My Experience with a PHEV

Obliviax

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I just bought a Jeep Wrangler 4xe. I picked it up and then immediately took my daughter to college in it. this included two 3 hour drives.

I like the Jeep a lot. Much more than I would have expected. The way this works is that you get ~ 25 miles on the electric motor and then use gas. It has a computer that decides when to use either motor depending upon acceleration and start/stop driving. Since it uses the electricity until it is down to zero, you actually get better mileage in city driving than the highway (where the battery goes to zero pretty quickly and you are full gas). It has a way to do hybrid, gas or electric. Several reviews wondered why you'd do gas only and now I know. When you are doing 70 mpg, it just drains the battery and you get little benefit. You are better off using gas only and conserving the electricity for when you arrive at your destination and are doing start/stop again.

My biggest beef so far is using the charging stations. At home, it takes about 14 hours to go from zero to full using a 110 outlet (J1772 adapter, level one) and 2.4 hours with 220 or level 2. Level 1 is fine because it charges up overnight fully. I probably won't install 220 in my garage or get the $500 level two charger. My beef is with the chargers in public places. The way it works is that you park, plug it in, and using an app, pay to use the charger (just a couple of dollars). The problem is I paid for three different places and none of them worked. It may have been me. Maybe I didn't do something on the Jeep correctly. But I highly suspect these outlets get beat up and aren't maintained. Of course, you don't know until you've paid the money. Two just didn't work and the other's J1772 connector didn't snap into place (meaning, something was broken).

Anybody else have an experience to share or an idea of what went wrong for me?
 
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jjw165

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Maybe this 4xe charging video will help. I don’t know if you were trying one of those Tesla charging stations, but there is a way to use them with your Jeep. The level 2 charging stations can come in handy if you make multiple short trips and want to use the battery more instead of gas for those trips. This guy recommends a Clipper Creek level 2 charger over the Jeep brand to save some money.
 
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Wandering Spectator

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My daughter has a Kia Niro PHEV. Works GREAT for her daily 22-mile commute to work. She plugs in when she gets there and charges for free for the ride home. Plugs in overnight (110) for the next day. Lather, rinse repeat.

She has experienced some outlets that don’t work elsewhere around town. But they usually only bill her for what charge was used so no issue with over billing.

We did have a problem at the beach when we tried to find a charging station. Non-EVs were parked in the EV charging spots.

Highway driving is definitely not great. I believe it has a small tank so you’re limited in range as well.

Overall she’s loving the vehicle and the lack of gas consumption
 
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Obliviax

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Maybe this 4xe charging video will help. I don’t know if you were trying one of those Tesla charging stations, but there is a way to use them with your Jeep. The level 2 charging stations can come in handy if you make multiple short trips and want to use the battery more instead of gas for those trips. This guy recommends a Clipper Creek level 2 charger over the Jeep brand to save some money.
Thanks. I referred to this video as the guy wonders why one would ever go to gas only option. I was hoping to get more guidance on how to charge. Perhaps there isn't anything other than "plug it in and go". I may be doing something wrong but can't see what. My guess is that it is either the terminal was bad or other was some kind of disconnect between the mobile app and the charging station.
 

crm114psu

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Thanks. I referred to this video as the guy wonders why one would ever go to gas only option. I was hoping to get more guidance on how to charge. Perhaps there isn't anything other than "plug it in and go". I may be doing something wrong but can't see what. My guess is that it is either the terminal was bad or other was some kind of disconnect between the mobile app and the charging station.
I'm not up on the technology, but do these vehicles automatically charge while running on gas, or can charging take place only by being plugged in?
 

jjw165

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Thanks. I referred to this video as the guy wonders why one would ever go to gas only option. I was hoping to get more guidance on how to charge. Perhaps there isn't anything other than "plug it in and go". I may be doing something wrong but can't see what. My guess is that it is either the terminal was bad or other was some kind of disconnect between the mobile app and the charging station.
Here’s a short 4 minute vid where this owner couldn’t charge on a public Tesla charger. The comments were insightful. Apparently, the Tesla chargers can be configured to only charge Certain vehicles or during certain schedules. This could be what you are experiencing.
 

Obliviax

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I'm not up on the technology, but do these vehicles automatically charge while running on gas, or can charging take place only by being plugged in?
No. Charging while on gas simply adds resistance to the gas motor so isn't a good use and is inefficient. However, there is a tool that uses the car's momentum that can charge the battery. So you accelerate and then decide to slow down. The car will use the momentum to engage a charger to add a bit of energy back into the battery. Since the engagement adds resistance, this can be used for "one petal driving" which takes some getting used to. Basically, you drive with one pedal unless you have to brake quickly. It is of very little help but does help a bit
 

Obliviax

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Here’s a short 4 minute vid where this owner couldn’t charge on a public Tesla charger. The comments were insightful. Apparently, the Tesla chargers can be configured to only charge Certain vehicles or during certain schedules. This could be what you are experiencing.
yep...heard the adapter from the J1772 Jeep one to Tesla doesn't work.
 

bdgan

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I just bought a Jeep Wrangler 4xe. I picked it up and then immediately took my daughter to college in it. this included two 3 hour drives.

I like the Jeep a lot. Much more than I would have expected. The way this works is that you get ~ 25 miles on the electric motor and then use gas. It has a computer that decides when to use either motor depending upon acceleration and start/stop driving. Since it uses the electricity until it is down to zero, you actually get better mileage in city driving than the highway (where the battery goes to zero pretty quickly and you are full gas). It has a way to do hybrid, gas or electric. Several reviews wondered why you'd do gas only and now I know. When you are doing 70 mpg, it just drains the battery and you get little benefit. You are better off using gas only and conserving the electricity for when you arrive at your destination and are doing start/stop again.

My biggest beef so far is using the charging stations. At home, it takes about 14 hours to go from zero to full using a 110 outlet (J1772 adapter, level one) and 2.4 hours with 220 or level 2. Level 1 is fine because it charges up overnight fully. I probably won't install 220 in my garage or get the $500 level two charger. My beef is with the chargers in public places. The way it works is that you park, plug it in, and using an app, pay to use the charger (just a couple of dollars). The problem is I paid for three different places and none of them worked. It may have been me. Maybe I didn't do something on the Jeep correctly. But I highly suspect these outlets get beat up and aren't maintained. Of course, you don't know until you've paid the money. Two just didn't work and the other's J1772 connector didn't snap into place (meaning, something was broken).

Anybody else have an experience to share or an idea of what went wrong for me?
I considered a BMW plug in hybrid two years ago. My problem was that they couldn't tell me the expected gas mileage once the 25-40 mile electric range was exhausted.

I had a Lincoln MKZ hybrid rated something like 42 mpg highway, 36 mpg city. I was disappointed that I only got 25 mpg or so when I made short 2-3 mile trips but a 7 mile run to the grocery store got in the low 40s. I was very surprised that I got over 40 mpg on the highway. In fact I got over 44 mpg until my speed got up to 75 mph, then it dropped to 38 mpg.

Two minor negatives. Gas mileage dropped by 10% in the winter. It also dropped after 6 years as the battery lost some charge. My daughter is still driving that car. After a dozen years she still gets 38 MPG except on very short trips.
 

crm114psu

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No. Charging while on gas simply adds resistance to the gas motor so isn't a good use and is inefficient. However, there is a tool that uses the car's momentum that can charge the battery. So you accelerate and then decide to slow down. The car will use the momentum to engage a charger to add a bit of energy back into the battery. Since the engagement adds resistance, this can be used for "one petal driving" which takes some getting used to. Basically, you drive with one pedal unless you have to brake quickly. It is of very little help but does help a bit
That "one pedal driving" is basically a regenerative braking implementation, which I was assuming was a standard feature on most electrics.

I can't see why charging while operating on gas would add any more resistance to the motor than an ordinary alternator would, as that is already charging a battery. I'm not talking a deep-cycle type of charge, just enough to keep the battery topped off.

Thanks for the quick answer though - I'm going to need to do some research on the various approaches.
 

Obliviax

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That "one pedal driving" is basically a regenerative braking implementation, which I was assuming was a standard feature on most electrics.

I can't see why charging while operating on gas would add any more resistance to the motor than an ordinary alternator would, as that is already charging a battery. I'm not talking a deep-cycle type of charge, just enough to keep the battery topped off.

Thanks for the quick answer though - I'm going to need to do some research on the various approaches.
an issue for smarter people than me but when you engage the regenerative system, there is a pronounced drag on the momentum of the car (and therefore, the engine if you were to try and recharge while using gas).
 

Obliviax

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I considered a BMW plug in hybrid two years ago. My problem was that they couldn't tell me the expected gas mileage once the 25-40 mile electric range was exhausted.

I had a Lincoln MKZ hybrid rated something like 42 mpg highway, 36 mpg city. I was disappointed that I only got 25 mpg or so when I made short 2-3 mile trips but a 7 mile run to the grocery store got in the low 40s. I was very surprised that I got over 40 mpg on the highway. In fact I got over 44 mpg until my speed got up to 75 mph, then it dropped to 38 mpg.

Two minor negatives. Gas mileage dropped by 10% in the winter. It also dropped after 6 years as the battery lost some charge. My daughter is still driving that car. After a dozen years she still gets 38 MPG except on very short trips.
all depends on the type of driving you do. Interestingly, I know people that are getting 40+ MPG because they only do short city driving which is all electric after the evening charge. Others are getting in the 20s because they have a longer highway commute and use all gas. So, converse to ICE, they get better city then highway miles. the point is that city driving is actually higher MPG than the highway.
 
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Obliviax

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Here’s a short 4 minute vid where this owner couldn’t charge on a public Tesla charger. The comments were insightful. Apparently, the Tesla chargers can be configured to only charge Certain vehicles or during certain schedules. This could be what you are experiencing.
Thanks but no. I was on a standard J1772 charger that is public, not a Tesla charger. It was advertised as working for my Jeep 4xe
bb87e0e8fe771e1bdf6a97c6c213cb8b371d2686.jpeg
 
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PSUSignore

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Is there any risk to the fuel system and engine if you only do short city trips for long stretches of time and minimally use the fuel? Can the gas go bad or will some parts corrode from having idle fuel sitting there for a long time?
 
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Obliviax

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Is there any risk to the fuel system an engine if you only do short city trips for long stretches of time and minimally use the fuel? Can the gas go bad or will some parts corrode from having idle fuel sitting there for a long time?
its a good point. I don't think "gas" is at much risk. Gas is usually good for several months. But there have been issues with some kind of control Jeep has put into place to circulate other fluids (oil, cooling). The idea is that the engine needs to periodically circulate the fluids so they don't gum up. But you have to get the engine up to a certain temperature to do this. So the jeep engines will kick in gas periodically but won't release it until the engine gets to a certain temperature. This has led to some complaints where the car will run all winter on gas and never kick in the electric. Contributing factors are the climate (most complaints have been from Canada), garaged or left outside, driver never drives other than very short commutes.

Interestingly, everyone has to choose what works for them:
  • ICE (internal Combustion Engine) - lots of long drives where you don't want to have to stop to recharge, risk-averse, etc.
  • EV - limited range, less long trips, OK to charge every night, warmer climates the better
  • PHEV - short commutes and long drives but have additional complexities and double the drive train risks. Best of both worlds and worst of both worlds.
 

Wandering Spectator

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Interestingly, everyone has to choose what works for them:
  • ICE (internal Combustion Engine) - lots of long drives where you don't want to have to stop to recharge, risk-averse, etc.
  • EV - limited range, less long trips, OK to charge every night, warmer climates the better
  • PHEV - short commutes and long drives but have additional complexities and double the drive train risks. Best of both worlds and worst of both worlds.
Best outline I’ve seen to date. There’s no one right answer (unlike what some might say). My thinking at the moment is one of each. 😂
 
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Obliviax

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Best outline I’ve seen to date. There’s no one right answer (unlike what some might say). My thinking at the moment is one of each. 😂
Agree but things will change. I see many cars today boasting a fast charge of 20 minutes (to 80% of power) on a supercharger. I suspect that time will continue to drop. I also say the Korean makers suggest that they are coming out with a charming pad, like charging your phone without plugging it in, for their cars in the near future.

I will say that I really like the 4xe so far. i got them to throw in the 100,000mile warrantee at next to nothing so am more comfortable with two drive systems (double to go wrong). I also think the battery adds weight which gives the car more substance and feel but without sacrificing MPG. We'll see.
 

crm114psu

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Agree but things will change. I see many cars today boasting a fast charge of 20 minutes (to 80% of power) on a supercharger. I suspect that time will continue to drop. I also say the Korean makers suggest that they are coming out with a charming pad, like charging your phone without plugging it in, for their cars in the near future.

I will say that I really like the 4xe so far. i got them to throw in the 100,000mile warrantee at next to nothing so am more comfortable with two drive systems (double to go wrong). I also think the battery adds weight which gives the car more substance and feel but without sacrificing MPG. We'll see.
Is there any difference in the performance of accessories while running electric vs gas?
 

Obliviax

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Is there any difference in the performance of accessories while running electric vs gas?
yes....there are stats but the EV is quicker. I saw 5.5 seconds whereas the normal Wrangler with a 4 cylinder is 6.7 or worse.
 

crm114psu

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yes....there are stats but the EV is quicker. I saw 5.5 seconds whereas the normal Wrangler with a 4 cylinder is 6.7 or worse.
I was asking about accessory performance, not acceleration. Wipers, lights, heat & ac. - do you notice any difference in the performance of those when running gas vs running electric?
 

Obliviax

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I was asking about accessory performance, not acceleration. Wipers, lights, heat & ac. - do you notice any difference in the performance of those when running gas vs running electric?
No, not at all. the reviews say that heat/AC, specifically, is faster. But I haven't seen anything in terms of wipers or lights. The car kind of moves, almost imperceptively, between EV and ICE. So my guess is that if there is degradation from the battery, the ICE kicks in.
 

The Spin Meister

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An altered state
I just bought a Jeep Wrangler 4xe. I picked it up and then immediately took my daughter to college in it. this included two 3 hour drives.

I like the Jeep a lot. Much more than I would have expected. The way this works is that you get ~ 25 miles on the electric motor and then use gas. It has a computer that decides when to use either motor depending upon acceleration and start/stop driving. Since it uses the electricity until it is down to zero, you actually get better mileage in city driving than the highway (where the battery goes to zero pretty quickly and you are full gas). It has a way to do hybrid, gas or electric. Several reviews wondered why you'd do gas only and now I know. When you are doing 70 mpg, it just drains the battery and you get little benefit. You are better off using gas only and conserving the electricity for when you arrive at your destination and are doing start/stop again.

My biggest beef so far is using the charging stations. At home, it takes about 14 hours to go from zero to full using a 110 outlet (J1772 adapter, level one) and 2.4 hours with 220 or level 2. Level 1 is fine because it charges up overnight fully. I probably won't install 220 in my garage or get the $500 level two charger. My beef is with the chargers in public places. The way it works is that you park, plug it in, and using an app, pay to use the charger (just a couple of dollars). The problem is I paid for three different places and none of them worked. It may have been me. Maybe I didn't do something on the Jeep correctly. But I highly suspect these outlets get beat up and aren't maintained. Of course, you don't know until you've paid the money. Two just didn't work and the other's J1772 connector didn't snap into place (meaning, something was broken).

Anybody else have an experience to share or an idea of what went wrong for me?
What went wrong??? Simple....your not a twelve yr old kid. Find one of them and your problem is solved!
 
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sdwcpa

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I have a 2 month old Volvo VC 60 Recharge Extended range. I get 35/43 miles to a charge which covers 90/95% of my driving . I have just under 1000 miles on it and I have not yet gone through my second gallon of gas. For me it is the best of both worlds. The car has a 19 gallon gas tank with 550 miles of range giving me almost 600 miles of total range.. Living in S Florida that gives me comfort if I have to evacuate in a Hurricane situation as opposed to having to deal with range anxiety of a pure EV
 

Marylovesthelions

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I just bought a Jeep Wrangler 4xe. I picked it up and then immediately took my daughter to college in it. this included two 3 hour drives.

I like the Jeep a lot. Much more than I would have expected. The way this works is that you get ~ 25 miles on the electric motor and then use gas. It has a computer that decides when to use either motor depending upon acceleration and start/stop driving. Since it uses the electricity until it is down to zero, you actually get better mileage in city driving than the highway (where the battery goes to zero pretty quickly and you are full gas). It has a way to do hybrid, gas or electric. Several reviews wondered why you'd do gas only and now I know. When you are doing 70 mpg, it just drains the battery and you get little benefit. You are better off using gas only and conserving the electricity for when you arrive at your destination and are doing start/stop again.

My biggest beef so far is using the charging stations. At home, it takes about 14 hours to go from zero to full using a 110 outlet (J1772 adapter, level one) and 2.4 hours with 220 or level 2. Level 1 is fine because it charges up overnight fully. I probably won't install 220 in my garage or get the $500 level two charger. My beef is with the chargers in public places. The way it works is that you park, plug it in, and using an app, pay to use the charger (just a couple of dollars). The problem is I paid for three different places and none of them worked. It may have been me. Maybe I didn't do something on the Jeep correctly. But I highly suspect these outlets get beat up and aren't maintained. Of course, you don't know until you've paid the money. Two just didn't work and the other's J1772 connector didn't snap into place (meaning, something was broken).

Anybody else have an experience to share or an idea of what went wrong for me?
Where can you get honest facts?
I've read that the lifespan of a battery is about a 100000 miles. I have also seen receipts for batteries from 20 to $27000. Where can I get the truth?Obviously if what I read is true, it's a terrible investment.
79 million cars were assembled worldwide last year. Where would the world get the lithium needed to build batteries for 79 million cars a year. How would the world dispose of all these batteries? It seems that an awful lot of planning was ignored.
 

Obliviax

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Where can you get honest facts?
I've read that the lifespan of a battery is about a 100000 miles. I have also seen receipts for batteries from 20 to $27000. Where can I get the truth?Obviously if what I read is true, it's a terrible investment.
79 million cars were assembled worldwide last year. Where would the world get the lithium needed to build batteries for 79 million cars a year. How would the world dispose of all these batteries? It seems that an awful lot of planning was ignored.
all good questions. Honestly, this is being done for tree huggers rightly or wrongly. Much of it depends on technological advancements that are anticipated but not yet realized. This is in terms of the making of the massive amounts of additional electricity needed as well as in the discovery, development, manufacture and disposal of batteries. I don't think anyone really knows. With all of that, pricing will change.

Having said that, there are real advantages to EVs and PHEVs. I'll drive the wheels off of my Jeep and have a 100,000-mile warranty (along with an attorney for a wife, in case they want to fight it). I think two of those are as follows:

  1. There are far fewer moving parts in an EV (not a PHEV which has more) as compared to an ICE (internal combustion engine). That should translate into great reliability. There are no pistons, head gaskets, oil changes, plugs, coils, manifolds, transmissions, mufflers......
  2. A ton of ICE engineering goes into the combination of the transmission and engine. That almost completely disappears. The engineering in cars will go into electronics, comforts and ride. Much of that can be modified by the driver depending upon his/her preferences. This includes updating the way your smartphone or laptop gets updates. So it can be continually improved. Bottom line is, after the initial wave, EVs will be far less expensive than ICE cars over time.

In the end, we are trading in some benefits with ICE cars and EV/PHEV cars. one size will never fit all. I am of the mind that ICE will never go away but you will have options. And don't forget ICE cars powered by Hydrogen. Both F1 and IMSA are experimenting with Hydrogen (Fuel Cells or FCEV.

 
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Agoodnap

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I think hydrogen has a real role to play especially for trucks and buses, but only if they can figure out how to make hydrogen without using fossil fuels.
You'll find lots of hydrogen in the ocean. The problem is separating it from oxygen using less energy than the resulting free hydrogen can produce. There are several serious efforts going on now. When hydrogen burns it gives off heat and water and nothing else. Pretty nice!
 

SLUPSU

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For those cynics who don't believe in the promise of improving technology....

 
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The Spin Meister

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For those cynics who don't believe in the promise of improving technology....

This is good news. Assuming it works. I have stated many times over the years that we screwed up spending billions on forced production of things like EVs and windmills that aren’t really competitive. We should have been spending billions on research to make them work.

Let’s just hope it works and isn’t another ‘breakthrough’ like the ones about cancer or nuclear fusion we hear every few years.
 

cntblvitsbutter

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This is good news. Assuming it works. I have stated many times over the years that we screwed up spending billions on forced production of things like EVs and windmills that aren’t really competitive. We should have been spending billions on research to make them work.

Let’s just hope it works and isn’t another ‘breakthrough’ like the ones about cancer or nuclear fusion we hear every few years.

Agree, but we really do seem to be on the cusp of some amazing breakthroughs, especially with advances in quantum computing and AI. From the article, it seems like this technology would work well for homes or small buildings. I think solid-state batteries are the future for cars and electronics, while iron-flow batteries seem ideal for grid storage purposes.
 

SLUPSU

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Agree, but we really do seem to be on the cusp of some amazing breakthroughs, especially with advances in quantum computing and AI. From the article, it seems like this technology would work well for homes or small buildings. I think solid-state batteries are the future for cars and electronics, while iron-flow batteries seem ideal for grid storage purposes.
Article on Solid-State battery production

 

87 Penn St8

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Agree but things will change. I see many cars today boasting a fast charge of 20 minutes (to 80% of power) on a supercharger. I suspect that time will continue to drop. I also say the Korean makers suggest that they are coming out with a charming pad, like charging your phone without plugging it in, for their cars in the near future.

I will say that I really like the 4xe so far. i got them to throw in the 100,000mile warrantee at next to nothing so am more comfortable with two drive systems (double to go wrong). I also think the battery adds weight which gives the car more substance and feel but without sacrificing MPG. We'll see.
Agreed on the best outline yet. Thank you!

In the other EV thread I shared our status on buying and this thread only made me feel better about waiting 3 years or so once the charging infrastructure and government incentives/ car company supply chain is figured out.

We have a Rav4 that will continue to be our road trip car. I drive a 94 Jeep from May- Halloween and to pull a trailer for yard waste/hauling etc.

My bride has a 2010 Mazda 5 that we could sell and use as a pretty good down-payment on an EV. She is the techie in the family and she works from home 2 days, and commutes only 12 miles round trip on office days. She'd never have to worry about charging outside our home.

But it just feels like we are in the midst of so much change- both good and evolving- that we definitely will not buy used. We will bide our time until everything is more mainstream and some brands/ cars become proven leaders (that we can afford).

This has been educational and useful.
 

Obliviax

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Agreed on the best outline yet. Thank you!

In the other EV thread I shared our status on buying and this thread only made me feel better about waiting 3 years or so once the charging infrastructure and government incentives/ car company supply chain is figured out.

We have a Rav4 that will continue to be our road trip car. I drive a 94 Jeep from May- Halloween and to pull a trailer for yard waste/hauling etc.

My bride has a 2010 Mazda 5 that we could sell and use as a pretty good down-payment on an EV. She is the techie in the family and she works from home 2 days, and commutes only 12 miles round trip on office days. She'd never have to worry about charging outside our home.

But it just feels like we are in the midst of so much change- both good and evolving- that we definitely will not buy used. We will bide our time until everything is more mainstream and some brands/ cars become proven leaders (that we can afford).

This has been educational and useful.
That is why I am starting with a PHEV. It will work with gas just fine.

your point is sound, technology will rapidly improve so the technology you buy will date the car (like the old inbuilt car phones or Apple chargers) Plus the supply chain issues are increasing costs. Waiting is the appropriate move unless you are leasing or a short term buyer.

for example, I would not have bought my jeep PHEV if it ’ wasn’t going to be garaged and relatively warm. People in really cold climates are seeing degradation in battery efficiency
 

cntblvitsbutter

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I wish one of these companies would produce ev cars where you can upgrade the batteries, but probably not enough profit for them.
 
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94LionsFan

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The way it works is that you park, plug it in, and using an app, pay to use the charger (just a couple of dollars). The problem is I paid for three different places and none of them worked. It may have been me. Maybe I didn't do something on the Jeep correctly. But I highly suspect these outlets get beat up and aren't maintained. Of course, you don't know until you've paid the money. Two just didn't work and the other's J1772 connector didn't snap into place (meaning, something was broken).

Anybody else have an experience to share or an idea of what went wrong for me?
I use an app called PlugShare that lets you find chargers and read reviews. Has been very helpful in finding exactly where a charger is and avoiding ones that aren’t working.
 

Obliviax

Well-Known Member
Gold Member
Aug 21, 2001
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I use an app called PlugShare that lets you find chargers and read reviews. Has been very helpful in finding exactly where a charger is and avoiding ones that aren’t working.
Thanks. that is what I used but three plugs didn't work (all of the ones at that location). I didn't see where they were marked as not working so I'll check on that.