Featured Post

This is the Kodak Moment for the Auto Industry

Plug-In Drivers Not Missin' the Piston Electric vehicles are here to stay. Their market acceptance is currently small but growing...

Sunday, September 23, 2018

Two Years of Tesla Ownership

We've had our Tesla Model X for 2 years now. Last year I detailed the delivery story and a few minor issues here in our 1 year of ownership post. Now at the 2-year mark, I can report that I still love the car. It is so much fun. This is by far the best (and most expensive) car that I've ever owned. The software updates bring improvements and easter eggs that keep the car exciting.

How is the car aging?
We have nearly 25,000 miles on the odometer. With my other cars, I would typically only have 9 or 10 thousand miles per year. I enjoy this can so much that I'm looking for reasons to drive it. I've taken two road trips to San Diego and for a family vacation, we toured the 7 Wonders of Oregon, we traveled to southern Oregon multiple times to visit family, and we've taken it to the coast for beach clean-up events. We've even used bioweapon defense mode while traveling through the smoke of raging forest fires.

After buying a Leaf in 2011, I was hooked on electric and knew that I was never going back to a gas car. However, the Leaf experience left me concerned about battery degradation. Before buying the Model X, I researched Tesla's battery lifespan & degradation and was impressed by graphs like the one below:

Seeing that they have been highly reliable is great, but how is my car doing? Similar to the tracking that I've been doing with our Leaf since 2012, I've been collecting and charting battery data for our Tesla for over a year now. Here's the resulting graph:
The first graph shows degradation based on distance driven, whereas my graph is based on age, but we do know the odometer reading.

2-years, ~25,000 miles ~40,000 km, degradation = 4.3% 

This puts my results inline with others in the first chart. The good news is that degradation seems to significantly slow down after ~5%. Time will tell. Our Leaf never seems to find a spot where the degradation slowed. As the range decreased, the demands on the battery capacity grew and with it so did the degradation this caused. The Tesla, on the other hand, has far more capacity and a far better thermal management system. Next year's 3-year report will be telling.

Saturday, September 8, 2018

National Drive Electric Week event in Wilsonville on September 15th, 2018

NDEW 2017 at Washington Square Mall Indoor Display
The OEVA is holding their National Drive Electric Week event in Wilsonville on September 15th from 10-3.

A big part of the event is the PGE Electric Test Drive – people who test drive EV’s leading up to and at the event can earn free entries into the OEVA fundraising raffle. The prize is $5,000 towards the purchase or lease of an EV (new or used)! Note: Current OEVA members are NOT eligible to win, but someone that joins after Sept 1st is OK.

The OEVA is selling raffle tickets @$5 each, PGE is purchasing the free tickets that are given away for test drives. If you know friends/co-workers that want to buy tickets, we will have them for sale at the event (and at our monthly meeting on Thur)

We currently have 10+ dealers providing test drives at the event, with more giving free entries for test drives at their locations leading up to the event.

Platt Auto will be doing test drives on used EVs and we will draw for a fun door prize – 3 day extended test drive of a Tesla Model S subject to availability). He is also giving away a JuiceBox Pro 40 at his booth – stop by and enter the drawing.

As always, we can use volunteers!

You can get more info and register to attend (or volunteer) at:

Gary Exner

Friday, September 7, 2018

Plug In: Oregon Department of Energy Invites Oregonians to Celebrate National Drive Electric Week

News Release Header
September 7, 2018
Jennifer Kalez, 503-480-9239

Plug In: Oregon Department of Energy Invites Oregonians to Celebrate National Drive Electric Week

SALEM — It’s National Drive Electric Week, and the Oregon Department of Energy wants Oregonians to know that now is a great time to go electric. From September 8-16, we’re celebrating zero emissions with plenty of torque, widespread availability of plug-in all-electric and hybrid vehicles, and an expanding network of charging infrastructure to support EV adoption.
With an array of financial incentives and rebates, Oregonians can save big by making the switch to an EV. The Department of Environmental Quality’s Clean Vehicle Rebate Program offers savings of up to $5,000 for qualifying EVs. Combined with a federal tax credit of up to $7,500, you could save about a third of the cost of some EV models. “DEQ is excited to offer financial incentives through the Oregon Clean Vehicle Rebate Program, which will reduce barriers to purchasing EVs, protect public health, and fight climate change,” said DEQ Director Richard Whitman.
Oregon electric utilities are also stepping up to support EV adoption. Eugene Water & Electric Board customers can qualify for a $300 rebate on new or used electric vehicles. Pacific Power customers can save an extra $3,000 on a 2018 Nissan LEAF if they buy before September 30.
EVs are fun to drive, with plenty of get-up-and-go. Plus, they are often less expensive to run and maintain than traditional gasoline cars. Five dollars’ worth of gasoline can get you about 47 miles down the road, while a $5 EV battery charge will take you about 176 miles! And with bigger, lighter batteries and more fast charging stations across the state, including along some of Oregon’s most scenic roadways, electric vehicles are road trip-ready.
EVs offer another important benefit: zero tailpipe emissions. “Electric vehicles are a better choice for our environment,” said Janine Benner, Oregon Department of Energy Director and EV owner. “Replacing traditional engines with zero emission vehicles can help reduce greenhouse gases and harmful air pollutants. That’s why we hope to have at least 50,000 registered EVs on Oregon roads by the end of 2020.”
Ready to take a test drive? National Drive Electric Week events are popping up in Oregon over the next week – check them out at driveelectricweek.org/events.php. From car shows to ride-and-drive events, there’s something for everyone. Head over to Sunriver for Midstate Electric Coop’s Electric Tailgate Party, take the scenic route to the beach for Drive Electric Yachats, or pop up to Wilsonville for the PGE Electric Test Drive and enter to win $5,000 off the purchase of an EV.
Learn more about EVs in Oregon, including how the State of Oregon is working to reach our 50,000 EV goal, on the Go Electric Oregon website: goelectric.oregon.gov
Electric Avenue
"Electric Avenue" in Portland, OR

Wednesday, September 5, 2018

1 Million EVs on US Roadways Very Soon

There are 956 thousand plug-in cars on US roads today. About 33 thousand of these were added in August of this year. And the growth is not showing any sign of slowing. If September and October put up similar results, we'll cross the 1 Million Milestone!
data via InsideEVs
We first started tracking the progress towards this goal in 2016. Back then, we projected that as 200+ mile EVs came out, these EVs would appeal to a larger market than the ~ 100-mile range EVs had and that EVs sales would grow and we'd be ringing in 2019 with more than 1 million EVs on the US roads. I'm happy to report that this forecast has proven to be very accurate.

2018 will be the Year of 1 Million Plug-in Vehicles on U.S. roadways.

There's at least one person, however, that might not be happy to see these domestically fueled cars on the roadway. That person is Charles Lane, Washington Post opinion writer. You see, Charles proposed a wager with a fellow journalist. Charles didn’t think that there would be 1 million plug-in hybrid and all-electric cars on the road in the United States by 2018. The stakes of the bet are a new car. If Charles wins, he gets a new BMW. If he loses, he has to buy a Chevy Volt for his fellow journalist. If "by 2018" means "by the end of 2018" then Charles better make friends with his local Chevy dealer and start shopping for year-end specials.