My EV journey Continues Part 2 by Michael Nugent

Republished from Bass Coast Post* with permission.

What’s the best thing about owning an EV?

The answers were split between the “feel-good” factor on one hand: knowing you’ve organised your personal transport as best you can to minimise your contribution to the mounting climate crisis; and the “petrol head” answer on the other: it’s a simple fact that as far as acceleration goes, a standard EV beats a standard ICE hands down every time.

Also, not having to pay for petrol ever again rates pretty highly, particularly as petrol price rises make the economics of driving an EV more and more appealing, as did the option of single-pedal driving – Nissan call this the e-pedal, a “way of including a gentle but effective braking effect (regenerative braking) on the accelerator pedal.  You will very rarely need to use the brake pedal (which is why brakes pads last a very long time on EVs)”. 

But it’s not all beer and skittles, so I also asked what is the worst thing about owning an EV? The clear winner again was range anxiety (or range hesitancy or uncertainty). 

“It is important to calculate your day to day driving distance and make sure you buy a car that has twice that range”. The EV tells you the percentage charge you have left in your battery at any given time, and it also converts that into a guestimate of how many kilometres you have to go. But the actual distance you have left depends on a range of factors, as it does with an ICE, like whether you use the heater or the air conditioner, how many people in the car, tyre pressure, whether you are driving on the open road or stop-start, whether the terrain is hilly or flat, the battery’s temperature, etc.

So you are never quite sure exactly how much is left, thus the conventional wisdom of never running down to below about 10 or 15% of the battery’s capacity.  “Having driven the car for over 20,000kms, I’m still watching the Range figure constantly, even though I know I’ll have around 100kms of range left after driving to Melbourne or the Latrobe Valley and back to the Bass Coast”…

Fortunately, we have a several rapid charging options in Bass Coast and the council will soon be installing four more as part of their plan to reach carbon neutrality by 2030.  But another note of caution: if you will be reliant on a particular rapid charging station for a trip, it can pay to check beforehand that it is in working order (vandalism is a problem at some locations) and that the technology is compatible with your vehicle (it’s VHS versus Betamax all over again when it comes to the plugs – it’s not that hard to work out what you need but it does take a little doing at the start and you don’t want to be relying on a charger that doesn’t work with your particular vehicle).

*Full article here.