Any GTAM'ers own an electric vehicle? | Page 126 | GTAMotorcycle.com

Any GTAM'ers own an electric vehicle?

Mad Mike

Well-known member
I wasn't able to find the cost of the Tesla shingles, but 2 Powerwalls are about 20K installed. I'd be dead long before the payback. And really, if everyone in Ontario switched to these the price of electricity would rise exponentially to make up the revenue loss.
I don't get the Powerwall technology if you're on the grid, just pump your power into the grid when generating, then pump from the grid when you in need.
 

GreyGhost

Well-known member
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I don't get the Powerwall technology if you're on the grid, just pump your power into the grid when generating, then pump from the grid when you in need.
Agreed. It's at the early adopter stage now where financially it is a terrible choice but some people like to brag.
 

mxs

Well-known member
Site Supporter
Any time energy is converted there's an efficiency loss. Quantitatively, I have no idea what typical numbers would be in a system that converts solar energy to stored chemical energy then converts that into a different cell of stored chemical energy. A lot? A little? I'm just speculating.
Generally, you are correct of course, but in Tesla's case the losses are very minimal, considering they design it from the roof all the way down to the car battery. The efficiencies are very high on every component or point of conversion. It's a good system, but expensive.
 

mxs

Well-known member
Site Supporter
I don't get the Powerwall technology if you're on the grid, just pump your power into the grid when generating, then pump from the grid when you in need.
Why would you take power from the grid during peak, when you have juice in the Powerwall?
 

GreyGhost

Well-known member
Site Supporter
Why would you take power from the grid during peak, when you have juice in the Powerwall?
Because the price of the powerwall will never be recovered by peak shaving. You are way ahead to buy grid power and pocket the money you would have spent on the powerwall.
 

PrivatePilot

Ironus Butticus
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What are everyone's thoughts on buying new / used (1 or 2 year old), what kind of price point would you be looking for on a 2016/2017 Volt?
If you look at the prices for 1 or 2 year old used Volts, they're being priced pretty close to what a new one with the provincial incentive would cost out the door. One or two on this thread bought new and could chime in with their experience.
A big x2. I'm actually going through this right now with my sister. They've decided they'd like a Gen2 volt, but didn't plan to buy new, so my sister has been shopping. Here's 2 they were looking at.

A 2017 Premiere with a whopping 47,000KM for $29,000. Probably actually sold in 2016 despite being a 2017 model year, given the milage.
http://wwwa.autotrader.ca/a/chevrolet/volt electric/whitby/ontario/5_38123248_20160115160939361/?showcpo=ShowCpo&orup=47_11_56&pc=L1N 6R1&sprx=100

And a 2016 Premiere with almost 40,000KM on it for $29,000 as well.
http://wwwa.autotrader.ca/a/chevrolet/volt electric/woodstock/ontario/5_37873879_20121116150533671/?showcpo=ShowCpo&ursrc=hl&orup=5_13_13&pc=L1N 6R1&sprx=-1

Both of these prices are patently insane as you can buy a brand new 2018 for $44,000, and after the $14,000 rebate, that's $30,000.

Why in all holy hell would you spend $29K for a 1 or 2 year old car with 40-50K on it when you can buy a brand new one for only a few thousand dollars more?
 

PrivatePilot

Ironus Butticus
Site Supporter
Don't worry about the Tesla shingles ... it will take long time before they become available up here. Of course the payback is not great up here whether its panels or power walls, because we enjoy relatively cheap price per grid kWh and our insolation rating is generally not greatest, plus 4 seasons with snow, ice ... etc. etc. But imagine you live in sunny area with no winter and expensive grid rates ... all of a sudden your position/payback gets a different positive spin on things.
Agreed. Installing solar here with any intent to save money is a fools game - our electricity is cheap, no matter what the people of the province seem to think because it's no longer dirt cheap like it used to be.

Earlier in this thread I posted an electricity bill from somewhere in California (IIRC) where their per kwh rates were insane compared to ours.

People are kidding themselves thinking we are being gouged compared to many parts of the rest of NA, much the same as how a lot of Americans still think they are getting ripped off at the gas pumps but haven't looked beyond their own borders to realize that it's actually dirt cheap.
 

PrivatePilot

Ironus Butticus
Site Supporter
caboose56 said:
One thing I've often wondered is why don't we have hybrids like diesel locomotives? An ICE engine spins a generator at a constant (IE most efficient) rpm, and that in turn drives an electric motor for propulsion. Is it not possible or feasible to scale it down into something that would fit in a car? Or even a transport truck?
What you described there is effectively exactly what the Volt does.

Except in a few select circumstances, the engine is not connected in any fashion directly to the wheels - it's simply there to generate electricity and keep the traction battery at a 20-22% state of charge.

The car is actually still moving under the electric side of things - the Volt is always running on electric - it doesn't just mechanically switch over to the engine when it comes into play like a traditional car.

Sorry for the multiple replies and a ton of edits...apparently the forum was barfing on a word (which I couldn't figure out) and was throwing server errors. I had to spit it up to make it finally post..
 
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DJM

Well-known member
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Strangely enough, my neighbour across the road just had his roof covered in solar panels yesterday, as did a couple houses further down. Must be still lucrative?
 

Rick CH

Well-known member
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People are kidding themselves thinking we are being gouged compared to many parts of the rest of NA, much the same as how a lot of Americans still think they are getting ripped off at the gas pumps but haven't looked beyond their own borders to realize that it's actually dirt cheap.
Such a common human trait. When friends of mine (from here) were living in Singapore, they laughed at the constant griping of Singaporeans about their high taxes. The highest income tax rate? 22% on income above (approx) $300000 CDN.
 

PrivatePilot

Ironus Butticus
Site Supporter
Strangely enough, my neighbour across the road just had his roof covered in solar panels yesterday, as did a couple houses further down. Must be still lucrative?
Still lots of companies out there doing MicroFIT installations and selling the electricity back to the province at the inflated prices ($0.50/kwh last I saw) the program allows. Companies installing these systems blanket neighbourhoods with flyers promising all sorts of riches to the homeowner.

The actual homeowners usually get paid a pittance in the end compared to what the company that actually owns the panels is making, and since there's a 20 year contract it can complicate sale of the house down the road as the new owner either has to accept the contract, or the current owner is on the hook to pay to terminate it early, as well as fix all the holes in the roof, etc.

There's also a lot of questions about who has to pay to have them taken down if the roof needs to be reshingled, etc.

In the end, it's not something I'd subscribe to.
 

Brian P

Well-known member
Moderator
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One thing I've often wondered is why don't we have hybrids like diesel locomotives? An ICE engine spins a generator at a constant (read: most efficient) rpm, and that in turn drives an electric motor for propulsion. Is it not possible or feasible to scale it down into something that would fit in a car? Or even a transport truck?
Well, locomotives aren't really "hybrids". The electric part of the powertrain is more akin to an electric CVT. They are not capable of storing electricity. When they are in "dynamic braking" they throw away the electricity through a bank of resistors to shed heat.

But, I get your point, and it's called a "series hybrid" and it's what the BMW i3 does. The problem is that running an engine at a fixed load point has its own set of issues. That load will almost never match demand. In order for the engine to be able to keep up, that fixed operating point has to make enough power to sustain (let's say) 130 km/h against some reasonable head-wind. (This isn't the case with the i3, by the way - its "range extender" won't sustain highway speed in those conditions.) If you are puttering around slowly, the engine would end up having a 1% - 5% duty cycle running full-tilt and then you run into battery charge/discharge losses.

Engines nowadays have a reasonably large "island" of efficiency within a few percent of the actual single point having max thermal efficiency. If you are going to have a combustion engine running, it ends up working out better for that engine to "somewhat" match instantaneous load except under conditions when it can't. Maximum acceleration in a Volt draws more power than the engine can put out - but in normal circumstances this condition is not sustained for more than a few seconds, so they draw down the battery pack. Traffic-jam conditions draw LESS power than the engine can produce efficiently, so they shut it down unless the "extra" power would serve a purpose by charging the battery. If instantaneous power demand is within the "island" of high efficiency, but not quite at the peak, it's better to let the engine power output vary (roughly matching demand) to save the charge/discharge losses.

For similar reasons, the Volt is capable of mechanically coupling the engine in certain conditions (highway driving) - because a set of gears is more efficient than an alternator, rectifier, inverter, motor, and the same set of gears. Under load conditions where they need to run the engine and it is possible to mechanically couple it ... they do.

GM did their homework on the Volt powertrain.

By the way, the BMW i3 (which is a true series hybrid) doesn't have fantastic fuel consumption when operating in engine-running (charge-depleted) mode. Too many energy-conversion losses doing it that way.

I am surprised they put such a large ICE in the Volt. Again, this is probably because it is designed as a transition vehicle to easy people into plug in vehicles. Something like a much better version of the i3 powertrain makes a lot of sense. Around a 30 hp constant speed engine to charge the battery. This is more than enough to maintain highway speed in north america. Rapid acceleration draws from the battery, cruising allows some power back into the battery.
The Volt's engine was chosen because it is a version of an engine that GM already had in their worldwide inventory of available engines ... the expected production volume didn't warrant building a special one just for that car.

Don't forget that it has special Volt-only camshafts so that it operates on the Atkinson cycle (the effective expansion ratio is bigger than the effective compression ratio) and the compression ratio is higher than on the other versions of that engine (to make better use of the Atkinson cycle).

It also isn't running anywhere near maximum rated power output most of the time. It runs as near as it can to the best-efficiency "island" on the BSFC map. On an engine that size (1.4 litres normally aspirated) that near-best-efficiency "island" probably surrounds 2000-ish rpm and three-quarters of rated torque ... an engine that size probably makes around 25 - 30 horsepower ... about what it takes to go highway speed in a vehicle that size. It CAN make a lot more power if it has to, but not as efficiently.

The BMW range-extender (650cc) would have to be running closer to flat-out in order to do that ... not as efficient. And then ... that all it's got. I'm givin'er all she's got, Cap'n. If I ask for any more she's gonna blow!
 

shanekingsley

Curry - so nice it burns you twice
Site Supporter
If you look at the prices for 1 or 2 year old used Volts, they're being priced pretty close to what a new one with the provincial incentive would cost out the door. One or two on this thread bought new and could chime in with their experience.
Absolutely. Brand new I paid $31.5k out the door. That included $14k rebate and $1500 off from the dealer for getting the GM Visa which I will never use. To think anyone would pay $29k for a used on with about 40,000km on it makes no sense, because you are still paying tax on it, which will make it more expensive than a brand new one. I guess some people are paying that? If so, insert facepalm here. At first I looked at used Volts and I quickly realized as others have said, it's either get a used Gen 1 or get a new Gen2.

FWIW - The rebate on the Volt is no longer $14k, it's down to $13k as of March 9, 2018.

I drive with confidence, so I don't need no stinking package. Seriously though, for such a low priced car, it offers a lot by way of driver aids and in-dash displayed info. The only thing I wanted which it did not come with on LT model is the blind spot mirrors. I do find that this car has big blind spots, so I just bought some curved mirrors and stuck them on - just like the old times. If you can afford it - just buy new.

If you didn't know, the Gen2 Volt freely supports Apple Car Play, or simple open-source projection if on another smart phone that allows you to connect your phone to the car and listen to music stored on your phone, use Google Maps instead of crappy in-car nav, take phone calls, listen to text messages and so on.
 

GagguP

Well-known member
A big x2. I'm actually going through this right now with my sister. They've decided they'd like a Gen2 volt, but didn't plan to buy new, so my sister has been shopping. Here's 2 they were looking at.

A 2017 Premiere with a whopping 47,000KM for $29,000. Probably actually sold in 2016 despite being a 2017 model year, given the milage.
http://wwwa.autotrader.ca/a/chevrolet/volt electric/whitby/ontario/5_38123248_20160115160939361/?showcpo=ShowCpo&orup=47_11_56&pc=L1N 6R1&sprx=100

And a 2016 Premiere with almost 40,000KM on it for $29,000 as well.
http://wwwa.autotrader.ca/a/chevrolet/volt electric/woodstock/ontario/5_37873879_20121116150533671/?showcpo=ShowCpo&ursrc=hl&orup=5_13_13&pc=L1N 6R1&sprx=-1

Both of these prices are patently insane as you can buy a brand new 2018 for $44,000, and after the $14,000 rebate, that's $30,000.

Why in all holy hell would you spend $29K for a 1 or 2 year old car with 40-50K on it when you can buy a brand new one for only a few thousand dollars more?
I'm assuming the price of $44,000 that you used is for an LT model?

The cheapest Premier I see on AutoTrader right now brand new is $46,000.
Approximately $52,000 after tax minus $13,000 for the rebate would be $39,000 out the door....?
 

caboose56

Well-known member
Site Supporter
There are quite a few '16 and '17 LTs for the same price as new on Kijiji at the moment. WTF?

Hadn't really been looking closely at the Gen 2 pricing until you guys mentioned it.
 

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