street parking is more prevalent than dedicated, reserved parking stalls or slots. It's one thing for an apartment building to outfit its parking garage, but entirely different for a municipality to provide freestanding chargers on public residential streets.
     
  4. ElectricTundra

    ElectricTundra P85D AP1

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2015
    Messages:
    864
    Location:
    Tundra
    With 200+ miles of range how critical is this? Even accounting for cold weather reducing the range to 150 miles, how many people drive 150 miles in a day? How many drive 75 miles each way to work? Or 50 miles each way to work and another 50 in errands?

    I usually charge my Model S to 150 miles each night and rarely go under 100 during any day. I know a number of people with Leaf's and i3's who have no problems with range except maybe once a month or so and all say 150-200 miles of range will take care of that.

    A few people with a 200 mile BEV will need a charger other than home but how many? 2% at most? How many people have to fill their ICE up with gas every single day or even every other day because they drive through an entire tank?
     
  5. AB4EJ

    AB4EJ Member

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2015
    Messages:
    772
    Location:
    Tuscaloosa, AL
    Actually, the hydrogen for fuel-cell vehicles is mostly produced from natural gas. This uses fossil fuels and produces lots of CO2. It is theoretically possible to do this using electricity, but not in the volumes required to power a large fleet, because this process ("electrolysis") is slow and inefficient.

    This is the fundamental limitation of the fuel cell car (oh, and also you can't safely put all that much hydrogen on board an affordable car).
     
  6. wdolson

    wdolson Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2015
    Messages:
    6,005
    Location:
    Clark Co, WA
    The battery production capacity won't be there in 12 years to build 50% of the world's cars as BEVs unless a heck of a lot of people are willing to settle for short range city cars with significantly smaller battery packs than long range BEVs and even then it would be iffy.

    To replace 50% of the world's ICE car production with long range BEVs, would require 100 GigaFactory equivalents and cost around $500 billion. Somebody needs to start putting up $42 billion a year for the next 12 years to do that and nobody is putting that kind of money into building battery factories, or even seriously talking about it.

    Nobody in the mass market is going to get serious about mass producing BEVs until Tesla proves it can be done and people will buy them. And even then they will spend a couple of years trying to prove it's not really happening. Only when it's clear Tesla is not going away and is in fact the new Google, Amazon, or Apple in the car business will the older companies decide to start developing a mass produced BEV and that will take at least two years, probably longer.

    This takes us past 2020 before anyone other than Tesla is even giving serious consideration to needing all those Gigafactories. Companies will run to governments to build Gigafactories for them and many governments will do it because it will be seen as needed to keep their country competitive. But half of your 12 year time line will have passed before that happens.

    Even then governments will argue and go back and forth and will delay for a year or more breaking ground on the factories. Then the factories need to be built, which will take a couple of years. By the late 2020s we might have the equivalent of 10 Gigafactories worldwide, probably half of them owned by Tesla. Those factories will be able to provide enough batteries for about 5% of current car production, more than that if people are willing to drive hybrids with small batteries or really short range BEVs.

    Without some major incentive like skyrocketing gas prices, the public will probably keep driving their old ICE cars while they wait the year or two for their Tesla to be built. Economists are predicting gas prices are going to remain low for a very long time because demand is dropping while supply is increasing. The CAFE requirements in the US will serve to accelerate this trend as new ICE cars will use less and less gasoline.

    Between the math and human nature, BEVs will not become the majority type of car on the road in even one large country until mid-century or later. Battery production is the key. Elon Musk saw that a few years ago which is why the first Gigafactory exists. Without lots of massive factories cranking out massive amounts of batteries, BEVs will remain a novelty item. And with the numbers required, it's going to take a very long time to build the capacity necessary. To a large degree the will to even start isn't there. It's only there in the Tesla universe and nowhere else.
     
  7. wdolson

    wdolson Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2015
    Messages:
    6,005
    Location:
    Clark Co, WA
    Most BEV owners today have garages and can charge at home. But less than 1/2 the population of the US has a garage where they can charge and that number is even smaller in many other countries. To make BEVs for the masses we need a ton of charging capability for those who don't have garages.

    If charging is too inconvenient, owning a BEV will become a nightmarish chore to many people.
     
    • Like x 1
  8. AB4EJ

    AB4EJ Member

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2015
    Messages:
    772
    Location:
    Tuscaloosa, AL
    What I can't understand is the idea that most car companies have, that an electric vehicle has to look strange.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    For EVs to go mainstream, they need to look like a regular car, and be very affordable (think Camry). Until that, they will be a niche product (maybe that's where the big auto companies want to keep them??)
     
  9. AUSinator

    AUSinator Member

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2015
    Messages:
    175
    Location:
    Australia
    I said the develop world not the whole world. Also in 12 years the Teslas giga factory would be able to produce 750000 - 1 million car battery packs as the tech improves and the batterie packs get smaller.
     
  10. ElectricTundra

    ElectricTundra P85D AP1

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2015
    Messages:
    864
    Location:
    Tundra
    I agree with your last point. A garage however is not needed. Chargers can be outside and most public chargers are so this shouldn't be an issue for anyone who owns a home without a garage. Condo's and apartments will be another issue but far from an insurmountable one. It won't take many calls from prospective tenants asking about charging for them to get the message that this is something that they need to offer. Even today an increasing number are at least aware of the need and work with tenants on a case by case basis.

    Remaining will be those who park on the street and I'd guess it will remain a PITA for many of them for some time and for most a BEV may not be a good alternative for a while. What percent of the population are these though?
     
  11. ElectricTundra

    ElectricTundra P85D AP1

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2015
    Messages:
    864
    Location:
    Tundra
    I quite like the BMW i3 and I'm not turned off by the Leaf. Not everyone wants a sporty looking car.
     
  12. AUSinator

    AUSinator Member

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2015
    Messages:
    175
    Location:
    Australia
    And you wonder why some people complain how the model 3 looks like.
     
  13. AUSinator

    AUSinator Member

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2015
    Messages:
    175
    Location:
    Australia
    #73 AUSinator, Apr 10, 2016
    Last edited: Apr 10, 2016
    In real the i3 looks better than in a picture, not great but I could live with it however the leaf fell down the ugly tree hitting every branch. Never recovered to this day !!!
     
  14. Snowdog

    Snowdog Member

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2013
    Messages:
    130
    Location:
    Ottawa, Canada
    Not sure I would go that far, but I don't like it either, and my best friend + wife wanted an EV and they ruled out Leaf on ugly factor alone. They got a Volt instead.
     
  15. Jeff N

    Jeff N Active Member

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2011
    Messages:
    2,152
    But when GM makes a regular looking car like the Bolt EV then people complain that it's too ordinary. :)
     
  16. tomas

    tomas Only partially psycho

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2012
    Messages:
    3,569
    Location:
    Chicago/Montecito
    A lot hinges on whether Tesla can scale. If they scale successfully, they will make the same dent in the 3's market that they've done already in the S's. Scaling is not just getting the reservations, it is delivering and servicing them profitably.

    If that succeeds, existing or new competitors must and will participate. Technology will sort out electric sources. Capital will be available for battery plants and charging infrastructure, but there will also be a big R&D push on better, cheaper batteries. Don't rule out battery swap for areas where there are few garages. But there will be other approaches as well, because the market will reward innovation.

    Buyers will flock to EVs simply because they perform better and are lower maintenance.

    But if tesla cannot scale the 3, EVs may very well remain niche while we choke the planet. I don't think today's automakers will put serious priority on BEV unless their market share is threatened.

    No pressure, Elon.
     
  17. Electroman

    Electroman Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2012
    Messages:
    5,404
    Location:
    TX
    From that Daimler article. It is interesting they consider these as "attacks". I think a better phrasing would have been,

    "a radical upheaval, driven by innovations from Silicon Valley".
     
    • Like x 1
  18. shrspeedblade

    shrspeedblade Rideshare Monkey

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2015
    Messages:
    1,004
    Location:
    CA, United States
    ;)
    Exactly- I never even bothered to sit in a Leaf or i3 prior to buying my Volt or putting the deposit down on the Model 3.

    (Ok, neither car's specs really satisfied me either, but both would be excluded on styling alone as well.)
     
  19. Scott Franco

    Scott Franco Member

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2016
    Messages:
    26
    Location:
    San Jose
    Don't know why this gets repeated so often. Natural gas is abundant, some would say overabundant, and the conversion of the grid in america to NG generation is moving apace. In California it is already the dominant source. Coal has been virtually outlawed in the USA.

    Perhaps the main reason NG does not figure into green calculations is that it is abundant because of "dirty fraccing". But CO2 emissions in the USA have fallen dramatically due to NG use and fraccing. Its the classic case of the perfect being an enemy of the good.
     
  20. ChadS

    ChadS Last tank of gas: March 2009. EV miles: 244,000

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2009
    Messages:
    2,953
    Location:
    Redmond, WA
    This is true, and I agree that in the future it will be an issue. However, the percentage of people buying new cars in the PEV price ranges have more like 75% availability of garages, and for a few years (as you have pointed out) PEV volumes can only get so high. So it's not an immediate issue (at least not for the overall market; I agree it's disappointing to some potential buyers with the wrong living situation).

    Already many new apartments and condos are getting some infrastructure built in. At some point existing buildings will note they are losing tenants to newer places that have these facilities, and they will retrofit. Yes it will be a messy process and it will definitely hold back some sales. But I don't think it's going to have a really large effect on the PEV market. (I could be wrong).


    You are correct, they want them to be a niche product - specifically, non-cannibalizing conquest cars. There are other approaches, but the simplest is to make the appearance unattractive. Many more details on why the automakers make EVs the way they do are in THIS thread.

    Nissan's Ghosn has repeatedly said that they want the next-gen LEAF to be a mainstream car, so it will get a more mainstream appearance and more range (I hope for a similar price, but they haven't discussed that piece).
     

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.


    SUPPORT TMC