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Is electric really the answer

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2 hours ago, C8RKH said:

OK, so that is around £15k more expensive than an equivalent petrol or diesel version at £38-40k.  That's a hell of a lot of free" fuel if you buy the petrol or diesel version compared to the EV, and allowing for  the road tax etc I reckon that's about 4 years of fully funded "fuel and tax" for around 15k miles per annum. I bet you would also get a better discount off the non EV version too.

Remind me again why I would buy an EV because the running costs are cheaper?

Fir environmental reasons, maybe. Financial? You're really having a larf!  ;)

LOL - yeah, you might buy it for environmental - personally if I'd bought it it would be for the much better acceleration and not having to fill up with Petrol.

I would agree that this is too much, it should have been £45k max - especially if you look at the price of the Polestar - but hey-ho.

However, I just can't see the sense of a performance SUV. If I wanted to be financially astute and have a 'load-lugger' - I think the all Electric MG would be my choice 🙂

The big concern for me is that if they're pricing the rather heavy small off-roader at £55k'ish, then it suggests that IF they were going to bring out an electric Lotus Coupe, with weight saving materials - then its going to be over £100k - maybe over £120k. 😱

The future of Lotus may be expensive it seems ☹️

Edited by KAS-118

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Apex AP-0

1200kg all electric sports car; £150k.

Personally I like it - but I do wonder if it will ever see the light of day.

https://www.autocar.co.uk/car-news/new-cars/apex-ap-0-£150000-brit-built-electric-sports-car?fbclid=IwAR1iC8jkrP-EhGKKK0P5mrlAfDJD5loHi2oVn9jsgmYcYwck7DX_BJL6fCc

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On 13/03/2020 at 12:54, C8RKH said:

Remind me again why I would buy an EV because the running costs are cheaper?

Fir environmental reasons, maybe. Financial? You're really having a larf!  ;)

Yep totally agree with yo on this.  My Mum was looking to buy a new car lightly used 2-3 years old little hatch back thing last year.  She does low miles every year and rarely does trip of more than 100 miles round trip these days so I thought EV might be a good bet for her.  

No matter which way I tried to skew the figures the EV always came out more expensive by a long way.    Looked at a Zoe with battery lease, buying the battery outright, looked at Leafs, BMW i3 etc etc ... Can't remember the exact numbers but I think going petrol rather EV saved her enough money to buy petrol for 8 years!

Plus there's a lot written about the effect on the environment about mining the materials for the batteries and recycling them afterwards etc  ... its not just about CO2.   It's not too far fetched to think overall a VW Polo with small petrol engine doing max 5000 miles a year would have less impact on the world?

 

Edited by electro_boy
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Well it would be interesting to see your calculations? As stated above the XC40 Recharge is over priced - and it is difficult to see it being particularly popular in the UK.  Although Volvo are saying that they will be offering various incentives - it is not clear what they will be and I would in any event be surprised if they make up the difference that there is - unless perhaps if you're a company car buyer.

However, as you mention VW, in respect of new cars at least, VW say that there ID.3 will have lower running cost's, of €600 per year than an equivalent petrol Polo https://www.greencarreports.com/news/1127450_vw-claims-ownership-costs-for-id-3-will-be-lower-than-for-gas-cars

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So someone goes in to detail the maths based on their own personal circumstances and you suspect the figures. Yet VW issue figures (after being fined in just about every market for emissions cheating and lying about figures) but you believe them?  Hmmm...

According to the calculator on Fleetnews, the cost, over 3 years and 30k miles for a Zoe is 64.31p - 66.90p per mile versus a similar spec'ed Renault Clio at 42.55p - 53.93p per mile over the same period. Given that fleets are the biggest buyers of cars and are hugely price sensitive from a purchase and running cost perspective I would believe their numbers over VW's to be honest.

So, based on 15k miles in 3 years the savings could be circa £3,150 in favour of the non BEV car. on 30k miles in 3 years it would be £6,300.  That's a significant sum for most people.

Also, when looking at buying used, I strongly believe that the price differential in favour of non BEV would be better for the non BEV car.

I think you can argue the environmental case for BEV's all day and win. But still, the financial case is moot and often it is worse for BEV than for non BEV.


Alcohol. Sex. Tobacco. Drugs. Chocolate.  Meh! NOTHING in this world is as addictive as an Evora +0. It's not for babies!        

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1 hour ago, C8RKH said:

I think you can argue the environmental case for BEV's all day and win. But still, the financial case is moot and often it is worse for BEV than for non BEV.

I agree that EVs are currently a more expensive proposition than petrol cars but assume that will change when the manufacturers need to sell to more than 5% of the population - I think getting rid of the grant would "reduce their price" by £3500 overnight, much as it did with when they stopped the bribes for Solar PV .  I'm not even sure that the environmental case is all that strong, other than city air quality.  But IMO they still have a place and can be great fun...

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1 hour ago, C8RKH said:

So someone goes in to detail the maths based on their own personal circumstances and you suspect the figures. Yet VW issue figures (after being fined in just about every market for emissions cheating and lying about figures) but you believe them?  Hmmm...

According to the calculator on Fleetnews, the cost, over 3 years and 30k miles for a Zoe is 64.31p - 66.90p per mile versus a similar spec'ed Renault Clio at 42.55p - 53.93p per mile over the same period. Given that fleets are the biggest buyers of cars and are hugely price sensitive from a purchase and running cost perspective I would believe their numbers over VW's to be honest.

So, based on 15k miles in 3 years the savings could be circa £3,150 in favour of the non BEV car. on 30k miles in 3 years it would be £6,300.  That's a significant sum for most people.

Also, when looking at buying used, I strongly believe that the price differential in favour of non BEV would be better for the non BEV car.

I think you can argue the environmental case for BEV's all day and win. But still, the financial case is moot and often it is worse for BEV than for non BEV.

I didn't say I believed him or not - I said I'd be interested to see his calculations  as  there are many factors that affect the overall cost for an individual. Clearly, he's the only one in possession of his own figures. You seem to have a rather unfortunate habit of putting (the wrong) words into peoples mouths - why is that?

As for VW, that article did provide some figures. However,  as its a comparison between a VW and a VW it unclear why you think they are mistaken, or they would not be undertaking a direct comparison under similar circumstances? The article is quite open in identifying some of the costs comparison is due to the availability of a rebate. However if you consider VW have got their sums wrong then by all means identify that . 

Turning to your comments on Fleetnews and using the 1st Model of each - the Clio  has a P11D Value of £15,310 and the Zoe a P11D value of £31,365 - i.e. more than twice the value.

The breakdown of the Zoe figures are 58.97ppm is accounted for in depreciation; 4.13ppm Fuel and 1.2ppm Service costs. It has a residual value of £11,425

That compares with the Clio of 29.62ppm depreciation; 10.29 Fuel and 2.6ppm Service. It has a residual value of £6,425.

So the actual running costs in terms of fuel and service costs  are significantly lower in favour of electric - and its the significant costs of depreciation of a Zoe - and the considerable initial cost, which makes it unviable.

However, someone who has £15k to spend on a car isn't going to be infested in a £30k car; and someone who has £30k to spend on a car is unlikely to be interested in a £15k car.

All this comparison does is shows there's not a competitively priced small electric car - but according to VW at least, they've addressed that. 

However, looking at Fleetnews, why don't you compare similarity priced, similarly sized and similarly performing cars? 

Lets look at the Tesla 3 Standard at £43,435 and a 71.15ppm running costs compared to a BMW 3 Series 330 Saloon 2.0i 258 SSM Sport Tech Plus A8 20MY at £43,120 and £101.55ppm?

(I would have preferred to compare the Tesla 3 Performance against the M3 - but the M3 doesn't appear to be listed).

So, you see figures are important and comparing a £15k car really is not the same as comparing a £30k car. 

If you wanted to compare a £30k Renaults - then the Petrol Megane at £30,485 seems closest - and that 71.17ppm - i.e. more than the Zoe. 

So yeah, if you want a small electric car - the advice is don't buy Renault. 

 

Edited by KAS-118

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What we are trying to establish is that CURRENTLY, like for like in terms of price the BEV is working out more expensive than the similar non BEV.

I don't want to argue every point @KAS-118 but the stuff is being squinted to suit the argument. The fact is the Zoe is £30k, the equivalent non BEV is nowhere near that price.  You can't then just say, Oh,m well you're wrong because you are not price matching on list price. The point was the ownership cost for 2 similarly sized new vehicles, from the same manufacturer, one BEV and one not. Even the figures you quote in the article re the VW are not based on real life now, they are a projection and rely on an almost 7,000 "subsidy" - someone has to pay that subsidy and it will be the taxpayers, just like it was with the solar boom when the subsidy was added on to the cost of everyone else electricity bill!  Nothing is for free.

I get that you love BEV's but the fact is they don't make the most economical choice by default and increasingly the issue re emissions in terms of harm to health is moving from exhaust fumes to tyres and brakes and there ain't no way a heavier BEV is going to produce less of those.


Alcohol. Sex. Tobacco. Drugs. Chocolate.  Meh! NOTHING in this world is as addictive as an Evora +0. It's not for babies!        

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Again- you actually appear to have missed what I first posted - i.e. that VW are CURRENTLY making a small BEV that costs LESS than the equivalent Petrol (at least after rebates etc). 

To quote,  it said The Volkswagen ID.3, the first of a family of electric cars based on the automaker's MEB platform, is now in production in Europe

As for the tyres and brakes - that Article addressed that - and so should your Fleetnews running costs. However, notwithstanding that, the actual engine and transmission maintenance costs are a lot less on a BEV. However, lets stick to what the 3rd Parties (Fleetnews) say about that shall we - i.e. that the Service costs of a BEV is less than half a Petrol.

Oh, its not the case of I love BEV's - I don't have one - and as I've said on numerous occasions before I was all ready to buy an Evora last year - as far as I'm aware they're not a BEV!? However, what I actually am is willing to consider the evidence objectively - and not with any pre-preferences. 

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We were looking to buy a lightly used mid sized hatchback, VW Polo, Ford Fiesta kinda of thing.  There where plenty of options around £7-9K with lots of features and great condition interiors and paint work etc ... I think similar EV options that hadn't done a million miles where coming in at £13-16K and really it was the higher end cars that we would have preferred to get.

So that extra ~5K+ pays for about 850 gallons of petrol which is good for about ~30Kmiles which is good for about 6 years for my mum's driving.

I've forgotten take into account the servicing costs etc so maybe the EV could get a bit back but we didn't really have £13K+ to mum wanted to spend closer to 9K.

I've done some quick rough calculations so I may have made some mistakes somewhere.  Let me know if anything is way off.  I don't have the original spreadsheet with proper values anymore.

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Thanks for your reply. 

I agree that if you were looking at £7-9k then there wouldn't be any real options - as the 'tipping point' where a Small EV makes financial sense has probably only just been reached. Although comparatively cheaper cars, such as the MG, Kia and now the VW are beginning to come on stream. So for that price range you're probably 2-3 years away before it become viable - although I guess if you were purchasing now (with the VW) a PCP might be an option although I haven't looked into it myself.

Hope your Mum liked her new car 🙂

 

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Latest study by Cambridge, Exeter and Nijmegen Universities say that the argument switching to Electric Vehicles will increase your carbon footprint - because of the fossil fuels to create the electricity and/or produce the car - is no more than a 'myth' for 95% of the world. 

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-51977625?intlink_from_url=https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science_and_environment&

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That just reinforces my judgement on EV's.  The impacts in general of EV's have been significantly played down to try to drive their adoption. Part of it I am sure is a desire to reduce the worlds dependency on oil and gas to reduce the power and influence of the chief suppliers (countries like Saudi, Iran, etc) - the US wants cheap oil as their citizens are addicted to it and the US can produce cheap oil for them - and it has fook all to do with the planet really.

I don't think that any of the people behind EV's give a flying fig about the environment. It's just  bandwagon they jump on to to get consumers to buy their cars.  It's just like cigarette manufacturers don't care about peoples lungs. They just want to cell their product. It's like soft drink manufacturers not caring about people being fat and obese with diabetes. They just want to hook people up and sell their product. 

It's a scam and we will see it for what it was in 10 years or so when we deal with the fallout lol...

Just all in my very humble, non expert, not scientific or verifiable opinion, of course.


Alcohol. Sex. Tobacco. Drugs. Chocolate.  Meh! NOTHING in this world is as addictive as an Evora +0. It's not for babies!        

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1 hour ago, dave excell said:

Yes, I agree it is interesting - but its the 'myths' that has been addressed by the Cambridge, Exeter and Nijmegen Universities Report I mentioned above - which does agree with the Industry Week one in as much as that in Poland you're better of, for now, sticking with an internal combustion engine. 

Those Universities looked at the lifetime use of the vehicle and found that in Sweden and Norway the Carbon emissions would be 70% better off, and inn the UK 30%.

Clearly - Lithium is not the most eco-friendly of materials - but only a comparatively small portion of a EV battery actually uses lithium. But I would agree 'something' that is better does need to be found sooner rather than later.

I therefore agree that its mining should be something that is considered - but so too should the production, and ecological effects, of petrol and diesel. Even without the odd 'Oil' tanker disaster that can wreck local wildlife, the production of Petrol and diesel itself is not exactly environmentally friendly. 

Also of interest is this Report from the Swedish Environmental Research Institute that have identified a significant reduction of between 50-60% in carbon emissions for battery manufacturers - although it does identify the need for further and better data https://cleantechnica.com/2019/12/16/latest-report-claims-emissions-from-lithium-ion-battery-production-much-lower-than-two-years-ago/

Edited by KAS-118

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Unfortunately there is an essential truth here. Electric cars are all well and good, but until you have an equivalent LGV, ships et al, then it has little relevance. Chopsing on about cars is all well and good for the Eco Warrior, but if you dont have a supply chain, then all they have is a model that remains fundamentally flawed :D 


Caught between a rock and a hard place in a catch 22 situation, So its 6 of one and half a dozen of the other. Your damned if you do, but your damned if you don't so shut your cock!!!!!!!!!!!

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🤔....unfortunately I'm not quite clear of the point you're making?

Firstly, a person may chose to go electric for various reasons that are not confined to pollution. For example, performance, packaging, lower running costs, convenience (charging at home and not having to go to a petrol station - which at the moment would be a big plus) and lower maintenance.

(Obviously, there may be some attributes of an EV that would prevent someone buying an EV, such as needing a range of greater than 200miles without charging or, if you're looking at a budget/cheap car then, at the moment, there aren't many good ones that are EV's - although the UK Government thinks there will be parity by 2024/25).

But are you saying that you think that until 100% of transportation can be done by zero carbon emission means 100% of the time then its 'not worth' doing anything about the Environment? 

If you are, then looking at just the 'Eco-Friendliness' factor, according to this https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Environmental_impact_of_transport cars account for 40% of transport pollution - and trucks 34%; so there's a potential large improvement that can be made by tackling these 2 - especially in city areas. So I'm unclear why you consider 2 modes that account for 74% of transportation pollution have "little relevance"?

As for LGV's - well trains are LGV's - and a lot of those run on electricity (well at least in area's other than the USA where a large majority don't) and likewise it is possible to get Electric Lorries; DAF do one  https://www.driving.co.uk/news/daf-electric-lorry-delivered/ , Volvo are brining them out, as are Tesla. 

As for shipping - that's being looked at too https://www.marineinsight.com/future-shipping/10-future-ships-that-would-change-the-face-of-the-shipping-industry

Clearly, these will take time to become more common - but that's not a reason for failing to do something now. 

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18 minutes ago, LotusLeftLotusRight said:

Apparently BMW has made an announcement today regarding a hybrid power unit with hydrogen fuel cells.

https://www.topgear.com/car-news/electric/bmws-hydrogen-x5-will-produce-368bhp

That's interesting - I note they no longer favour keeping the Hydrogen cooled to a liquid as they've previously have done https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/BMW_Hydrogen_7

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30 minutes ago, LotusLeftLotusRight said:

Apparently BMW has made an announcement today regarding a hybrid power unit with hydrogen fuel cells.

https://www.topgear.com/car-news/electric/bmws-hydrogen-x5-will-produce-368bhp

Now we're getting serious! Refuelling in about the same time as it takes now for petrol/diesel.  Superior range in all weather conditions. Now I'm getting excited.

"That battery is also fed by brake regen and energy from the fuel cell, and there are a pair of 700 bar tanks that hold a total of 6kg of hydrogen, which “guarantees a long range regardless of the weather conditions”. Refuelling is said to take between three to four minutes."


Alcohol. Sex. Tobacco. Drugs. Chocolate.  Meh! NOTHING in this world is as addictive as an Evora +0. It's not for babies!        

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Here's a link that shows what the actual drivetrain looks like http://www.automobilsport.com/cars-tuning--37,205605,The-powertrain-for-the-BMW-i-Hydrogen-NEXT-BMW-Group-reaffirms-its-ongoing-commitment-to-hydrogen-fuel-cell-technology,news.htm

It's a shame they don't indicate the weight of the Tanks + Drivetrain; nor indicate the anticipated range? I assume its saying that both tanks hold a total of 6kg's of hydrogen (as they look different sizes so that wouldn't be 6 each)? 

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Wow, an emotionally charged topic. Well I'm going to wade right in as there's been some inaccuracies and missed science in this thread.

First of all though, I would like to point out that I've been a confirmed petrolhead for almost 60 years and initially thought the restrictions being placed on fossil fuel powered vehicles totally abhorrent. Then I drove an I-Pace. Obviously I was already becoming intrigued with the idea of electric power, but my experience with the I-Pace blew me away. The performance and driving experience without question, way superior to any ICE powered vehicle. The acceleration was simply proportional to how far you pushed the pedal down - at any speed. Utterly relentless and knocks even the best auto transmission into a cocked hat.

It was also immediately apparent that once at normal driving speeds, the sound was really not that different from a decent modern ICE car, whose engine and exhaust sounds are deliberately muffled and anyway, whilst on the move, drowned out by road noise that you still have, just the same in an electric car. If you want to be aurally assaulted by engine and exhaust noise all the time while driving, then tough luck, because that will go. No bad thing IMO.

I say 'tough' because whatever any of you may desire, the ICE is dead. In not so many years it will be impossible to purchase a new one and  much as you may wail and gnash your teeth, you'll be out of luck. So none of the ICE vs electric arguments can have anything other than that one outcome.

The reasons for the demise of the ICE are mainly twofold. They use up the planet's oxygen, pumping out noxious emissions in the process and much as you may want to ignore that, what you cannot ignore is that the fuel to run them is running out. Whatever you may have read about how much oil is left, the one inescapable fact is that it is a FINITE resource and WILL run out. Probably not in your lifetime and maybe not even in that of your children, but that's no excuse to ignore the inevitable, bury our heads in the sand and hope the problem will go away, which it obviously will not. So something HAS to be done and since burning fossil fuels also has the other unpleasant consequence of pollution, we should be doing something about it now.

So, it matters not how much you may hate the idea of the impending revolution in personal transportation, as I said before, tough. It IS going to happen, it HAS to. So stop whining about it. Wake up and smell the coffee as the saying goes. The big question is, what will replace the ICE?

Electric motors, that's what. No matter how you look at it, they are an extremely efficient solution to converting energy into forward motion. They're very well understood, basically simple, relatively cheap to produce and with very few bearing parts, even without maintenance should last longer than the rest of the vehicle. But from where will that electricity come?

I would first like to dismiss the argument that just like oil, so is Lithium a finite resource and hence we have the same problem. Well, not really. First of all, Lithium is an abundant element, but most importantly, it is not fuel. It doesn't get used up. Just like metal parts of an ICE, lithium in a battery is just a facilitator and once the battery reaches the end of its life, the lithium can be re-used in a new battery in the same way the iron and aluminium in an ICE can be re-cycled. So yes, contrary to popular myth, batteries can be and do get re-cycled. Whereas when oil is burned, it's gone.

Then we have the BIG question, battery or hydrogen powered and that seems to have stirred the emotions here. Let's first make something clear. When discussing hydrogen powered vehicles, we're not talking about using hydrogen as the fuel for an ICE. Yes it can be done, but it's not the wonderful panacea many thought it would be. No-one (that I am aware of) is pursuing that line of research any longer.

Hydrogen power now refers to the use of hydrogen, converted in a fuel cell to electricity and water. As correctly mentioned before, water vapour is probably the worst greenhouse gas, but without the clouds, our climate would be very different. Whether fuel cell vehicles would have any impact on this I have no idea, but it's irrelevant as there are far bigger problems.

One of which is that fuel cells are hopeless at producing rapid quantities of electric power. Although as I mentioned above, the acceleration of an electric car can be stupendous, that is because all those battery cells in the vehicle (I-Pace as I mentioned above) can chuck out huge power, instantly. Fuel cells are not good at this. In fact, to overcome this shortfall, a hydrogen fuel cell powered vehicle will have, horror of horrors, batteries on board that will be charged from the fuel cell. There are 2 approaches to this. Either the electric motor is driven entirely from the batteries (themselves charged from the output of the fuel cell), or the car can run normally from the fuel cell, with the batteries being used to 'top-up' the available power when needed. Either way, they still need batteries, complete with all the objections that some have as to their manufacture and danger etc. Well, until we have super capacitors to do the same thing, but we're not there yet.

Talking of danger, there certainly needs to be care taken when an electric vehicle is involved in a crash as the power available is way more than mains power in the home. Worse for being DC rather than AC. But no-one can claim ICE cars are safe. Ask Ford about the cost to modify their Pinto many years ago when they foolishly designed it with the petrol tank behind the rear axle and vulnerable to rear impact. Petrol is nasty stuff, it really is. Highly flammable and as a liquid it spreads rapidly so a burning petrol fire is very dangerous indeed. Not only that, but petrol is in fact toxic, even before they stuff it with carcinogenic compounds to make it work better in an ICE.. However that is all forgotten when targeting all the hatred at batteries.

Meanwhile, hydrogen is actually quite safe. If it escapes, it just rises and dissipates into the atmosphere. But here's the thing. It does escape. What is often conveniently overlooked is the fact that unless you can change the laws of physics in this universe, it is IMPOSSIBLE to completely contain hydrogen in any vessel. The hydrogen atom is the smallest atom that can exist. It is a single proton and therefore very much smaller that ANY OTHER atoms or molecules and hence can simply pass through any material that is used to try and hold the hydrogen. Not rapidly may be, but it has to be taken into consideration when arguing for the use of this gas as a fuel.

Ah yes, the next problem. It is a gas. No problem say you, just compress it into a liquid. Aye, there lies the rub (although Shakespeare wasn't talking about hydrogen when he wrote that). The other BIG negative regarding the use of hydrogen is that at normal/room temperature, it CANNOT exist as a gas. No matter the pressure it will NOT liquify at room temperature. I use upper case there to indicate that is another of nature's irritating laws. In order to liquify hydrogen, it not only has to be extremely compressed, but it can only exist as a liquid below I think about -270° C. So once we've managed to produce the hydrogen gas, it takes a massive amount of energy to compress it and reduce the temperature to nearly absolute zero in order to liquify it, let alone maintain that state while the gas is stored in the vehicle and trust me, that just ain't feasible in a car.

I have not so far mentioned the cost of actually producing the hydrogen and currently I believe it takes more energy to do so than we can get from it when used as vehicle fuel. I accept that with more and cheaper electricity from renewable sources like wind farms, the cost of production falls, but there's no getting away from the fact that storage and transportation is extremely problematic and certainly could not utilise the current liquid fuel delivery infrastructure. It has to be stored at such high pressure and although pressure vessels of sufficient safety can be used, it will still be a gas and hence not very dense. Unlike LPG, whose very acronym explains the big difference. LIQUID Petroleum Gas. It liquifies easily at room temperature and can be easily transported - and it doesn't leak continuously. Unlike hydrogen.

So, all told, there are HUGE problems with the idea of using hydrogen as a fuel. Better to develop cheaper ways to produce it and then burn it in power stations, run that electricity to everywhere that needs it (obviously some improvement needed there) and use it to charge portable batteries to move vehicles around. All we need to solve the problem is better batteries.

Let's consider battery technology. Although electric vehicles existed before the ICE, it is misguided to claim there has been the same development effort put into batteries as into ICE development. That is clearly nonsense. Intense development of the ICE has been on-going for over 100 years, but serious battery development has only really just got started. John Goodenough's lithium ion breakthrough was relatively recent and we're very much still in the ascent stage of battery development. Lithium ion technology has already improved by more than 50% and there are many advancements on the horizon. Simple improvements in the same basic tech will soon see possibly another 50% and other breakthroughs with safer and more efficient electrolytes and electrodes and then solid state technology. These are all quite imminent and promise improvements of possibly up to 4 or 5 times what we have now regarding range and speed of charge.

It is obvious that in order to obtain these fast charging rates, the charging system needs to be able to chuck that much power down the cable to the car. But as has been pointed out, we'll be seeing 250-300 kw chargers soon. Thing is, charging stations are actually very easy to install compared to the huge investment required to construct a petrol filling station. Even local pubs can hook up a few charging points in their car park. Ok, won't be 250 kw, but why would you need that just to get back home from the pub. How far away is your local and how quickly can you sink a pint. 🙂

Despite the oft mentioned 'range anxiety', research has shown that:-

  • There are already more charging stations in the UK than fuel pumps
  • Standards are being introduced to make it easier for any vehicle to use any charge point (Tesla excluded of course)
  • Over 90% of all car journeys in the UK are less than 100 miles

That last does of course still leave the small percentage of longer journeys, but those who have already converted to electric claim it's not a problem although it is of course more hassle than simply filling up with fossil fuel - at the moment. With more charge points and further battery improvements, it's quite frankly becoming a pointless argument. As is thinking a 300 kw charger would be required at home. Really? If the car is connected overnight, what would be the point in it being charged in just 12 minutes. A normal household charge point that takes a few hours will be absolutely fine and don't forget, you ALWAYS start from home with a full tank. Try setting up your own petrol filling pump at home. The fast charging only becomes relevant when 'on the road' and that is exactly where the faster chargers will be concentrated. Simply common sense really.

It is still early days for electric vehicle development and the defining technology is that of the batteries. They are already improving and will continue to improve with greater capacity, faster charging and lower cost. There also needs to be considerable investment in the national grids that cover our respective countries, as well as more and cheaper power production. It was recently calculated that the US would need to increase the number of power stations by 30% in order to satisfy the demand if all cars in the US suddenly became electric. Well, a significant upgrade, but to be honest, less than I would have expected and I'll bet it's way less than the detractors wanted it to be. 

So yes, a way to go yet, but the signs are that moves are being made to address the shortfall in both power supply and mobility. All I can say is, don't pretend it's not going to happen, as you WILL be disappointed. But don't be concerned as it's actually not a bad thing. Driving a good electric car is a thrilling experience, just a little different from the ICE you're used to. I obviously will be making the switch and have no qualms about doing so, secure in the knowledge that I won't miss the ICE experience. Mind you, I still have lots of ICE powered motorcycles to keep playing with. 😁

Final point, what I would like to know is how the government intend to charge for EV usage. In the UK, VED (road tax) is their biggest single income and one thing we can all agree on, they won't let that go. So how are they going to charge? I have long thought that it should be applied to petrol/diesel as that meant the charge would always be totally proportional to use of the road and also, no-one would ever be able to dodge it. But that's no longer a sensible option. I recently read someone's suggestion that the tax should simply be applied to tyres. Don't laugh. Think about it. It is actually the cleverest suggestion I've heard yet. Appropriately proportional to road usage, unavoidable, independent of motive force and SIMPLE. That last guaranteeing the government won't go for it then.🙄

Have a nICE day.

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