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dgatwood

Member
Dec 20, 2017
959
1,103
Sunnyvale, ca
Nailed it. The only real "benefit" it seems to give consumers is they won't have to learn a new way to refuel their cars. Or at least, the hydrogen refueling method is fairly similar to gasoline, just much higher pressure and risk. However, once you get a home EV charger, you realize how much better it really is. And with how fast superchargers are now, you barely lose any time the few days of the year you are traveling.

I disagree. I've done what would have been a three day road trip in my 2017 Model X four times, and it took four days (except the last time, which we stretched to 9 days so we could see family). You don't quite realize how quickly 45 minutes of charging for every 2.5 hours of driving adds up on long-distance trips until you've done it a few times. If you total up those two round trips, I spent more than the equivalent of an entire work week charging.

We're still a very long way from the point where you barely lose any time, even after factoring in time for bathroom stops and food — I'm going to say at least a factor of two, maybe three.

Mind you, I love having the Autopilot features on long road trips, so the second time around, I still took my Tesla, not my RAV4, but I'd have given anything to have been able to get 1000 miles on a charge and charge twice a day at lunch and supper with a max of... say 600 kW instead of 270-ish miles at a max of ~175 kW (and usually < 120 kW). Just saying.
 
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father_of_6

Member
Jan 24, 2021
271
282
Buffalo, NY
@dgatwood... okay, that's fair. Still, BEVs will continue to improve in the range and charging speed departments. Giving up and switching to Hydrogen would be a massive mistake.

For *most* drivers (almost all of us), road trips are very rare compared to daily driving. Road trip charging may seem like a nuisance, but even in these early days of BEVs it still a worthwhile trade off for never hitting a gas station (with home charging). I drove 7 hours home from picking up my M3 and it took 2 charging stops... probably half hour each. Didn't seem bad at all.
 

dgatwood

Member
Dec 20, 2017
959
1,103
Sunnyvale, ca
@dgatwood... okay, that's fair. Still, BEVs will continue to improve in the range and charging speed departments. Giving up and switching to Hydrogen would be a massive mistake.

On this we agree. Hydrogen is a disaster all around — terrible efficiency, not great reliability, crazy high cost (both fuel and hardware), etc., and the efficiency can't get that much better without violating the laws of physics.

What I would like to see, at least in the short term, is a rentable range extender trailer that you hook onto your trailer hitch and plug into the charge port, then fill with gasoline. It could be either a traditional ICE engine or a gasoline reformer and fuel cell (presumably whichever approach gives the best balance between efficiency and reliability at the time).

You'd rent one whenever you were doing a long-distance trip, and then your Tesla would be a gasoline-powered automobile for a few days. Get home, turn it in, and you're done with it.

That approach would means that you'd be maintaining almost exactly as many gasoline engines as society requires to accommodate long-distance travel, and no more. And it means that the maintenance headaches would fall on the rental company, not on the individual drivers.
 

mk677

Member
Feb 10, 2021
536
304
jacksonville fl
I disagree. I've done what would have been a three day road trip in my 2017 Model X four times, and it took four days (except the last time, which we stretched to 9 days so we could see family). You don't quite realize how quickly 45 minutes of charging for every 2.5 hours of driving adds up on long-distance trips until you've done it a few times. If you total up those two round trips, I spent more than the equivalent of an entire work week charging.

We're still a very long way from the point where you barely lose any time, even after factoring in time for bathroom stops and food — I'm going to say at least a factor of two, maybe three.

Mind you, I love having the Autopilot features on long road trips, so the second time around, I still took my Tesla, not my RAV4, but I'd have given anything to have been able to get 1000 miles on a charge and charge twice a day at lunch and supper with a max of... say 600 kW instead of 270-ish miles at a max of ~175 kW (and usually < 120 kW). Just saying.
you need to learn how to drive the bottom of the battery. the car will charge much faster from a low SOC, then only charge enough to make your next stop. doing this will cause more stops but they are faster stops. you don't need to arrive at the next charger with 30% range left.
 
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father_of_6

Member
Jan 24, 2021
271
282
Buffalo, NY
What I would like to see, at least in the short term, is a rentable range extender trailer that you hook onto your trailer hitch and plug into the charge port, then fill with gasoline. It could be either a traditional ICE engine or a gasoline reformer and fuel cell (presumably whichever approach gives the best balance between efficiency and reliability at the time).

You'd rent one whenever you were doing a long-distance trip, and then your Tesla would be a gasoline-powered automobile for a few days. Get home, turn it in, and you're done with it.

How about a battery-based range extender? Same idea except it's a second battery pack. When you get to the supercharger you could charge both batteries at the same time.
 
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AdamMacDon

Member
May 8, 2019
729
561
Victoria BC
I disagree. I've done what would have been a three day road trip in my 2017 Model X four times, and it took four days (except the last time, which we stretched to 9 days so we could see family). You don't quite realize how quickly 45 minutes of charging for every 2.5 hours of driving adds up on long-distance trips until you've done it a few times. If you total up those two round trips, I spent more than the equivalent of an entire work week charging.

We're still a very long way from the point where you barely lose any time, even after factoring in time for bathroom stops and food — I'm going to say at least a factor of two, maybe three.

Mind you, I love having the Autopilot features on long road trips, so the second time around, I still took my Tesla, not my RAV4, but I'd have given anything to have been able to get 1000 miles on a charge and charge twice a day at lunch and supper with a max of... say 600 kW instead of 270-ish miles at a max of ~175 kW (and usually < 120 kW). Just saying.
I live up in Canada and I've gone as far north as Fort McMurray (about 5 hours north of Edmonton) and never seen a trip take 2-3x longer (and on that trip I had to stop at an L2 charger). Driving to Vegas from the west coast of Canada took only 3 days (same as a gas car), especially in CA where there is a supercharger every 2 miles or so, I swear. Doing the math, if your car gets about 400kms per charge and you are using about 75% of the battery, you have 300kms between stops. Assuming you eat three meals a day and visit the washroom about the same amount of times, you can fit about 3 stops in without really increasing the trip time. This math works out to roughly 900kms of travel with limited difference in time. I have found even getting fast food I usually am barely done eating before the car is close enough to get me to the next charger. I have done some 1000+ km travel days and on those you can lose a bit of convenience for sure, but how many days of the year are you traveling over 1000 kilometers? It's not quite on par with a gas car, but considering I do that kind of stretch less than 3-5 times a year, it's a pretty small percent of my seat hours and more than made up for with the ease of charging at home for my daily use.

The main "trick" I have found is controlling your speed and charging from as low a % as possible. Reducing speeding is the quickest way to drive an EV with a fixed gear ratio, ironically.
 

dgatwood

Member
Dec 20, 2017
959
1,103
Sunnyvale, ca
How about a battery-based range extender? Same idea except it's a second battery pack. When you get to the supercharger you could charge both batteries at the same time.
That would work only if there are enough stalls to connect the battery to a separate stall, or if the superchargers all get upgraded to Tesla Semi specs amperage-wise (max 525A). Otherwise, you've halved the number of stops, but roughly doubled your charge time at each stop, for approximately zero gain.

you need to learn how to drive the bottom of the battery. the car will charge much faster from a low SOC, then only charge enough to make your next stop. doing this will cause more stops but they are faster stops. you don't need to arrive at the next charger with 30% range left.

I did that on the first trip, following the routing from ABRP. I was going down to about 10% at nearly every stop. Their charge speed estimates were, in my experience, somewhat optimistic, because the V2 superchargers haven't given me full charging speed in about two years, and it seems to mostly be a problem with the chargers themselves. I've neve seen 150 kW on a V2 supercharger even when my car was brand new, with the exception of the Sunnyvale supercharger when they first built it, for maybe six months, before it started breaking down.

By contrast, most V3 superchargers will gladly pump 167 kW into my car if I get it discharged far enough, and the taper seems to be much later/slower, too. So needless to say, I favored V3 superchargers as much as possible, but there were only two on my entire route, I think, or maybe three, and exactly zero once I got east of Tacna or Quartzite, AZ. I probably would have saved at least an hour per trip if they had all been V3, rather than V2.

The second trip, I didn't bother; I just used the Tesla routing, though I was a little more aggressive about making sure I didn't end up with too much reserve capacity at the each stop, sometimes disconnecting a few minutes early. The difference wasn't more than maybe 10 minutes per day, which is pretty much lost in the noise when you're driving for 14+ hours.

The thing is, that trip would have been a hard three days, with 11+ hours per day of driving plus food and gasoline stops, even with gasoline. After adjusting to arrive at my destination at a reasonable hour, it would have ballooned to 13 hours per day on all but the last day. No matter what you do, barring significant improvements in charge speeds and battery capacity, you're not going to get the charge times down to the point where you can drive for 13 or 14 hours plus charging and still get eight hours of sleep.
 
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MXLRplus

Active Member
Mar 11, 2020
1,599
2,802
Eastvale, CA
My thoughts on EV DCFC charging in 2021 -

Driving "the bottom of the battery" opens you up to potentially crushing delays.
  • Overcrowded charging locations.
  • All hookups are disabled or heavily nerfed.
To reduce the possibility of these delays, having a CHAdeMO adapter can be a good idea. There are 4,358 unique CHAdeMO locations in North America, and 1,118 Tesla Supercharger locations. Tesla should really release a CCS adapter if they truly support EV owners.

But unlike ICE refueling, you don't always have a backup plan. When I was hot-shotting, I'd carry 5 gallons of fuel in case of emergencies (55 miles). That's not really a thing with EVs.

For right now, I suggest new EV owners, regardless of brand, stop often and charge to at least 80%. Running out of juice just one time or waiting for hours for a recharge will knock the wind out of a new owner. "If you are a happy customer, you tell 10 friends, if you are an angry customer, you tell the world."
 
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AdamMacDon

Member
May 8, 2019
729
561
Victoria BC
My thoughts on EV DCFC charging in 2021 -

Driving "the bottom of the battery" opens you up to potentially crushing delays.
  • Overcrowded charging locations.
  • All hookups are disabled or heavily nerfed.
To reduce the possibility of these delays, having a CHAdeMO adapter can be a good idea. There are 4,358 unique CHAdeMO locations in North America, and 1,118 Tesla Supercharger locations. Tesla should really release a CCS adapter if they truly support EV owners.

But unlike ICE refueling, you don't always have a backup plan. When I was hot-shotting, I'd carry 5 gallons of fuel in case of emergencies (55 miles). That's not really a thing with EVs.

For right now, I suggest new EV owners, regardless of brand, stop often and charge to at least 80%. Running out of juice just one time or waiting for hours for a recharge will knock the wind out of a new owner. "If you are a happy customer, you tell 10 friends, if you are an angry customer, you tell the world."
I consider your backup plan as anywhere with a 110V outlet that you are allowed to access, but it is for sure a different paradigm than just being able to carry a jerry can around with you, and far less convenient. I carry a Chademo adapter around, but honestly you nailed it, Tesla needs to get a CCS adapter ASAP. CCS is quickly taking over in North America, and I can't find as many Chademo chargers in my area.

For what it's worth, I have never ran out of energy with any kind of vehicle. Proper planning and thinking ahead can prevent the majority of issues from arising. Certainly with EV's we are still in the "early adopter" stage, and just like gas cars in their early adopter stage, you need to plan around the infrastructure and not just blindly set off. Especially if traveling in North Canada where electric vehicles are largely regarded as toys. I had a few days in the last trip where I survived solely off level 1 charging.
 

GoBlue88

Member
Apr 1, 2014
858
287
Carlsbad, CA
About damn time, Toyota. I had a 2010 Lexus IS350 that I absolutely loved until I got my Model S in 2014. Toyota's decade-long negative attitude towards BEVs when they should have been one of the companies on the forefront of BEV development has completely soured me on their brands. Very glad to see them finally come around (allegedly), however I'm still a permanently lost customer thanks to them being jerks about it for so long.
 
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AdamMacDon

Member
May 8, 2019
729
561
Victoria BC
About damn time, Toyota. I had a 2010 Lexus IS350 that I absolutely loved until I got my Model S in 2014. Toyota's decade-long negative attitude towards BEVs when they should have been one of the companies on the forefront of BEV development has completely soured me on their brands. Very glad to see them finally come around (allegedly), however I'm still a permanently lost customer thanks to them being jerks about it for so long.
So well put. It has been almost shocking seeing their company pioneer a plug in Prius over a decade ago, and they claim that BEVs had no merit and we should focus on hydrogen fuel cells... What?
 

240W

Member
Jul 19, 2018
216
99
Earth
Hydrogen may make sense in Japan/Asia/dense areas, and they were betting big that it's the future and not ev's. Hopefully they'll ramp up efforts significantly and make a presence, along with other manufacturers, the more the merrier.
 

mk677

Member
Feb 10, 2021
536
304
jacksonville fl
Hydrogen may make sense in Japan/Asia/dense areas, and they were betting big that it's the future and not ev's. Hopefully they'll ramp up efforts significantly and make a presence, along with other manufacturers, the more the merrier.
toyota has retreated from pushing fool cells and are now focusing on BEVs
 
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AdamMacDon

Member
May 8, 2019
729
561
Victoria BC
Hydrogen makes sense if you design a car assuming the paradigm of 5 minutes or less to fully fuel up MUST be maintained, and is the most important feature of said vehicle. However, such a paradigm really doesn't make much sense when you step back and realize that most personal cars sit idle for 95% of their life and electricity is widely available in any country where the average person can afford an EV. In fact, if you count wall outlets, EV "infrastructure" outnumbers gas pumps by a wide margin. How many single family homes have gasoline pumps or hydrogen fuel stations? Even if robotaxis get utilization rate up 5x to 25%, there is still TONS of time in the day during which a simple 220v outlet can provide more than enough energy. In terms of cost, efficiency, safety, or infrastructure, hydrogen quickly diminishes in usefulness versus battery powered vehicles.

Hybrid lithium ion batteries with graphene-based super capacitors seem like a much better long term bet than hydrogen. But what do I know? Haha
 

240W

Member
Jul 19, 2018
216
99
Earth

AdamMacDon

Member
May 8, 2019
729
561
Victoria BC
I don't think they are getting rid of hydrogen plans in that part of the world. Future expansion goals for cars, trucks, forklifts, etc.
Did a quick google, apparently california still have plans for hydrogen expansion too.


That being said, I'd only buy ev's due to the convenience of filling up at home overnight
I'm sure it has a place, perhaps in things where weight is really important, such as airplanes? Also then you don't need to build out nearly as many fueling stations. Personally, as impressive as the Tesla fast charging network is, it's nowhere near expansive enough if it was your ONLY option to refuel a Tesla. Thankfully it's a contingency option. Not the same case with hydrogen fuel...
 

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