Driving across South Africa in an electric car - Price and duration calculated

backstreetboy

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So take a car and test it in an situation it's not really suited for?
Look I still don't think in SA you could have an electric car as your only car, but as a second car that will cater for literally 99% of your needs I'd still have one.

For us and our family and needs it'd be perfect.
This. Useless article that came to a non surprising useless result.
 

K3NS31

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Those prices make no sense.
My ridiculously expensive home electricity is R1.84 / KWh.
How are they getting R2 / KWh as their cheapest rate?
 

Geoff.D

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This is exactly why electric cars are BS. And this data they generated is based most likely on empty vehicles. Put 4 people in that car with luggage and watch those distances halve. Also, who has the time to sit and wait for these batteries to charge? Give me good old fossil fuel ANY day thanks.
I can do 2500 km in my fossil driven, 4 x 4 at one go, without any need for overnight stops at a decent 100km/hr average speed with a full load and 4 passengers.
A no brainer - electric is just a commute vehicle to and from work and short trips around home base.
 

leonb

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Well done on a good article with thorough research.
This is a great reminder of how inconvenient longer distances can be in an all-electric car.
The time wasted while recharging and the ridiculously slow speed you would need to drive at would make for a stupidly unpleasant trip.
Good article yes, but please correct the units: kWh vs kW
 

K3NS31

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I can do 2500 km in my fossil driven, 4 x 4 at one go, without any need for overnight stops at a decent 100km/hr average speed with a full load and 4 passengers.
A no brainer - electric is just a commute vehicle to and from work and short trips around home base.
You're gonna do a 2500KM drive without stopping for bathroom breaks or to eat or rest? Jeez no wonder our roads are so dangerous.

Once the infrastructure gets to SA (oh, the joys of being a 3rd world country); you'd be able to do this drive in a Tesla in the same amount of time as your 4x4. Like they can right now in places like the US, where they have a fast charging infrastructure on the interstates.(Of course, the rider is that a Tesla has much longer range than an iPace. If the authors had actually done this drive, they'd have discovered that the hard way. 10 charging stops minimum, from what I've read about it's real-world range. AND it's more expensive. Still, you can only work with what's available, I get that. I wish they'd actually driven it tho)
 

Swa

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So take a car and test it in an situation it's not really suited for?
Look I still don't think in SA you could have an electric car as your only car, but as a second car that will cater for literally 99% of your needs I'd still have one.

For us and our family and needs it'd be perfect.
What are they suited for really? The price of electricity and no real charging choices makes them unfeasible. Unless you have free electricity and use it as a work vehicle you're never going to make up the extra cost. Even for the guys saying they can charge at work, somebody is still paying for it. That's like saying your employer pays for your petrol so you'll stick to a petrol engine instead of a bicycle to save.

I actually think this would have been an ideal situation for an EV but they still fail the test.
 

Kelerei

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Right now, I reckon that plug-in hybrids hit the sweet spot -- you have an electric motor for the stop-start city driving and a petrol engine for the long distance stuff. I had an Audi A3 e-tron on rental last month for a trip to the North Island Central Volcanic Plateau and back, and it performed brilliantly: ran on the electric motor for the stop-start 50km/h sections through the various towns on the way, and petrol engine for the 100km/h open road sections. Best of both worlds.

Pure electric vehicles are great as city cars, but for long distance, the technology isn't quite there yet. We've got the infrastructure in NZ to support them (charging stations every 75-100km on the main routes now), but I still wouldn't go for an electric-only vehicle: the charging times and frequency of having to charge just puts me off (with the PHEV, it will switch to petrol-only once the electric battery has insufficient charge, and can be recharged at home overnight to take advantage of the cheaper off-peak electricity rates we have here). South Africa has the additional problem of an expensive, unreliable and erratic electricity supply (what do you do when you reach the charging station with barely any range yet, only to find out said charging station has been loadshat?), so it's even less appealing for you guys.
 

pinball wizard

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What are they suited for really? The price of electricity and no real charging choices makes them unfeasible. Unless you have free electricity and use it as a work vehicle you're never going to make up the extra cost. Even for the guys saying they can charge at work, somebody is still paying for it. That's like saying your employer pays for your petrol so you'll stick to a petrol engine instead of a bicycle to save.

I actually think this would have been an ideal situation for an EV but they still fail the test.
I sometimes use my bicycle for work. Like as in not to commute to the office, but to see customers.
 
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S3XY

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Right now, I reckon that plug-in hybrids hit the sweet spot -- you have an electric motor for the stop-start city driving and a petrol engine for the long distance stuff. I had an Audi A3 e-tron on rental last month for a trip to the North Island Central Volcanic Plateau and back, and it performed brilliantly: ran on the electric motor for the stop-start 50km/h sections through the various towns on the way, and petrol engine for the 100km/h open road sections. Best of both worlds.

Pure electric vehicles are great as city cars, but for long distance, the technology isn't quite there yet. We've got the infrastructure in NZ to support them (charging stations every 75-100km on the main routes now), but I still wouldn't go for an electric-only vehicle: the charging times and frequency of having to charge just puts me off (with the PHEV, it will switch to petrol-only once the electric battery has insufficient charge, and can be recharged at home overnight to take advantage of the cheaper off-peak electricity rates we have here). South Africa has the additional problem of an expensive, unreliable and erratic electricity supply (what do you do when you reach the charging station with barely any range yet, only to find out said charging station has been loadshat?), so it's even less appealing for you guys.
The technology is definitely there, just not in SA.
A Tesla would be 8 times (2 times more efficient and charges 4 times faster) better than the Jaguar in this situation.
You would have a total charging time of only 1 hour and 10 minutes over the whole trip (V3 supercharger with the Long Range Model 3 AWD).
You would need to only stop about every 2 hours for about 5-10 minutes. Not even enough to stretch legs properly.

There is an even longer range model that is only made in china now. (Model 3 LR RWD)
The data is based on the real life energy consumption figures as well as a real life V3 super charger charging test.

Also, 99% of the trip would be done by the car itself on the highway, while you only keep hand on the wheel and eyes on the road, but overtaking, braking, lane changes and keeping in lane can all be done on Autopilot.

1597391344401.png
 

eg2505

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Hopelessly impractical solution to an old reliable technology.

What Jaguar should have done, and actually ALL EV manufacturers, should have done is think a bit.

Instead if having a battery cell welded to the car, Like a cellphone is these days,
And having superchargers, that who knows how much wear a supercharger does to the overall lifespan of the cell.

Is think a bit outside the box, and use a technology that's more reliable.

Simply changing the battery cell, and letting it take its 8 hours to charge quietly and reliably.
And putting a freshly charged set of batteries into your car for the journey onward.

Unfortunately, and this is my main gripe.
It makes a manufacturer more money (and more pollution) to throw away an entire EV car, then to just replace the battery pack and continue quite safely.

And we are seeing this thinking even today.
My old drum of removable batteries in cellphones are rarer than hens teeth.

Its makes more money to throw away a cellphone that's still perfectly usable (with software updates) then a phone with old school batteries that can be swapped when they wear out.

Same thing here, if you could drive to a petrol station, where a robot arm would remove and reinstall a freshly charged cell into your vehicle, and let you be on your way.

This issue kind of reminds me of the whole lightbulb manufacturing industry,
If a bulb breaks, you have to change it, even though its completely possible for a lightbulb to last for decade's.

But what we have today, is consumerism at its worst, you have to change the entire house to swap a lightbulb.
As the part that wears out cannot be removed and it makes more money to change houses to fix a faulty bulb.

Same thing with EV's, its much more lucrative to sell you a NEW car then it is to sell you a replacement battery, and your car can run for decade's and make no money for the manufacturer.

Again, we live in a society that throws away perfectly usable items for profit and to hell with everything else including the environment and 3rd world sh*th0les.
 

S3XY

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Hopelessly impractical solution to an old reliable technology.

What Jaguar should have done, and actually ALL EV manufacturers, should have done is think a bit.

Instead if having a battery cell welded to the car, Like a cellphone is these days,
And having superchargers, that who knows how much wear a supercharger does to the overall lifespan of the cell.

Is think a bit outside the box, and use a technology that's more reliable.

Simply changing the battery cell, and letting it take its 8 hours to charge quietly and reliably.
And putting a freshly charged set of batteries into your car for the journey onward.

Unfortunately, and this is my main gripe.
It makes a manufacturer more money (and more pollution) to throw away an entire EV car, then to just replace the battery pack and continue quite safely.

And we are seeing this thinking even today.
My old drum of removable batteries in cellphones are rarer than hens teeth.

Its makes more money to throw away a cellphone that's still perfectly usable (with software updates) then a phone with old school batteries that can be swapped when they wear out.

Same thing here, if you could drive to a petrol station, where a robot arm would remove and reinstall a freshly charged cell into your vehicle, and let you be on your way.

This issue kind of reminds me of the whole lightbulb manufacturing industry,
If a bulb breaks, you have to change it, even though its completely possible for a lightbulb to last for decade's.

But what we have today, is consumerism at its worst, you have to change the entire house to swap a lightbulb.
As the part that wears out cannot be removed and it makes more money to change houses to fix a faulty bulb.

Same thing with EV's, its much more lucrative to sell you a NEW car then it is to sell you a replacement battery, and your car can run for decade's and make no money for the manufacturer.

Again, we live in a society that throws away perfectly usable items for profit and to hell with everything else including the environment and 3rd world sh*th0les.
They have tried it and it works nicely (but logistics is a nightmare), but with the advent of V3 supercharging and the million mile battery (can be charged and discharged 5000 times - equal to more than 1.6 million km's of travel - without much degradation) this has become unnecessary. Your battery will outlive your car by far. Also, the plan is then to recycle these batteries into mass storage as it can still hold between 70-80% of it's charge. Some asian companies - like NIO - are still pursuing swappable battery packs.
 

GhostSixFour

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I sometimes use my bicycle for work. Like as in not to commute to the office, but to see customers.
With how e-bikes are expanding in range and coming down in cost, I've considered moving to an e-bike for commuting. Will get me to the office and back on a single charge, and I'll likely charge it at the office anyway, why pay for my own electricity :) plus, you can set the assistance so that you're not all sweaty and hot, then take into account that you can travel down paths that are off limits to cars and motorcycles, reducing the traveling distance, and keeping in mind that even in a car you're average speed is likely less than the 25km/h that an e-bike motor can provide, I'm seeing it as a win. Not sure why we don't have streams of e-bikes running into Sandton everyday.
 

garp

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Objectively, the fundamental problem is EV battery technology is not ready for long distance, cross country trips.

Some companies have done a better job than others of mitigating the issues, i.e. Tesla, but fundamentally, until they can offer the same range and refuel/recharge time as ICE engines, it's not going to happen.

They have cracked the urban commute scenario though - the average 40km per day commute is well handled by EVs. For people who can afford to maintain two vehicles the solution is to use an EV as a daily commuter and use something more conventional for long distance trips (not that it makes financial sense).

Hybrids provide some degree of a solution by offering an all-in-one, but then have the overhead of lugging a combustion engine around when it's not needed. Here's a whacky idea - an EV with a quickly removable modular combustion engine - like the i3 "range extender" but which can be loaded/unloaded at the press of a button.
 
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Geoff.D

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Objectively, the fundamental problem is EV battery technology is not ready for long distance, cross country trips.

Some companies have done a better job than others of mitigating the issues, i.e. Tesla, but fundamentally, until they can offer the same range and refuel/recharge time as ICE engines, it's not going to happen.

They have cracked the urban commute scenario though - the average 40km per day commute is well handled by EVs. For people who can afford to maintain two vehicles the solution is to use an EV as a daily commuter and use something more conventional for long distance trips (not that it makes financial sense).

Hybrids provide some degree of a solution by offering an all-in-one, but then have the overhead of lugging a combustion engine around when it's not needed. Here's a whacky idea - an EV with a quickly removable modular combustion engine - like the i3 "range extender" but which can be loaded/unloaded at the press of a button.
Like this I presume?

 

Geoff.D

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The technology is definitely there, just not in SA.
A Tesla would be 8 times (2 times more efficient and charges 4 times faster) better than the Jaguar in this situation.
You would have a total charging time of only 1 hour and 10 minutes over the whole trip (V3 supercharger with the Long Range Model 3 AWD).
You would need to only stop about every 2 hours for about 5-10 minutes. Not even enough to stretch legs properly.

There is an even longer range model that is only made in china now. (Model 3 LR RWD)
The data is based on the real life energy consumption figures as well as a real life V3 super charger charging test.

Also, 99% of the trip would be done by the car itself on the highway, while you only keep hand on the wheel and eyes on the road, but overtaking, braking, lane changes and keeping in lane can all be done on Autopilot.

View attachment 892702
Who drives from BFW to GR and then to Gariep Dam on a trip from CT to PG? Sounds like a gimmick trip.
 

S3XY

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Who drives from BFW to GR and then to Gariep Dam on a trip from CT to PG? Sounds like a gimmick trip.
In the article,

"There was one particular hurdle which we had to circumvent on our route, however.

The distance between the Beaufort West stop and the next available station next to the N1 at Colesberg was 313km.

To be safe, we, therefore, had to divert onto the N9 to reach a closer station located at Graaff-Reinet and then proceed back towards the N1."


There are no superchargers in SA, so wanted to compare this theoretical trip with the one in the article. If I could design the Supercharger locations there would be fewer stops as the superchargers would be spaced better to accommodate the better range (478km) of the Model 3.
 

Goosfrabba

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With those charging times, may I suggest Nintendo target this market to sell Switches?
 

konfab

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The fact of the matter is that electric cars only make financial sense if your electricity is cheap. Eskom and the ANC have made sure that SA will never have cheap electricity, which means electric cars are only going to be financially viable for those people who have solar in SA.

I think they will not become mainstream unless hot-swappable batteries are implemented. There are two reasons for this:
1) Electric cars are mechanically much simpler than internal combustion cars. They will pretty much forever if you discount the battery.
2) I think they are pretty much reaching the limits for lithium ion batteries.
 
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