Inyokern Dining recs?

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Inyokern Dining recs?

Postby ShiftyRider » Thu Apr 14, 2016 11:06 pm

Lovin the Tesla, not so sure about dinner in Inyokern...
Last edited by ShiftyRider on Mon Aug 08, 2016 5:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Mammoth, Apr.11-13, 2016

Postby Tony Crocker » Fri Apr 15, 2016 12:30 am

Inyokern is not a culinary Mecca, but in this drive home scenario with a gas car we're usually just getting fast food in Mojave so not that much different.

We like to get where we're going fast, so I researched the round trip Mammoth scenario thoroughly. With the larger 90D battery the 3 charge stops take a total of ~100 minutes added to ~10 hours drive time. With the smaller 70D battery it would be more like ~135 minutes.

While Superchargers are available on the I-15 drive to SLC, there would be 3 hours charge time each way added on to the 9.5 hours one way drive time, so the Tesla will not be used for that trip. We're too impatient for that. I see our practical Tesla travel radius as AZ/Vegas/Reno/Tahoe/Northern CA.

As CA has so many owners the Tesla Supercharger infrastructure is moderately dense already. You're not tied just to the major highways, can easily drive scenic roads along the coast or in the Sierra. For the time being the Tesla is less practical in the Mountain States, where you would be more tied to the Interstates and a few other major roads for travel.

Judge for yourself from this independent map, zoomable and including permitted and under construction Superchargers. http://www.teslarati.com/interactive-te ... arger-map/ I was the first to notify its webmaster last December 9 that the Mammoth Supercharger was under construction.
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Re: Mammoth, Apr.11-13, 2016

Postby tseeb » Mon Apr 18, 2016 10:34 pm

Do you need to stop at every Supercharger? Going across N Nevada on I-80 is 410 miles or it's 430 miles from Wendover to Truckee. Could you make it from Wendover to Winnemuca (233 miles), then Winnemuca to Truckee (196 miles). Or would it be better to go from SLC to Elko (230 miles), then to Lovelock (<200 miles).

How do 180-188 cm ski fit in Tesla?
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Is Tesla Practical As a Ski Car (or Otherwise)?

Postby Tony Crocker » Wed Apr 20, 2016 1:06 pm

Length of storage area behind front seats is longer in Tesla than Cayenne. The floor of folded down second row is not quite level with the back. Hatchback vs. higher roof in SUV means less space if you need to stack luggage. So having a 3rd person is doable in Tesla but easier with Cayenne. But with 2 people there's ton of space in Tesla. We had 4 skis due to nebulous weather forecast just in case, but only used daily driver Blizzards as it didn't snow.

Supercharging Tesla is a non-linear function, fast when battery is low and progressively slower if you try to fill it all the way. This data was posted into a downloadable spreadsheet on the Tesla Users Forum before I bought the car so I could work out the calculations myself for max efficiency. Charging from 30 rated miles up to 150 on a S85 takes 24 minutes. Charging from 150 - 270 (full) takes 62 minutes.

Thus it makes more sense to drive fast and hit every Supercharger than to drive 60-65 for 230 miles to skip a stop. The supercharge rate does not fall below 80mph until you're about 90% full. It also makes sense to run the battery to a low level, with a secure cushion of 25-30 miles projected for the next supercharger stop, then charge to some upper mid-level range for the one after that rather than try to fill up. Thus we made the 13 minute stop in Inyokern rather than try to drive the 218 miles home to Lone Pine at slower speed. And the stop at Lone Pine where you need to put 200+ rated miles on the battery was measured so we didn't get into that slow-charging top-off range.

The spreadsheet calculations need to take speed, altitude/gain/loss and temperature into account, info also available from another post on the Tesla Users Forum. All power consumption results on the Mammoth trip and another one to Santa Barbara wine country were within 10% of sheet calculations and most within 5%. The elapsed time of of 5 hours 12 minutes home to Mammoth on April 10 is proof that the optimal efficiency calculations paid off.

With a full charge starting off our practical Tesla travel radius of AZ/Vegas/Reno/Tahoe/Northern CA can be achieved in marginally more travel time than in a gas car. It's also no big deal to full charge the car at your destination if it has a Supercharger like Mammoth does, or if you're in a hotel with an overnight 220 charger.

The Tahoe to SLC calculations can be done with not too much trouble. SoCal to SLC added 3.5 hours supercharge time to the 9.5 hour drive. That calculation would look better if you spent a night in Vegas and left there with a full charge. Nonetheless any CA - SLC drive is going to be lengthened appreciably vs. a gas car because you can drive 85+ past Vegas/Reno and Tesla power consumption increases 9% for every 5mph of average speed.

A stop in Reno/Tahoe with a full charge would have a similar effect on an Bay Area to SLC drive. Unless your Tahoe stop has an overnight 220 charger, the only superchargers in the Reno/Tahoe region so far are in Truckee (good for Don, not so good for tseeb).

The superchargers are spaced so there is no impediment to have the smaller/cheaper battery and be able to drive anywhere on the network. However, you have to charge the smaller battery closer to being full, which takes more time and adds up to 1/4 to 1/3 more time spent at the superchargers on a road trip. This is the key issue that informed our decision to go with the max rated range 290 mile 90D battery. There are some side benefits of the larger battery too, like 0-60 in 4.2 seconds. :mrgreen:

The careful planning on road trips is offset by more convenience charging at home. I won't miss waiting in line for gas at Costco.

An interesting article here: http://www.latimes.com/business/autos/l ... story.html I've spent enough time in remote places in our far flung country to realize electric cars are more practical in some places than others. But in western Europe, with compact distances and sky-high gas prices, the German companies should get in the game seriously sooner rather than later.
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Re: Mammoth, Apr.11-13, 2016

Postby Marc_C » Tue Apr 26, 2016 3:00 pm

Tony Crocker wrote:Supercharging Tesla is a non-linear function, fast when battery is low and progressively slower if you try to fill it all the way. This data was posted into a downloadable spreadsheet on the Tesla Users Forum before I bought the car so I could work out the calculations myself for max efficiency. Charging from 30 rated miles up to 150 on a S85 takes 24 minutes. Charging from 150 - 270 (full) takes 62 minutes.

The spreadsheet calculations need to take speed, altitude/gain/loss and temperature into account, info also available from another post on the Tesla Users Forum. All power consumption results on the Mammoth trip and another one to Santa Barbara wine country were within 10% of sheet calculations and most within 5%. The elapsed time of of 5 hours 12 minutes home to Mammoth on April 10 is proof that the optimal efficiency calculations paid off.

With a full charge starting off our practical Tesla travel radius of AZ/Vegas/Reno/Tahoe/Northern CA can be achieved in marginally more travel time than in a gas car. It's also no big deal to full charge the car at your destination if it has a Supercharger like Mammoth does, or if you're in a hotel with an overnight 220 charger.

The Tahoe to SLC calculations can be done with not too much trouble. SoCal to SLC added 3.5 hours supercharge time to the 9.5 hour drive. That calculation would look better if you spent a night in Vegas and left there with a full charge. Nonetheless any CA - SLC drive is going to be lengthened appreciably vs. a gas car because you can drive 85+ past Vegas/Reno and Tesla power consumption increases 9% for every 5mph of average speed.

A stop in Reno/Tahoe with a full charge would have a similar effect on an Bay Area to SLC drive. Unless your Tahoe stop has an overnight 220 charger, the only superchargers in the Reno/Tahoe region so far are in Truckee (good for Don, not so good for tseeb).

The superchargers are spaced so there is no impediment to have the smaller/cheaper battery and be able to drive anywhere on the network. However, you have to charge the smaller battery closer to being full, which takes more time and adds up to 1/4 to 1/3 more time spent at the superchargers on a road trip. This is the key issue that informed our decision to go with the max rated range 290 mile 90D battery. There are some side benefits of the larger battery too, like 0-60 in 4.2 seconds. :mrgreen:

The careful planning on road trips is offset by more convenience charging at home. I won't miss waiting in line for gas at Costco.

An interesting article here: http://www.latimes.com/business/autos/l ... story.html I've spent enough time in remote places in our far flung country to realize electric cars are more practical in some places than others. But in western Europe, with compact distances and sky-high gas prices, the German companies should get in the game seriously sooner rather than later.


A freakin' spreadsheet for trip planning calculations - what a hoot!!! This is why I and tens of millions of others will be waiting however long it takes to eliminate all the bolded stuff above before ever considering an all-electric car. It needs to be at least as simple as a gas powered vehicle. Ideally the need for chargers entirely will disappear, whether it be from fuel-cell self-charge/regeneration or different technologies - including off-world alien solutions.
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Postby ShiftyRider » Wed Apr 27, 2016 4:27 pm

Lotsa folks not only enjoy detail like that, but the certainty to be gained is kinda a simple pleasure too. He's figuring out those 5% error margins now so he won't need as many contingencies later.

Speaking of simple, if you live in (I don't know) a house, it already has electricity...
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Re:

Postby Marc_C » Wed Apr 27, 2016 10:42 pm

ShiftyRider wrote:Speaking of simple, if you live in (I don't know) a house, it already has electricity...

And I live in a state that has millions of acres without cell phone coverage, let alone charging stations.
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Re: Mammoth, Apr.11-13, 2016

Postby Tony Crocker » Thu Apr 28, 2016 1:22 am

MarcC wrote:It needs to be at least as simple as a gas powered vehicle.

One could argue it's more simple at home since it doesn't need to go to a gas station every week or so.
SshiftyRider wrote:Speaking of simple, if you live in (I don't know) a house, it already has electricity...

True, but in North America that electricity is 110 and you need to install 220 and ensure that your electrical main can handle the load. Another issue is that electric cars are most attractive in urban areas but if you live in an apartment you may not be able to charge at home. I think it will require true driverless cars ~15 years from now before electric cars can dominate the urban areas. I don't think it's an accident that Elon Musk is enamored with autopilot and getting driverless technology developed as soon as possible.
ShiftyRider wrote:Lotsa folks not only enjoy detail like that, but the certainty to be gained is kinda a simple pleasure too. He's figuring out those 5% error margins now so he won't need as many contingencies later.

My point was to make Mammoth trips as transparent/similar as possible as in a gas car. The Tesla User Forum like ski forums is overrepresented by the fanatics. But there are many owners who treat Superchargers like gas stations and "fill up" on road trip stops. However they will take longer to reach their destinations than I do. Others may "hypermile" and drive at 60-65 to attain maximum range and minimize power consumption. That would drive me nuts in a car with this level of performance and comfort.

The bottom line is that I basically agree with MarcC that I want a similar level of convenience driving the Tesla as in a gas car. It does not need to replace all road trips, but given its price it needs to replace some of them. California is undoubtedly the easiest place in North America to drive a Tesla, but it's probably quite easy along the eastern urban corridor and in Florida too.

MarcC wrote:And I live in a state that has millions of acres without cell phone coverage, let alone charging stations.

There are enough Superchargers along the major interstates to support Teslas nearly everywhere in the US, but I would probably not own one living in that kind of state either.

MarcC wrote:Ideally the need for chargers entirely will disappear, whether it be from fuel-cell self-charge/regeneration

Fuel cells require hydrogen, which takes a lot of energy to isolate chemically. And who is going to build hydrogen refueling infrastructure? If there are to be alternative fuel vehicles I think it's fairly obvious by now that those will be electric, with the ease of building electric chargers vs. a new fuel infrastructure being a key reason. The process will be gradual over decades IMHO and concentrated in the areas it makes the most economic sense, like western Europe.
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Re: Mammoth, Apr.11-13, 2016

Postby Marc_C » Thu Apr 28, 2016 8:47 am

Tony Crocker wrote:
MarcC wrote:And I live in a state that has millions of acres without cell phone coverage, let alone charging stations.

There are enough Superchargers along the major interstates to support Teslas nearly everywhere in the US, but I would probably not own one living in that kind of state either.

Even the interstates here can be sparse. West of Green River on I-70 the next services are about 125 miles away. Heading east there's a single gas station at about 20 miles, then the next is just outside Fruita, CO, about 70 miles further. IOW in over 200 miles of I-70, there are only two service areas about 20 miles apart.

Tony Crocker wrote:
MarcC wrote:Ideally the need for chargers entirely will disappear, whether it be from fuel-cell self-charge/regeneration

Fuel cells require hydrogen, which takes a lot of energy to isolate chemically. And who is going to build hydrogen refueling infrastructure?

I was speaking very conceptually at the meta level when I mentioned fuel cells, not necessarily existing or widely available technology. Nuclear fuel cell anyone?
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Re: Mammoth, Apr.11-13, 2016

Postby Tony Crocker » Thu Apr 28, 2016 9:36 am

MarcC wrote:West of Green River on I-70 the next services are about 125 miles away. Heading east there's a single gas station at about 20 miles, then the next is just outside Fruita, CO, about 70 miles further.

In 1990 Richard and I drove a 15-hour marathon with 3 kids to Steamboat in his old boxy and underpowered Toyota van with a ski rack. The Green River gas stations were closed and I awoke at 5:30AM to Richard driving at an uncharacteristic snail's pace, barely making it to Fruita.

I'm personally impressed that a startup company selling a boutique luxury product has been able to establish a nationwide network of what appears to be low cost and nearly zero maintenance electric charging stations. Even a deep pocketed company like Toyota will find the cost of doing the same for its hydrogen fuel cells a formidable barrier.

MarcC wrote:I was speaking very conceptually at the meta level when I mentioned fuel cells, not necessarily existing or widely available technology. Nuclear fuel cell anyone?

As MarcC is on record believing climate change to be a serious problem, I would presume he would be interested in technologies with practical application in the intermediate term. I have taken 3 tours of Princeton's Plasma Physics Lab, once as a student and at 2 reunions. All 3 times fusion has been presented as "40 years away" from practical application.
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Re: Is Tesla Practical As a Ski Car (or Otherwise)?

Postby Admin » Thu Apr 28, 2016 6:06 pm

Tony Crocker wrote:Length of storage area behind front seats is longer in Tesla than Cayenne. The floor of folded down second row is not quite level with the back. Hatchback vs. higher roof in SUV means less space if you need to stack luggage. So having a 3rd person is doable in Tesla but easier with Cayenne. But with 2 people there's ton of space in Tesla. We had 4 skis due to nebulous weather forecast just in case, but only used daily driver Blizzards as it didn't snow.

Supercharging Tesla is a non-linear function, fast when battery is low and progressively slower if you try to fill it all the way. This data was posted into a downloadable spreadsheet on the Tesla Users Forum before I bought the car so I could work out the calculations myself for max efficiency. Charging from 30 rated miles up to 150 on a S85 takes 24 minutes. Charging from 150 - 270 (full) takes 62 minutes.

Thus it makes more sense to drive fast and hit every Supercharger than to drive 60-65 for 230 miles to skip a stop. The supercharge rate does not fall below 80mph until you're about 90% full. It also makes sense to run the battery to a low level, with a secure cushion of 25-30 miles projected for the next supercharger stop, then charge to some upper mid-level range for the one after that rather than try to fill up. Thus we made the 13 minute stop in Inyokern rather than try to drive the 218 miles home to Lone Pine at slower speed. And the stop at Lone Pine where you need to put 200+ rated miles on the battery was measured so we didn't get into that slow-charging top-off range.

The spreadsheet calculations need to take speed, altitude/gain/loss and temperature into account, info also available from another post on the Tesla Users Forum. All power consumption results on the Mammoth trip and another one to Santa Barbara wine country were within 10% of sheet calculations and most within 5%. The elapsed time of of 5 hours 12 minutes home to Mammoth on April 10 is proof that the optimal efficiency calculations paid off.

With a full charge starting off our practical Tesla travel radius of AZ/Vegas/Reno/Tahoe/Northern CA can be achieved in marginally more travel time than in a gas car. It's also no big deal to full charge the car at your destination if it has a Supercharger like Mammoth does, or if you're in a hotel with an overnight 220 charger.

The Tahoe to SLC calculations can be done with not too much trouble. SoCal to SLC added 3.5 hours supercharge time to the 9.5 hour drive. That calculation would look better if you spent a night in Vegas and left there with a full charge. Nonetheless any CA - SLC drive is going to be lengthened appreciably vs. a gas car because you can drive 85+ past Vegas/Reno and Tesla power consumption increases 9% for every 5mph of average speed.

A stop in Reno/Tahoe with a full charge would have a similar effect on an Bay Area to SLC drive. Unless your Tahoe stop has an overnight 220 charger, the only superchargers in the Reno/Tahoe region so far are in Truckee (good for Don, not so good for tseeb).

The superchargers are spaced so there is no impediment to have the smaller/cheaper battery and be able to drive anywhere on the network. However, you have to charge the smaller battery closer to being full, which takes more time and adds up to 1/4 to 1/3 more time spent at the superchargers on a road trip. This is the key issue that informed our decision to go with the max rated range 290 mile 90D battery. There are some side benefits of the larger battery too, like 0-60 in 4.2 seconds. :mrgreen:

The careful planning on road trips is offset by more convenience charging at home. I won't miss waiting in line for gas at Costco.

An interesting article here: http://www.latimes.com/business/autos/l ... story.html I've spent enough time in remote places in our far flung country to realize electric cars are more practical in some places than others. But in western Europe, with compact distances and sky-high gas prices, the German companies should get in the game seriously sooner rather than later.


This kind of crap is why I love dead dinosaurs. Pull up to the nearest filing station, slide my debit card and be on my way in 5 minutes or less. No muss, no fuss.
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Re: Is Tesla Practical As a Ski Car (or Otherwise)?

Postby berkshireskier » Fri Apr 29, 2016 1:31 pm

Admin wrote:
Tony Crocker wrote:Length of storage area behind front seats is longer in Tesla than Cayenne. The floor of folded down second row is not quite level with the back. Hatchback vs. higher roof in SUV means less space if you need to stack luggage. So having a 3rd person is doable in Tesla but easier with Cayenne. But with 2 people there's ton of space in Tesla. We had 4 skis due to nebulous weather forecast just in case, but only used daily driver Blizzards as it didn't snow.

Supercharging Tesla is a non-linear function, fast when battery is low and progressively slower if you try to fill it all the way. This data was posted into a downloadable spreadsheet on the Tesla Users Forum before I bought the car so I could work out the calculations myself for max efficiency. Charging from 30 rated miles up to 150 on a S85 takes 24 minutes. Charging from 150 - 270 (full) takes 62 minutes.

Thus it makes more sense to drive fast and hit every Supercharger than to drive 60-65 for 230 miles to skip a stop. The supercharge rate does not fall below 80mph until you're about 90% full. It also makes sense to run the battery to a low level, with a secure cushion of 25-30 miles projected for the next supercharger stop, then charge to some upper mid-level range for the one after that rather than try to fill up. Thus we made the 13 minute stop in Inyokern rather than try to drive the 218 miles home to Lone Pine at slower speed. And the stop at Lone Pine where you need to put 200+ rated miles on the battery was measured so we didn't get into that slow-charging top-off range.

The spreadsheet calculations need to take speed, altitude/gain/loss and temperature into account, info also available from another post on the Tesla Users Forum. All power consumption results on the Mammoth trip and another one to Santa Barbara wine country were within 10% of sheet calculations and most within 5%. The elapsed time of of 5 hours 12 minutes home to Mammoth on April 10 is proof that the optimal efficiency calculations paid off.

With a full charge starting off our practical Tesla travel radius of AZ/Vegas/Reno/Tahoe/Northern CA can be achieved in marginally more travel time than in a gas car. It's also no big deal to full charge the car at your destination if it has a Supercharger like Mammoth does, or if you're in a hotel with an overnight 220 charger.

The Tahoe to SLC calculations can be done with not too much trouble. SoCal to SLC added 3.5 hours supercharge time to the 9.5 hour drive. That calculation would look better if you spent a night in Vegas and left there with a full charge. Nonetheless any CA - SLC drive is going to be lengthened appreciably vs. a gas car because you can drive 85+ past Vegas/Reno and Tesla power consumption increases 9% for every 5mph of average speed.

A stop in Reno/Tahoe with a full charge would have a similar effect on an Bay Area to SLC drive. Unless your Tahoe stop has an overnight 220 charger, the only superchargers in the Reno/Tahoe region so far are in Truckee (good for Don, not so good for tseeb).

The superchargers are spaced so there is no impediment to have the smaller/cheaper battery and be able to drive anywhere on the network. However, you have to charge the smaller battery closer to being full, which takes more time and adds up to 1/4 to 1/3 more time spent at the superchargers on a road trip. This is the key issue that informed our decision to go with the max rated range 290 mile 90D battery. There are some side benefits of the larger battery too, like 0-60 in 4.2 seconds. :mrgreen:

The careful planning on road trips is offset by more convenience charging at home. I won't miss waiting in line for gas at Costco.

An interesting article here: http://www.latimes.com/business/autos/l ... story.html I've spent enough time in remote places in our far flung country to realize electric cars are more practical in some places than others. But in western Europe, with compact distances and sky-high gas prices, the German companies should get in the game seriously sooner rather than later.


This kind of crap is why I love dead dinosaurs. Pull up to the nearest filing station, slide my debit card and be on my way in 5 minutes or less. No muss, no fuss.


LOL, so true ! I don't have the patience to sit around for an hour (or longer) waiting for the batteries to re-charge on a longer trip but I can see the owning an electric car if you're using it ONLY for shorter trips around home where you can re-charge it overnight or otherwise when not in use. I think for this reason, we will NOT see widespread use of purely electric cars for many years. Of course, it would help if they could develop faster charging technologies or much better battery capacity where you could go 400 or 500 miles per charge!
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Re: Is Tesla Practical As a Ski Car (or Otherwise)?

Postby Tony Crocker » Fri Apr 29, 2016 6:44 pm

I would be interested to know what kind of road trips berkshireskier does that would be significantly slowed down by electric charging stops. Generally drive distances in the Northeast are shorter than in the West and speeds are slower. These factors lengthen range a little bit though colder winters will be a partial offset. And the supercharger network in upper New England is not as dense as in California.

With regard to road trips it depends upon what each individual's most common trips are. The L.A.-Mammoth run adds about 45 minutes going up for charging. Coming home with a typical after skiing departure hour it really adds nothing because you're going to stop for dinner anyway most of the time.

The real test will be to see the acceptance of Model 3/Chevy Bolt etc. a few years from now. Many people should be just fine with a mid-priced electric car with 200 mile range if there is a second car for road trips. I'm not making predictions here because the fear of inconvenience may override the reality.

The economic gain is modest at the moment with current gas prices. So it's no surprise that sales of the more utilitarian plug-in hybrids and short range electrics have slowed recently. Tesla's marketing/design strategy of making the cars desirable on their merits as cars vs. just being an economy or ecology play is looking smarter. Thus there's not as much sensitivity to the lower gas prices, as evidenced by the 180,000 deposits made for Model 3 on the March 31 day of its announcement.
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Re: Is Tesla Practical As a Ski Car (or Otherwise)?

Postby berkshireskier » Tue May 03, 2016 9:03 am

Tony Crocker wrote:I would be interested to know what kind of road trips berkshireskier does that would be significantly slowed down by electric charging stops. Generally drive distances in the Northeast are shorter than in the West and speeds are slower. These factors lengthen range a little bit though colder winters will be a partial offset. And the supercharger network in upper New England is not as dense as in California.

With regard to road trips it depends upon what each individual's most common trips are. The L.A.-Mammoth run adds about 45 minutes going up for charging. Coming home with a typical after skiing departure hour it really adds nothing because you're going to stop for dinner anyway most of the time.

The real test will be to see the acceptance of Model 3/Chevy Bolt etc. a few years from now. Many people should be just fine with a mid-priced electric car with 200 mile range if there is a second car for road trips. I'm not making predictions here because the fear of inconvenience may override the reality.

The economic gain is modest at the moment with current gas prices. So it's no surprise that sales of the more utilitarian plug-in hybrids and short range electrics have slowed recently. Tesla's marketing/design strategy of making the cars desirable on their merits as cars vs. just being an economy or ecology play is looking smarter. Thus there's not as much sensitivity to the lower gas prices, as evidenced by the 180,000 deposits made for Model 3 on the March 31 day of its announcement.


Yea, at this point in my life, I'm NOT taking many longer road trips where the hassle and time of charging an all-electric car would be a negative factor for me. Most of my longer trips are to either Boston or NYC, each of which is about 240 miles round-trip (more or less within the range of a fully-charged Model S). I'm certainly not opposed to electric cars (I drive a hybrid now), other than the initial cost (and I'm sure this is a big negative for many people, up to this point in time). No doubt if Tesla and the other car companies can make and sell electric cars with a decent range in the $25,000 to $35,000 range (after tax credits), there will be a much larger market (see the number of deposits already on the Model 3!).

Just out of curiosity, (and I assume you put in high speed charger at your home?), have you figured out how much it cost you in electricity costs to fully charge the car from "empty"?
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Re: Is Tesla Practical As a Ski Car (or Otherwise)?

Postby Tony Crocker » Tue May 03, 2016 12:39 pm

We just completed one month of ownership, during which we drove 2,554 miles. This included 2 trips to Mammoth and one to Santa Barbara wine country. I used 698kWh at Superchargers and 398kWh at home. The charging speed at home on the 240v NEMA 14-50 is about 26 miles/hour. The marginal cost of electricity at home is about 20 cents/kWh, so that's about $80. A "full charge zero to empty" is theoretically 90kWh or $18 at home. But I limit home charging to 70% to be conservative about prolonging battery life. And when we arrive home from a trip near empty we take the car down to the local supercharger 3 miles away late at night and put 200+ miles of charge on the battery. So the daily home charging is mostly recharging the 20-50 miles we might drive locally each day. I suspect the ~$80/month for local driving is a likely fairly stable cost going forward. The supercharging use is what will vary the most and spring will definitely be the highest Tesla travel season. Winter travel is either by air or beyond the efficient Tesla travel radius of ~400 miles.

I have also had solar panels since 2009 that cover ~3/4 of my electric bill pre-Tesla. Going forward solar should still pay a bit over half, but of course the marginal cost of 20 cents/kWh is the correct way to look at that. In terms of comparing to gasoline cost, California is well above average for the US for both gasoline and electricity, so these comparisons should be done using one's local rates.

The marginal cost of supercharging is zero, but I've read that $2,000 of the price of each Model S or X is earmarked to build out the Supercharger network. The Model 3 is described as "Supercharger enabled." I have not seen yet whether Model 3 will have "free supercharging with cost built into the car" or paid supercharging. One could argue that many Model 3 buyers would prefer a lower initial cost and pay-as-you-go supercharging, especially if the car is going to be mostly used in a radius from home and not much on extended travel. However, the existing supercharger network would need to be retrofitted to accommodate payments, and to distinguish which cars are paid vs. free.
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Tony Crocker
 
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