Been a little quiet..

Yeah with all the stuff going around haven’t really had much to post. There was this article a few days ago describing the huge push right now for electric delivery vans.

This makes a lot of sense: Local delivery vans don’t need a lot of range and the stop and go nature of their daily routes is perfect for an electric powertrain using regeneration over brakes. These trucks will also be much quieter than your usual FedEx or UPS truck which will make for happy homeowners (although you may notice deliveries just popping up on your doorstep as you never heard the truck!).

Battery tech will have to get a bit better for long-range trucks to be more viable (including RV’s). They will need a higher power to weight (and power to volume) density to prove effective (kind of like this battery).

In other Ford EV news an exec gave some brief info about Ford’s future plans (not really a lot there, however).

Of course everything is pretty much at a standstill at the moment (although rumor has it that Mach-E orders will be starting on 5/11/20). We’ll see…

Been a little quiet..

What was it?

I’m sure you’ve been waiting on the edge of your seat: What was the issue with my battery? Nothing, no issue with the battery. Just an issue with the coolant pump (which make sense since the battery does rely on that). Took a day or so but here is what they found:

Strangely enough when I googled the e-mail one of the results was a very similar issue to that above. It appears that some wiring chafes a bit and wears through–seems like a good time for a small redesign ! LOL

As far as my dealership experience was: As good as I was expecting. When it was going to take longer than a day they gave me a loaner to drive (a brand new Equinox with 7 miles on the odometer) and called me with updates when they had them. Perfectly satisfactory.

What was it?

An issue with the Li-Ion battery…

Wait, what? Yup, start up the Bolt this morning and I see this:

Dash with check engine light on (lower right red car icon)

Very quickly after that I receive and e-mail from OnStar:

Uh oh! Yikes…now I know that back in 2017 GM built a few Bolts with bad batteries (and updated the software in the Bolts to detect the bad batteries before they left their owners stranded) but I had thought those issues were fixed. Does my Bolt have a bad battery? after only 23,743 miles? (I’m guessing no, but we’ll see–it charged to full just like normally and drove itself to the dealer no differently than before.)

The Bolt is now at the dealership awaiting a fix (googling the above e-mail reveals some owners who have had issues with their cooling system causing the battery fault which were fixed pretty quickly…crossing fingers its that and not a battery).

The good news of all this is that it wasn’t anything like the Focus Electric’s “Stop Safely Now” error which made many people stop, but not very safely.

An issue with the Li-Ion battery…

Better batteries on the horizon?

Well now here is a rather interesting article:

Welcome to the era of supercharged lithium-ion batteries

Now we’ve been hearing of “the next big thing” for EV batteries for a long while now. It seems like every other week there has been another article touting some breakthrough or another promising 2X, 3X, etc. larger batteries. Typically, however, something has been missing–batteries need to last long, charge quickly, have many cycles, scaleable, etc. Usually one or two of those requirements are missing.

All during that time I’ve been hearing about a few technologies that have the promise but have been difficult to get to that point (air batteries, for instance). Silicon anodes have been one of these very promising ideas that have that “if we could just fix X, Y,…”. The above article implies that X, and Y have been fixed (or at least a way to work with X and Y) and we could “soon” LOL! have them (re: within the next decade). Is it more hype? We’ll see.

I wouldn’t stop leasing those EVs just yet…

Better batteries on the horizon?

Whats better, gas or electric?

This is a very interesting article from Motor Trend: Gas vs. Electric: Which is better? They realized that the Hyundai Kona can be optioned with either an electric motor or a gas engine. With that in hand they took two “identical” Kona’s on a road trip comparing each.

The results? Well its a bit nuanced (they definitely liked driving the EV better but it cost more..what??) The article is rather long but is really worth the read.

Whats better, gas or electric?

More coverage of the Mach-E

This video and article from Jalopnik has a really good interview of the chief engineer for the Mach-E. It includes some of what I mentioned before about the Mustang name and much about the thought that went into the car. Very much worth a watch and read. (Article courtesy of the Mach-E forums.)

Speaking of good videos; the following one is a really good primer on charging an EV–its been making its rounds on a lot of the EV websites.

More coverage of the Mach-E

What’s in a name?

So here is my controversial post about the “Mustang Mach-E”: Many are disappointed Ford decided to put Mustang on the Mach-E. Strangely enough they are more concerned with the fact that it is an SUV/CUV rather than an EV (given that EV’s these days can outperform many ICE vehicles its no surprise).

My take: The use of Mustang is a message to consumers. Ford is saying: “We’re putting our best people on this, like we would a Mustang.” They say it in that “building the Mach-E” video (see below): It has to be worthy of the name (even Bill Ford at the beginning of the video kind of laughs it off “You want to call what a Mustang??”). It is a not so subtle shot across the bow (of Tesla, no less) that Ford will be making a compelling EV; something anyone would want to own…not just the people in the niche market that own’s EV’s because they like EV’s.

What’s in a name?