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Published on January 2nd, 2014 | by Zachary Shahan


Driving An Electric Car For The First Time

January 2nd, 2014 by  

opel amperaAutomotiveBlog.co.uk yesterday published a pretty good overview piece on electric cars. The intro is what caught my eye:

For most experienced drivers, the first time in an electric car is decidedly odd. There is typically no gearbox or transmission, for example. Electric motors differ greatly from internal combustion engines in the way they deliver power and torque, and for the most part, you have maximum performance from the start. No hanging about waiting for revs to build, no waiting for the optimum moment to change to another gear, nothing; it’s just push the pedal and go.

Until a driver has actually tried an electric car it is very difficult to get the sensation across in words. For starters, all is quiet; there is virtually no noise. All that happens is, as the foot goes deeper into the carpet pile, the car continues to gather speed all the way up to the speed limit and, in some cases, beyond. No drama at all. You could drive through a cathedral undiscovered, except perhaps by an eagle-eyed clergyman who would simply nod benignly because, as you know, electric cars are righteous.

An EV goes directly to full torque from zero in one linear power delivery. Another virtue is that most decent petrol engines are puffed out by about 8000rpm at best whereas a decent electric car motor can go all the way up to 15000rpm.

Good stuff. That is a quite good description of the experience one has when the first drive a modern electric car. It also throws in some good literary fun. The writer then goes on to focus on range in a way that leaves plenty of room for critique, but I’m not really in the mood for critique right now, and I have a lot of other stories to get to, so I’ll just note that the rest of the article misses the beat a bit. Also, ironically, while harping on range as every other very slightly informed auto blogger has done, the photo used in the article was the one above, which is a photo of the Opel Ampera (European Chevy Volt). If that doesn’t tell you anything, the irony is that the Ampera is a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle that can use gas/petrol when the battery runs out, essentially giving it the range of a gasmobile/petrol-mobile and the ability to fill up at a gas station (or with a gas bucket, as the writer discussed) if needed.

Anyway, kudos to this conventional auto blogger doing a half-decent job on the story. 


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About the Author

Zach is tryin' to help society help itself (and other species). He spends most of his time here on CleanTechnica as its director and chief editor. He's also the president of Important Media and the director/founder of EV Obsession and Solar Love. Zach is recognized globally as an electric vehicle, solar energy, and energy storage expert. He has presented about cleantech at conferences in India, the UAE, Ukraine, Poland, Germany, the Netherlands, the USA, and Canada. Zach has long-term investments in TSLA, FSLR, SPWR, SEDG, & ABB — after years of covering solar and EVs, he simply has a lot of faith in these particular companies and feels like they are good cleantech companies to invest in. But he offers no professional investment advice and would rather not be responsible for you losing money, so don't jump to conclusions.

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