Volt vs. Tesla?

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Dan Detweiler

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#1
I am a current Chevy Volt owner and have been very happy with the car. Over the four years of ownership I have averaged about 80% of my driving on electricity and only rarely use the ICE for longer trips. My only reservation about going full electric is the viability of long trips in all electric. I am fully aware of the supercharger network currently in place but I am curious as to what people might view as the minimum range to make this car truly "trip practical". I know that for the health of the batteries you should not charge to the full capacity of the battery pack so is a 200 mile range car practical?

Any info would be much appreciated.

Thanks,

Dan
 

teslaliving

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#2
Teslas advice is to range (full) charge when you need it and otherwise only charge to 90%. Thats what i've done. A few weeks ago I drove to FL and back in the Model S. 12 Superchargers down and then 12 back. Totally do-able and you can get just about anywhere in the country with Tesla.

Keep in mind that Tesla's superchargers were places to make the Tesla Model S 60 able to drive between them. The Model 3 has slightly more range (and thats before they try to eek out a few more miles) than the S60 so it means the 3 will be fine to visit all those same superchargers.

Generally superchargers are about 150 miles apart although it varies. In a Model S85 you're generally charging from about 10% to 70% each time give or take. In a 3 or S60 you'd need to charge up a bit more which adds some time but it all can be done.

Now for the practicality: Do you want to stop for 30 minutes every 2 hours? A 20 hour drive to FL for me turned into a 26 hour drive thanks to the charging stops. Sure I would have stopped for food/gas but not 6 hours worth. And sure the supercharging was free whereas gas isn't. So it depends on how you define practical.
 

Dan Detweiler

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#3
Thanks so much for your prompt response. I am pretty much sold on the Model 3, especially after looking at what the 2017 Volts are going for. $40,000 for a car with much less features and much less performance. I don't think they are even comparable even if the Model 3 ends up at 45-50K.

Thanks Again,

Dan
 

teslaliving

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#4
Thanks so much for your prompt response. I am pretty much sold on the Model 3, especially after looking at what the 2017 Volts are going for. $40,000 for a car with much less features and much less performance. I don't think they are even comparable even if the Model 3 ends up at 45-50K.

Thanks Again,

Dan
No problem, love my Model S so happy to talk about it and also excited about the 3.

The thing I havent heard about on the Bolt is if it will have a fast charge capability, Chademo or something. Sounds so far like it won't. A pure electric car without fast charge would give me a serious pause.

While there are many J1772 etc plugs out there you can find all over the place via plugshare/chargepoint etc, they're pretty much useless on a road trip as it takes too long to charge. You need Chademo or Tesla Supercharger support to make road trips viable in an EV.
 

teslaliving

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#6
I won't even consider the Bolt. Looks, performance, price...just not even in the Model 3 league. I would buy another Volt before buying a Bolt. Just my opinion of course.

Dan
I was next to a Volt owner in the Model 3 line and he had similar thoughts. Tesla is going to kill the Bolt.

He had great words for the Volt though. Said it was a great car.
 

Dan Detweiler

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#7
It has done everything the factory claimed it would when they were developing the car from the start. I have minor complaints about the interior layout but other than that it has been great for me. The Model 3 represents a huge leap forward though in regards to performance and technology at not much more money.

Dan
 

Nate

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#8
No problem, love my Model S so happy to talk about it and also excited about the 3.

The thing I havent heard about on the Bolt is if it will have a fast charge capability, Chademo or something. Sounds so far like it won't. A pure electric car without fast charge would give me a serious pause.

While there are many J1772 etc plugs out there you can find all over the place via plugshare/chargepoint etc, they're pretty much useless on a road trip as it takes too long to charge. You need Chademo or Tesla Supercharger support to make road trips viable in an EV.
Bolt has CCS. In my area Chademo is more common, but CCS is growing faster and more automakers are backing it. Recently Tesla joined the CCS backed CharIN association. Others include BMW, Audi, VW, Ford, GM, and Daimler. The European manufacturers' are pushing hard for it in parts of Europe. Nissan has backed Chademo, but there is some question if they will long term:
http://insideevs.com/nissan-engineer-seems-to-suggest-chademo-is-on-its-way-out-ccs-for-the-win/
 

TrevP

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#9
If I had a choice between CHAdeMO or CCS I'd go with CCS. CHAdeMO is big, ugly and really bulky. Not that J1772 is any better but at least it's not aircraft refueling big.
 

Nate

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#10
Thanks so much for your prompt response. I am pretty much sold on the Model 3, especially after looking at what the 2017 Volts are going for. $40,000 for a car with much less features and much less performance. I don't think they are even comparable even if the Model 3 ends up at 45-50K.
Dan, like yourself I currently have a Volt and I reserved the Model 3 as soon as I could online, 3/31. I like the Volt a lot. Pretty much EV all the time (87% lifetime) unless we take a road trip. It is reliable and has work flawlessly for us regardless of the trip distance. The only reason I wouldn't replace it with the 2nd generation model is the rear passenger seat space. It works fine now, but by the time my (tall for their age) kids are teenagers we'll want something that fits tall people in the backseat better.

It seems too early to compare price. The '16 Volt was limited in production and availability. The '17 hasn't been out that long enough nationwide to put incentives on it. By the time the Model 3 is available to you the effective price on the Volt could be completely different. I leased my Volt in '13 and at that point there were big incentives. The '13 leased out better than the incoming '14 models even though the later year had a $5000 MSRP price cut.
 

AEDennis

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#11
I am a current Chevy Volt owner and have been very happy with the car. Over the four years of ownership I have averaged about 80% of my driving on electricity and only rarely use the ICE for longer trips. My only reservation about going full electric is the viability of long trips in all electric. I am fully aware of the supercharger network currently in place but I am curious as to what people might view as the minimum range to make this car truly "trip practical". I know that for the health of the batteries you should not charge to the full capacity of the battery pack so is a 200 mile range car practical?

Any info would be much appreciated.

Thanks,

Dan
I often range charged to near full during my cross-country trip last May. The weather ranged from mild to cool and I rolled off soon as I was done charging, so it didn't stay at full too long.

As @teslaliving mentions, day-to-day max is around 90%, but for the occasional range charge, don't worry about it.
 

Badback

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#12
Why is the Bolt so sucky?

GM has gobs more resources than Tesla.

GM has access to the same scientific and engineering information as Tesla.

GM has had forever to develop the Bolt.

So why is the range on the Bolt so lousy?
 

garsh

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#14
Why is the Bolt so sucky?
I'm drinking the Tesla koolaid too, but dial it back a little please. ;)
GM has gobs more resources than Tesla.
True. But they're not all-in on electric cars like Tesla.
GM has had forever to develop the Bolt.
About the same amount of time as Tesla did to develop the 3.
So why is the range on the Bolt so lousy?
It's about the same as the Model 3.

Look, the Bolt appears to be much better than any other comparably-priced EV available right now. It just that the Model 3 will apparently be even better, and hopefully available just a year later.
 

teslaliving

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#15
It sounds like the bolt will have the same range as the Model 3 and be delivered a year earlier. It also sounds like it will support the CCS fast charge system (a group that Tesla is also now a part of) which is small but growing. CCS has realistic plans to offer charging speeds faster than the current Tesla superchargers.

Im no expert on the bolt and the pictures i've seen make it look ugly. It also sounds like it may be more expensive than the 3. But I think its a bit premature to say that it sucks or is far behind what Tesla offers. It may well be, but just by being early, and GM they could make a big splash in the EV space if they're serious about it.
 

Gary Moore

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#16
Why is the Bolt so sucky?

GM has gobs more resources than Tesla.

GM has access to the same scientific and engineering information as Tesla.

GM has had forever to develop the Bolt.

So why is the range on the Bolt so lousy?
People basically have brains because we navigate. Stereotypes are not people, but my over-generalization helps to sketch out a picture quickly.

Perspective for everyone is where your head is at. GM's historical legacy is largely managing money. (You might not think they would then need a bail out, but gambling is like that. Ford got lucky in blowing their money ahead of the curve, and thus had refinanced before the crash hit---a financial event which not even Warren Buffett saw coming.) When GM wants engineers, it buys them.

Once any culture is established, changing it is quite difficult, even after a paradigm shift, because those on the inside all are influenced by the map of reality the culture had previously drawn. If your culture is largely financial, you decide things based on $$$ forecasts.

Forecasters don't have hindsight to use upon paradigm shifts, so they commonly ignore them. If your tentacles were designed to manipulate ICE's, then those "other guys" seem quite weird and out of touch. The Bolt makes sense, if your premise is that electric cars are only for a few certain cheap weirdoes, those who are much too antisocial to ever decide to ride the bus. The potential Bolt drivers envisioned must somehow be tasteless, anarchic techno-hippies. What kind of market is that?

That is why the Bolt is so sucky. In reality, neither large or small herds of techno-hippies exist in nature. It's simply hallucinogenic.
 

Rick59

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#18
In response to ZEV mandates, the Ford Motor Company introduced its new electric vehicle, the Ford Folt. The Folt's 1kWh battery consists of 112 rechargeable D batteries connected end to end, located in the trunk. Its range is 12 city blocks or 6 miles driving downhill in San Francisco. The Folt can only be recharged by taking the battery pack apart and charging 4 D batteries at a time using a home charger. Alternatively the driver can flip a switch and use the other 112-battery pack located in the frunk. A Ford spokesperson lauded the vehicle's design, "Our Design Team spent an entire long weekend developing this baby."
(This came to me in a dream last night. I'm spending waaaaay too much time reading about electric cars.)
 

Badback

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#19
In response to ZEV mandates, the Ford Motor Company introduced its new electric vehicle, the Ford Folt. The Folt's 1kWh battery consists of 112 rechargeable D batteries connected end to end, located in the trunk. Its range is 12 city blocks or 6 miles driving downhill in San Francisco. The Folt can only be recharged by taking the battery pack apart and charging 4 D batteries at a time using a home charger. Alternatively the driver can flip a switch and use the other 112-battery pack located in the frunk. A Ford spokesperson lauded the vehicle's design, "Our Design Team spent an entire long weekend developing this baby."
(This came to me in a dream last night. I'm spending waaaaay too much time reading about electric cars.)
I had that same dream, only mine was Diahatsu Dolt.
 

Badback

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#20
Teslas advice is to range (full) charge when you need it and otherwise only charge to 90%. Thats what i've done. A few weeks ago I drove to FL and back in the Model S. 12 Superchargers down and then 12 back. Totally do-able and you can get just about anywhere in the country with Tesla.

Keep in mind that Tesla's superchargers were places to make the Tesla Model S 60 able to drive between them. The Model 3 has slightly more range (and thats before they try to eek out a few more miles) than the S60 so it means the 3 will be fine to visit all those same superchargers.

Generally superchargers are about 150 miles apart although it varies. In a Model S85 you're generally charging from about 10% to 70% each time give or take. In a 3 or S60 you'd need to charge up a bit more which adds some time but it all can be done.

Now for the practicality: Do you want to stop for 30 minutes every 2 hours? A 20 hour drive to FL for me turned into a 26 hour drive thanks to the charging stops. Sure I would have stopped for food/gas but not 6 hours worth. And sure the supercharging was free whereas gas isn't. So it depends on how you define practical.
I'm thinking that as a Tesla owner I will have to adopt a more lay-back attitude regarding charging times. Maybe instead of thinking of the layover as charging time we think of it as time to eat, explore, read, work, play games, nap, hobbies, exercise (my favorite for sureo_O).
So, I can turn the charging time into activity time. Each leg of the journey will seem like a new journey.