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Tesla Battery Size: New Narrative

Discussion in 'Model 3 Reveal' started by John, Jul 29, 2017.

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  1. John

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    Tesla—at least during the Delivery Event—is moving away from quoting battery size in kWh, preferring instead to focus on range.

    I think one reason for this (in addition to being more meaningful to most people) is that Tesla cars have more aerodynamic shapes and more efficient electronics. That means that a Tesla will go farther on a 50 kWh battery than a competitor would with a 60 kWh battery. After all, it's range that people primarily care about.

    So Tesla is in effect saying, "It's not the size of the battery, it's what you do with it."
     
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    • SoFlaModel3

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      Very well said. As part of moving the mass market to an EV its more important to call the car "long range" than to say it has a 75 kWh battery.
       
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      • Mike

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        It will be interesting to see the range decay, as a %, once winter driving realities take place (with the assumed smaller battery sizes being implied by Tesla omitting to state them).
         
      • Iaeen

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        If I recall correctly, Tesla didn't originally have any battery size badging on the early Model S, but that was later added... So I guess they are swinging back to the old ways?

        I'm not sure how I feel about it. On an ICE car, I specifically want to know the tank size and projected MPG. If someone tells me "it'll go X miles between trips to the pump", I immediately wonder "sure, but how much is that trip to the pump going to cost me?" I guess that's less of a concern with BEVs since electricity is cheap, but I still want to know about the efficiency so that I can budget accordingly.

        Anyway, I'm sure when real people get their hands on the car, someone will figure out the battery situation. Also, not having the battery badging on the back is probably good for me since the $9k extended battery is probably going to get the axe in order to keep the car in budget :eek:
         
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        • SoFlaModel3

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          Your car doesn't have a badge that indicates the fuel tank size though, it's in the final specs. I'm sure we will know the battery capacity.
           
        • MelindaV

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          capacity isn't the same as efficiency though. it will cost you the same to drive the same distance regardless if it's a 50kWh battery or a 75kWh (minus the weight impact).
           
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          • KennethK

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            Also Tesla has been accused of labeling a vehicle with one kWh and having the actual battery capacity end up smaller. This is avoided when not labeling (also prevents class action lawsuits)
             
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            • Jean Théoret

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              I guess we lose 30-40% of energy.
               
            • mig

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              I hope detailed specs are released (I don't care what the vehicle "badge" says), because it is interesting and I like to know what I am buying, and not have to rely on a future "teardown" video to figure out basic information like battery pack size and motor kW.

              While I agree range is what most people are going to be most interested in, there are huge error bars on the range of any EV and I hope Tesla isn't setting themselves up to disappoint here. Hopefully the reported range is lower quartile or something, and it is likely with careful driving people can do a bit better than 220/310 miles per 100% charge.
               
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              • Cloxxki

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                The true capacity figures may have worked out awkwardly with the absolute optimum they found in cost for both versions, for number of modules, and internal module layout. 75kWh maximum size was tweeted by Elon. If we take that as fact and assume it implemented to give the most range for the LR car, it's a very middle of the road expected consumption. 40.9% more range, would imply 42-44% more cells used, assuming the same cells which seems like as pure cost was driving factor in its development.
                The LR may well be a perfect 75kWh, but a 50 would need to be over-delivered to make the promised >215 miles. And, 50 sounds "cheap" with Bolt doing 60+ and Model S/X selling mostly 100's now. 55kWh would be generous for 220 miles, putting entry model margins in geopardy.
                Note that the aero wheels and accompanying tyres are standard. With the optimal wheels most seem to prefer, I wonder whether the LR makes 300 miles EPA, and SR even will still manage 215+. Would EPA differentiate for those, would Tesla need to somewhere put the difference in economy in fine print?
                 
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                • Topher

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                  Absolutely, but it doesn't need to be on the badge, or even the most highlighted spec.

                  They are obligated to give EPA rated range. It is up to you to make modifications due to your mileage varying.

                  Thank you kindly.
                   
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                  • mig

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                    My point was that difference between EPA rated range and real world range is an unknown, and hiding actual battery capacity doesn't help clueful buyers determine what they might see IRL.

                    I've driven two different EVs and the differences between the EPA rated efficiency and my efficiency was different in both cases. I don't think I could hazard a guess about my personal results just from the EPA range, with no other information because Tesla choose not to share it.
                     
                  • Twiglett

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                    Of course real world range is different. It is entirely dependent on location, driver, speed, climate etc etc.
                    Rated range is a "known conditions" example that every car is given so comparisons can be made.
                    Same applies to ICE cars as well.
                    In the same car I can easily beat EPA estimate and the following day get half that, just by driving differently.
                     
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                    • Topher

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                      No, but neither would telling us the battery capacity.

                      Ok, Exactly what information do you think Tesla has, that you need? They could tell you efficiency (as measured by EPA tests) and battery capacity, But the product of those is just EPA range. I don't see how factoring it out helps. Tesla doesn't KNOW how your driving affects EPA efficiency, (perhaps by 'clueful' you mean that you know that, but then you could determine your range from EPA range).

                      Are you wanting to calculate from first principles, and need the Frontal Area, and Rolling Resistance?

                      Thank you kindly.
                       
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                      • mig

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                        Thought I made it clear I'd like to know usable battery capacity. That would help me personally more than construed EPA range (I know how many kWh my commute takes over a few years of commuting by EV) I guess if I end up with a Model 3 I could measure it from the wall.

                        (Sorry if that desire is controversial -- I did not mean for it to provoke anything)

                        BTW, I also like to know the batter capacity of my other devices like my phone, even though I realize most people don't care or need to know.
                         
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                        • Cloxxki

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                          But Tesla feel their car is a better EV, so you might get further on a kWh. Truth is, it differs for city vs highway. And the EPA highway cycle is kind of slow.
                          I do feel they are overreaching trying to kill the capacity figure and just making it standard and long range. As if the world will just bow and start making 220 and 310 mile vehices to comply with the world standard.
                           
                        • garsh

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                          #17 garsh, Jul 30, 2017
                          Last edited: Jul 30, 2017
                          I think that's the problem. People will see that the Bolt has a 60kWh battery while the Model 3 has a 50kWh battery, and assume that the Bolt is the better deal. Even though the Model 3 is more efficient and can go farther per kWh.

                          I think this is exactly why Tesla is moving away from battery size designations.

                          But I'm also curious to find exactly what the size of the batteries are. :)
                           
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                          • mig

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                            Great point. I hadn't thought of it that way, and I probably should have just said I was really curious what exact capacity resulted in that EPA range.

                            Thanks!
                             
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                            • Dr. Ken

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                              According to MotorTrend estimate (apparently even they couldn't get the numbers from Tesla), the standard range is 60 kWh and the extended range is 85 kWh.
                               
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                              • SoFlaModel3

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                                Elon said the car won't fit above 75 kWh.
                                 
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