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Apple secretly met with Tesla CEO Elon Musk; also working on tech to predict heart attacks - Page 3

post #81 of 145
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Originally Posted by zoetmb View Post

While the technology advances at Tesla are very interesting, they are never going to be a mass-market producer and the Market expects Apple to be a mass-market producer (for better or worse).   Tesla is more like Next - very high end, very esoteric, very expensive and few bought it.
That is baloney! Tesla's goals are the mass market. The problem is you can't just start max producing cars of any type no matter how much money you have. It is nothing like building an iPad.
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I think if Apple bought Tesla, it would sink Apple's stock, in spite of the current hype over Tesla's stock.   (Or maybe I'm just envious because I'm never going to be able to afford a Tesla car and even if I did, have no place to recharge it anyway.)
I'm of mixed opinion here. Tesla has a very bright future, it is a great machine for many parts of the country.
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On the other hand, although medical devices are also somewhat of a niche market (depending upon the device), I think that if Apple can get involved in this area in a sophisticated way (more than that accessory you stick into a Nike shoe), that's something that can pull Apple far away from Android and the other competitors.    But it has to be far more than predicting heart attacks because the primary market, relatively young people, don't think they're ever going to have a heart attack.     (A herpes sensor might be a great idea, though!)
Sometimes I think people are stretching here. The value of a watch type device has yet to even be proven in the marketplace. The fact that the FDA has not seen reason to require regulation has pretty much indicated that at least the first version will not have all of the features that are rumored if nay of them.
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I'm very interested in anything Tom Holman brings to the table.   I still have a 35 year-old Apt-Holman preamp and it still sounds better than any reasonably priced audio device out there today.   In some ways, it's very Apple-like:   a very sophisticated device that's very easy to use, but with even more flexibility than Apple normally builds into its products.   I'd love to see Holman working on ways to make the audio in Apple's devices sound much better - I think that's an area that's been ignored the last few years and again, it would give Apple a competitive advantage.   And if Apple is working on a television, Holman should design the audio capabilities.  

Apple needs to put a lot of effort into audio performance, especially the built in speakers in the "I" devices. I'm actually disappointed that Apple hasn't gotten a handle on this relative to the iPads. Serious would it kill them to have front facing speakers with a little volume? I mention iPads because that is where I actually like to use the devices without ear buds.
post #82 of 145
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Originally Posted by Srice View Post

Yeah, here we go - a very L Ellison sounding quote -- Musk believes in the founder theory and Apple is done without Jobs... I hope Jobs biggest invention, Apple, lasts a long, long time.
There are as many arguments for as there are against that theory. In Apples case the big problem here is that Jobs wasn't as big a factor in the success of some of Apple devices as one might assume. That isn't to say his leadership wasn't important just that it has been pretty obvious, form both oral and researched histories, that the success of may Apple products was due to engineers working around Jobs direction.
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"...saying that Apple will likely lose out to Google in the smartphone business "because (former Apple CEO Steve) Jobs is out of the picture."
The evidence here is pretty clear, Apple has been very successful against Google.
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He added that "it really makes a difference who runs the company. (Google CEO) Larry Page is quite good and probably in the long run will come out on top." - E Musk



He is absolutely right which is why I have significant confidence in Apple right now. All of the critical people that helped rebuild the company are still there. They don't have a marketing genius right now but that might be why the woman from Burberry was hired. Jobs greatest achievements where not technology related, it was rather his ability to market Apple products in a way few CEO's can.

That Jobs is gone as that "marketing" CEO doesn't damn the company as many CEO's have zero marketing skills. People just need to come to grips with the idea that people are unique and Jobs is unfortunately gone.
post #83 of 145
You hit upon the critical issue with Electric cars.
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Originally Posted by Marvin View Post


The key element of the Tesla is the power source. Once you have that figured out, it's a done deal - same with airline travel or other transport. Nobody has figured out how to generate enough electricity in a portable way using renewable energy so they have to build an infrastructure to efficiently and conveniently transfer energy. This means building charging stations and getting users to adopt the new procedures.
Battery based electric vehicles will never be more than commuter cars. Not that that is a bad thing, but I just don't see reliable battery technology on the horizon. Especially battery technology that works well in todays sub zero temperatures.

At this point the only options I see are fuel cells and nuclear technologies. Unfortunately both fuel cells and nuclear technologies suffer from a lack of investment in R&D from both he car companies and the government. this is rather sad as the only reliable way to get a fast "recharge" is to pour something in a tank. Or in the case of a reactor new fuel for that reactor.

Some may thing the idea of a nuclear power source for a commuter car is crazy, but there is interesting technology out there that can allow for the possibility if it is developed past the research stage. These technologies would be relatively safe to boot.
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For electric cars to really take off, they need to overcome this hurdle.
Electric cars already fill an important niche as commuter cars. I just don't see battery based technology replacing more general use of an automobile.
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This means either figuring out how to build a portable generator or building a battery with a high enough energy density that you can carry it in your hand. That's not something you can rely on any brand name to come up with because of their history, it happens when it happens.

A portable generator would end up powering the car via fossil fuels and effectively be a hybrid car. Hybrids are actually a good idea. However why carry the "stuff" in your hand. The average person wouldn't be carrying a 20 gallon gasoline can around. Frankly you have about as much chance of carrying that much energy around in your hand (without it exploding) as you do with some of the reactor technologies on the horizon. At least a fusion reactor fuel wouldn't explode on you.

By the way if you look at the hysteria created every time a Tesla battery catches on fire (usually after a significant crash) you will realize just how stupid America has become. Sure the battery burns but it is nothing like a gasoline fire or explosion. If there is anything happening in this world that will undermine the success of future alternative energy vehicles it is this sort of totally irresponsible journalism. Storing energy means that you have the potential for unintended release of that energy, a fire, there is no way to get around that 100%.
post #84 of 145
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Originally Posted by Emes View Post


Touché, though I never meant it as an offensive statement.

The problem is the statement wasn't offensive it is rather blatantly ignorant. Energy storage by its nature is dangerous, to expect Tesla to instantly solve that problem is ridiculous. Frankly it doesn't matter if it is natural such a coal or even grain, or something man made such as gasoline, TNT or a battery. Any significant battery will have waring labels all over it warning people not to puncture or rip open that battery - why do you think that is?
post #85 of 145
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Originally Posted by focher View Post

Tesla fully intends to be a mass market car manufacturer, and they've demonstrated at every moment that they will do it. They started at the top of the market, but their intention is to deliver a mainstream EV in 2017. Those who doubt them continue to be wrong.
People just don't understand that starting up a car company isn't like starting up a burger stand! Of course if your entire life experience has been flipping burgers, maybe just maybe you can't wrap your head around the idea of what is involved in the automobile business.
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That said, cars are not consumer electronics. While there are obvious opportunities for a business partnership, outright ownership makes no sense. Elon Musk is the Edison / Ford of our time. He's not interested in working for anyone else.[/quote

In the context of electric cars this is total bull crap. Musk is no more a Ford than I am a Steve Jobs, there is nothing terribly inventive about Teslas cars The only technology that has hampered electric cars over the last century or so is the power source. Putting lithium batteries in a car isn't inventive at all, it is just exercising another option for the batteries.

Now if you want to talk about space exploration that might be seen as a different discussion. In the context of cars though, Musk is just another head of another car company.
post #86 of 145
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Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post

You hit upon the critical issue with Electric cars.
Battery based electric vehicles will never be more than commuter cars. Not that that is a bad thing, but I just don't see reliable battery technology on the horizon. Especially battery technology that works well in todays sub zero temperatures.

That's a strong statement to say they will 'never' be more than a niche product or commuter cars. Musk is already quoted as saying they'll have 500 mile range batteries fairly soon. 5 to 10 years from now we'll easily surpass 1,000 mile range from batteries.

I drive a Model S everyday as my only car and I hardly find 200+ mile range a niche. The only thing 'never' is appropriate for is that I never go to gas stations. Every morning my car is full and ready to go. If I take a road trip I stop at a supercharger on the way and recharge for free.

20 years from now gasoline cars will be the niche. Eventually electric cars will charge while in motion using inductive charging along major roads and highways. When that happens range will be effectively infinite, no need for miracle palm sized nuclear reactors or cold fusion.
post #87 of 145
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Originally Posted by Eric Swinson View Post

So you don't think higher density batteries and electric vehicles will ever be mass marketed?
You stuffed two unrelated question into one above. As to batteries I don't see a future where the density increases enough to allow electric cars to effectively replace gasoline power cars. Batteries have improved dramatically in every form over the last hundred years or so but we still don't have a power source that is well fitted to the needs of an automobile. At best battery power vehicles will remain commuter cars.

As for mass marketing that is happening now. Electric cars make good sense for two car families where it is basically a commuter machine. The only real hold up is costs which in part is due to the batteries. What Tesla and the industry needs for that matter, is a battery technology not tied up in patents and extremely high licensing costs. A technology by the way that works a hell of a lot better than the current lithium solutions.
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Just like NeXT, Tesla's technology could be introduced in more mainstream consumer oriented products. (Not just cars either.) Sure, while they make a premium product now, they are already woking on a followup SUV more geared for soccer moms. The model S is trailblazer designed to put (and prove) the technology in the hands of early adopters.
Hear is the problem, there isn't a lot of unique or new technology in a Tesla. The problem is the very high cost of the materials that go into the car. Electric motors have been around since the real Tesla and Westinghouse started producing them. Actually electric motors happened before then, but it was Tesla the came up with the polyphase motor that drove the industrial revolution. The only thing that is significantly different about the electric car is the battery and the inverter used to drive the electric motor. Inverters are commonly used in industry and in fact the drive to produce more reliable industrial hardware is what has made the Tesla inverter possible.

I've worked around industrial technology for many decades now, i fully understand that they technology for the motors and drives has been ready for a couple of decades now. The power source has always been the real problem with electric cars.
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On the medical devices I somewhat disagree with you.  Apple has proven many times over that it can turn seemingly niche markets into exciting mainstream product categories. If they make it simple enough to use and fairly reliable, you might see them do very well, especially if it can tie into the rest of their iEcosystem.  
I'm very much wait and see on this one.
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Even if this doesn't bear fruit, if it is an indication of the direction Apple is heading, I'm excited to see what comes next. 
The biggest problem I have here is that a simple meeting gets blown out of proportion. First it is labeled as secret to generate page clicks and then devolves from there. There are many many things that could have been discussed in such a meeting.
post #88 of 145
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Originally Posted by Sigma4Life View Post

That's a strong statement to say they will 'never' be more than a niche product or commuter cars. Musk is already quoted as saying they'll have 500 mile range batteries fairly soon. 5 to 10 years from now we'll easily surpass 1,000 mile range from batteries.
I would have to say that is a pretty strong statement on Musks part and frankly I wish he was right. However this is a nut that science has been working on for decades now and we only get very modest increases in capacity every couple of years. I would be completely shocked if in 5 years we have a battery that can give us a 1000 mile range in any car I'd want to drive. Imagine a guy with size 15+ feet.
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I drive a Model S everyday as my only car and I hardly find 200+ mile range a niche. The only thing 'never' is appropriate for is that I never go to gas stations. Every morning my car is full and ready to go. If I take a road trip I stop at a supercharger on the way and recharge for free.
So where do you live? I only ask because I'd like to know how the car works when the temperatures drop below zero and head to -20°. The one thing I've noticed about Tesla owners is that they always seem to use their vehicles under ideal conditions. If you need to plan your trips around a limited number of charging stations then effectively you have a commuter vehicle.
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20 years from now gasoline cars will be the niche. Eventually electric cars will charge while in motion using inductive charging along major roads and highways.
I can't imaging tax payers approving such a waste of tax payer money! The weather is so brutal with respect to the roads that supporting such highways would bankrupt any states building them. Beyond that I've yet to see a demonstration of an inductive charring system for a vehicle running on the road that is anywhere efficient enough to justify for an automobile. The idea with Electrics is to save energy and clean up the environment, gross waste is not what we want to see.
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When that happens range will be effectively infinite, no need for miracle palm sized nuclear reactors or cold fusion.

By the way I said nothing about palm sized reactors, I was responding to the idea mentioned by another poster. As to the reactors they would be very hot indeed. Frankly nuclear technologies are the only rational solution of the future. Solar and other so called green solutions lead to a gross waste of land space which is far too limited for the current population not to mention the population that we will see a few decades from now.
post #89 of 145
I don't think Apple is interested in Tesla's battery technology because they are not especially light or dense and cost a lot.
It is possible that Apple is in talks to build a new battery plant that utilizes new battery technologies that have at least twice the capacity of the best current batteries and 1000+ charge cycles without significant loss of capacity. This technique is currently available and Apple can buy the patents (for the right price of course).
I don't think Apple is interested in Tesla's motor technique because future electric cars will have wheel hub motors possibly including steering and suspension (note that 'unsprung weight' can be reduced by the use of advanced materials like aluminum, carbon fibre and liquid metal; combine this with carbon nanotube wires to make it actually less than that of current cars).
Maybe Apple is interested in building a factory for this kind of advanced motors that will revolutionize the car industry.
Tesla could use Apples iPad to make its car and software look better, because it's current display and 'fit and finish' in general is not up to par compared to rest of the industry (a Peugeot 208 has a better display position and design for example).
Tesla could also use Apples software development because that is Apples best asset.
post #90 of 145
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Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post

I would have to say that is a pretty strong statement on Musks part and frankly I wish he was right. However this is a nut that science has been working on for decades now and we only get very modest increases in capacity every couple of years. I would be completely shocked if in 5 years we have a battery that can give us a 1000 mile range in any car I'd want to drive. Imagine a guy with size 15+ feet.

Why people continue to doubt Elon Musk is beyond me. He knows more about battery technology than any of us. Based on his track record I think he's earned the benefit of the doubt.

Battery technology improves at about 15% per year. That means later this year tesla will likely introduce a 350+ mile battery for the Model S. In 4 years they will be at 600+ mile batteries and In 8 years they will provide 1,000+ mile batteries. As Elon said, this will NOT require a miracle to achieve.

Also, based on your comment, I can safely assume you have never driven a Model S. The only reason to NOT want a Model S is if you routinely drive 250+ miles a day. Why else would you not want a car that has instantaneous torque at any speed, goes 0 - 60 in 3.9 seconds, has the storage space of an SUV, downloads software updates like an iPhone / iPad, and gets the equivalent of 90 miles per gallon. To top it off the cost of fuel (electricity) is 1/5 the cost of gas.
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So where do you live? I only ask because I'd like to know how the car works when the temperatures drop below zero and head to -20°. The one thing I've noticed about Tesla owners is that they always seem to use their vehicles under ideal conditions. If you need to plan your trips around a limited number of charging stations then effectively you have a commuter vehicle.

I live in Texas so cold weather isn't an issue for me specifically but you're making a huge incorrect assumption about Teslas. The Model S was the #1 selling car in Norway at the end of last year. The customers there love the performance of the car in the cold.

http://cleantechnica.com/2013/12/23/tesla-model-s-great-winter-driving-norway-video/
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I can't imaging tax payers approving such a waste of tax payer money! The weather is so brutal with respect to the roads that supporting such highways would bankrupt any states building them. Beyond that I've yet to see a demonstration of an inductive charring system for a vehicle running on the road that is anywhere efficient enough to justify for an automobile. The idea with Electrics is to save energy and clean up the environment, gross waste is not what we want to see.

I hardly think it would be a waste of money. Paying for wars to take foreign oil is a waste of money but converting the world to renewable energy sources is a noble and great endeavor.

It's not a very good argument to say you've never seen XYZ before so therefore it can never exist. Just like the iPhone, iPad, and Model S, just because something doesn't exist today doesn't mean it won't exist tomorrow.
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By the way I said nothing about palm sized reactors, I was responding to the idea mentioned by another poster. As to the reactors they would be very hot indeed. Frankly nuclear technologies are the only rational solution of the future. Solar and other so called green solutions lead to a gross waste of land space which is far too limited for the current population not to mention the population that we will see a few decades from now.

Electricity is prevalent and easy to distribute to every inch of the US and just about anywhere in the world. I think people refuse to see the forest for the trees. Nuclear technologies are valuable since they can produce energy for the grid which will reach cars. There is however enough surface area to provide a significant source of energy from fully renewable sources like wind and solar.
post #91 of 145
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Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post

Some may thing the idea of a nuclear power source for a commuter car is crazy, but there is interesting technology out there that can allow for the possibility if it is developed past the research stage. These technologies would be relatively safe to boot.

I'm all for nuclear powered transport:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nuclear_submarines

25 years without refuelling. Same with power for homes. Relying on and paying for the electrical grid or gas shouldn't be necessary. It just needs fusion to be figured out:

http://www.theguardian.com/science/2014/feb/12/nuclear-fusion-breakthrough-green-energy-source

Lasers and gold, the stuff of James Bond. If nuclear fusion is eventually figured out, that's it, clean energy for all transport, all homes. Undeveloped countries will take off big time because they'll be able to power electronics and refrigerators easily and travel will be inexpensive. Flights right across the world will cost next to nothing. It can bring about the flying car because limitless power means you aren't limited in what method you use to move around, no more traffic.
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Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post

why carry the "stuff" in your hand. The average person wouldn't be carrying a 20 gallon gasoline can around.

It has to be replaced. Transferring charge is too slow but switching it out for a fully charged unit is fast. Tesla had a demo of a system for replacing the entire battery in the Tesla within minutes - faster than refilling a standard car.

If the energy density of batteries increased 1000x (think 10x in each dimension), a Tesla battery would be the size of a laptop battery. You could have two in the car and when one runs out, it switches onto the next one and you drive into the nearest supermarket or post office to pick up a full one for a small fee while handing over your empty one. These units can be charged at industrial plants or in special areas at supermarkets.

If these kind of batteries were in electronic devices, you'd never need to recharge the device for say 3 years and then you'd just take it in for a new battery. Things like Magsafe could disappear entirely. Maybe not Lightning as it's also for data but the bundled AC plug could and even for data, fast wireless can replace it.
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Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post

if you look at the hysteria created every time a Tesla battery catches on fire (usually after a significant crash) you will realize just how stupid America has become. Sure the battery burns but it is nothing like a gasoline fire or explosion. If there is anything happening in this world that will undermine the success of future alternative energy vehicles it is this sort of totally irresponsible journalism. Storing energy means that you have the potential for unintended release of that energy, a fire, there is no way to get around that 100.

It's because it's new technology. It's the same with an iPhone catching fire. In fact, this might be what they are working on because there was a news article recently about a development in batteries that can't catch fire:

http://www.engadget.com/2014/02/11/non-flammable-battery-could-end-laptop-fires/

That kind of technology would benefit them both.
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Originally Posted by Sigma4Life 
Eventually electric cars will charge while in motion using inductive charging along major roads and highways.

That has the catch-22 problem. Who can justify the expense of lifting up every road in order to satisfy the small portion of owners? Maybe if public transport switches entirely too. There has only been 25,000 Tesla S models sold worldwide in just over a year. It also requires every electric car manufacturer to follow a charging routine that might be improved by some fast-charging batteries. There's also the issue of who pays for the electricity.

The Tesla range as it stands is fine, I don't think capacity is the problem that needs to be solved but charging time. If they can get the supercharge station down from an hour to 5-10 minutes, that would help a lot. Trouble is, does every other manufacturer have to come up with their own charging option? It doesn't matter what model of standard car you buy, you can refill it at the same station. It's the same issue with everything Apple does - they want to do it all so that it's all done properly but then it limits their unit volume.
post #92 of 145
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Originally Posted by sirozha View Post

Tesla is going mainstream soon. The price of the vehicle made for the masses will be in the $30,000 range. If the government keeps their tax credit, this vehicle will be affordable for 25-30% of the American families - maybe more.

If Tesla can keep the range in this vehicle above 100 miles, they will be selling them like hotcakes. I live in a town where Nissan Leaf is extremely popular - not sure why. I work from home, but every time I go for a short drive, I see 4 to 6 of t them within a 10 minute drive. Sometimes, they follow one another. So, the percentage of them is pretty high already, and they don't even go for longer than 80 miles.

This is the future, and the future is coming within a year or two.

100 miles? Gordon Bennett! I admittedly know very little about Tesla other than it's hot property and some people clearly see a synergy with Apple, but, for me, the problem with electric cars is the incredibly low range. When they start to reach 400/500 miles, I’ll become interested.
"If the young are not initiated into the village, they will burn it down just to feel its warmth."
- African proverb
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"If the young are not initiated into the village, they will burn it down just to feel its warmth."
- African proverb
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post #93 of 145
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Originally Posted by Ireland View Post

Jean-Luc, you misspelt your username. There's one 'e' in Earl.

And one earl in yster.
"If the young are not initiated into the village, they will burn it down just to feel its warmth."
- African proverb
Reply
"If the young are not initiated into the village, they will burn it down just to feel its warmth."
- African proverb
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post #94 of 145
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Originally Posted by Benjamin Frost View Post

100 miles? Gordon Bennett! I admittedly know very little about Tesla other than it's hot property and some people clearly see a synergy with Apple, but, for me, the problem with electric cars is the incredibly low range. When they start to reach 400/500 miles, I’ll become interested.

I think the large Tesla is above 200 miles but a smaller, cheaper car could have a smaller battery. But I'd still agree that an affordable car would have to retain a decent range. The plus I suppose is that it would charge more quickly so if you don't go more than 100 miles in a day, a small town car Tesla could easily be charged every night at home in 3 or 4 hours.

That's the other thing with home charging though is that not everyone has their own garage where they can install a charging point so lots of people have no home charging option at all. Easily replaceable batteries or fast charge points are the only way lower income families will be able to use electric cars.
post #95 of 145
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Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post


You stuffed two unrelated question into one above. As to batteries I don't see a future where the density increases enough to allow electric cars to effectively replace gasoline power cars. Batteries have improved dramatically in every form over the last hundred years or so but we still don't have a power source that is well fitted to the needs of an automobile. At best battery power vehicles will remain commuter cars.

As for mass marketing that is happening now. Electric cars make good sense for two car families where it is basically a commuter machine. The only real hold up is costs which in part is due to the batteries. What Tesla and the industry needs for that matter, is a battery technology not tied up in patents and extremely high licensing costs. A technology by the way that works a hell of a lot better than the current lithium solutions.
 

 

Considering real road trips are a rare occurrence, most of our car use, in America, is commuting. A sedan or SUV class vehicle with a 200 - 300 mile radius is practical for just about any imaginable use short of long distance road trips, and even then, quick charging makes that practical. Back and forth to work, trips to the store, kids to school and sports - the fact that it can be done today is impressive enough. How many of us go visit the grandparents out of state on a daily basis? You aren't going to replace the mail and UPS trucks, or a taxi with electric only alternatives anytime soon, but replacing the sea of idling cars during rush hours with clean electric "commuters" is a huge step.  I think many families will only have an electric car and maybe just rent the occasional gasser for their great American road trips, or perhaps get accustomed to taking the train, which is what most of Europe already does anyway. 

 

That fact that energy density in batteries is such a hard won achievement, even technology that delivers slight improvements over current levels will hold significant competitive advantages in the marketplace. What may only add a few dozen miles of range to an electric car could add hours to the life of a phone or laptop and wearable technologies are going to be expected to last days if not weeks before needing to be charged. We also can't rule out advancements in solar power which seems to be on the verge of a small revolution on its own. 

 

I'm not going to read too much into a few meetings Apple may have had, but I'm certain they are not sitting around doing nothing. If you look at where they are filing patents in the areas of wearable technologies and car integration as well as their investment in clean energy systems for their data centers, you can start to get a better understanding of their mindset and direction they seem to be heading in. While the world is fretting over smartphone marketshare they are busy shaping the future. 


Edited by Eric Swinson - 2/17/14 at 6:53pm
post #96 of 145
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Originally Posted by Ireland View Post

Btw, heart disease, strokes and aneurysms may be caused by a lack of vitamin C. No joke. This is according to the only person to have won 2 unshared nobel prizes, Linus Pauling. After investigating this for some time and looking through years of research on the benefits of vitamin C Pauling theorised that it was actually a lack of L-ascorbic acid (otherwise known as vitamin C) in the body which caused the initial 'cut' to form inside the artery. And then subsequently it's just a matter of time while the body deliberate adds plaque to the injured area in an attempt to 'fix' the problem. The body mistakingly uses plaque to patch up the problem because it lacks the collagen to heal the tissue weakness. Guess what acid is used to make collagen? It's a very simple theory, and I'm going on the assumption that in the years to come it will be proven correct. Collagen strengthens skin, veins, arteries and other parts of the body. It's worth looking into.
Oh god not again. This has been proven wrong over and over again. Sadly this Noble prize winner has lost almost all of his credit clinging on to this theory. Last data show an increased mortality when using high dose vitamin C .
post #97 of 145
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Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post

You hit upon the critical issue with Electric cars.
[1] Battery based electric vehicles will never be more than commuter cars. Not that that is a bad thing, but I just don't see reliable battery technology on the horizon...

[2] By the way if you look at the hysteria created every time a Tesla battery catches on fire (usually after a significant crash) you will realise just how stupid America has become. Sure the battery burns but it is nothing like a gasoline fire or explosion. If there is anything happening in this world that will undermine the success of future alternative energy vehicles it is this sort of totally irresponsible journalism. Storing energy means that you have the potential for unintended release of that energy, a fire, there is no way to get around that 100%.

[1] You might be aware of this work, however, the field of energy storage continues to surprise - http://www.technologyreview.com/news/524781/a-battery-with-liquid-electrodes-can-be-recharged-or-refilled/

 

[2] A lot of vested interests are lining up against Elon Musk in both of the fields in which he is currently, visibly active. Existing interests do not like visionaries but when such visionaries make significant progress in disrupting the status quo, dislike can become a vehement campaign.

 

All the best.

Where are we on the curve? We'll know once it goes asymptotic!
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Where are we on the curve? We'll know once it goes asymptotic!
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post #98 of 145
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That has the catch-22 problem. Who can justify the expense of lifting up every road in order to satisfy the small portion of owners? Maybe if public transport switches entirely too. There has only been 25,000 Tesla S models sold worldwide in just over a year. It also requires every electric car manufacturer to follow a charging routine that might be improved by some fast-charging batteries. There's also the issue of who pays for the electricity.

The Tesla range as it stands is fine, I don't think capacity is the problem that needs to be solved but charging time. If they can get the supercharge station down from an hour to 5-10 minutes, that would help a lot. Trouble is, does every other manufacturer have to come up with their own charging option? It doesn't matter what model of standard car you buy, you can refill it at the same station. It's the same issue with everything Apple does - they want to do it all so that it's all done properly but then it limits their unit volume.

 

I'm just giving an example of what's possible when the world completely converts to electric vehicles. You're right that current technology would be expensive and cumbersome, but no doubt new ways of charging will be introduced in the future. Apple already has a patent for wireless charging. http://www.patentlyapple.com/patently-apple/2013/12/apple-wins-patents-for-wireless-charging-system-new-mac-pro.html  Why can't this type of technology also be adapted to cars?

 

Imagine powerful charging stations positioned strategically along roads similarly to how cellular towers are positioned to give maximum coverage. You could charge your car while driving on a freeway, parked at a store, sitting at a red light, etc. The possibilities for electric cars are limitless. Gasoline burning cars are DONE and will probably be extinct in 100 years.

 

Technology we take for granted today was pure science fiction 30 years ago. The science fiction of today will also be mainstream in 30 years.

post #99 of 145
Quote:
Originally Posted by Benjamin Frost View Post

100 miles? Gordon Bennett! I admittedly know very little about Tesla other than it's hot property and some people clearly see a synergy with Apple, but, for me, the problem with electric cars is the incredibly low range. When they start to reach 400/500 miles, I’ll become interested.

The top-of-the-line Model S goes for 300 miles already. The battery can be switched in less than two minutes. That car costs over $100,000.

For a $30,0000 car, you can't expect the range to be 300 miles yet. But let's say it is 120 miles. This range is more than adequate for 80% of people in America and Canada as well as for 95% of Europeans for a second car for commuting to work and running errands.

In fact, you could have both of your family cars to be Tesla, and a few times per year you need to drive out of town, you could rent an internal-combustion-engine vehicle.
post #100 of 145
Quote:
Originally Posted by sirozha View Post

The battery can be switched in less than two minutes.

What do you mean by "can be"? I saw the presentation on the fast battery swap but I haven't seen a single station that offers it.

Quote:
But let's say it is 120 miles. This range is more than adequate for 80% of people in America and Canada as well as for 95% of Europeans as a second car for commuting to work and running errands.

In fact, you could have both of your family cars to be Tesla, and a few times per year you need to drive out of town, you could rent an internal-combustion-engine vehicle.

I see two issues.

1) The range of a vehicle you can't reasonably "refuel" on the go needs to be compared against some shorter distance, not the round trip. Perhaps something like a half-life of the range for round trips.

2) The idea of renting a car just to go out of town makes the whole notion of an electric car a poor option. If I am paying more than $100k for a luxury sedan I'd like to enjoy that sedan on the longer trips, not just quick 2 mile trips to the grocery store.

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post #101 of 145

I don't think electric or even gas-electric hybrids are the answer. They seem to be transitional type technology to get us to that next level. At least right now it appears that hydrogen fuel cell cars might have the best chance for mass adoption if they can address the shortcomings. You can fill them up just like gas in only 5 minutes and they can go for up to 400 miles on a tank and they get the gas equivalent of around 60MPG. The two weak points are the price of hydrogen which is high and the lack of service stations to fill up your car. If enough existing service stations offer a pump then that would solve at least one problem. I look forward to seeing the new models coming out later this year. Gas will still be with us for a long while yet but it is interesting to see what the future holds. 

 

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-switch/wp/2014/01/24/i-tried-a-hydrogen-fuel-cell-vehicle-heres-what-it-was-like/?tid=hpModule_1728cf4a-8a79-11e2-98d9-3012c1cd8d1e


Edited by gwmac - 2/18/14 at 8:47am
post #102 of 145
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post


What do you mean by "can be"? I saw the presentation on the fast battery swap but I haven't seen a single station that offers it.
I see two issues.

1) The range of a vehicle you can't reasonably "refuel" on the go needs to be compared against some shorter distance, not the round trip. Perhaps something like a half-life of the range for round trips.

2) The idea of renting a car just to go out of town makes the whole notion of an electric car a poor option. If I am paying more than $100k for a luxury sedan I'd like to enjoy that sedan on the longer trips, not just quick 2 mile trips to the grocery store.

In California, the battery swap stations are already there, and are built within the Tesla range from one another. Additionally, if you own a Tesla, you can charge it for free at many electric charging stations in California. There are 75 Super Charging stations in North America already, and you can now drive coast to coast by getting your Tesla charged at Super Charging stations only. A Super Charging station can charge a Tesla Model S in 30 minutes for a range of 170 miles. By the end of 2014, 80% of US population will be covered by Super Charging stations. By the end of 2015, 98% of US population will be covered. Super Charging stations are located near restaurants and shopping centers, so an hour-long rest stop will allow you to fully recharge the battery in a Tesla.

 

We are not talking about a car that costs more than $100K with a range of 120 miles. Those will be different Tesla models (not Model S), which will cost in the neighborhood of $30,000 give or take. Currently, the least expensive Tesla Model S has a range of 208 miles and costs $63,570. There's no shortage of demand - you have to wait 2-3 months for a Tesla to be delivered once you order yours.  

 

Last June was a great opportunity to invest in Tesla, when it was $30 something per share. Today it's $204. This is nearly a 600% rise in stock price in eight months.  

post #103 of 145
Quote:
Originally Posted by gwmac View Post
 

I don't think electric or even gas-electric hybrids are the answer. They seem to be transitional type technology to get us to that next level. At least right now it appears that hydrogen fuel cell cars might have the best chance for mass adoption if they can address the shortcomings. You can fill them up just like gas in only 5 minutes and they can go for up to 400 miles on a tank and they get the gas equivalent of around 60MPG. The two weak points are the price of hydrogen which is high and the lack of service stations to fill up your car. If enough existing service stations offer a pump then that would solve at least one problem. I look forward to seeing the new models coming out later this year. Gas will still be with us for a long while yet but it is interesting to see what the future holds. 

 

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-switch/wp/2014/01/24/i-tried-a-hydrogen-fuel-cell-vehicle-heres-what-it-was-like/?tid=hpModule_1728cf4a-8a79-11e2-98d9-3012c1cd8d1e

How do you obtain hydrogen from water? Any ideas other than harnessing energy generated by fossil fuels to get pure hydrogen?  

post #104 of 145

This makes sense.  They both use cell phone batteries.  Mush wants to build a big cell phone type battery plant.  Both companies can use the batteries.

post #105 of 145
Originally Posted by mlbusler View Post
Mush wants to build a big cell phone type battery plant.  Both companies can use the batteries.

 

Apple’s battery tech doubles the range of Tesla vehicles. Tesla’s battery factory builds Apple’s battery tech on an industrial scale for cheap.

 

Win win.

post #106 of 145
Quote:
Originally Posted by sirozha View Post

... Any ideas other than harnessing energy generated by fossil fuels to get pure hydrogen? 
Think of hydrogen as an energy storage medium. Hydrogen can be used in an ICE much like compressed natural gas. Several years ago, BMW had a fleet of 7-Series sedans on the road that did just that. However, the consensus is that hydrogen is put to its best use in fuel cells.

Opponents of hydrogen go on ad nauseam ad infinitum about the source of electricity used to extract hydrogen from its source. They try to drown-out thoughts about a very important fact about electricity--its source is flexible. Your electricity may be generated by a coal-fired plant. It may also be generated by photovoltaic cells. Coal-fired plants have numerous issues. Photovoltaic cells generate electricity from the Sun, a free and inexhaustible source. Other sources fall somewhere between coal and solar with respect to issues involving source energy. You cannot put a coal, oil, or nuclear power plant in your basement. However, you can put an array of solar cells on your roof or in your back yard that will satisfy all of your electric needs for your car and your home. Many home owners are doing this now. Many new businesses are moving into buildings that generate some or all of their electric via photoelectric cells.

From where I sit, the most environmentally friend source of hydrogen is the electrolysis of water. You may have done this in your high school chemistry class. However, the fossil fuel producers want us to produce hydrogen by reforming methane. Reforming methane produces CO2, one of the by-products that we want to avoid by switching to hydrogen in the first place. If we produce electricity by burning coal, oil, or natural gas [methane], then we will generate CO2. However, there are methods of generating electricity that do not burn fossil fuels. These include hydroelectric, wind, nuclear, solar, ocean waves, etc. Obviously, some of these alternatives are better than others.

The point is that we have choices. It is up to us not to surrender our choices.
post #107 of 145
Quote:
Originally Posted by sirozha View Post

The top-of-the-line Model S goes for 300 miles already. The battery can be switched in less than two minutes. That car costs over $100,000.

For a $30,0000 car, you can't expect the range to be 300 miles yet. But let's say it is 120 miles. This range is more than adequate for 80% of people in America and Canada as well as for 95% of Europeans for a second car for commuting to work and running errands.

In fact, you could have both of your family cars to be Tesla, and a few times per year you need to drive out of town, you could rent an internal-combustion-engine vehicle.

I don't agree that 120 miles range is adequate for anyone. All the millions of people that don't own a garage park on the street; how do they recharge overnight?

Batteries have to be replaced after a few years at great expense; not so for conventional engines.

Batteries take so long to charge! Petrol or diesel lets you increase your range by 600 miles within a couple of minutes; miles quicker than electricity. Handy in an emergency.
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post #108 of 145
The statements made in this post vary from alarmism to outright falsehoods.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Benjamin Frost View Post


I don't agree that 120 miles range is adequate for anyone. All the millions of people that don't own a garage park on the street; how do they recharge overnight?
To the contrary, A range of 120 miles is adequate for not just "anyone," it is adequate for the vast majority of people the vast majority of the time. For some reason, I surmise that you meant everyone rather than anyone. Most people will acknowledge that nothing fits the needs of 100% of the people 100% of the time.

Petroleum-powered vehicles force compromises. It is unrealistic to expect electric vehicles not to force compromises.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Benjamin Frost View Post


Batteries have to be replaced after a few years at great expense; not so for conventional engines.
You are either spreading deliberate misinformation or you are being deliberately uninformed. One of the features being developed is the fast swap of batteries convenience stores and service stations that cater to electric cars. Suffice it to say, the swap would take a few seconds and be very inexpensive.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Benjamin Frost View Post


Batteries take so long to charge! Petrol or diesel lets you increase your range by 600 miles within a couple of minutes; miles quicker than electricity. Handy in an emergency.
Again, you are either deliberately spreading misinformation or you are being deliberately uninformed. Tesla has setup a network--currently standing at 75--Supercharger battery recharging stations across the United States with an island of Superchargers in Texas. There are currently 14 Supercharger stations in Europe. These stations recharge the Tesla battery in 30 minutes at no charge to the vehicle owner. If you travel with friends or family, then your passengers will want to eat and shop at each stop during your journey. Your battery will be recharged long before your passengers finish their meals.

It is now possible for a Tesla owner to drive from Vancouver, BC to Miami, FL and to pay nothing for the battery recharges required to complete the trip. Try that in a petroleum-powered car!

Learn more about the Tesla Supercharger network here--if you dare.
post #109 of 145
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Me View Post

To the contrary, A range of 120 miles is adequate for not just "anyone," it is adequate for the vast majority of people the vast majority of the time. For some reason, I surmise that you meant everyone rather than anyone. Most people will acknowledge that nothing fits the needs of 100% of the people 100% of the time.

I understand that most daily trips are well under 120 miles but for an assumption to made that 120 mile roundtrip range of transportation is good enough for the "vast majority" you need to be sure the "vast majority" never needs to drive over 60 miles, one-way, in a day. I don't think the "vast majority" would fall into that situation and the idea of then renting or owning a spare internal combustion engine vehicle specifically for traveling more than a 60 mile radius from your home is not a comforting argument for the future of electric vehicles.

Furthermore, if it's rated for 120 miles I assume that's highway miles. How many miles are wasted by acceleration and idling? You also need to have enough of a cushion to feasibly not get ever get stuck because you have a dead battery. This then means you need to make sure the "vast majority" never need to use a car for more than probably 100 miles round trip between charges.

I use Automatic and despite how much highway driving I do I still only average about 34 miles per hour. For example, since Monday I have driven nearly 400 miles and have had my car running for about 8.5 hours.

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post #110 of 145
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post


I understand that most daily trips are well under 120 miles but for an assumption to made that 120 mile roundtrip range of transportation is good enough for the "vast majority" you need to be sure the "vast majority" never needs to drive over 60 miles, one-way, in a day. I don't think the "vast majority" would fall into that situation and the idea of then renting or owning a spare internal combustion engine vehicle specifically for traveling more than a 60 mile radius from your home is not a comforting argument for the future of electric vehicles.

Furthermore, if it's rated for 120 miles I assume that's highway miles. How many miles are wasted by acceleration and idling? You also need to have enough of a cushion to feasibly not get ever get stuck because you have a dead battery. This then means you need to make sure the "vast majority" never need to use a car for more than probably 100 miles round trip between charges.

I use Automatic and despite how much highway driving I do I still only average about 34 miles per hour. For example, since Monday I have driven nearly 400 miles and have had my car running for about 8.5 hours.

 

I don't know where you're getting your data because 92% of US commuters drive less than 35 miles each way during their daily commutes. That means a 120 mile electric car (even with an effective range of just 90 miles) would be good enough for 90% of the US on most days. Considering that more and more employers are installing EV chargers, the commuter could very well be fully charged before leaving work each day. 

 

http://www.statisticbrain.com/commute-statistics/

 

Also, electric cars get better range at lower speeds. The Model S can get 400 miles on a charge if you were to consistently drive about 30 mph. At 55 mph it gets 300 miles. At typical speeds of 65 - 70 it gets about 250 miles per charge.

post #111 of 145
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sigma4Life View Post

I don't know where you're getting your data because 92% of US commuters drive less than 35 miles each way during their daily commutes. That means a 120 mile electric car (even with an effective range of just 90 miles) would be good enough for 90% of the US. 

http://www.statisticbrain.com/commute-statistics/

Also, electric cars get better range at lower speeds. The Model S can get 400 miles on a charge if you were to consistently drive about 30 mph. At 55 mph it gets 300 miles. At typical speeds of 65 - 70 it gets about 250 miles per charge.

So these 92% never travel more than 70 miles in a day?

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post #112 of 145
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Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post


So these 92% never travel more than 70 miles in a day?

 

You're changing the topic now. You went from discussing 'most daily trips' to what a driver occasionally does. The majority of the time 92% of commuters are just fine with a 120 mile EV. That's the point. 92% of the time an EV user can charge at home overnight, drive to work and run errands each day, then return home and plug in. Rinse, dry, repeat.

 

For the other 8% of the time when you do need to make a longer trip you can use a FREE super charger (if you own a Tesla). Stopping for 20 extra minutes saves you $50 in gas expenses. My time is valuable but I don't mind waiting 20 minutes for $50 in my pocket. If it were a job salary that's the equivalent of making $150 / hour ($300,000 / year). 

post #113 of 145
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sigma4Life View Post

You're changing the topic now. You went from discussing 'most daily trips' to what a driver occasionally does. The majority of the time 92% of commuters are just fine with a 120 mile EV. That's the point. 92% of the time an EV user can charge at home overnight, drive to work and run errands each day, then return home and plug in. Rinse, dry, repeat.

For the other 8% of the time when you do need to make a longer trip you can use a FREE super charger (if you own a Tesla). Stopping for 20 extra minutes saves you $50 in gas expenses. My time is valuable but I don't mind waiting 20 minutes for $50 in my pocket. If it were a job salary that's the equivalent of making $150 / hour ($300,000 / year). 

Why wouldn't you want to count what people potentially do with a car? My parents didn't need a station wagon for the family except for the infrequent road trips but they bought one with that in mind. My father, who drove to and from work every day would have loved to have instead had a two-seat convertible but it's impractical for the bigger picture so why would you or anyone else make an isolated scenario that doesn't cover the real world driving habits that people do use their vehicles for, even if infrequently?

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post #114 of 145
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Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post


Why wouldn't you want to count what people potentially do with a car? My parents didn't need a station wagon for the family except for the infrequent road trips but they bought one with that in mind. My father, who drove to and from work every day would have loved to have instead had a two-seat convertible but it's impractical for the bigger picture so why would you or anyone else make an isolated scenario that doesn't cover the real world driving habits that people do use their vehicles for, even if infrequently?

 

You're right, the things people potentially will want to do is important too. That's why I got the 85kW Model S. I have 200+ miles of range even though I rarely drive more than 50 - 60 miles in a day. The most important value any product is whether it suits your needs the vast majority of the time you need it. For me I'm in driver's bliss 99% of the time using my Model S. For the 1% of the time I need to make a cross country trip I'll rent a car or live with the extra charging times.

 

I'd rather be happy with my car 99% of the time and inconvenienced 1% of the time than drive an inferior car 99% of the time just so I'm prepared for the 1% chance I'll drive long distances.

post #115 of 145
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sigma4Life View Post

You're right, the things people potentially will want to do is important too. That's why I got the 85kW Model S. I have 200+ miles of range even though I rarely drive more than 50 - 60 miles in a day. The most important value any product is whether it suits your needs the vast majority of the time you need it. For me I'm in driver's bliss 99% of the time using my Model S. For the 1% of the time I need to make a cross country trip I'll rent a car or live with the extra charging times.

I'd rather be happy with my car 99% of the time and inconvenienced 1% of the time than drive an inferior car 99% of the time just so I'm prepared for the 1% chance I'll drive long distances.

And that's the reasoning that led to Toyota's Prius line becoming best-selling hybrid vehicles.

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post #116 of 145
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sigma4Life View Post
 

I'd rather be happy with my car 99% of the time and inconvenienced 1% of the time than drive an inferior car 99% of the time just so I'm prepared for the 1% chance I'll drive long distances.

 

And interestingly that also seems to be the Apple approach with iOS.  Synergies of product philosophy here.

 

I just had a thought, Apple should buy Tesla!

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post #117 of 145
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Me View Post

The statements made in this post vary from alarmism to outright falsehoods.
To the contrary, A range of 120 miles is adequate for not just "anyone," it is adequate for the vast majority of people the vast majority of the time. For some reason, I surmise that you meant everyone rather than anyone. Most people will acknowledge that nothing fits the needs of 100% of the people 100% of the time.

Petroleum-powered vehicles force compromises. It is unrealistic to expect electric vehicles not to force compromises.
You are either spreading deliberate misinformation or you are being deliberately uninformed. One of the features being developed is the fast swap of batteries convenience stores and service stations that cater to electric cars. Suffice it to say, the swap would take a few seconds and be very inexpensive.
Again, you are either deliberately spreading misinformation or you are being deliberately uninformed. Tesla has setup a network--currently standing at 75--Supercharger battery recharging stations across the United States with an island of Superchargers in Texas. There are currently 14 Supercharger stations in Europe. These stations recharge the Tesla battery in 30 minutes at no charge to the vehicle owner. If you travel with friends or family, then your passengers will want to eat and shop at each stop during your journey. Your battery will be recharged long before your passengers finish their meals.

It is now possible for a Tesla owner to drive from Vancouver, BC to Miami, FL and to pay nothing for the battery recharges required to complete the trip. Try that in a petroleum-powered car!

Learn more about the Tesla Supercharger network here--if you dare.

No, I meant anyone, not everyone.

Your logic is flawed. To say that for the "vast majority of time", 120 miles is sufficient for the "vast majority" is a bit like saying that for 99% of the time, the vast majority of the time, most people don't need running water. The idea of people renting cars whenever they need to go on holiday, Christmas, visit aged relatives, visit friends etc. is not an attractive proposition for most people because of the hassle, let alone the cost.

Your glowing appraisal of electric vehicles relies on a ludicrously tiny number of charging stations.

You seem to think that stopping for half an hour on a motorway to wait for your car to recharge is preferable to filling up in a couple of minutes! What world are you living in?

You talk about battery-swapping being cheap and quick, but you say that it's a feature being developed, so that's a non-existent feature at the present time.

"There are currently 14 Supercharger stations in Europe. These stations recharge the Tesla battery in 30 minutes at no charge to the vehicle owner. If you travel with friends or family, then your passengers will want to eat and shop at each stop during your journey. Your battery will be recharged long before your passengers finish their meals."

This is just a hilarious paragraph! Oh dear, I'm running low on electricity, so I’ll just nip along to my local Supercharger in Europe—oh, there are only 14 you say? That'll be a 500 mile trip to the nearest then...

"Your passengers will want to eat and shop at each stop during your journey". That's the most ridiculous sentence I've read for a long time!

You seem to think that I've got some kind of vested interest in being pro-fossil fuels or something. I've never owned a car.

There may be a time when a fully electric car is an economic proposition for the masses, but it looks as though that prospect is still many years away.
Edited by Benjamin Frost - 2/19/14 at 7:38am
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post #118 of 145
Quote:
Originally Posted by Benjamin Frost View Post


No, I meant anyone, not everyone.

Your logic is flawed. To say that for the "vast majority of time", 120 miles is sufficient for the "vast majority" is a bit like saying that for 99% of the time, the vast majority of the time, most people don't need running water. The idea of people renting cars whenever they need to go on holiday, Christmas, visit aged relatives, visit friends etc. is not an attractive proposition for most people because of the hassle, let alone the cost.

Your glowing appraisal of electric vehicles relies on a ludicrously tiny number of charging stations.

You seem to think that stopping for half an hour on a motorway to wait for your car to recharge is preferable to filling up in a couple of minutes! What world are you living in?

You talk about battery-swapping being cheap and quick, but you say that it's a feature being developed, so that's a non-existent feature at the present time.

"There are currently 14 Supercharger stations in Europe. These stations recharge the Tesla battery in 30 minutes at no charge to the vehicle owner. If you travel with friends or family, then your passengers will want to eat and shop at each stop during your journey. Your battery will be recharged long before your passengers finish their meals."

This is just a hilarious paragraph! Oh dear, I'm running low on electricity, so I’ll just nip along to my local Supercharger in Europe—oh, there are only 14 you say? That'll be a 500 mile trip to the nearest then...

"Your passengers will want to eat and shop at each stop during your journey". That's the most ridiculous sentence I've read for a long time!

You seem to think that I've got some kind of vested interest in being pro-fossil fuels or something. I've never owned a car.

There may be a time when a fully electric car is an economic proposition for the masses, but it looks as though that prospect is still many years away.

 

One can clearly see the Tesla Supercharger network will be well filled out in several years.

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post #119 of 145
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post

One can clearly see the Tesla Supercharger network will be well filled out in several years.

That will be great when it happens but right now it's like when cell towers just started to pop up, except that back then being without a cellphone signal was not as detrimental as being without fuel for your car. It's still not as detrimental, but at least today a dead cellphone can at least be an issue.

For me, the closest Supercharger is about 80 miles away and it's in a direction I'm not likely to travel so it's not something that will work for me, even if I did want to plan my trips around getting from charging station to charging station. It's simply not mature enough to make this a viable option for most people. One day I think it will be, but I think it's still a toss up if Tesla's charging stations or battery replacement stations will be part of that future.

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post #120 of 145
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post
 

 

One can clearly see the Tesla Supercharger network will be well filled out in several years.

I love Tesla as a company and what they're trying to do and I sincerely hope they're able to build a car in coming years that average people can afford, but it's completely naive to not believe that electric-only cars have very limited practical limitations.   If you're rich and can afford the charging device in your home and you use it primarily as a station car, it works.   It doesn't work for long distance driving. 

 

I see absolutely no signs that the Tesla network will be well filled out in several years (where are they in the U.S.?) and even if they will be, people do not want to spend half an hour or more charging their cars.    I can see riots at the charging stations when people waiting get upset with how long the person in front them is taking to charge, especially if the person in front has the larger batteries that take more time to charge.

 

Furthermore, most of the population lives in large cities and most people in large cities live in apartments.   I don't see any apartment buildings putting a number of these in their garages.   I figure you'd probably need at least one charger for every 5 to 10 cars.   Maybe it will happen in those buildings in which apartments cost $2500 and upwards a square foot, but it's not happening in middle-class condos and coops or rental buildings and unless Tesla funds it, it's not happening on city streets.    I have seen chargers on the driveway leading into Central Park for use by city-owned vehicles, but I don't know if those chargers work with Tesla cars.  

 

In addition, when you walk into a Tesla salesroom and they have that calculator that figures the savings in fuel costs, it's totally bogus because the average rates it shows for electricity is based on the cost of the electricity and not the charge to deliver it or the taxes/fees.   In NYC, the full cost of electricity in 2013 was about 32 cents per kilowatt hour, but for the first month of this year, it cost me 41 cents per kilowatt hour, probably because they let the utilities raise rates due to repair costs from Hurricane Sandy.    There's no way that it's more efficient to use an electric car even at $3.60 per gallon.

 

And range is still a big factor.   The main thing I use my car for is to drive to my daughter's house which is about 300 miles round trip.    Until the cars can exceed that range, I couldn't use one even if I had a charging station.    

 

And come to think of it, even though I visited a Tesla showroom in Long Island, NY, I've never seen a Tesla on the road in New York.   

 

If Tesla is smart (and I believe they are), they will realize that they're not in the electric car business.   They're in the green car business and therefore, they will adopt whatever green technology or combination of technologies makes sense.   Electric batteries might not be it.   Maybe it's hydrogen fuel cells or natural gas or some combination of tech. 

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AppleInsider › Forums › Mac Hardware › Future Apple Hardware › Apple secretly met with Tesla CEO Elon Musk; also working on tech to predict heart attacks