In three years of electric car ownership, I think we used a public charger maybe four times. Once for sure just to see how it worked, the other three were "just in case." The other 1090 days we charged at home, overnight, while sleeping. I bought a $500 Siemens L2 charger, hooked it up to the electrical box, and voila, done.
My parents owned a 500e for three years as well, and just replaced it with a Bolt. I believe in the roughly 40 total months of ownership they used a public charger twice - one to see how it worked, then again last weekend just because plugging in allowed them to park conveniently. My dad actually sent me this email:
> Monday 7/17.2017 we drove from home to XXXXX's place, went to lunch
> about 8 miles away (round trip) and then drove home. That was a
> total of 182 miles.
> In Walnut Creek we plugged the car into a free Level 2 charger for
> two hours while eating lunch which added 26 miles of range to the
> battery. (Charge was started when the remaining range was 164 miles;
> when we pulled the cable the remaining range was 190 miles so, it
> was not a 40 AMP charger... maybe half that.)
> The entire trip was made with the AC on (dashboard thermometer readout
> was never under 89° and got up to 102°). The "usual" speed on the
> speedometer was 65 MPH. Frequently we hit 70-72 MPH when keeping up
> with traffic.
> When we got home the range meter said the remaining range was 108
> If we'd not recharged the car in Walnut Creek we'd have arrived
> home with 72 miles on the meter (which means with hot weather, AC
> on and freeway driving the range is 254 miles).
> To replace the missing 44.5 kWh in the battery electricity will cost
> $3.15 (at $0.0716/kWh) or about a gallon of gas. According to the
> onboard display it will take 7hr 30min to fully recharge the battery.
"182 miles per gallon" is pretty great. Even with pretty onerous electricity rates it's still 90 miles per gallon. They save around $200-$250 per month in fuel vs. the four cylinder Ford Fusion (~25mpg) they would otherwise drive. Sometimes - albeit rarely - the Bolt can't get them where they are going - visit family in Oregon or Washington, for example. In those situations, the $250 they didn't spend on gas buys a couple weeks in a rental car or, as often as not, plane tickets. Since those long road trips certainly don't happen every month, it's *still* a net positive.
It's very easy to dismiss electric cars as "insufficient," but if you sit down and do the math, being realistic about use and not imagining the worst case scenario as the common scenario electric cars make a lot of sense for a lot of people. Our 500e was virtually free to own - yes, the range was limited, but even using it *purely* to commute every day it paid for itself, offsetting about $170/mo in gas. That's not bad. Nope, they won't work for everyone - maybe you don't have a place to rent an ICE nearby, maybe you don't have an electrical outlet where you park, or maybe you have a fear of flying and that's all fair. But most cars for most people never see more than 60-80 miles per day. An even larger group - almost all encompassing - never sees more than 150 miles per day. If you fit into that group - acknowledging that *occasionally* you drive further - you really should bust out Excel and crunch some numbers.
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Not me, vvk, Wed, 19 Jul 2017 04:04:29
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