How green is a green vehicle?

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hwybear
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How green is a green vehicle?

Unread post by hwybear on

I just got this email, not sure of original source.... interesting for sure
****************
The Operating Cost Of A Chevy Volt .
Eric Bolling (Fox Business Channel's Follow the Money) test drove the Chevy Volt at the invitation of General Motors.
For four days in a row, the fully charged battery lasted 25 miles before the Volt switched to the reserve gasoline engine.

Eric calculated the car got 30 mpg including the 25 miles it ran on the battery. So, the range including the 9 gallon gas tank and the 16 kwh battery is approximately 270 miles. It will take you 4 1/2 hours to drive 270 miles at 60 mph. Then add 10 hours to charge the battery and you have a total trip time of 14.5 hours. In a typical road trip your average speed (including charging time) would be 20 mph.

According to General Motors, the Volt battery hold 16 kwh of electricity. It takes a full 10 hours to charge a drained battery.

The cost for the electricity to charge the Volt is never mentioned so I looked up what I pay for electricity.
I pay approximately (it varies with amount used and time of day) $1.16 per kwh.
16 kwh x $1.16 per kwh = $18.56 to charge the battery.
$18.56 per charge divided by 25 miles = $0.74 per mile to operate the Volt using the battery.

Compare this to a similar size car with a gasoline engine only that gets 32 mpg.
$3.19 per gallon divided by 32 mpg = $0.10 per mile.

The gasoline powered car cost about $25,000 while the Volt costs $46,000.

So they want us to pay 2 times as much for a car that costs more that 7 times as much to run and takes 3 times as long to drive across country.

REALLY???
Above is merely a suggestion/thought and in no way constitutes legal advice or views of my employer. www.OHTA.ca


coriolis
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Unread post by coriolis on

Hi there, I drive a 2011 Chevy Volt. Been driving it since April 2011. Note that this is a company fleet vehicle (you may have seen me around the GTA, hard to miss hah), so it is provided, as is gas and electric costs, so my comments are purely from my own point of view.

I'll answer any questions to the best of my ability if you'd like to ask more in regards to the Volt in general. I'm not a professional nor do I work in the automotive industry, I work in real estate.


Anyways, here are my comments, in bold.

The Operating Cost Of A Chevy Volt .
Eric Bolling (Fox Business Channel's Follow the Money) test drove the Chevy Volt at the invitation of General Motors.
For four days in a row, the fully charged battery lasted 25 miles before the Volt switched to the reserve gasoline engine.

My Volt's battery lasts from 50km to 75km, I've hit 80 km before, but that was with a lot of coasting in stop & go traffic, which the Volt excels at. Highway is the bane of the Volt, no regenerative braking, no coasting, just pure battery consumption.

Eric calculated the car got 30 mpg including the 25 miles it ran on the battery. So, the range including the 9 gallon gas tank and the 16 kwh battery is approximately 270 miles. It will take you 4 1/2 hours to drive 270 miles at 60 mph. Then add 10 hours to charge the battery and you have a total trip time of 14.5 hours. In a typical road trip your average speed (including charging time) would be 20 mph.

I'm not sure how to comment on this. The Volt was not designed as a long distance driver, if you want a good mileage long distance driver, look at TDI's.

According to General Motors, the Volt battery hold 16 kwh of electricity. It takes a full 10 hours to charge a drained battery.

On a standard 120v outlet, it takes 8-10 hours, newer houses/buildings have 240v outlets, which decrease the time to 3-4 hours. I live in an older house, so it takes a long time to charge the Volt. I've looked into upgrading to a 240v but didn't feel the investment would be ideal. My household and I don't use power tools and whatever you would normally require 240v outlets.

The cost for the electricity to charge the Volt is never mentioned so I looked up what I pay for electricity.
I pay approximately (it varies with amount used and time of day) $1.16 per kwh.
16 kwh x $1.16 per kwh = $18.56 to charge the battery.
$18.56 per charge divided by 25 miles = $0.74 per mile to operate the Volt using the battery.

Um, this guy has it wrong, he's reading the kWh in dollars. A full charge takes 15-16 kWh, Hydro Ontario charges 11.7 cents per hWh during peak, 6.5 cents during offpeak. Let's use on-peak as an example, a full charge will cost 16 x 11.7 c = $1.87

Here's another example, a hair dryer is typically 1500w. If you use the hair dryer for 30 minutes, it will consume 750w. Since we're looking at kWh, we divide 750w by 1000 to get 0.75 kWh used. Most people use the dryer in the evening, so thats 6.5 cents per kWh, it will cost (0.75 x 0.065 = 0.04875, approximately 5 cents to use for 30 minutes).

Assuming it costs $1.87 to charge the battery, divide that by 50 km (worse case scenario), thats 3.75 cents per km.

Source: http://www.torontohydro.com/sites/elect ... Rates.aspx


Compare this to a similar size car with a gasoline engine only that gets 32 mpg.
$3.19 per gallon divided by 32 mpg = $0.10 per mile.

The gasoline powered car cost about $25,000 while the Volt costs $46,000.

So they want us to pay 2 times as much for a car that costs more that 7 times as much to run and takes 3 times as long to drive across country.
Here's my fuelly, regrettably, I only started late last year. http://www.fuelly.com/driver/coriolis/volt


At the moment, I commute from Markham to Mississauga daily, about 100~140 km per day. Of that mileage, it is usually 60%-70% on battery, with the rest on engine/battery combo. For those who may not know how the Volt actually works, let me explain, it's complicated due to all the name throwing that everyones been doing, is it an EV? is it a hybrid? The Volt is an extended range electric vehicle. What this means is that the Volt uses the battery to move 100% of the time, until the battery runs out. Instead of being stuck without any power like other EV's (The Leaf is an example), it has a 1.3L ICE (Internal Combustion Engine) that turns on to charge the battery just enough so that the battery will always have a reserve % of battery power to run the car. The engine only turns on to do that. If the battery rarely runs out, the engine will rarely turn on.

The best example I can give you in regards to how the battery/engine works is this.

In the summer of 2011, I commuted from Markham to Downtown Toronto everyday. This is typically a 60-70 km round trip commute, which falls right into the battery range. I take streets only, and since Toronto is on a downward slope, I get to coast a lot, my commute in the morning uses approximately 30% of the battery, with the computer saying I had at least 50 km of range left. The trip home uses 50-70% (aka the rest) of the battery, since it is a lot of uphill and not much coasting. During this period (June 2011 to September 2011), I filled up the Volt a total of one time. I was getting about 0.2 L/100km.

This summer of 2012, I commuted from Markham to Mississauga, a 120-140 km round trip, with 80% highway. The trip to Mississauga uses about 60%-70% of the battery, with the computer telling me I had at least 25 km of range left. The trip home uses the rest of it and the ICE turns on to power the battery while on the highway. During this period (May 2012 to present), I've needed to fill the 35L (I think?) tank every 2-3 weeks. I am currently getting about 2.4 L/100km.


The Volt's a decent entry to the whole green car movement, it has its flaws (and plenty of it), but it is a decent option for some consumers - its not for everyone.


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hwybear
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Unread post by hwybear on

coriolis, thanks for the insight, obviously the originator is from USA with the mpg stuff, so costs are different somewhat

I am not even close to the GTA, so haven't seen the Volt yet, or "green plates" for that matter!

cheers
HB
Above is merely a suggestion/thought and in no way constitutes legal advice or views of my employer. www.OHTA.ca


viper1
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Unread post by viper1 on

I think the key is "no energy use" when in stop and go traffic.
Every engine has a sweet spot with maximum power and least effort.
New cars have 8-10 speed transmissions that help a lot.
I had a 3800 buick that would be 25 % better millage at 135 kph ,then at 100 kph.
Then again 20 years ago I had a 400 Suzuki that would get 85 miles per gallon.

Cheers
Viper1




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