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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
http://www.greencarreports.com/news...e-electric-car-shows-challenges-remain/page-4

Lessons learned:

- Slow the f** down! The owner admitted she was driving 80 mph on the highway. As most of us know, the Bolt isn’t exactly the most aerodynamic car, so traveling at speeds of 80+ will definitely kill your range. As she stated her estimated range after charging full prior to her journey was only 180-ish miles, we can infer that she definitely has a lead foot.

- She states her total charging costs for the trip were $88, and mentions it costs her $10.95 per 30 minute EVgo session. By my count, she had five 30 minute charge sessions at EVgo stations under the “Flex” plan ($0 month, $4.95 connection fee per session, 20 cents per minute), for a grand total of $54.75.
If she had selected the monthly “On the Go” plan ($14.95/month, 10 cents per minute/$0 connection fee), her charging costs even factoring the monthly fee would have been $29.95 (14.95 + five 30 minute sessions costing $3 each = $29.95), or almost $25 cheaper.

- She states she drove around for 45 minutes late one night trying to find a public charging station to charge at while parked overnight, and said the ones near her hotel were not accessible and ended up returning to her hotel without being able to charge.

I checked Plugshare, and while I’m not sure what hotel she ended up staying at, I found a Hilton 0.9 miles from Caltech that had charging stations accessible via valets. Maybe should have stayed there instead? *shrug*

So basically, road tripping in a Bolt at the moment is not for the faint of heart and requires patience. And more planning than what this owner did, as she would have figured out about EVgo’s monthly subscription option and that Hilton hotel that had the free overnight charging. She said she will not take her Bolt on any trips of more than 200 miles, and based off her lead-foot driving style and not laser-sharp attention to detail, that might be a good idea for her.

Someone with a better game plan would have likely fared far better than she did. And least she didn't end up getting the Tow of Shame. :p
 

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It is, however, an accurate assessment of the Bolts capabilities. Without even driving the Bolt EV yet I could agree with her quote:
Until charging sites are more widespread, and fast enough to use the Bolt EV's 80-kw fast-charging ability, I will probably only take it on trips under 200 miles in the future.
Although the Bolt EV is capable of fairly long distances over 200 miles with fast chargers, especially in an area with a fast charging network (the closest to me is barely in range of the Bolt EV), the car is mostly a runabout where you can drive around all day in a large city area without having to worry about charging midday like you would in a Leaf or something. You can fast charge locally for a delivery service, or if you don't have home electricity, etc.

It is a very practical vehicle in that regard. Sure, if you live on a coast you can maybe take a trip up to 400 miles one way with a lunch charging stop, etc, but charger availability would have me question that decision. That trip would be worry free in the Volt and probably take 1 or 2 hours less each way. This might be fine if you don't do this a lot with the Bolt EV and just need to be able to do it a couple times a year or something.
 

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Generally the advice should _not_ be to slow down. Fast chargers should add miles faster than you can use them, especially in a speed-limited car like the Bolt. But unfortunately the (current?) slow charging rate means that slowing down might indeed be the faster option, especially if you are in an area with limited charging infrastructure.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Generally the advice should _not_ be to slow down. Fast chargers should add miles faster than you can use them, especially in a speed-limited car like the Bolt. But unfortunately the (current?) slow charging rate means that slowing down might indeed be the faster option, especially if you are in an area with limited charging infrastructure.
Whoever her "lifeline" was, he didn't give her the best advice, as it seems like she got stuck charging at 24 kW Chargepoint stations a couple of times. Those should pretty much be ignored for road tripping unless you take siestas after lunch or are charging overnight.
 

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I'm not defending the article but you suggest she should've done research on EVgo plans to save $25, then suggest she should stay at the Hilton
How much would that have cost over say the budget hotel she wanted, just to get a charge?!
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I'm not defending the article but you suggest she should've done research on EVgo plans to save $25, then suggest she should stay at the Hilton
How much would that have cost over say the budget hotel she wanted, just to get a charge?!
Again, I have no idea where she actually stayed. For all I know, she stayed at the Westin or Sheraton, which are even more expensive than the Hilton.
 

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Ladogaboy should go on a 1,000 mile trip with the Chevy Bolt and write something about it on how cheaper and convenient to do it with just a little planning and self-awareness of the charging stations and what one needs to do to bring the fueling costs down.
 

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Ladogaboy should go on a 1,000 mile trip with the Chevy Bolt and write something about it on how cheaper and convenient to do it with just a little planning and self-awareness of the charging stations and what one needs to do to bring the fueling costs down.
Yup. 1,100 mile road trip and no major issues. Just do your homework and plan your route. Also, I don't recall any 80 mph freeways in California.


Also, I guess I should post up my summary for my Zion trip (also about 1,000 miles).
 

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Yup. 1,100 mile road trip and no major issues. Just do your homework and plan your route. Also, I don't recall any 80 mph freeways in California.


Also, I guess I should post up my summary for my Zion trip (also about 1,000 miles).
Yes please! Do justice for Chevy Bolt EV!
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Yup. 1,100 mile road trip and no major issues. Just do your homework and plan your route. Also, I don't recall any 80 mph freeways in California.


Also, I guess I should post up my summary for my Zion trip (also about 1,000 miles).
GCR needs a minimum 6 photos of your Bolt during the trip to be publish-worthy. ;)
 

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To each their own, of course, but this account sounds like a pretty hellish road trip to me. Hundreds of extra miles, hours of extra time, hunting for a charger at night, plugging in and walking back to the hotel, and being forced to listen to One Direction (especially for someone who is apparently a Grateful Dead fan, judging by the pic).

I know exactly what she's talking about regarding the route. I could drive from L.A. to the Sacramento area once or twice a year, but there's a gap of about 370 miles with no CCS charging station if I take the closer, more direct inland route. Instead, I would add hours and many miles going up the coast then over.

I also used Plugshare to plot out a simple 300-mile drive from L.A. to Las Vegas, and it wasn't pretty. One out-of-service charger and you're out of luck--maybe a sign you shouldn't be going to Vegas at all. :)

I appreciate the Bolt's 200-mile range, but I just don't see it as a road car with today's infrastructure. A great city car, a great commuter car, but road trips are hassle enough without adding extra miles, hours, and calculating routes based on charging stations vs. how you want to get there.

Jan
 

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I thought it was a fair article concerning the realities of EV long distance driving today. Speed must be balanced, the infrastructure needs refinement, but no matter what, today an ICE or Hybrid is going to get you there faster when the distances require remote charging.

We have been fed propaganda that EV long distance travel is just as fast as conventional cars, since all you must do is spend a lot of money to get something that charges faster. But the truth is, for an 800mi trip, a Volt will defeat a $93,700+ Tesla 100kWh when it comes to travel. But so will a $13k econobox as well.
 

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If I was limited to one car, I'd choose the Volt. With two cars, it would be a Volt and Bolt. For her trip, I'd take the Volt. I don't plan to use the Bolt for trips longer than 100 miles and even that would be rare.
 

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If I was limited to one car, I'd choose the Volt. With two cars, it would be a Volt and Bolt. For her trip, I'd take the Volt. I don't plan to use the Bolt for trips longer than 100 miles and even that would be rare.
I am still of the contention that the most well thought out 'green' car in history remains the 2011 Volt. Good performance, very 'green', no reliance on EV infrastructure at all. Want to drive to Alaska from Florida? A Volt could do it in late 2010. No EV can do it in 2017.

But Monday through Friday, for most drivers, most of the time, the Volt is simply an EV minus anxiety.
 

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I like it though.

It takes these sorts of horror stories to improve the charging situation. I'm reminded of the time back in 1920’s? when the Military took 3 months to drive across the country and that that sparked a huge change in the countries approach to road building.

More pioneering types should try these trips and report the ground situation.

One thing I have noticed is the strange location/layout of the charging stations. They have been placed for cheapness/feasibility rather than actual trip requirements. Look at this strange gap in DCFC charging on California I5. It is only now that folks are attempting these trips that this gap is turning into a show stopper. Hope the powers that be are paying attention.
 

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Sure, if you live on a coast you can maybe take a trip up to 400 miles one way with a lunch charging stop, etc, but charger availability would have me question that decision.
I live on the coast, and a 400 mile trip one-way will have me returning and passing my point of origin (or deep in the Atlantic Ocean!). The only charger would be my own and I will recharge overnight as I sleep. And the speed limits here are below 65 MPH, so I will get more range than most Bolt EV owners. A Chevy Bolt EV is more than what I need.
 

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http://www.greencarreports.com/news...e-electric-car-shows-challenges-remain/page-4

Lessons learned:

- Slow the f** down! The owner admitted she was driving 80 mph on the highway. As most of us know, the Bolt isn’t exactly the most aerodynamic car, so traveling at speeds of 80+ will definitely kill your range. As she stated her estimated range after charging full prior to her journey was only 180-ish miles, we can infer that she definitely has a lead foot.

- She states her total charging costs for the trip were $88, and mentions it costs her $10.95 per 30 minute EVgo session. By my count, she had five 30 minute charge sessions at EVgo stations under the “Flex” plan ($0 month, $4.95 connection fee per session, 20 cents per minute), for a grand total of $54.75.
If she had selected the monthly “On the Go” plan ($14.95/month, 10 cents per minute/$0 connection fee), her charging costs even factoring the monthly fee would have been $29.95 (14.95 + five 30 minute sessions costing $3 each = $29.95), or almost $25 cheaper.

- She states she drove around for 45 minutes late one night trying to find a public charging station to charge at while parked overnight, and said the ones near her hotel were not accessible and ended up returning to her hotel without being able to charge.

I checked Plugshare, and while I’m not sure what hotel she ended up staying at, I found a Hilton 0.9 miles from Caltech that had charging stations accessible via valets. Maybe should have stayed there instead? *shrug*

So basically, road tripping in a Bolt at the moment is not for the faint of heart and requires patience. And more planning than what this owner did, as she would have figured out about EVgo’s monthly subscription option and that Hilton hotel that had the free overnight charging. She said she will not take her Bolt on any trips of more than 200 miles, and based off her lead-foot driving style and not laser-sharp attention to detail, that might be a good idea for her.

Someone with a better game plan would have likely fared far better than she did. And least she didn't end up getting the Tow of Shame. :p
A few points, any vehicle you drive fast will drain range (whether EV or ICE)...
I've pointed out that CHARGING STATION anxiety is almost as bad as range anxiety...
Despite the Hilton offering free charging always have to look into the final invoice...If the Hilton is $100/night, but also charges $15 for wifi and $25 for parking while the Best Western offer free wif and parking for $80, then that's the better deal...

Overall was an interesting read...
 

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I am still of the contention that the most well thought out 'green' car in history remains the 2011 Volt. Good performance, very 'green', no reliance on EV infrastructure at all. Want to drive to Alaska from Florida? A Volt could do it in late 2010. No EV can do it in 2017...
The Al-Can was done in a Tesla 85 a couple of years ago, though he started in Sacramento not Florida. Once you get north of Kamloops, expect lots of L2, and even TT-30 L1 charging to get there.
 

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It takes these sorts of horror stories to improve the charging situation. I'm reminded of the time back in 1920’s? when the Military took 3 months to drive across the country and that that sparked a huge change in the countries approach to road building...
True, but it was in 1918. Just after WW 1, though at the time it was just the WW, the military decided to see what it took to get equipment from one coast to the other. It took weeks along the Lincoln Highway - the first transcontinental auto route that todays Interstate 80 roughly follows. They encountered lots of break downs, stuck vehicles, broken bridges, and so on. A young captain named Dwight Eisenhower was on that trip. Some years later, after having seen the Autobahns in Germany and being elected President of the U.S., he initiated the Interstate Highway project.
 

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The Al-Can was done in a Tesla 85 a couple of years ago, though he started in Sacramento not Florida. Once you get north of Kamloops, expect lots of L2, and even TT-30 L1 charging to get there.
He hit Deadhorse? Really?
 
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