Chevy Bolt EV Forum banner

1 - 20 of 20 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
31 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I saw this yesterday, and it was a head scratcher. It's from a generally positive review in Automobile magazine. http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2017-chevrolet-bolt-premier-review-one-week/

In it they state:
The car was already juiced up to 158 miles of range, causing the fast-charging process to slow down. A half an hour at 43 amps and an $11.95 charge to my American Express pushed the Bolt up to 188 miles of range, with both the charger and the Bolt’s dashboard gauge indicating that the battery level was about 93 percent.
For me, the appeal of EVs is not primarily fuel savings, but lower emissions, HOV access, less maintenance, and a soot-less garage. Granted, I do not yet have a Bolt, but none of my 500e public 240 charges have amounted to more than $4, and that was during high usage rate hours and for an additional 50 miles of range.

I know a DCFC is going to pull more juice, but their cost of increasing the range thirty miles is the equivalent of an ICE getting about 7-8 mpg ($11.95 / $3-gallon = ~4 gallons of cheap stuff).

Anyone have any idea why this might be?

I checked the Ferndale Michigan temperatures for the last month, but it seems pretty mild, nothing that would be requiring extra juice to keep the battery in it's happy temperature zone. http://www.accuweather.com/en/us/ferndale-mi/48220/april-weather/333746

We're all pioneers and EV evangelists of sorts, and if I am missing something, I'd like to be aware of any caveats to the usual lower mileage costs.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
862 Posts
Average DCFC cost is ~$40K with installation. Cost is higher than L2 to help compensate. I still have never heard of any provider turning a profit, or even getting close.

Some vendors charge a connect fee ($5 for EVgo) in addition to either a per minute or per kWh fee (some places do not allow per kWh billing by anyone but utility companies). If they charged you $5 to put the nozzle in your gas tank + $3 per gallon, cost per gallon gets skewed. Topping off with a couple of gallons would be expensive.

Charging will almost always be cheaper at home. But then again, so is a cup of coffee ....

Using DCFC to top off any EV is inefficient. In the article, they started at ~75% SOC and charged to 95%. DCFC is best used when SOC is<50% and is generally stopped at ~80%. At some point (varies by EV) the charge rate tapers to that of 240V L2. At the very end (near 100% SOC), even L2 is no faster than L1.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
168 Posts
As DucRider said, the best time to use DCFC is when you have less than 50% SOC. I probably wouldn't want to wait until I have 10 miles of range remaining before starting a charge, but the lower you go, the more value you can get out of it - thus reducing the cost of the charge (or charge connection fee).

The moral of this story is, don't use DCFC when you don't need to. DCFC is a solution for convenience - not a 'charge to full' solution. I actually think that the way pricing is set up is a good way to deter people from hogging/blocking DCFC stations. I don't want to buy a 4-pack of batteries at the convenience store for $15 either, but I'm glad they sell them in a pinch!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,486 Posts
In a perfect world, charging rates won't slow down when your battery is closer to full so the charge rates are worth your money. But it is what it is and hopefully the rates will go down a bit with more charging stations out there to drive up competition, at least a plug in fee reduction.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
31 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Thanks. Unfortunately, this is kind of a game changer. While I have a house now with a 240 outlet, I may be living nomadically for a year, and I just can't be certain I will have a nice in-garage charging situation.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
95 Posts
Thanks. Unfortunately, this is kind of a game changer. While I have a house now with a 240 outlet, I may be living nomadically for a year, and I just can't be certain I will have a nice in-garage charging situation.


the charger doesn't have to be "indoors" ... however if you are not certain if you can charge at home at all in the future and EV-only car might not be the right choice for you. look into a volt maybe instead?


I would never fully rely on public charging, leave alone its a lot of extra time spent somewhere to charge ...


if you drive low amount of miles on a daily basis a 110V charge from any regular outlet might be enough for you - but then again if you drive 50 or less miles a day, just get a volt and don't worry about future changes, even in gas mode the volt gets 40 mpg...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
95 Posts
EVgo has plans that could fit your need however, that doesn't have a connection fee and lower per minute costs ... research what chargers are in your neighborhood
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,766 Posts
As already stated, DCFCs are more expensive if you use them to charge when the battery is pretty full.

Under 50% SoC, the Bolt charges at a high rate (~50 kW, if your charger supports it).

From 50-70%, the Bolt charges at around ~35 kW (again, if your charger supports it).

Around 70%, the car drops to 24-ish kW, and then starts tapering downwards from there after 80-ish%.

So it's really stupid to use a DCFC when your battery is 75% full, as the author of the article did. You should use a DCFC when you NEED that juice NOW (or this is your last chance to get some electrons) : hopefully when your battery is at (say) 20% (you'd still have about 50 miles range at that point with a Bolt). Otherwise, figure out where the Level-2 chargers are at, and do 'opportunity charging' when you can, or overnight (if possible). I have friends that "reverse car pool" - they drive to a parking garage with lots of public charge stations, plug in, and one of them drives the rest to work. At lunch-time, they come back to get their cars, and leave another car or two to charge for the next 4 hours.

If you don't think you'll have access to a 240V plug, AND you don't have ready access to a goodly number of public charging stations - a fully electric vehicle doesn't sound like a very good choice.

I see quite a few Bolts that park overnight at public chargers. I expect that they are people who live in apartments (or rental property w/out 240V access) and park there then walk 3-10 minutes to home.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,255 Posts
Free DCFC (CCS) stations as shown on PlugShare... free cross country trip, anyone?



27264
 
  • Like
Reactions: GetOffYourGas

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,255 Posts
I selected only CCS adapters so it only shows green (public) and brown (restricted).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
60 Posts
This is what I get when searching for free CCS/Combo. I note that there are a lot of Nissan and Harley dealers listed and their chargers are typically placed so you need permission to use them. I have heard Nissan dealer are hostile even to Leaf drivers.

27270
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,255 Posts
OK, I selected all the plugs then removed them, now my map shows orange.
 
  • Like
Reactions: hickman55

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,255 Posts
Wow, there is one in the Bahamas!

27271
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Thats correct! This opened up earlier this year. It's actually in a solar car park that produces just shy of 1 megawatt of power and is fed back into the electrical grid. It's currently the only DCFC, but the island itself is only 21 miles long, so the regular Level 2 chargers have been alright for now. However, we did just order a Chevy Bolt (with DCFC), so I'm excited to see what 238 miles of range looks like. We've been renting 1st gen Leafs for about a year now, but turns out visiting tourists (90% of our customers) do lots of driving while exploring, so they can sometimes burn through 60+ miles in a day. So we're going to give the Bolt a try. Should be here in a few weeks! ?


Wow, there is one in the Bahamas!

View attachment 27271
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,790 Posts
Lol, a DCFC on a 21 mile long island? I suppose it could be useful to an Uber driver or anyone else using their vehicle a substantial part of the day.

EVs make all kinds of sense on Islands or smaller isolated countries like South Korea.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Lol, a DCFC on a 21 mile long island? I suppose it could be useful to an Uber driver or anyone else using their vehicle a substantial part of the day.

EVs make all kinds of sense on Islands or smaller isolated countries like South Korea.
We don't even have Uber here, and there aren't that many EVs, but I think the government figured that if they were spending that much to build a solar car park, they might as well be forward thinking and put in a DCFC station. Even though the island is 21 miles long, its always pretty hot here and traffic is usually pretty heavy, so we spend a lot of time just sitting in traffic with the AC on full blast - that tends to eat up range like crazy. Persons who rent our EVs generally do lots of driving though..especially cruise ship visitors..they only have about 6 hours to see as much as they possibly can ???
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Do rental companies require EVs to be returned with a full charge, similar to how they require ICE vehicles to be filled?
We don't require it be full, but we do like when persons return with at least 20 miles of range. I can't speak for other EV rentals. When I rented a Model 3 in NJ a few months ago on Turo, I had to return full (there was a prepaid EV recharge option for $25, but I just went to the nearest Supercharger). All public charging stations are currently free in Nassau though, so it doesn't really matter to us.
 
1 - 20 of 20 Posts
Top