Author Topic: Electric cars  (Read 52839 times)

culzean

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Re: Electric cars
« Reply #735 on: February 10, 2018, 05:19:12 PM »

https://www.wired.com/story/tesla-autopilot-why-crash-radar/?mbid=BottomRelatedStories

So it is not just Teslas that crash into stationary objects. Any car with Adaptive Cruise Control can!

Yep - even a stupid human would not do that (unless they were on the phone or watching a video) - "programmed to ignore stationary objects otherwise it would not work at all" - that is a damning statement that makes you wonder it self-driving cars will ever be safe.

At the bottom of article in link is another link to 'autonomous cars have entered the trough of disillusionment ' where the real problems of replacing us dumb humans are showing up.

https://www.wired.com/story/self-driving-cars-challenges/?mbid=BottomRelatedStories
« Last Edit: February 10, 2018, 09:40:03 PM by culzean »
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Jocko

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Re: Electric cars
« Reply #736 on: February 10, 2018, 07:02:26 PM »
Forget about self driving cars. Reactive Cruise Control is currently available on a whole range of cars including Honda Civics and CR-Vs.

http://owners.honda.com/vehicles/information/2018/CR-V/features/Adaptive-Cruise-Control

Jocko

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Re: Electric cars
« Reply #737 on: February 12, 2018, 12:59:37 PM »
Just been watching the latest "Fully Charged", featuring the new electric TX black cab. Brilliant. It is a Range Extender EV. Petrol engine is not connected to wheels, only used to charge the battery. It has a range of 400 miles with 80 miles full EV. Battery will charge to 80% in 25 minutes so they can be plugged in while the cabbie has his break.
Cost to buy is £55599, almost twice the cost of a conventional TX, but a conventional TX4 costs £166 per week on a four year lease while the electric TX5 costs £177. And the electric cab costs £100 per week less to run plus it only needs serviced every 25,000 miles, which for the London cab is about every 12 month (conventional cab is about every 6 months).

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qOxnJQP2_0E

http://www.autoexpress.co.uk/car-news/98450/new-tx-electric-london-taxi-priced-at-55599

Jocko

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Re: Electric cars
« Reply #738 on: February 13, 2018, 01:03:29 PM »
Interesting video of Jeremy Clarkson reviewing the Tesla Model X. He seems to enjoy it.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8Cdyuq5IC3k&t=506s

ColinB

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Re: Electric cars
« Reply #739 on: February 17, 2018, 09:38:46 AM »
This BBC article this morning neatly describes why I cannot buy an EV anytime soon, no matter how much I might want to (and yes, I think I might be very tempted because my pattern of vehicle use would suit an EV):
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-42944523

In my (roughly) 100m of street, there are 27 terraced properties, none of which has off-street parking. Each has at least one (and sometimes more) vehicles, plus commuters & shoppers, so the street has constant nose-to-tail parking on both sides. Often you can't even park in the street, never mind within charging distance of your own house. It's a conservation area so the council are unlikely to agree to roadside charging points, and there are just 3 street lights. Even if a limited number of chargers could be installed (eg at the street lights), we would need a culture change so that people did not block them when they don't need them, and noting the current disregard for yellow line restrictions that simply isn't going to happen. So it's just not a practical option. It'll be interesting to see what happens as the crunch point of 2040 approaches, but maybe it won't matter to me by then.

peteo48

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Re: Electric cars
« Reply #740 on: February 17, 2018, 10:38:08 AM »
Just adding to what Colin has said above I have turned my back on EVs - despite being very interested - for a number of reasons. The key one was when I got my son-in-law (qualified electrician) to look at the feasibility of installing a charge point. We have off road parking but no garage and no vehicular access to the main entrance to the property (the "front" door being at the side). He came up with a number of options all of which had problems. One was to simply put the charger just outside the "front" door and charge with a 25 foot cable (these are available for around £150). This would run up the middle of the drive causing a trip hazard. The better option was to dig up half the front garden creating a new parking space - the charger would then go on the front wall of the property supplied by an armoured cable.

I was losing the will to live at this point but I then went to an event at a local Nissan dealers where the new Leaf was being demonstrated. 235 miles? Forget that but a genuine 150 easily attainable. If that car, or something better, was in my price range, it opens up the possibility of just using fast chargers. I'd need to charge once a fortnight. This is doable.

So range is still the issue as is the infrastructure. These will both improve greatly but, for now, I'm out.

culzean

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Re: Electric cars
« Reply #741 on: February 17, 2018, 12:01:49 PM »
I drove into our local town the other evening and parked on main carpark.  There were 4 charging bays marked with blue lines and a prominent charger next to them - three of the bays were occupied by normal ICE cars - and this isn't the first time I have seen blue charging bays with normal cars parked in them (and surprisingly not large BMW or Audi SUV's).

I don't know who polices the spaces or if local council just installed them to tick a box on their 'green' policy and then forgot about them,  but I would be well pissed of if I had a BEV (ha ha) and could not charge it. There is no 'charge' for parking during the evening / night so no parking wardens around, so possibly people feel safe to park in the spots between 6PM and 8AM.

Also if charging points are installed on normal town / city street (mostly already overcrowded with cars) It does not take much imagination to guess that no-one is going to get up during the night to mover their car and allow someone else to use the charger so it will be able to handle one car a night,  and if and ICE car needs a spot during the day they will use the charging bay - and if someone is charging their car in the day and does not have a spot to move to they will leave their car in the bay even after it is charged.
« Last Edit: February 17, 2018, 12:05:00 PM by culzean »
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Jocko

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Re: Electric cars
« Reply #742 on: February 17, 2018, 02:33:25 PM »
I don't think there is currently any point in owning an EV unless you have your own off street parking. I will be moving to a house with a drive, soon, and will buy my Nissan Leaf then. My intention is to run an armoured cable, underground, and bring it up to a new post installed beside the drive. No need for a long charging cable, no trip hazard.

peteo48

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Re: Electric cars
« Reply #743 on: February 17, 2018, 02:57:24 PM »
I don't think there is currently any point in owning an EV unless you have your own off street parking. I will be moving to a house with a drive, soon, and will buy my Nissan Leaf then. My intention is to run an armoured cable, underground, and bring it up to a new post installed beside the drive. No need for a long charging cable, no trip hazard.

yes - my son in law did mention the post method. Involves a lot of disruption though and a more expensive option unless you can do the spade (no pun intended) work yourself.

ColinB

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Re: Electric cars
« Reply #744 on: February 17, 2018, 06:20:32 PM »
... I have turned my back on EVs ... The key [reason] was ... the feasibility of installing a charge point.
I don't think there is currently any point in owning an EV unless you have your own off street parking.
And there's the rub. The BBC article suggests nearly a third of car owners will not have anywhere to charge an EV if they buy one. There is no easy answer to that problem, and I certainly do not see any public or private suppliers contemplating the kind of infrastructure project that will sustain the current level of car ownership as we approach 2040. You would need to fit every single public and supermarket car park space with a charger, and even that will only scratch the surface of the problem. We are pinning our hopes on some kind of breakthrough in battery and charging technology that will make it all possible, but that's always been "just around the corner".

Without your own private charging facility, the sheer hassle of having to use a limited number of public chargers is going to make car ownership more trouble than it's worth for a very large number of people. Maybe that's not a bad thing because it'll reduce the number of vehicles clogging up our streets, but it's going to have an adverse impact on Joe Public's ability to travel for work and leisure.

Jocko

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Re: Electric cars
« Reply #745 on: February 17, 2018, 06:42:05 PM »
Without your own private charging facility, the sheer hassle of having to use a limited number of public chargers is going to make car ownership more trouble than it's worth for a very large number of people. Maybe that's not a bad thing because it'll reduce the number of vehicles clogging up our streets, but it's going to have an adverse impact on Joe Public's ability to travel for work and leisure.
That is where autonomous cars, turning up at a phone call, will make travel easier.

ColinB

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Re: Electric cars
« Reply #746 on: February 17, 2018, 11:36:24 PM »
That is where autonomous cars, turning up at a phone call, will make travel easier.
And where are they going to charge themselves ?

peteo48

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Re: Electric cars
« Reply #747 on: February 18, 2018, 09:30:32 AM »
I think what all this shows is that we are some way from EVs being suitable for everybody. In my extensive research (which has resulted in me buying another Jazz!) I think I have drawn the following conclusions:

1) EVs ideal as second car if you have suitable off road parking.
2) Long range EVs - like Teslas - suitable as main car if you are near one of their superchargers. They install 10 at a time.
3) Charging infrastructure is a major issue. There are many many journeys you can do which are in charge point deserts. I did 2 last year and I'm doing another one later today (although I could charge up at our friends' house).
4) Ideal as urban car but if you live in an urban environment you may well have no off road parking.

The new Nissan Leaf 40 kwh would actually suit my needs WITHOUT a home charging point but they are a long way out of my budget at the moment.

Jocko

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Re: Electric cars
« Reply #748 on: February 18, 2018, 09:45:56 AM »
That is where autonomous cars, turning up at a phone call, will make travel easier.
And where are they going to charge themselves ?
The business plan I have read is that, like buses, they go back to the company's depot. There they will be charged, cleaned and sent back out again. The London Black Cab TX5 recharges to 80% on 25 minutes.

ColinB

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Re: Electric cars
« Reply #749 on: February 18, 2018, 11:40:17 AM »
That is where autonomous cars, turning up at a phone call, will make travel easier.
And where are they going to charge themselves ?
The business plan I have read is that, like buses, they go back to the company's depot. There they will be charged, cleaned and sent back out again. The London Black Cab TX5 recharges to 80% on 25 minutes.
Letís get real here by looking at some numbers.

I live in the city of Bath, which has a population of around 95000 (Ref 1). According to the RAC Foundation we own 526 vehicles per 1000 of population (Ref 2, latest figure I can find). So thatís 49970 vehicles. The BBC (link earlier in the thread) suggests 1/3 of those donít have off-street charging, so thatís 16657 vehicles.

Now, how many of those can be replaced by auto-Ubers ? Thatís tricky, clearly itís not going to be 1:1, but the calculation needs to make assumptions about how many will be needed simultaneously (eg everyone needing to go to work during the rush hour), plus some will always be charging back at the depot. Iím going to assume weíll only need 20% of 16657, which is 3331 auto-Ubers but you can pick your own number if you think thatís not realistic.

That is one huge out of town depot which has to be within a reasonable distance of the city. To put that into perspective, Bath has 3 P&R sites totalling around 2500 spaces. The Council recently failed in an attempt to build a fourth due to a combination of there being no suitable site and very strong local opposition. So what chance of a massive auto-Uber depot ? And before anyone points out that you could convert the existing P&Rs to auto-Uber depots, those are heavily used by people travelling in from elsewhere so thereís not enough room for them to also accommodate auto-Uberís for residents.

Whilst Iíve used a particular city as an example, itís going to be similar elsewhere. And letís not forget that a large auto-Uber network will actually increase congestion (albeit not local pollution) because of the need for the extra journeys to/from the depot and from job to job.

So sorry, I just donít think an auto-Uber system is going to provide the solution.

References
(1) Wikipedia: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bath,_Somerset
(2) RAC Foundation: https://www.racfoundation.org/assets/rac_foundation/content/downloadables/car%20ownership%20rates%20by%20local%20authority%20-%20december%202012.pdf

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