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General Automotive General automotive discussion. This is intended to be a discussion about other not VW and Diesel cars you may have or interested in.

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Old February 14th, 2020, 08:41   #5296
VeeDubTDI
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Originally Posted by tikal View Post
I appreciate the feedback. Right now a coworker of mine is leaning to get a used EV as commuter vehicle for a 85 mile round trip. Budget is fairly tight, $12000 would be pushing it. I think it will be tight to make it on one charge with a used Kia Soul EV but here at work we have a very few 110 volt outlets that some drivers have been using to recharge while in the office, so there is a possibility.

Thoughts?
To make an ~80 mile EV like a Kia Soul, Fiat 500e, Nissan LEAF or VW e-Golf work for that commute, he would need reliable charging on both ends of his commute. A regular 120 volt outlet will suffice at work, but he'll want a 240 volt charging station at home. Remember that head winds, 80 MPH speeds and cold weather will all reduce the usable range of the vehicle.

If these charging requirements can be met, he stands to save a lot of money on commuting. As compu_85 mentioned, our Fiat 500e has been dirt cheap to operate compared to a conventional car. It certainly won't work for everyone, but it can yield incredible savings for those whose lifestyles the car fits into.
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Old February 14th, 2020, 09:26   #5297
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Just pulled up cars.com. Looking at 100 miles and under $12,000, there are only three electric cars listed. A Leaf and two Volts. One of the Volts, I wouldn't even look at with 132k miles. Go up to $15k and it just throws more Leafs on the fire.
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Old February 14th, 2020, 10:37   #5298
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Just pulled up cars.com. Looking at 100 miles and under $12,000, there are only three electric cars listed. A Leaf and two Volts. One of the Volts, I wouldn't even look at with 132k miles. Go up to $15k and it just throws more Leafs on the fire.
"more Leafs on the fire" I like that!
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Old February 14th, 2020, 11:17   #5299
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Originally Posted by VeeDubTDI View Post
To make an ~80 mile EV like a Kia Soul, Fiat 500e, Nissan LEAF or VW e-Golf work for that commute, he would need reliable charging on both ends of his commute. A regular 120 volt outlet will suffice at work, but he'll want a 240 volt charging station at home. Remember that head winds, 80 MPH speeds and cold weather will all reduce the usable range of the vehicle.

If these charging requirements can be met, he stands to save a lot of money on commuting. As compu_85 mentioned, our Fiat 500e has been dirt cheap to operate compared to a conventional car. It certainly won't work for everyone, but it can yield incredible savings for those whose lifestyles the car fits into.
I agree with your general approach. It comes down to properly having the tool(s) to check the health of the EV battery one is considering buying. I understand that these EVs have their own console/software telling you how much 'life' is left and so forth. However I am not sure how accurate they are or if they tend to be optimistic like our TDIs onboard MPG readings
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Old February 14th, 2020, 11:28   #5300
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I agree with your general approach. It comes down to properly having the tool(s) to check the health of the EV battery one is considering buying. I understand that these EVs have their own console/software telling you how much 'life' is left and so forth. However I am not sure how accurate they are or if they tend to be optimistic like our TDIs onboard MPG readings
The only cars I know of with on-board battery health indicators are Nissan LEAFs. All of the others need to be calculated by running a couple of full cycles and seeing what you get. Teslas will also show you something approximating battery health by way of the range display. Teslas show EPA rated range, whereas all other EVs show estimated range based on recent driving (not really useful for determining battery capacity).

Our Fiat has lost approximately 10% capacity in 7 years and 33,000 miles. Most Nissan LEAFs I've looked at are between 20 and 40% capacity loss over similar time and mileage. YMMV
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Old February 14th, 2020, 13:36   #5301
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If you have Torque Pro, you can pick up PIDS that can give you an approximation of battery capacity.
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Old February 14th, 2020, 18:48   #5302
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But people already own their current cars. They would have to buy an EV for way more money. I bought my 2015 Beetle new in 2017 and it is paid for. It would take forever to recoup that money with that fuel cost difference. I bought the 2002 Suburban for $1200 cash. Even though it is a gas sucker you would never recoup the difference. If you have to own a $30k and up new car, then maybe you are right, it would be better. For the majority of people who drive cheap cars and use cheap fuel it makes no sense at all.

Almost nothing EV available locally for $10k or less except old Leaf's. Not having one of those.
Reminds me of the arguments against diesel saying the extra cost wouldn't be worth it. Now all of a sudden, double or more of the cost of ICE vehicles is justified for the relatively meager "fuel" savings of an EV. How quaint. Bias anyone?
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Old February 14th, 2020, 19:15   #5303
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Yeah - that never held water (TDI vs. gas); it was pretty simple math to see that it wouldn't take too long to make the difference up in fuel savings.
In my case: $2300 price difference.


(Numbers rounded a bit for ease of calculation)
1000km of driving TDI = $75 (~$1.33/L @5.5L/100km)
1000km of driving a 150hp gasser = $125 (~$1.50/L @ 8L/100km)

$50 diff. per 1000km. x 46 = $2300

46K km and I've made back my money. The next 400,000km, I'm all but making money.
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Old February 14th, 2020, 20:52   #5304
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Yep I bought my brand new 2015 Beetle for $16k. Stop sale after dieselgate. I am saying the majority of the people won't spend $30k or more on any vehicle diesel, gas or electric. Just can't afford it. Or they don't mind being in debt forever for a stinking car. For those who can't or won't spend that kind of money just to get from point A to point B they make no sense and save them nothing. They just cost they out the wazoo. If everyone goes electric you can just bet the rates will increase and you will save nothing as well. It will just be the electric companies taking all of your money instead of the gas companies. Or you can buy $40k worth of solar panels to power your $40k car. I will stick with my $16k Beetle tdi and $1200 2002 Suburban gas hog. More than likely never to buy a new car again. Unless I get really old and decrepit and can't drive and they have self driving cars by then. But you probably won't own them by then, just pay to use.
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Old February 14th, 2020, 21:32   #5305
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I know a lot of people opt for a lease, where they just build in the fact that they're gonna pay $500/mo. (or whatever) for a car for the rest of their life....just like rent.

I'm not built that way (the mortgage got paid off ASAP; and if we didn't have available cash for anything else, it didn't get purchased until we did), but a lot of people are. That way, they can have the $50K+ car without having to amass $50K in the bank, or be "stuck with an old car" (another mindset that totally escapes me) when they finally pay it off.
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Old February 14th, 2020, 22:59   #5306
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Well I am like that too. My home was paid off in 13 years. I am debt free. Buying trash on credit is stupid. I pay cash for what I need. I try very hard not to overbuy anything. $50k cars are not for me, hence the $1200 Suburban. A lease is no better than a car loan. You are still on the hook and you usually buy more car than you need so your payments are just as large as if you bought a cheaper car. I was raised not to be in debt except for maybe a house or car. If you couldn't pay for the car in three years your were buying too much car. Now I believe you should just buy one for cash. There are so many cheap usable cars out there now days because others just have to have something new and dump a perfectly good old car.
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Old February 15th, 2020, 08:21   #5307
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EV's are a hobby. Fun but not practical for most people in our housing challenged and high mileage commute society, which for some reason likes large thirsty SUV's over economical hatchbacks. The costs are a big problem too. Perhaps if enthusiasm for small practical EV's improves, the public will benefit more.
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Old February 15th, 2020, 08:48   #5308
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Yes, it's very encouraging to see how quickly the enthusiasm for EV's is growing. People are looking forward to the future. There is a reason why Tesla has a market cap greater than Ford, GM, and FCA combined- investors can sense that the future of automobiles is electrified. The current rate of divestment from fossil fuels is a pretty good indicator of where things are headed.
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Old February 15th, 2020, 09:49   #5309
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I don't see improvement until public charging becomes the norm and relatively problem free. This has too many hurdles to make it anywhere near "quickly"
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Old February 15th, 2020, 12:07   #5310
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The price of these things also has to get down into the common man threshold instead of only the elite class. Somewhere in the $15k to $20k range. Otherwise the masses are just priced out of the market right off the bat.
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