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Thread: OT: Politics

  1. #1501
    Insider Unfated33's Avatar
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    While not as fuel efficient, I think Honda got it right with the newest generation Insight hybrid. Looks like an accord. Fairly lux interior, especially at that price point. Gets equal or better gas mileage to most Prius models. I'm pretty sure they designed it to be a Prius-killer.

    The grey spot seems to be plug in hybrid models. You would think there would be a larger demand for having extended cheap range on a hybrid, but the marketing seems to just be terrible across the spectrum. The Volt was arguably the best of the plug in hybrids, and GM is killing it off. I guess that leaves the Prius Prime as the next best choice? Or maybe the Honda Clarity? Maybe Prius Prime already killed the Volt - as they've sold almost double the number of Volts through the end of October 2018: https://insideevs.com/monthly-plug-in-sales-scorecard/

  2. #1502
    My question is what will the increase electric cars do to the transmission grid and electricity costs. Investment in the grid has already been massive in the last 10-15 years. Given that electrical rates are cost-based, more investment is just going to further increase the costs. It won't be the energy inputs that are expensive, it'll be the transportation of that electricity.

  3. #1503
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    If most recharging is at home, very little infrastructure upheaval.
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  4. #1504
    Insider Unfated33's Avatar
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    Well, you see grids are starting to put more storage online in regions near population clusters. This helps lower the need for transmission costs because you have a cheap massive generator that is cyclic (Solar) that typically outproduces what is needed during the period where it can be collected. It also helps avoid time of use penalties on the main generation by using up storage to shift and diminish peak electrical demand. There are some other advantages to do with government required reserves and frequency balancing, but what the population sees and gets the most use out of is the demand reductions and local availability.

    However, these same technologies are ultimately going to put economic pressure on utilities because lower prices make them attractive at the residential level (we already see this with photovoltaic generation). If you can put LG batteries or a Tesla Powerwall in your house with PV cells on your roof, there's a good chance you can do all of the loading for your electric vehicle without involving your utility. It's already currently available to the population, though the cost of it makes it viable only for the rich and celebrities that use green as a status symbol.

    (Disclosure: This stuff is literally my job every day.)

  5. #1505
    Quote Originally Posted by Unfated33 View Post
    Well, you see grids are starting to put more storage online in regions near population clusters. This helps lower the need for transmission costs because you have a cheap massive generator that is cyclic (Solar) that typically outproduces what is needed during the period where it can be collected. It also helps avoid time of use penalties on the main generation by using up storage to shift and diminish peak electrical demand. There are some other advantages to do with government required reserves and frequency balancing, but what the population sees and gets the most use out of is the demand reductions and local availability.

    However, these same technologies are ultimately going to put economic pressure on utilities because lower prices make them attractive at the residential level (we already see this with photovoltaic generation). If you can put LG batteries or a Tesla Powerwall in your house with PV cells on your roof, there's a good chance you can do all of the loading for your electric vehicle without involving your utility. It's already currently available to the population, though the cost of it makes it viable only for the rich and celebrities that use green as a status symbol.

    (Disclosure: This stuff is literally my job every day.)
    What part of the industry to you work in? I'm on the legal/federal rates side of the industry.

    I know there has been talk of setting batteries up at substations, but don't you still have to transport the clean power to the load centers? This can be costly in some areas. New England is looking at a 1-2 billion dollar project to develop wind in Maine to be brought to load centers in Mass and CT.

    Also, I really can't wait till more houses become micro grids. Will be interesting to see how utilities handle that given the demand implications for them.

    Edit: Ryan - you would still need an increase in infrastructure such as battery storage. If everyone is charging at night that changes the load characteristics. I don't know the answer to this, but I'm curious to know whether the current distribution system could handle such an increase if everyone on the street decides to charge the car at night.
    Last edited by d0cwho; 11-29-2018 at 04:34 PM.

  6. #1506
    Quote Originally Posted by Lurker27 View Post
    You've described how electric cars will kill off gas cars at pricepoints that Tesla does not play in (currently). If you think the sole appeal of the Tesla has been the fact that "it's electric", I don't know what to tell you.

    Tesla started with a clean sheet design, instead of "checking the box for electric", which is a HUGE design disadvantage. The good ones, anyway, the original roadster was a laughable POS. Teslas are also explicitly disruptive - they had zero entrenched interest to protect by making the neutered ass iBullshit other companies roll out. I think you're vastly underrated some of the Tesla juice: performance, "cool factor", exclusivity, autopilot. Some of that can be cloned, but not all of it. Not immediately, anyway.

    Love an original honda insight series hybrid. People are retrofitting them to plug in hybrid with lithium cells now. There's also a 500hp k20 turbo one somewhere, since they're incredibly light.
    no, the problem is that tesla decided to make cars.

    and the reason they will die is because they are terrible at making cars.

    they invented and proved market segment was real, but when the big boys come in, the folks who are making 100-10,000 times the the cars that tesla makes, decide to make a tesla, they will UTTERLY DESTROY TESLA. tesla is struggling to make what, 10,000 cars a month? VAG makes almost a million cars a month. when VAG decides to make a tesla killer, (and they already have) they will utterly destroy tesla.

    teslas best hope to be bought out, and become the Cadillac of millennial car brands.

    but make no mistake, tesla will stop being an independent car making company very, very, very quickly. they might survive as a novelty car company fora while, on high margin, specialty cars, or as a battery maker/designer more long term, but making cars mainstream in a fight with the big boys? they are dead meat. anyone who says otherwise is on the kool-aide.
    Last edited by cockerpunk; 11-29-2018 at 05:03 PM.
    social conservatism: the mortal fear that someone, somewhere, might be having fun.

  7. #1507
    Quote Originally Posted by cockerpunk View Post
    no, the problem is that tesla decided to make cars.

    and the reason they will die is because they are terrible at making cars.

    they invented and proved market segment was real, but when the big boys come in, the folks who are making 100-10,000 times the the cars that tesla makes, decide to make a tesla, they will UTTERLY DESTROY TESLA. tesla is struggling to make what, 10,000 cars a month? VAG makes almost a million cars a month. when VAG decides to make a tesla killer, (and they already have) they will utterly destroy tesla.

    teslas best hope to be bought out, and become the Cadillac of millennial car brands.

    but make no mistake, tesla will stop being an independent car making company very, very, very quickly. they might survive as a novelty car company fora while, on high margin, specialty cars, or as a battery maker/designer more long term, but making car mainstream in a fight with the big boys? they are dead meat.
    Given all the manufacturers signing up for Formula E and Audi/Porsche's experience in LMP1, I think this will give them a competitive edge in the long term over Tesla.

  8. #1508
    Quote Originally Posted by d0cwho View Post
    Given all the manufacturers signing up for Formula E and Audi/Porsche's experience in LMP1, I think this will give them a competitive edge in the long term over Tesla.
    biggly. nothing tesla is doing now is actually unique. the thing they did, is prove that the world works fine with an electric car. there hurdle was actually making a car, because it turns out, making things in the real world is fucking hard, because the real world isn't silicon valley. there is not copy and paste button for process engineering.

    now that that market segment is proven, that it exists and people want to buy these cars ... the big car companies are going to kill tesla.

    and tesla will either have to transform out of trying to make cars profitable, and into a battery or electronics company or something like that ... or get bought out. or likely branch off and have some parts bought out etc etc. tesla, as it exists today isn't going to be around in 10 years.

    and the future of the electric car isn't a tesla ... its when you can walk into a dealership, and there is the 4 cycl box, the 4cycl turbo box, and the electric box to check on the ordering form.

    don't get me wrong, while i believe tesla's days are numbered, i don't believe for a second what they did was a waste of money, or a poor use of technology etc etc, quite the opposite. its just the problem of actually making cars is fucking hard, and they are bad at it. meanwhile, 10% of the worlds economy is fucking good at it, like really fucking good at it.
    social conservatism: the mortal fear that someone, somewhere, might be having fun.

  9. #1509
    Insider Unfated33's Avatar
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    Tesla could very well transition into a charging station company, as their stations seem to work better than any of their competitors so far. That may be what it turns out they are actually good at.

    Doc, I work in energy storage systems. Tesla is one of our direct competitors on the energy side of their business - we see them as very cheap in the door and then very flaky/expensive to maintain. Many of our mutual customers have stopped buying from Tesla.

    Gordon, right now Tesla is selling around 20k to 30k cars a month. You can track their sales by the link I provided at the top of page 151 (if this comment rolls over to page 152). They are making and selling roughly the same amount of cars to clear out their Model 3 backlog, so I would use the same number for how many they can make. It's still a fraction of a Toyota or a GM. But all that said, they are going to sell more model 3's this year than Toyota has sold Prius Primes or Chevrolet has sold Bolts and Volts over the past 2-3 years combined. They haven't been toppled quite yet.

  10. #1510
    Quote Originally Posted by Unfated33 View Post
    Tesla could very well transition into a charging station company, as their stations seem to work better than any of their competitors so far. That may be what it turns out they are actually good at.

    Doc, I work in energy storage systems. Tesla is one of our direct competitors on the energy side of their business - we see them as very cheap in the door and then very flaky/expensive to maintain. Many of our mutual customers have stopped buying from Tesla.

    Gordon, right now Tesla is selling around 20k to 30k cars a month. You can track their sales by the link I provided at the top of page 151 (if this comment rolls over to page 152). They are making and selling roughly the same amount of cars to clear out their Model 3 backlog, so I would use the same number for how many they can make. It's still a fraction of a Toyota or a GM. But all that said, they are going to sell more model 3's this year than Toyota has sold Prius Primes or Chevrolet has sold Bolts and Volts over the past 2-3 years combined. They haven't been toppled quite yet.
    workable range EVs from other companies are just coming up to market right now. they have the range, they are actually available for there advertised price, and they will start to kill model 3 sales.

    the model 3 i think was a poor choice for tesla to do. if they are to survive making cars, its going to need to be on high margin cars, with unique features. not in trying to get in a price battle with a mainstream car company. 35k teslas are vaporware, and will continue to be for some time. meanwhile, you can walk into a chevy dealership and walk out with a bolt for less, and now a hyundai dealership. so many more are on there way. the trickle beguiles a tsunami. when you no longer have to look for a ~30k EV with 200-250 miles of range, when they are at every dealership in the country ... its over.
    Last edited by cockerpunk; 11-29-2018 at 06:11 PM.
    social conservatism: the mortal fear that someone, somewhere, might be having fun.

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