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REAL miles to drive?

Discussion in 'Roadster' started by MR_P, Jun 16, 2009.

  1. MR_P

    MR_P New Member

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    Hi Everybody!

    Now thinking about ordering a new Tesla Roadster, but some things turn me in doubts... Question to owners: What are real miles can be driven per 1 charge.
    As I've seen in reviews, driving distance seriously decrease when driving on highway.
    Are there really 250 miles or it is just some unreal result that was achieved in some ideal conditions?

    Tku in advance!
    AP.
     
  2. Kevin Harney

    Kevin Harney Active Member

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    Mr P,

    Yeah 244 miles is the EPA Rating. So think of it as as your mileage may vary. It is possible to get those miles on the roads under ideal conditions and proper driving. But the real world answer is probably no. I am not an owner but from what I have read the actual highway mileage seems to be in the neighborhood of 170 -190 miles. In the city I think that the mileage is actually better than that. In an electric cars case city mileage is better because it can recoop some of the power losses with regenerative braking. In an ICE the opposite is true. Highway miles are more efficient. Also Roadster drivers tend to favor the more shall we say SPIRITED driving - after all they have the car that makes it fun so why not .... :biggrin:
     
  3. Kevin Harney

    Kevin Harney Active Member

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  4. graham

    graham Active Member

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    Tesla lists 240+ miles per charge - but most people will not see this range for 3 reasons:

    1) It apparently comes from charging in "Range Mode" -- that is charging the battery to 100% and then discharging all the way to 0%. The car gives a warning every time you try this that you are ruining your battery when you do so.

    2) It was achieved running less than highway speeds.

    3) It was using brand new batteries

    If I charge in Standard mode (which gives you access to only about 80% of the battery capacity) and drive conservatively on the highway, I can get about 175 miles on a charge.

    If I charge in Range mode and do the same, I can get 200 miles on one charge.

    If I slow down to under 50 mph and am in Range mode, I can probably come closer to Teslas charge numbers. I have had one trip thus far that matches this profile. I drove almost 200 miles at 50mph and under. I had over 40 miles left on the range estimator when I got home.

    Of course with each charge cycle the battery had hold less energy. What might work today for 175miles on a charge will likely be closer to 150miles in 5 years.
     
  5. ra-san

    ra-san Member

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    The "normal" range figures graham and others are saying are pretty much my experience too. You notice extremes more than you do on a gas car though, at least on longer trips where you are thinking about the fact you can't refill in a few minutes somewhere close to wherever you happen to be. This has led me to notice that with me driving in a "quick" style (not high speed, just fast getting to speed) around town that my WH/mile (sort of an inverse of mpg) can be much higher than average, leading to ranges of closer to 120 miles.

    Conversely, on the couple of trips from Santa Monica to San Diego I've made, I've found it pretty easy to do quite a bit better than the EPA numbers, but only if you drive 65 or under (55 avg even better), and take advantage of opportunities to follow larger vehicles (which is pretty much all of them :) but larger the better).
     
  6. vfx

    vfx Well-Known Member

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  7. ChrisC

    ChrisC see signature

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    They should rig that up to have a few presets for cars currently on the market or spec'd out. There's no way that I'm going to know all those specific data points for the Roadster or any other car. If they would fill it out with some sample cars, I'd love to do some what-if fiddling with it.
     
  8. BBHighway

    BBHighway Member

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    I drove 162 miles to the beach this weekend and the range still showed 75 miles of ideal range, 74 miles of estimated range. I wasn't setting any speed records, but not holding up traffic either.

    For part of the trip I got stuck in some bad traffic. One thing about a rolling backup in an EV, it's still annoying and time consuming but you get amazing range! At one point I had 202 miles of ideal range, 228 miles of estimated range!
     
  9. tomsax

    tomsax Member

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    Just like gas mileage, that number applies to driving with a very specific driving profile. I believe the 244 mile range is an average between the EPA's city and highway driving profiles. It definitely is for a range mode charge from 100% to 0%, which is something you wouldn't want to do on a regular basis.

    So, yes it's real, but that doesn't mean you'll get 244 miles of range on every segment of a road trip. Once you are driving a Roadster, you may not get 244 miles in range mode, but if you're paying attention you'll never be surprised by the battery pack. You can drive the full range of the battery pack (whatever it is for your driving style and conditions), with complete confidence in how many miles you have left before you need to charge.

    Except for the extreme 2% of US drivers that have a daily round trip commute over 100 miles, the range of the Roadster is total overkill for daily driving. Even when I'm out joyriding, I have a hard time racking up over 100 miles and I rarely get below 50% on a standard charge.

    I've done a few range-testing trips and I can tell you that it's possible to get about one real mile per ideal mile if you're willing to take it easy to get good range.

    I also just recently had a big revelation: my confidence in getting the maximum range out of the battery pack is directly related to having a reliable charge state reading, and trusting that Tesla won't let me kill my battery by driving the car. (You can kill your battery pack, and void your warranty, by letting your battery run completely out and then not have the ability to keep itself in the right temperature range. Don't do that.)

    When I'm road tripping, I keep an eye on how many miles I need to drive and what the ideal range is. I drive so that either the ideal range is much larger than the needed range (so I can drive however I want, about 99% of the time), or so that ideal and remaining miles track each other (about 1% of my driving). As long as I have a decent buffer in ideal miles, like 10 miles, I'm happy driving. I would not be able to do this with confidence if the Tesla folks hadn't done such a good job of giving me consistent, reliable data. Cathy and I are much less confident about taking the RAV4-EV battery pack so low because we get less reliable, less precise data and have less confidence about where we get into the battery-harming zone. (It also doesn't help that we can't just take it to a dealer and have them sell us a new battery pack, and no automaker has announced plans to build a comparable EV.)

    I drove from Portland to Seattle with a passenger and a full trunk in 100-degree weather on a bit less than a full range mode charge, going from 240 to 10 ideal miles, covering 190.4 miles. The A/C compressor was running a lot of the time to cool the battery pack. We did 60 mph on the freeway most of the way, but bailed off onto state highways for the last 40 miles to reduce our speed and extend range.

    I drove round trip from the Seattle area to the Sunrise visitor's center, with a net elevation change of 6,200 feet up and then down. That trip was 168.8 miles, going from 195 to 9 ideal miles from a standard mode charge (so I had another 25 or so available if I switched to range mode). Since I had the range mode buffer available, I wasn't doing anything to maximize range, although I wasn't on freeways and my speed was limited by driving conditions, about half of the miles at 55-65 mph, the rest slower.

    For our trip to San Juan Island, on the way to the island we drove 86 miles using 84 ideal miles off the top of a range mode charge, driving 60 mph on cruise control on the freeway and bypassing the first part of the freeway on state highways to maximize efficiency. On the way back, we didn't care at all about efficiency, I drove pretty much all freeway at 70+ mph and we got 98 actual miles on 115 ideal miles from the top of a standard mode charge.
     

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