• Tag Archives boltev
  • What gear am I in?

    One unexpected ‘feature’ of BB is that she is always. ALWAYS. In the right gear for every driving condition.
    You just regulate the speed with the regen smoothly and she just drives right every time all the time.
    I guess years of constantly nursing Marttys manual gearbox with low power has soiled me a little, you had to keep it dialed just right all the time to get it to go, like at all.
    Words can not really do it right, you just have to trust me on this one, it’s a very surprising experience, being in the one gear all the time is remarkable.

  • Away from home charging

    The joys of not going to a petrol station….. Let me tell you, it’s surprising how much I don’t miss going to a servo.
    That said, all that joy comes crashing down when I have to charge while traveling…..
    The fast charge (level 3) only takes you to 80% charge. And then it stops. Stops. Not switches to trickle charge. No, it stops dead.
    Don’t get me wrong, the public stuff so far has been really good. It sends an email when you hook up, an email (with cost and energy) when it stops and I’m told (so far, this has not happen) an email if someone disconnects you.

    No, the drag is that the last 20% takes a while to put in, and when you are driving, it feels like that first 20% gets you 50% of the way.
    It’s just a fact of charging lithium batteries. The last 20% has to be done at level 2 or level 1, ie slowly.

    The other drag, or fun part, depending on your tech level and attitude, is finding a place to charge…. See the fun part about having a standard charger plug is that there are so many standards to choose from. The result is that I have three apps on my phone and two NFC – touch cards in my wallet to find and pay for a public charging point.
    Some are paid (the fast stuff generally) and some are free – mostly level 1.
    Some are near malls and places of interest some are not.

    Here I am filling up at a free level 1 charging spot while we are doing our shopping.

    The free stuff is about 4 miles an hour, so yeah, not all that exciting… Just like this photo… but it shows that the charging point is on the drivers side of the car and is accessed via a little panel just like a petrol car is.

    Bottom line? Traveling any distance to a destination with an all electric car, for the moment, is a bit of a drag.

  • BB

    Yeah, long time no blog. Moving on.

    We just bought a brand new car. Notable for two reasons. Firstly, its my first ever new car and secondondly because its all electric.
    We bought an all American made 2019 Chevrolet (Chevy) BoltEV…. The net result of about 2 years of talking and looking. Perhaps longer.

    Short story short, I felt it was time to move on from the Smart (relax, looks like Terry is going to buy it, so it’s still in the family/garage).

    Here is my first charge at home.

    Sadly, the dealer gave it to us pretty much flat, so it was going to take a while to charge on the level 1 charger that it comes with.
    Level 1 is 110VAC. It’s pretty much good for nothing. I carry the cord just in case, but they are talking about 3 days (all day and all night for three days) to charge, so yeah, not a lot of use.

    As a result, that very day we found out about the joys of fast charging.

    The local shopping center has as fast charger. In about 45 minutes – aka, dinner, we had 80% charge. This is known as level 3. Or HSDC. High Speed Direct Current. It cost me 9 bucks. Not too bad, cheaper than petrol (gas).

    I guess under the hood is about as expected. The battery is 400 volts. Its front wheel drive, so what you see here is about everything. The rest of the car is battery under the floor. The inside floor is flat as a result, no tunnel running down the length and so there is plenty of legroom. It’s a good size to performance ratio I feel.

    This is what the driver sees. The dashboard. Speed is front and center.
    Trip meter under that, you can select different things to show under the speed, tire pressure, timer or music.
    To the left is the main battery gauge. The top number is the guestimate on range if you drive nice, the number in the middle is the range based on the past 5 mile average and the number at the bottom is the range you will get if you have some fun (Yes, typical electric, she gets up and boogies if you lean on the fun pedal).
    On the right is the current power you are using. Either upward for draw, or downward when you are regen (braking). We managed to go 5 miles for the cost of 1 in some heavy stop and go traffic in LA last week. The regen works really well.

    Pretty typical inside I suspect.

    The center infotainment has the usual screens for car info and music. It has more bells and whistles that I plan to use. (Satellite radio for example). She plays USB stick trance just fine and that works for me. I’m told that the car will refuse to play country and western, so Slim and Dolly are automatically blocked….. Pretty smart feature in my mind.

    There are some driver safety features as well…..

    Kind of hard to see, but cameras all over. Front facing (not photographed), side facing (under the rear view mirror) and back facing.
    It will alert me if there is a car in my side blind spot with an orange LED in the side mirror and will alert me if I am going forward to a stopped car too fast and will alert me if I am going to back into something.
    It will also alert me if I drift over a lane without indicating or being direct with the steering.

    She is super quiet and smooth. If I had to sum up the whole thing in as few words as possible, that would be it. Quiet and smooth. No gear changes and not a lot of road noise. The tires are not great (low rolling resistance sipperly junk), but we will sort that out when they are due to be changed in a year or so.

    So there you have it.
    Picked it up with 5 miles (and a flat battery).
    Pretty humbled and thankful for the chance to have such a cool car become part of the family. Looking forward to my first sleepless Sunday sunrise drive up to Palomar or Borrego Springs.

    Oh, and her name is BB.