Road Trip Advise

Road Trip Advise

Driving S85 down to Philadelphia next week from Paramus area, Bergen County, NJ to Barnes Foundation Musuem --google maps says 94 miles. Figuring at least 200 miles round trip. Plan to Max Charge before departure. Has anyone used the Chargepoint chargers at the Barnes Foundation parking lot. NJTPK driving 65-75. Should I have range anxiety if chargers are not available?

riceuguy | April 16, 2013

How long will you be at your destination? Figure about 0.6 mi of loss per hour once there, and use for a really decently accurate idea of how many kwh you'll use on the drive!

hamer | April 16, 2013

Drive at 55 MPH with cruise control your first trip. Use the trip odometer. Turn the headlights off if you're driving during the day. Try not to be too aggressive with the climate control. Write down before you leave how many rated miles you are starting with, and at the end subtract the two to see how your actual driven miles used match the miles of charge the car says it used. That should give you the most conservative usage. You can use that to make judgements about how concerned you need to be for future trips.

jat | April 16, 2013

I drove 240mi with significant elevation change and running the AC all the way, keeping the cruise at 64mph. I have previously had no problems getting 220mi running 74mph. You will lose some while sitting there, but I don't think you need to be anywhere as conservative as hamer suggests.

jbunn | April 16, 2013

I just completed a one way 800 mile road trip from Seattle to San Francisco last week. Sea level to Sea level, but I did have to cross the mountain range at the Oregon/Cali border. Plus carrying over 400 pounds of gear and a 230 pound driver.

Total energy bill for the trip was 20 bucks. Car worked great. I had a couple simple rules which really helped.

1) Maintain a constant speed. In my case just normal acceleration to 65, lock on cruise and maintain. Change lanes if needed, but keep speed constant.

2) Keep climate control to only what is needed. Departing it was 45, and I preheated. With just my body heat and sunshine it stayed confortable. Later as I got further south, I ran the fan with AC off. If you're on the highway, it's more enery efficient to keep the windows closed, and fan on. Under 35 or so, I enjoyed having the windows down for a bit.

3) This one seemed to be my most important rule. Using my navi, I looked at my distance to go go. Let's say 150 miles. Then looked at my Rated Range on spedo. Let's say it said 175 miles. Then it was good times. So long as rated range was 25 miles over where I was going, it was not an issue. And I'd end with exactly 25 miles of range remaining. This was true to plus or minus 1 or 2 percent of range, regardless of terrain. Pretty dang impressive. So long as you have an extra 25 I consider that my safe lower limit.

Chargepoints will get you about 17 miles per hour, so that's also a good rule of thumb when calculatulating when you will leave. Say you have 100 miles to return, 90 miles of range. By my rule you should charge to 125 at a minimum, or 35 miles. So that's a two hour lunch on a chargepoint. Then you know your departure time. Use the smartphone app to monitor your car to make sure it's charging to expectation.

I'm driving a 60, single charger, with supercharging enabled, for comparison.

Safe travels!

stevedar | April 16, 2013

Reset one of your trip odometers prior to the trip and monitor the Wh/mi. If it stays at or below about 310 you will get at least the full 265 miles of rated range on a full range charge. The further you go the less it fluctuates. The single best way to reduce energy usage on a cross country trip is by slowing down. I was able to achieve around 285 Wh/mi by driving 55mph even with the heater running.

Amagansett | April 16, 2013

Thanks to all for the good advice..