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Range Question

Discussion in 'Model S' started by AVRnj, Jan 23, 2017.

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  1. AVRnj

    AVRnj Member

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    Not currently owning a Tesla, I have a question for owners or anyone who has any insight. With the 100D having a 335 mile range, if we assume that is more like a 250 mile realistic range with winter and higher speeds, is there a point in which the extra miles just don't matter any more? Is this it?

    I mean I am sure they can eventually make a 120D with say 400 theoretical miles range, but is there a point of diminishing returns?

    I know this answer will vary for each individual and their driving patterns, but I am just wondering if there is a point where people say yeah, but the 1XXD has enough miles that I just don't care anymore?
     
  2. dmode

    dmode Member

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    I think it matters for long road trips, especially if you are in a state with good Supercharging infrastructure. I have a S 60, and I was thinking about my upcoming commute from Bay Area to Los Angeles. In my car, I have to make 3 SC stopes to comfortably reach LA and have miles left over. With a 100D, you can do this trip with a single stop at SC. That will save you at least an hour during the road trip. For daily driving, it is kind of moot.
     
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  3. Eclectic

    Eclectic Member

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    It certainly matters for those of us who regularly drive longer distances. For example, I drive in Montana quite a bit and my routes are well outside the supercharger coverage areas. To get from Bozeman (where there is a supercharger) to my land up north is about 100 or so miles. I have an off grid cabin and there isn't any charging there. If I had a Tesla with a realistic 400 mile range, I could drive the Tesla (rather than my truck) to my cabin and then head out for shorter trips north and still be able to get back to the supercharger network.

    I also don't take frequent breaks when driving long distances (i.e., CA to MT). Right now, it's a pain to have to take supercharger breaks every hour and a half. A 400 mile range would make long distance travel more acceptable, and it would also result in less congestion at superchargers, for the obvious reasons. Tesla can either build more superchargers or offer longer range (or both) as a response to supercharger congestion that will only get worse over time.
     
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  4. Ohm it

    Ohm it Member

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    I have an S90D, and have to stop twice between vegas and murrieta,CA (approx. 275 miles).... Rated at 295-300 miles on full charge, never get even close to that.... Also, the SC in Vegas is in a bad location and would not want my wife to go there at night.
     
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  5. Rockster

    Rockster Active Member

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    Having a larger battery helps in a variety of ways:
    • Because lithium ion batteries charge faster at the lower half of their range than at the upper half, Supercharging on a road trip is faster than with a lower capacity battery, all other things being equal.
    • There's more "headroom" for battery degradation, resulting in a battery that's viable for a longer period of time. Great for resale or for those folks who keep their cars for a very long time.
    • Peace of mind on a road trip, too.
    I'm sure others will chime in.

    And, yes, someone from Tesla once remarked that there is a weight/range tradeoff that creates a point of diminishing returns for battery capacity with a given level of battery technology. Obviously, increasing range without increasing weight is a different matter altogether.
     
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  6. sandpiper

    sandpiper Active Member

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    That point will vary by each person's needs. I would need roughly a 140D (500 miles, summer) for me to say "it doesn't matter any more.". I suspect that there are a lot of northern climate, suburban or rural folks who feel the same.

    One big advantage of a large battery is that it eliminates the need to charge on road-trips at all. That reduces the demand on superchargers, minimizing the infrastructure required.
     
  7. docherf

    docherf Member

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    Bigger batteries charge more miles in the same time. Saves time on trips.

    More range lets you skip more charges - saves time.

    I recently drove from KY to Detroit. With the 90D, I skipped 3 superchargers but had to stop at the last one. With the 100D, I could've made it all the way without stopping.

    If there is some point of diminishing returns on range, for me it would probably be at 400 or 450 miles.
     
  8. jankratochvil

    jankratochvil Member

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    For example in Europe in Germany 200km/h is a perfectly valid, safe and legal speed. And for 200km/h any battery size is too small. There will come always first the weight+size battery limitations.
     
  9. drklain

    drklain Member

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    Couple of factors that really drive the point of diminishing returns:

    1. How much range does the pack have (meaning usable/realistic range) under sub-optimum conditions (temps near freezing, driving around 70-75mph?
    2. How fast can the pack be recharged?
    3. What is the distance between recharging locations/how ubiquitous are they?

    Put this in ICE terms...there are plenty of very popular vehicles (think Honda Odyssey minivans which are sold by the millions) which only have a range of around 250 miles. However, they can filled in under 10 minutes at any gas station. Obviously in a Tesla, the need to use a supercharger limits locations and it isn't as fast as a gasoline fill-up right now, although with the bigger battery packs, we are approaching the ability to charge for around 15 minutes at every supercharger on a route and still complete the route or charge longer and skip a supercharger (note there are some places out west where spacing is such that doesn't work).

    Elon has previously said that, based on data they are seeing, the practical pack size is around 100 with a range of about 300 miles and that the likely improvements they will focus on will be the charging rate and getting more superchargers out there (i.e., points 2 and 3 above).

    If the new focus is really going to be 2 and 3, the difference between a current 100D and a 90D is pretty meaningless, since they are both only impacted by 3...2 is unchangeable given current battery chemisty (yes, I know that the 100D pack is larger and thus can charge at a slightly higher rate for a given amount of charge, but the difference is minimal).

    We know that the 2170 batteries are coming and going to the model 3 cars first. We expect those batteries will ultimately migrate to the S and X models in 3-4 years once the Panasonic contract is met (although we are speculating on this). We have also heard indications that there will be even faster superchargers coming out "soon" (whatever that means). We don't know if existing cars and 18650 batterypacks will be able to take full advantage of those new faster superchargers or if that will be limited to cars that are 2170-based and/or have a different internal configuration in the car, so everything there is speculation.

    I agree that there are people for whom the additional capacity between a 90 and a 100 makes a difference in some edge cases (rural areas or areas away from the major interstate highways where the superchargers are primarily located. I believe that for most people, those edge cases don't apply or apply pretty rarely (a couple of trips per year), but that doesn't mean that the edge cases aren't real. Unfortunately, until superchargers (or some other high-speed chargers) are darn near as ubiquitous as gas stations, the edge cases are still there and real.

    Given everything we have seen, I suspect (and this is just speculation) that what we will see in the next 24 months is:

    1. the model 3s will come out with 2170 batteries. The battery chemistry may allow charging at a faster rate than the 18650 packs, but I'd rate that at 50/50 because their supposed big advantage is energy density, not charge rate.
    2. the model 3s will have much smaller physical packs than the S and X model (the car is much smaller), so will hold less cells. As a result, the higher energy density will result in a car with range between 200 and 300 miles depending on what variant a person buys.
    3. the model S and X will stay at 100 as the largest battery pack for the next 24 months until a redesigned unit comes out in 2019-2020 which is based on the same physical size pack, but the 2170 batteries. The increased energy density may give us up to a 130 or so (assuming a 30% increase in energy density which is a LOT).
    4. Some higher speed supercharger will start being rolled out which is compatible with all current supercharger enabled cars. It may drop charge times by 10-15%.

    Again, those are all just speculation, but I think are realistic given all the factors. The conclusion -- if you want a car now and want max range, get a 100D. If you are waiting on a model 3, the range is unlikely to be greater than a 100D when the 3s finally come out. There will be a longer range S and X, but probably not until 2019.
     
  10. thefortunes

    thefortunes Member

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    Really?

    EVTripPlanner estimates that you will use 392 rated miles for that trip (parameters: speed 1.25x:D, cabin temp 70, ext temp 90, wind 10mph). You would use 240RM to Barstow and 152RM from Barstow to Murrieta.

    I have found EVTripPlanner to be pretty accurate - is it not in this case?
     
  11. TexasEV

    TexasEV Well-Known Member

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    Why are you using 1.25 x speed factor? Are you planning on passing every car on the road?
     
  12. drklain

    drklain Member

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    I think that is why he had the green smiley face...he was saying that he was using factors that drive performance/battery life down a bit. His point was that even with the speed factor, the trip could still be made using only 392 rated miles and only need one stop in Barstow.
     
  13. oktane

    oktane Active Member

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    I have found the cruise control improves range substantially. I'm able to average to 350 Wh/mi @ 75MPH with cruise control. This means a P100D is good for about 275 miles real world driving around 55F.
     
  14. thefortunes

    thefortunes Member

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    drklain is correct - I set the parameters to be pretty aggressive (high speed, high hvac use).

    Although I have driven from LA to Vegas (years ago, not in my Roadster or S) and >100mph was not uncommon.
     
  15. bcampbelllds

    bcampbelllds Member

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    I guess it depends on if you have kids or not. For me, I'm stopping every 90-120 minutes for a bathroom break or to feed the little ones, so a 85 or 90 is all I need. Superchargers are spaced out somewhere around 150 miles, so it works out nicley for our family.

    If I was single and wanted to make it from say San Diego to Utah in one stop I would need at least 450 miles of real world range.
     
  16. Ohm it

    Ohm it Member

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    I set the trip in the Nav and at first it said one stop required, however, while diving it said to slow to 60MPH to reach destination....
    Yeah right 60MPH to Vegas???

    I've done the trip twice in past two weeks and had to stop at barstow and Primm to SC.... But both times I managed to win 200 bucks during the charge at Primm!! Return trip required more charge since I did not get a full charge before leaving Vegas...
    But I did get a full charge before leaving murrieta... There was a 5 hr stop at the office in Riverside, but that is on the way....We seem to average about 400 - 425kwh/mile... nowhere close to the 300 rated
     
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  17. Ohm it

    Ohm it Member

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    Perhaps it has to do with hitting the grades at 85...
     
  18. MarcusMaximus

    MarcusMaximus Member

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    "That will save you at least an hour during the road trip"

    Whaaaaa? I went from San Diego to Bay Area and only spent about an hour total at superchargers. Ended up with about 20% battery left over. You should only need about 15-20 minutes at each one.
     
  19. drklain

    drklain Member

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    Well said. I think people have different philosophies/approaches to supercharging. Some treat it just like a gas station fill-up and either fill all the way or go to 90%. Other use something like EV trip planner and charge for what is needed to get to the next stop plus some bonus charge for problems....in some cases possibly leaving a supercharger with only 50% charge. I think, in general, the second strategy results in a faster trip overall but I'm not the road warrior others on this forum are to really say for sure.
     
  20. TexasEV

    TexasEV Well-Known Member

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    Also some people have the original 60s and some have 90s or 100s.
     
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