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Discussion Starter #1
Hello Folks.
I'm considering a Bolt when they become available here in Utah in the fall. My main motivation is that I need the tax credit but I also enjoy little zippy cars. I currently drive a very angry Fiat 500 Abarth and the Bolt seems like it could be almost as enjoyable.

I'm wondering what my increase in monthly electric costs will be charging a Bolt and driving it 1500 miles each month. Here are my charge rates from Rocky Mountain Power:
Block Rates
0-400 $.089 per kwh
401-999 $.0116 per kwh
1000 $.145 per kwh

Alternatively, there is an off peak program as well, I'm not sure if this will makes sense for my home.
1PM-8PM $.0435 per kwh
All other times $.0163 kwh

My electric bill is currently about $65 for 550 kwh (winter utilization). In the summer it gets as high as $165 for 1200 kwh. The additional energy usage of about 650 kwh is due to the central A/C which is used during peak times. I guess I could best utilize the A/C from 9AM to 12PM and get the house temps down but no matter what, the A/C is going to be on from 3PM to 8PM during peak hours. Off peak usage deserves another discussion.

With a good 220V charger installed, I'm planning on the generic advertised 60kwh to charge the Bolt for every 230 miles of use. That's a total 391kwh each month based on driving 1,500 miles.

What kinds of loses should I plan for or is it just as simple as figuring 60kwh per complete charge, or 391 kwh each month.
391kwh x $.0116 = $4.54 winter rate (second tier rate)
391kwh x $.145 = $56.67 summer rate (third tier)
or with the off peak of rate of
391kwh x $.0163 = $6.37

What are your thoughts folks?
 

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Are you sure about the $0.0116 rate for the middle tier? Seems like it should be $0.116 (11.6 cents a kWh). I looked up the off-peak program, it's a 4.35 cent surcharge on top of the regular rates for electricity used during the peak times, and a 1.63 cent discount on electricity used outside of the peak times. Might be worth doing if you can shift your electrical usage outside of the peak periods.

What you should do is calculate how much you spend on gas feeding the Fiat, and then compare that to the worst case scenario for your electricity bill. I'm fairly certain you'll find that driving the EV will be cheaper, despite your electric bill going up.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Correcto-mundo. I was wrong, here are the three tiers
$.089
$.116
$.145
Winter Rate: 391kwh x $.116 = $45.36
Summer Rate: 391 kwh x $.145 = $56.70

1,500 miles in the Abarth costs me $116.67 in premium fuel. But my wife usually drives our Ram 1500 as her daily driver for 26 miles each day or 546 miles per month, she gets a horrible 15 miles driving the La trocka. That's about $100 a month with mid-grade. If she starts commuting with the Abarth, then we will only spend $42.47 on gas, rather than the usual $216.67.

Inconclusion, Gas can be as cheap as $216.67 per month with our usual commutes. With the Bolt that will drop to $99 in fuel and summer electrical rates. No bad at all. This is with fairly cheap gas of $2.80/$2.60, if Trump blows up the world and gas jumps up then these differences improve.
 

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Correcto-mundo. I was wrong, here are the three tiers
$.089
$.116
$.145
Winter Rate: 391kwh x $.116 = $45.36
Summer Rate: 391 kwh x $.145 = $56.70

1,500 miles in the Abarth costs me $116.67 in premium fuel. But my wife usually drives our Ram 1500 as her daily driver for 26 miles each day or 546 miles per month, she gets a horrible 15 miles driving the La trocka. That's about $100 a month with mid-grade. If she starts commuting with the Abarth, then we will only spend $42.47 on gas, rather than the usual $216.67.

Inconclusion, Gas can be as cheap as $216.67 per month with our usual commutes. With the Bolt that will drop to $99 in fuel and summer electrical rates. No bad at all. This is with fairly cheap gas of $2.80/$2.60, if Trump blows up the world and gas jumps up then these differences improve.
You are calculating the electric cost based on battery size, but there are charging losses to consider. Probably a good ballpark would be 15%.

You also need to be aware that you have real winter in Utah and your efficiency will drop dramatically - I'd bump your winter electricity use by another 25%. If you live in somewhere like Park City and frequently deal with steep grades, your efficiency will be further reduced (you get some back thru regen on the downhill portion, but not 100% - hilly driving will reduce range/efficiency).

On the plus side, The altitude and arid climate are conducive to BETTER range/efficiency, particularly in non-winter months. Dry, thin, or hot air all create less drag and the range penalty for higher speed is reduced. You will likely see much higher freeway range numbers that the EPA test (217).

The range/efficiency of any EV varies greatly depending on driving habits (% of city/freeway traffic, terrain, weather). The Bolt is showing as much as a 50% winter penalty (performance snow tires, aggressive driving, 75 mph freeway speeds, subfreezing temps in a cold, wet environment)
http://www.chevybolt.org/forum/9-2017-chevy-bolt-ev-general-discussion-forum/6962-what-s-your-estimated-range-133-max-me.html

That is a pretty extreme case, and you are describing a much more typical commute, so the winter "penalty" should be greatly reduced. There is an active EV community in Norther Colorado and they will likely have insight into EV performance in a similar climate. http://driveelectricnoco.org/

Our Fit EV runs us ~$25 for 1000 miles and is rated at the same efficiency as the Bolt. Our rates are pretty much the same as your mid-tier year round ($.114). My inclination is that an average of <$50/mo for your electricity cost is reasonable.

Only time will tell on actual performance of the Bolt in different climates, but you will save money over using gas.
 

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Although the numbers are different in California, I went with the PGE EV-A plan where I can get off peak at $0.12/kWh from 11 PM to 7 AM during the week. Sufficient time overnight to charge my Bolt with a level 2 charger. I just didn't want to worry about getting into Tier 3 any month. Also, I can shift some household tasks like using the washer and dryer into off peak times. Recharging after a 100 mile trip cost $3.40. A lot less than gas in my old Jetta. But as they say, your results may vary.
 

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So long as you charge off peak hours, the electricity cost will be drastically less than what you'd be paying for a tank of gas every week. $56.67 summer rate per full charge is affordable depending on how often your charge compared to how often you get gas and how much you drive.
 
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