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Everything posted by alan

  1. Nearly all Lotus owners wave at me but sometimes look a bit confused / do a double take. Not sure if thats because it looks similar to a Lotus or because many years of Lotus ownership has conditioned me to wave at any Lotus I pass, perhaps a bit of both. Other Tesla owners do not wave at the Roadster, suspect few know what it is. In the last 10 years only passed another Roadster by chance twice - both times pulled over to have a chat. On the other hand if driving a Tesla Model S or 3 then other Tesla owners do often wave. So many on the road now that waving at others gets a bit silly.
  2. Annual service is about £400 / year from Tesla, I feel its best to keep a good relationship with them in case some obscure flux capacitor needs replacing. There are a few Tesla specific bits that are in short supply. Some body panels are also hard to come by but some owners are getting them made in small batches. As you can imagine with such a small volume car the owners help each other out. As with all EVs there are so few moving parts there is little to go wrong with the "electric bits". Suspension / brakes / steering is mostly Elise or VX220 and its best to buy the parts from a Lotus specialist as Tesla have crazy mark ups. Rear tyres cost a lot - not because they are expensive (Yoko AD08s) but due to my heavy right foot. Had at least 20 sets. Apart from the S4s which I dont use much (but will never sell) we are a fully Tesla family. I must admit the Model 3 performance is a awesome car - official 0 to 60 is 3.2 but lots of people have measured sub 3 seconds. It really feels glued to the road with dare I say it Lotus like steering and handling. I dont know when the next gen Tesla Roadster will arrive but sub 2 seconds 0 to 60 will be mad.
  3. Official range is 244 miles but driving normally (ie as if you stole it) the real world range is more like 150. Mine is 10 years old and 100K, range has dropped by perhaps 10 miles. It still does 0 to 60 in sub 4 seconds from every junction & traffic light. You ask what the charge time to 80% is . Not easy to answer - if the car was totally flat then you need to charge to 80% of the 53kWh capacity. To add 42.4 kWh to get 80% will take about 6 hours on a typical 32A (7.2kW) home charger. There are a few 70A chargers around which will do it in 2.5 hours. In reality like all EVs you just plug it in at night and in the morning its full.
  4. I did not put that graphic together, just borrowed it. The acceleration figure has been proven in the prototypes (they gave people who put a deposit down on the spot a test drive) but whether the other specs are met in production or whether 2020 is realistic time will tell. Rightly or wrongly petrol & diesel cars are on their way out - plans to ban them have been announced in many countries. I think this shows however is that in terms of performance there is nothing to worry about from the move to electric power, rather it can be used to improve performance. My 1st generation Tesla Roadster looks really old fashioned now - 0 to 60 in 3.7 seconds and a range of 200 miles. Ten years on the acceleration has halved, top speed doubled and the range tripled - that is an incredible rate of progress. Had Lotus continued with the Evora 414E then developed a fully electric Evora I wonder if they would then be having the same problems as Tesla face now - orders coming in faster than they can make cars. Yes its a huge problem for Tesla and the cash burn is scary but I would prefer to have the problem of too many orders than too few.
  5. Awesome Stuart - well done getting it. Somewhat jealous as I see from your signature you also have the active suspension Esprit, was that the one that was stored outside? I tried to buy that one as well but they said no. At least after I asked they cleaned it up and put it on display inside. Apologies if you have described your experiences with the 414E somewhere already if so please let me know where.
  6. If thats the 414E I tried to persuade them to sell them - quite a few willing buyers at the time but got the impression it was a project done because there was (government) funding available not because they wanted to make it. Such a shame - they were ahead of the curve with the move to EVs and are now behind.
  7. I was down for one of the first Evora's but ended up with a Tesla Roadster. This would be the perfect upgrade for me.
  8. Not used my S4s for a year so was pleased when it sailed through the MOT yesterday. Took the MOT certificate, still warm from the printer and jumped in the car looking forward to going for a blast. Turned the key - nothing! Owner of the garage thinks it could be the shortest time from passing an MOT to breaking down ever. Fortunately it was just a loose battery terminal, soon sorted and loving driving an Esprit again.
  9. We have been suffering with the same and using traps to no avail, I think there is some technique to setting them. For the last week my Mother in law has been staying and setting the traps & has caught 4 of them. Let me know if you want to borrow my mother in law, you can keep her for as long as you want...
  10. St Lucia is awesome but the Maldives has the edge. On the other hand if you get 2 holidays for the price of 1 in the Maldives its a no brainer. Time away on holiday is as much about who you are with and relaxing as the location.
  11. Honestly there is nothing to worry about with insects - the islands are too small to have much in the way of wildlife other than the odd bird & they smoke / gas the plant life to kill off any mosquitos etc. December to March is the time with least rain & highest prices. July & Aug are the wettest & cheapest - most of the days it rains however its short sharp showers not days on end. I think the best time to go is April if you can avoid Easter - good balance of weather, water visibility and cost. If you like snorkeling & diving then the rain matters less. If you dont like spending time in the water & just want to sit on a beach it could be an issue in July / Aug. Actually if you dont like spending lots of time in / under the water then perhaps the Maldives are not the right place anyway as the islands are so small. Try something like Guana Island in the BVI One other thing to consider is that as a Muslim country alcohol is forbidden in the Maldives except on the resort islands & as the holiday makers are a captive audience the prices can be very high (think top end London prices and some more on top). Drink is usually not included in any all inclusive packages. For some reason thought this might be important for you to know....
  12. Been there 4 times. Look at Cocoa Island - stupidly expensive but possibly the best place on the planet (trip advisor seems to agree with me). If you like snorkeling then Cocoa has one of the best house reefs - we usually spend 4 or 5 hours a day in the water. Turtles, eagle rays, sharks - basically the whole cast of Finding Nemo. Food, service, trips, scuba diving etc are all great. Only thing to be aware of is that like most of the islands it is tiny - you can walk around it in 10 mins. BA do direct flights over the winter months otherwise you will go via Dubai or similar.
  13. Should add to the above (but can not edit for some reason) that I agree that as a UK show shown worldwide they should have a bias towards British cars but seem to have almost the opposite. Also the Model X is £74,000 not £250,000.
  14. I dont know when they filmed the Tesla segment but Model X's are being delivered to customers in the US even if we do not have them in the UK yet. The official (EU) range is 310 which will translate to about 250 real world. Doing a 0 to 60 in ludicrous mode will take perhaps 1 or 2 miles of the range based on the Model S. I took my daughter from south of Cambridge to Manchester Uni a couple of days ago - about a 400 round trip. Had to top up at the Keele services supercharger on the M6 for 10 mins on the way back - would have taken about the same to fill up with Petrol and grab a coffee. Wish Lotus had carried on with the electric Evora and not just done the project to get the taxpayer funding.
  15. Episode 1 5/10 Episode 2 8/10 Episode 3 6/10 Episode 4 7/10
  16. Much better than the first episode IMHO. After being really disappointed with the first episode I am going to cut them some slack. Clarkson & co did 23 series / 180 episodes over 13 years. I don't remember the early episodes but suspect it took a few to get the formula right / develop the chemistry between the presenters. Also for the last few series the show was a bit stale / felt like they could not really be bothered. I forget the name of the guy who got punched but if as a result we get 2 decent TV series, each competing to be the best then I for one would like to buy him a drink.
  17. National grid last full year results - £3.9 billion profit before tax
  18. Quite a few posts since I last visited. To recap I drive a Tesla because it accelerates fast, not because I am green. I have owned more Lotus cars & done more miles in them than many on this forum (Sunbeam, Elise, Esprits). I am not a Tesla fanboy but have met Elon Musk a few times & he is a Lotus fan. The James Bond Esprit is not his only Lotus. To reply to a few points based on my 100,000 miles or so in EVs Spyker EV - I hope that was an April fools joke. Charging. Most charging is done by destination chargers - I use a 13A normal socket at work and my wife uses a 30A one at home. At home / work / hotels etc you don't need to charge fast as it can be done over several hours. Given every house with off street parking is effectively a destination charging location there are way more chargers for EVs than there are petrol stations. For me >95% of charging is done at work or home. The only time I use a public charger is when I am driving >250 miles in one trip. Such chargers need to be easy to access from motorways & main A roads. These chargers need to be very fast like the Tesla superchargers (400 miles per hour of charge) or they are a waste of time and (often tax payers) money. Charging in reality takes a few seconds each day - perhaps 5 seconds at work to lift up the cable and plug it in & the same when I leave to unplug. Before this I used to fill up at a petrol station every couple of days which often takes 10 minutes from entering to exit. This more than offsets the occasional 20 min top up charge when on a long journey. I also now eat less junk food by not stopping for fuel. Grid / solar etc. I do think there is enough generation capacity to support a lot more EVs (nearly 50% of all cars). The maths in my earlier post seems correct. Smart technology can go some way to smoothing out demand - for example if when I switch on the cooker, dishwasher, washing manchine and kettle its not a problem if my car pauses charging until the load drops. Variable pricing for electricity will mean EVs charge when there is plenty of capacity & not a lot of demand. Solar can be part of the mix - think of all the cars parked in office car parks. Solar & wind on their own is no answer to our energy needs in the UK. Again huge amounts of public money have been wasted here. Upgrading the grid if a significant number of cars go electric will cost billions but the generation & supply companies make billions in profit. The car owners will spend huge amounts with them making it more viable. If the lack of filling stations put off the early users of petrol cars we would all still be riding horses. Lotus / EVs. Such a shame they did not put the Evora 414E into production. It seems they wanted the taxpayers money for development but have no interest in selling them. Tesla started as a small company that used Lotus to build the Roadster & they had everything required to make a successful electric sports car. OK perhaps they would not be getting 300,000 pre-orders for an electric Evora but 1% of that would have doubled their annual sales.
  19. As mentioned I prefer driving for the performance / being addicted to acceleration. Whether its greener to be burning dinosaurs at the power station or in an internal combustion engine was not a factor when I bought. Andy - we may be talking about slightly different things when it comes to smart meters. What I mean is the price I am charged for electricity should vary minute by minute depending on demand and supply. The graph here is a few years old but still valid Electricity use at 5:30pm is twice that at 4am. By making electricity more expensive at peak times we can smooth out demand. Some of this can be done at home - I want the washing machine and dishwasher to be complete by the time I get up in the morning but dont really care if they switch themselves on at 9pm or 2am. I suspect this will not have a huge effect - we need energy intensive industry to shift their use as well. As for electric cars, if we charge those when asleep - say 11pm to 5am it looks as if the grid could easily supply another 15,000 MW over this "quiet" time so thats 90000000000 Wh. Lets say 300Wh per mile driven after charging losses so thats enough capacity to drive 300,000,000 miles each day. The average number of miles driven per day per car is only 20 (7300 per year - much lower than I expected). If my rough sums are right then we have enough spare capacity for 15 million electric cars provided they charge overnight. There are 35 million cars so nearly half could be electric by smarter use of the current grid.
  20. Another thought on the autopilot features, they work amazingly well on dual carriageways / motorways but struggle with roundabouts etc. At the moment its just a driver aid, not a car that can drive itself with no one at the controls. Before I used a Tesla with autopilot I would have said the days of self driving cars are at least 20 years away but now expect them by 2020. When they arrive I want an Esprit or Tesla Roadster for the days I want to drive for fun. I also want a self driving camper van. That way I can climb out of bed in the morning in my boxer shorts & get in the van. Whilst the van drives me to work I can have a shower, get dressed & have coffee & breakfast. Time it right and I will be straightening my tie as I arrive in the car park at work.
  21. As Bibs mentioned we own two (Roadster for 5 years and Model S for 2). I doubt I will buy another non electric car, its nothing to do with being green it is that I love acceleration. The instant torque of a fast electric car is utterly addictive. The Roadster does 0 to 60mph in 3.7 and because you do not have to rev up / make noise you use the acceleration from every junction/set of lights. The P90D Model S can do 0 to 60mph in 2.8 seconds - thats close to what the human body can cope with, your own personal roller coaster. Charging has been great as there are so few electric cars - they are most suited if you have off street parking. Overnight at home we charge at 30A (which gives about 30 miles per hour of charge) is more than enough for most. If going >250 miles you need to stop en-route at one of the superchargers which deliver 145kW for free. That means you charge at about 400 miles per hour of charge Plug in at a service station, have a quick coffee and you have 150 miles extra. Of course if they become a lot more popular then there are going to be huge issues with the grid. EVs however can be part of the solution as with smart metering they can charge when renewables are delivering (sun & wind) and sell power back to the grid when there is no sun/wind. There are issues with the grid & also issues with people dying from air pollution (40,000 early deaths per year in the UK / 20bn cost to the NHS, yes EVs still produce air pollution when some of the electricity is generated but its not in city centers). No easy answers with a growing population. BTW agree about the concerns with autopilot but is it amazing but scary tech. I went half way around the M25 a few days ago without once touching the controls. The car even overtakes if someone is going too slow. I could have been in the back of the car having a nap. Yes there will be accidents with autopilot cars, but there are also accidents with human drivers. If a computer makes less mistakes than the human... Anyway, please do not buy an EV in case the grid does collapse and it ends my fun.
  22. As a Tesla & Lotus owner its great to see this - hope they sell well. Lotus really should be fitting a bigger infotainment screen like Detroit have done. Looks bigger / better than the Evora let alone the Elise. I had hoped they would have moved on the performance a bit more than the 2008 Roadster though - the 0 to 60 is the same as my Tesla Roadster (3.7 sec). Given the top end Tesla Model S can now do 0 to 60 in 2.8 seconds I would have hoped they could have done a bit better. The 37kWh battery pack in the Detroit will give about a 150mile range. The original Roadster had 56kWh (about 210 miles) the battery packs they sell now as upgrades are 78kWh for a 300 mile range. Anyone know how much they cost?
  23. alan

    Lord Sewel

    Its nearly a perfect story, but he blew it by snorting the cocaine off her breasts with a £5 note. Surely the correct etiquette from a Peer of the realm is to use a £20 note for this if not £50?
  24. Interesting comments here. I have had a Tesla Roadster for 5 years and my better half has a p85 model S. We do not have these cars for any green reasons, they are simply nicer / more fun to drive. I doubt either of us will ever buy a petrol / diesel or hybrid car again. I still do like using my Esprit but now as a classic car not a daily driver. The low running costs / company car tax advantages are just a bonus so not worried if petrol / diesel costs drop further. They are a performance bargain if you like acceleration. I have not yet driven the P90d (0 to 60 in 2.8 seconds) but the P85d with 3.1 seconds is totally addictive. To answer a few questions above, after 5 years / 60,000 miles the capacity in my Roadster has dropped 3 miles. The 1 year old Model S (15,000) has not dropped. It also has an unlimited mileage / 8 year warranty that includes the battery pack. As for the national grid, most owners charge at home at night when demand and prices are low but I accept upgrades will be needed to the grid if use of electric cars becomes widespread. Charging. I have saved loads of time compared to filling up at petrol stations. At work and home it takes about 3 seconds to plug in vs say 5 mins to visit a filling station (I also end up buying less junk food). The few times I have needed to do a trip beyond the range of the car I dont mind driving 250 miles then having a 20 min charging break at a supercharger (whilst I have a coffee) to give me 150 miles more. Small, ultra efficient petrol engines with 80mpg are a great step forward but I love acceleration so they are probably not for me. Hydrogen seem like a non starter to me - for a start the production of hydrogen currently comes from electrolysis meaning its far less efficient than a pure electric car (remember hydrogen cars are electric cars). The tanks take up a lot of space, the fuel cells are expensive, performance is limited, there is no charging infrastructure where an electric car can charge from any mains socket in the world. In the real world both Tesla's are very fast cars from A to B. Much faster than my Esprit or Audi A8. Every junction / lights you can do a flat out 0 to 60 with no noise / penalty other than tyre wear. Overtaking is effortless. Only once have I managed to get the car into a power limit mode due to heat, its almost impossible to do this on a UK road. I accept that its not an ideal track day car though. The model S can cruise on the autobahn at 250km/h which is fast enough for most people. Max range is quoted at 310 miles, its probably more like 250 in real world driving in the UK (again flat out on an autobahn it will be less). Enabling Insane mode (earlier cars) or Ludicrous mode (new cars) does not drop the range as such it just removes a limit on acceleration. Some people dont want this level of acceleration all the time - when you floor it acceleration is >1g so things like iphones fly backwards and smash on the rear window! Using the maximum acceleration does burn up the range, If you push hard it will drop below 200 miles, but bear in mind when I swapped the Model S for a day with a friends BMW M5 I got 7mpg so I am talking about driving it like it was stolen (ahem, borrowed). Braking - the Roadster sits between the Elise and Evora weight wise and as it has Elise brakes they were a bit lacking. The main problem is that you dont use the mechanical brakes much as the motor does most of the braking. When you do use them they are cold and the first time you use them on a trip is not brilliant. Fortunately changing the pad compound to one of the carbontech ones solves this. Model S braking is at least as good as any high end German saloon, the combination of regenerative braking and normal brakes makes up for the extra weight (about 15% more than most competitors). The very low centre of gravity helps the handling as well. I realise I am on a Lotus forum sounding like a Tesla fan boy here, but I have done well over 200,000 miles in different Lotus (Elise, Evora, Esprit) and 60,000 in Tesla's. Whilst a Tesla will not suit everyone (range, price, charging etc) if you like acceleration give one a try.
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