When I sleep at night I am rewarded with visions of electric vehicles. The cars we have received from automobile manufacturers are not much further developed than the car you see below.
Charging an electric car in 1905 pic.twitter.com/16OYG5WAYH
— Old Pics Archive (@oldpicsarchive) October 18, 2014
Electric vehicles are awesome. You may not realise how awesome but they are beset with some issues which are resisting general acceptance.
Range Anxiety and Charge Time
Consumer-grade electric cars tend to be limited to around 100 miles. Only the electric super-cars (like Tesla) have the range that we expect from cars. My diesel has a range of around 300 miles on a full tank that takes about three minutes to replenish. The Tesla still takes about an hour to charge (at a SuperCharger) and while the cars with 100 mile ranges can get an 80% charge in 20 minutes on a turbo charger.
A supercar like a Ferrari F40 has a range of 750 miles.
Cost to Buy, Cost to Run
Electric cars are expensive. My diesel, with all of the mod cons and dead-cow interiors cost me 50% less than a Nissan Leaf which has a range of 120 miles on a full charge. But it’s hard to deny that electric cars are cost-effective to run. With operating costs of 2 pence per mile, the Leaf is excellent. My car has a 300 mile range on a £60 tank of fuel – which works out at 20 pence per mile.
The operating costs of internal combustion engines, including wear and tear, tend to be higher too.
An Assault on Battery
Batteries are awkward. They’re heavy, they’re expensive.
The lithium-ion battery pack in a Tesla Roadster weighs about 1,000 pounds (453.6 kg). That’s a lot of weight to carry and it can greatly reduce the car’s range. However, the designers of the Roadster have offset this battery weight with a light frame and body panels. The entire car only weighs 2,690 pounds (1220.2 kg)
One of the advantages of a heavy battery is that if you put it at the bottom of the car, it really lowers the centre of gravity.
A New Way Of Thinking
Any one want to help me re-think personal electric transportation?