Poll: Do you have, or plan to get, an electric car?

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Do you have an electric car or plan to get one?

  • Yes

  • No

  • I plan to

  • Over my dead body


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betarhoalphadelta

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Vehicle looks are constantly changing. Back when my wife and I bought our first Jeep, a Patriot, she complained that the Compass looked strange. She pretty much complains about how any vehicle looks if it doesn't look like it was designed before 2005.

I've never understood how people get so caught up in vehicle aesthetics. There are some paint colors I don't care for, a few I would outright refuse, but I can't recall a vehicle from a major manufacturer since 2000 that I've absolutely hated the look of. Dislike, sure. I even found the look of the cybertruck amusing.

I guess I just don't care about the looks that much, unless their air resistance is terrible as a result of gaudy design. There are several other attributes that I care more about.

Well, the basic lines of most vehicles are the same... They're all designed by the same computer programs for optimal Cd I'm a wind tunnel. About all the designer can do is "style" from there.

Some go the Versace route. Others go full Liberace.
 

day_trippr

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Looking at listings of Cd among currently sold cars I was surprised to find so many at .22.
Then there are many cars bunched between .23 to .26 - including some I'd have never guessed were that clean in the air, like many Audi and BMW models. By contrast, the Datsun 240z - which sure looked slippery to me - had a Cd of .476!

Turns out under-body airflow management is hella important...

Cheers!
 
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Looking at listings of Cd among currently sold cars I was surprised to find so many at .22.
Then there are many cars bunched between .23 to .26 - including some I'd have never guessed were that clean in the air, like many Audi and BMW models. By contrast, the Datsun 240z - which sure looked slippery to me - had a Cd of .476!

Turns out under-body airflow management is hella important...

Cheers!

coef drag is 0.357 for my full size truck. Hard time believing the number for that 240z.
 

day_trippr

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I had the same doubt but Google doesn't lie, right? :D

I owned a 280z and the Cd was down to 0.385. Traded that for a 300zx 2+2 once we had the 2nd pup and that one was down further to 0.30. Then the Toyota Supra Turbo that followed was up a scoche 0.32. After that Cd got totally ignored with the Pathfinder at 0.48 - a rolling brick wall :D

My Hemi Durango R/T claims 0.35 and my Audi S4 says 0.31, so I'm less socially irresponsible now :)

Cheers!
 
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I had the same doubt but Google doesn't lie, right? :D

I owned a 280z and the Cd was down to 0.385. Traded that for a 300zx 2+2 once we had the 2nd pup and that one was down further to 0.30. Then the Toyota Supra Turbo that followed was up a scoche 0.32. After that Cd got totally ignored with the Pathfinder at 0.48 - a rolling brick wall :D

My Hemi Durango R/T claims 0.35 and my Audi S4 says 0.31, so I'm less socially irresponsible now :)

Cheers!

My ram has one of those air dams that lower at 35mph to curtain the flow under the truck. I thought the bed would drag a lot, but a leaf in there will not blow out - crazy.
 

betarhoalphadelta

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Surprisingly my Ford Flex is 0.335, which is better than I'd expect.

My Jeep is reportedly somewhere around 0.48, with the top on. But the top's never on, so it's probably worse than that. And when I add the lift and bigger tires, it's just gonna get worse.
 

Brooothru

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Surprisingly my Ford Flex is 0.335, which is better than I'd expect.

My Jeep is reportedly somewhere around 0.48, with the top on. But the top's never on, so it's probably worse than that. And when I add the lift and bigger tires, it's just gonna get worse.
Where are you guys finding these drag coefficients? Even though I studied aerospace engineering and spent a career (two actually) in "the industry" as an end user, the phenomenon still impresses me with regards to surface vehicles. I remember in one undergrad aero class a study of a wind tunnel test of a small motor boat carried on top of a truck/car. Turns out that the most aerodynamically efficient orientation for the boat wasn't "bow front/transom aft", the way you would intuitively believe. Rather, it was the other way around, with the flat transom actually facing into the wind. The differential between interference drag from the slipstream spilling over the back end of the boat was greater than the planform drag when the 'blunt' end faced forward.

The analysis was pretty involved and not as straightforward as it might seem (it's been more than 50 years, so forgive my fading memory), but there was a cross-over point where speed becomes a factor. As was previously pointed out, drag increases as the square of velocity. It's also got some interesting twists and turns due to compressibility and area rule factors, which engineers discovered during the early days of trans-sonic and supersonic flight. That's when the 'coke bottle' shape of fuselages in the X-jets and Century Series fighter jets came to be a thing in the '50s.

As in many things, appearances can be deceiving. Now retired, we spend a lot of time traveling in a motorhome. We're currently on our third vehicle, all of which have been small (~25') vehicles of similar weights and exterior dimensions, built on the same Mercedes Sprinter chassis, engine and drivetrains. Recently we returned from a Florida visit where we averaged 16.3 mpg on the drive down but nearly 18.5 mpg on the way back. The route was the same each way (890 miles on I-4 and I-95, average driving speed 63 mph, similar traffic congestion). Even though our current motorhome aesthetically "looks" more aerodynamic, there's something else going on, and it must have to do with drag affecting fuel economy. Prevailing wind direction on the trip down was mostly on the nose and in the range of 10-15 mph. On the trip home it was 20-25 mph (and as much as 25-30 mph) tailwinds. By comparison, our average mpg over nearly 120,000 miles of driving on our previous two combined vehicles was in the 17.0 to 17.4 mpg range, even though they both (nearly identical models) "appeared" to be less aerodynamic.

Roof mounted devices and under-carriage ground effect panels play a more significant role than you'd think, and thus driving speed relative to the wind has a major bearing on fuel economy. Just think about the wheel hub covers and fiberglass side panels you now see on the majority of long haul over-the-road trucks. The seemingly minor tweaks can have a major effect on drag and fuel economy. At the end of the day, it ain't just about the sleek appearance on those tail fins on a '57 Chevy!
 

betarhoalphadelta

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Where are you guys finding these drag coefficients?

Via the googles... Which of course means that they are highly suspect.

I got the Flex value from an article at the Flex's introduction, where the Ford representatives interviewed were talking about the drag coefficient and how proud they were to achieve it for such a large boxy vehicle. So that one I put at least some stock into. The Flex is really interesting for the reasons you point out--despite being so big, it actually rides lower to the ground than many other vehicles in the "SUV/crossover" class, and that helps drag significantly.

The Jeep is a harder case. I've seen values of 0.55 for the previous era of Jeep, the TJ model. Mine is a JK, and they moved to a sloped front grill and sloped windshield in the JK design, and I've seen values online of both 0.48 and 0.50 for the JK. I don't know if that was based on the 2-door or 4-door Wrangler though (mine is 2-door). I also don't put a lot of faith into those numbers, for my own vehicle. I have a Rubicon, which is already lifted relative to the base Sport model with larger tires. So I'm sure that in itself hurts the Cd. So that shouldn't be considered a completely accurate number. I just posted it to talk about my vehicle, which is aerodynamically basically a brick on wheels...

Completely agree with how counterintuitive things can be regarding aerodynamics. I.e. a lot of people think that motorcycles, particularly sportbikes, are aerodynamic because of the sleek body panels and the small frontal area. Whereas the aerodynamics of a motorcycle make my Jeep look slippery. Motorcycles are fast at acceleration because of great power-to-weight ratios, but the aerodynamics are terrible. And pickups are counterintuitive--like @passedpawn suggests most people think that the truck bed will cause drag, and many people think that driving with the tailgate down will improve gas mileage. But the exact opposite is true; keeping the tailgate closed reduces drag.
 

McMullan

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I've never stood queueing at a bus stop, train or tube station, airport terminal, dock, etc., and heard folk refuse a ride, flight or cruise, based on 'drag' and 'esthetics'. Just saying. Bans on the sale of private ICE vehicles are likely going to be brought forward with those already on the roads getting taxed into scrap. Our next car, next year or the year after, is going to be an EV regardless. And we're just going to have to plan and change our travelling behaviour to adapt to it. It is the way. Just like electric brewing 😉
 

Kent88

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Vehicle-Render-Front-Luna@1x.jpg


Coefficient of drag on that is 0.13.

If it succeeds, I want to get one when my son turns 13 and let him take it to college after I've put some miles on it.
 
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Brooothru

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Via the googles... Which of course means that they are highly suspect.

I got the Flex value from an article at the Flex's introduction, where the Ford representatives interviewed were talking about the drag coefficient and how proud they were to achieve it for such a large boxy vehicle. So that one I put at least some stock into. The Flex is really interesting for the reasons you point out--despite being so big, it actually rides lower to the ground than many other vehicles in the "SUV/crossover" class, and that helps drag significantly.

The Jeep is a harder case. I've seen values of 0.55 for the previous era of Jeep, the TJ model. Mine is a JK, and they moved to a sloped front grill and sloped windshield in the JK design, and I've seen values online of both 0.48 and 0.50 for the JK. I don't know if that was based on the 2-door or 4-door Wrangler though (mine is 2-door). I also don't put a lot of faith into those numbers, for my own vehicle. I have a Rubicon, which is already lifted relative to the base Sport model with larger tires. So I'm sure that in itself hurts the Cd. So that shouldn't be considered a completely accurate number. I just posted it to talk about my vehicle, which is aerodynamically basically a brick on wheels...

Completely agree with how counterintuitive things can be regarding aerodynamics. I.e. a lot of people think that motorcycles, particularly sportbikes, are aerodynamic because of the sleek body panels and the small frontal area. Whereas the aerodynamics of a motorcycle make my Jeep look slippery. Motorcycles are fast at acceleration because of great power-to-weight ratios, but the aerodynamics are terrible. And pickups are counterintuitive--like @passedpawn suggests most people think that the truck bed will cause drag, and many people think that driving with the tailgate down will improve gas mileage. But the exact opposite is true; keeping the tailgate closed reduces drag.


That's exactly right about open bed pickup trucks. I remember getting a 'cargo net' web strap tailgate to replace the one in my Ford pickup way back in the early 80s. I don't recall any significant increase in fuel burn with the cargo web tailgate replacement, but I sure remember the lack of improved fuel economy.

Same with the custom bed cover on my next pickup. BUT, at least things in the bed didn't get wet when it rained.🌂
 

betarhoalphadelta

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corkybstewart

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This is one of the things I worry about with EV adoption... The world has plenty of lithium... But does it have industries able to recover that lithium in the quantities and at the cost necessary to ramp?
I have a friend working with some big name labs on using very available alternatives to lithium and that is all I can say about it.
 

Newsman

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This is one of the things I worry about with EV adoption... The world has plenty of lithium... But does it have industries able to recover that lithium in the quantities and at the cost necessary to ramp?
The batteries can be reprocessed, just like regular rechargeable batteries
 

betarhoalphadelta

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I have a friend working with some big name labs on using very available alternatives to lithium and that is all I can say about it.

Corky, if the lab has an press releases when they hit on some technology, I hope you can let us know. I'm always interested in that sort of thing.

That said, I can be a bit of a skeptic on such things. Proving a technology in a lab is one thing. Proving it at scale is another. Proving that it can COMPETE at scale economically and be produced in large quantities is another. I literally see this all the time in my field (data storage). I've spent the last 20 years listening to how SSDs will completely replace HDDs. I've spent the last 10 years hearing about promising technologies being proven in the lab that will make NAND flash obsolete. And yet... I think the tens of billions of dollars in annual revenue in the HDD and SSD markets aren't exactly being threatened.

If you get to a point you can talk about it, I'd love to hear. But I'm Missouri... Gonna have to Show Me. And it's possible that this technology is going to be groundbreaking--but when does that mean it'll be able to reach adoption? In the next decade?

The batteries can be reprocessed, just like regular rechargeable batteries

Similar to above, I know that reprocessing is possible. The big question is whether it can be done economically and whether it can scale to the capacity needed to make a difference.

At the very least, I doubt battery reprocessing will make a meaningful difference in EV adoption before 2030.
 

day_trippr

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From what I've read recently there is enough readily recoverable lithium in the Salton Sea area along with the geothermal energy to economically process it to swamp demand for years to come...


Cheers!
 

doug293cz

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Is it going to be a 4 door crossover like the "Mustang" Mach E ? 😂 😂 😂

Does it matter? That's what people are driving these days.
Nothing inherently wrong with a 4 door crossover, if that's the vehicle that fits your mission, but calling it a Mustang is a joke. Calling one a Corvette would be sinful.

Brew on :mug:
 

betarhoalphadelta

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Does it matter? That's what people are driving these days.

Nothing inherently wrong with a 4 door crossover, if that's the vehicle that fits your mission, but calling it a Mustang is a joke. Calling one a Corvette would be sinful.

Exactly. I've got nothing against the Mach E, except that I'm not a huge fan of the looks--primarily the rear end. I'm sure it's a fine car.

But it's not a Mustang. A Mustang is a 2-door pony car. It's supposed to be impractical and designed for testosterone-addled 20-somethings who are all about the GTL and DTF lifestyle. It's not a damn utilitarian crossover meant to appeal to middle-aged dads who prefer utility to flash and fury.

As for the Corvette, purists may not even fully accept the mid-engine configuration of the current model, but I think that opinion was drowned out quickly. I think purists would probably balk slightly at the idea of an electric version, but if it's performance bordering on supercar territory, they'll likely be drowned out as well.

If they call a 4-door crossover EV a "Corvette", then I'll be the first one to argue we need to bring back the old tradition of being tarred and feathered for the CEO of General Motors.
 

Kent88

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Vehicle looks are constantly changing. Back when my wife and I bought our first Jeep, a Patriot, she complained that the Compass looked strange. She pretty much complains about how any vehicle looks if it doesn't look like it was designed before 2005.

I've never understood how people get so caught up in vehicle aesthetics. There are some paint colors I don't care for, a few I would outright refuse, but I can't recall a vehicle from a major manufacturer since 2000 that I've absolutely hated the look of. Dislike, sure. I even found the look of the cybertruck amusing.

I guess I just don't care about the looks that much, unless their air resistance is terrible as a result of gaudy design. There are several other attributes that I care more about.

I still don't care that much about vehicle looks. Ford and GM don't care about my opinion. They think that they can sell cars like that, and with the Mach-E it seems to be working well enough. We'll see how the Corvette does.
 

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I dont plan on one, but I have thought about one. It would have to have a lot of range and be affordable.
 

Scout

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As for the Corvette, purists may not even fully accept the mid-engine configuration of the current model, but I think that opinion was drowned out quickly. I think purists would probably balk slightly at the idea of an electric version, but if it's performance bordering on supercar territory, they'll likely be drowned out as well.

If they call a 4-door crossover EV a "Corvette", then I'll be the first one to argue we need to bring back the old tradition of being tarred and feathered for the CEO of General Motors.
Corvette purists would know that the Corvette was supposed to be a mid engine vehicle since the 60s.

I've heard rumors that GM considered spinning the Corvette off into its own brand, which would include SUVs and crossovers.
 

betarhoalphadelta

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I'm not going to talk about this in any level of detail. If you look at their website it's public that the company I work for is an investor in their company. I'm not involved with any of it directly but I don't want to speak in detail so I have zero risk of talking about anything confidential.

Iron nitride magnetics with field strength equal/higher than known rare earth magnets. Because they're made of iron and nitrogen, they avoid most of they supply chain and mining issues with rare earths, and their trademark name is that it's the Clean Earth Magnet™

Throwing it out here because these types of magnets have application in electric motors, and I thought you guys would be interested.


 

TwistedGray

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Also...which model GT-R is that sweetie? I want that, too! :D

It's a wrapped (by the previous owner) 2010 with a lot of money thrown at it - Shepherd transmission, larger turbos, intakes, turbo outlets, downpipe, full exhaust, injectors w/ larger fuel pump, E85, Visconti tunes, and fistfuls of carbon fiber. It's the anti-EV...puts down gobs more torque and power than my P90D. I would rather have a FUSC'd P100D; however, they're still priced in the high 60's if not low 70's, and this GT-R was a steal, sooooooooo here we are : )
 
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