Tesla Pokes Fun At ICE’s

This cracked me up: it’s Tesla “test-driving” an ICE (Internal Combustion Engine). First they make fun of how you have to buy an ICE from an independent “middleman” (dealership), which is also the repair shop (Tesla refuses to do business with dealerships, but I have to wonder where one takes their Tesla if something goes wrong?). Cute.

This part made me laugh:

So we sat in the car and pressed the START button. The car’s gasoline engine coughed to life and started to operate. One could hear the engine’s sound and the car’s whole body vibrated as if something was broken, but the seller assured us that everything was as it should. The car actually has an electric motor and a microscopically small battery, but they are only used to start the petrol engine – the electric motor does not drive the wheels. The petrol engine then uses a tank full of gasoline, a fossil liquid, to propel the car by exploding small drops of it. It is apparently the small explosions that you hear and feel when the engine is running.

I took Mr. Beale’s Highlander to the repair shop for him last week because he was slammed at work. Since I’ve been driving a Leaf for almost four years now, there are things you forget about an ICE — like how noisy they are, the rumble of an engine (and Mr. Beale drives a hybrid, so it’s actually quieter than most cars) and the delay in acceleration. With an EV, you’re smooth, quiet, and as soon as you push the gas, you’re moving. None of that ICE lag.

And then came this:

Sure we filled the tank full in two minutes, but it did cost us an unbelievable €30! A full charge would thus cost us double that – a whopping €60! We cursed our luck that we apparently have chosen one of the most expensive gas stations, and began to ask the seller what other alternatives are there? How much does it cost to fill up at home, and how many free stations are there?

The seller looked very puzzled at us and explained that it is not possible to refuel gasoline cars at home, and there are no free gas stations. We tried to explain our questions, in case he had misunderstood, but he insisted that you can not. Apparently you have to several times a month drive to the gas station to recharge your petrol car at extortionate prices – there are no alternatives! We thought it was very strange that no gasoline car manufacturers have launched their own free gas stations?

[…]

We also begun to understand why there must be so many petrol stations everywhere, if all petrol cars always have to drive to them to refuel. Imagine if you could charge your electric car only at the power companies’ most expensive fast chargers – and nowhere else!

Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!

Last week I was walking the dog at a state park and someone who was considering buying a Leaf saw my car parked at one of the public EV chargers. He waited until I returned so he could pepper me with questions. Apparently he really wanted to buy a Nissan Leaf but had been advised against it by the Carmax salesperson. LOL. Of course he wanted to know how much it costs to charge the car and of course no one can really answer that question because it depends on how much you drive, just as with an ICE. But I charge at home, and it’s much cheaper than using one of the public stations, which charge a whopping .02 for 30 seconds of charging. Do the math … if you’re a Blink member in Tennessee, that’s .04 a minute (and quite a steal compared to other states, like California and New York, which are 0.49 cents a minute). So if you charge for an hour, that’s $2.40, about what gas is going for around here these days (a little cheaper, actually — last I saw, gas was going for around $2.50). And how far do you go on an hour’s charge? Hard to say, because it depends on whether you’re running the A/C or on the interstate, and other factors. But I’d say an hour’s worth of charging could take care of me for a couple of days. It’s just not comparable, cost-wise, even with gas prices lower than they’ve been historically.

But again, I have a charger at home, and so I charge even cheaper than this — plus, there are a couple of free chargers around town. I rarely use the public chargers.

Final dig:

We returned the car to the dealer’s premises, pulled the handbrake and step out of the car. The petrol engine continued to run! Apparently one must manually switch off the combustion of the precious liquid. But we wanted to see the petrol engine, so the seller opened the bonnet. The entire front portion of the car was completely cluttered with hoses, fittings, fluid reservoirs, and amid all a huge shaking cast iron block which apparently constituted the motor’s frame. There was no space for luggage in the front of the car! Despite its enormous size, high noise and vibration, the engine barely delivered one hundred horsepower. The engine was also extremely hot, we burned ourselves when we touched it. Even though this was on a warm summer day so the engine did not need to generate heat to the passenger compartment.

One of the first things I appreciated about the Leaf — after how quiet it is, of course — is that it doesn’t generate a lot of heat. You can drive it around town and pull it into the garage and your car isn’t emitting heat waves for the next three hours. I actually really like that. The second thing is, it’s practically maintenance-free. In four years I took it in once for a software update. Got new tires at CostCo another time, and that’s it. No oil changes, no “every 6,000 miles” visits to the dealership/repair shop. It’s gotten so you forget about those things.

Because Nissan is located just outside of Nashville, you see an awful lot of Leafs around town. Used to be I was one of the only ones, but nowadays you see them everywhere and it’s just no big deal. I can’t imagine why the rest of the country hasn’t jumped on the bandwagon yet. Especially if you’re in an urban area. I get that if you live in suburbia, range can be an issue. But for most of us who work five or 10 miles from where we live, it just makes sense.

8 Comments

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8 responses to “Tesla Pokes Fun At ICE’s

  1. I see a fair number of Leafs here in Southern California, and a surprising number of Teslas. They’re still uncommon enough that you notice them, but not so rare that they’re a real wonder to see.

    • I’ve seen only a handful of Teslas here, just because we don’t have a dealership here — yet. I believe one is supposed to open soon.

      • Jim in Memphis

        I saw a Tesla dealership in a mall near Evanston, IL when my daughter and I were visiting Northwestern University. I wish I had more time to go in for a test drive. They probably would have wanted a credit check or bank statement before letting me drive off in a $100,000 car though. I have seen a few Teslas on the road here in Memphis. They look awesome.

  2. A friend of mine bought one about two months ago. He seems thrilled so for.

  3. gene108

    I live in a condo. I’d need a two-hundred foot extension cord to run a line from my unit to my parking space.

    For us non-single-family-home-owners, without our own garages the logistical problems of electric cars are not close to being solved, which I why I do not buy one.

    • I don’t know about where you live but many condo and apartment buildings around the country DO have chargers. You pay like you would at any public charging station, i.e., Blink or ChargePoint. Many employers do as well, so you can charge at your workplace if your condo board won’t install one. It’s true that it’s much more difficult for people who live in multi-unit housing to go EV but as ever, as more people switch to EV that is something that builders will have to address. The infrastructure will be playing catch up, as with any new tech. Eventually it will be there and it won’t be as much of a burden.