Picking up my Mitsubishi I MiEV tonight

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by Evadman, Mar 12, 2012.

  1. KK

    KK Lifer

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    Can you tell a performance change from when you have a full charge, to when you are down to your last quarter?
     
  2. _Rick_

    _Rick_ Diamond Member

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    How's the cold temperatures while parked at work going to affect battery performance?
    I suspect that this may worsen the problems with the range?

    Have you considered insulating your garage? Especially cold night time temperatures might hurt the battery, though the heat from charging might help a little. Still, not ideal for cell chemistry.
     
  3. mmntech

    mmntech Lifer

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    The problem with electric cars like the iMiEV is there's just too many sacrifices for them to be practical. At least with current technology. As is, the iMiEV is basically an expensive econobox that sucks in the winter. Basically the original VW Beetle without the iconic attitude. I think fuel savings are a bit dubious as well.

    A new iMiEV costs $33k in Canada while a new, full loaded Prius C costs $23. The EPA says they cost $550 and $1050 per year to drive respectively. Taking that in mind it would take 20 years of driving the iMiEV before you'd start saving money over driving the Prius C. With oil changes on the Prius (which the iMiEV doesn't need), it would still take 17 years to recoup your costs. Though by that point the iMiEV will probably need costly new batteries.

    Sure, it's a glib bit of math since I'm assuming prices for hydro and gasoline won't rise, or will rise at the same rate. It also doesn't take tax credits into account. Though it does illustrate that electrics, right now, can't compete with conventional hybrids. At least for the length of time that most people own a car.

    I think we're in for a transition period right now. You'll see more turbocharged and smaller gasoline and diesel ICE engines. Then they'll all get hybridized or transfer over to natural gas. Then you'll see electrics take over when battery/fuel cell technology matures enough. It's coming but we're not quite there yet.
     
  4. Evadman

    Evadman Administrator Emeritus<br>Elite Member

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    There is no change in performance unless below about 10% charge. At that point, your heater/AC is automatically turned off, but there is no other change.

    I have the 'cold region' add-on, which uses a battery heater and cooler to keep the battery within its temperature operating range.

    The Prius C wasn't out when I bought this, or I would have possibly have gotten a Prius C. But you are missing one very important piece in your calculations. The Prius C is higher cost than the MiEV, you forgot to add in all the rebates. My MiEV was slightly over 18k, so I saved ~5k over a loaded Pirus C, and I save about $500 a year in fuel costs.

    Plus, you are really low on the costs of maintenance on the Prius C. A dino juice oil change around here is about $60 with a coupon (I do my own, so no b!tching) and the first oil change on the MiEV is in 240 months (20 years). Mainteance on the MiEV is stuff like adding washing fluid, wipers, tires, cabin air filter, etc. Same as a regular car. But no transmission to flush, the cooling system holds like nothing, etc. MiEV tires are not all that expensive ether. I am easily saving $200 to 250 on maintenance a year. Plus, I can plug in wherever I feel like, so I am not always paying for electricity, so I am closer to saving $800-900 a year over a Prius C.

    So basically, if you are worried about cost and convenience on a daily driver, you save $800 a year but you lose the ability to fill up wherever, and go on long trips. To me, the tradeoff was fine.

    Storage temp was not in the manual, but my garage is insulated besides the door. It doesn't get below freezing in my garage, even without heating. Also, the battery has either an 8 or 10 year warranty (I forget which off the top of my head) so if it does get hurt, it will be replaced.
     
    #129 Evadman, Nov 12, 2012
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2012
  5. Insomniator

    Insomniator Diamond Member

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    The car seriously almost can't manage 30 miles with the heater on? That's terrible.
     
  6. KK

    KK Lifer

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    Ah, he's going about it wrong. He need to think outside the box. Strap one of these beside you and you'd be good to go. Probably have to let the windows down a crack though.
     
  7. nedfunnell

    nedfunnell Senior member

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    Thanks for the update! I have been wanting one, but the cost savings would not exist for me, since I drive $2000 cars instead of $20000 ones. Maybe when i-MiEVs are hitting the used market in a few years. It's too bad- my upcoming commute is going to be about 60-80 miles (depending where I choose to move to) and I could charge at work and another destination.

    I think it's neat that you're building your own J1772 charger. I definitely want to see a build thread. Beating EVSEupgrade at their own game! I am curious- Are you going to crack open the car-side J1772 and solder wires to the back in there, or find where the wires go and tap in there, tap in the middle somewhere, or what?
     
  8. Evadman

    Evadman Administrator Emeritus<br>Elite Member

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    Already have one, already tried it. There isn't a good enough spot to tie down my torpedo in the back.

    That is yet to be determined. I need to find a good spot to tap all 5 wires, and somewhere decently close for a box that is about 5 inches on each side.
     
  9. tonymil1

    tonymil1 Junior Member

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    Evadman, I haven't done much cold weather driving but I've done enough to know that it hits range pretty hard. You might want to try insulating the heater unit and hoses as shown here: http://myimiev.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=9&t=694

    I don't know how much it helps but it definitely falls into the category of "can't hurt". I did mine using heater duct insulation around the heater and pipe insulation around the hoses.
     
  10. nedfunnell

    nedfunnell Senior member

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    Okay, Evadman, tell me if I'm crazy. In my area I can lease an i for $221 a month. I spend that much in gas a month. Why wouldn't I lease an i, enjoy driving a new car, and pocket what I spend on maintenance? I've always been told that leasing is a horrible idea- but $221 a month for a car that's so cheap to run is crazy.

    With a lease, most of your 'due at signing' amount is a refundable deposit, correct?

    Caveat: If there's a mileage limit, then it's no good- but there isn't one listed on the Mitsubishi site, although it says additional terms and details apply.
     
    #135 nedfunnell, Nov 15, 2012
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2012
  11. nerp

    nerp Diamond Member

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    if you can score that lease with no penalties, do it. Looks like a good deal.
     
  12. nedfunnell

    nedfunnell Senior member

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    No go on the lease- 12k miles annually and $3500 due at signing. Who only drives 12k per year? I guess not everybody lives in the country. Also, I didn't understand how leases work.
     
  13. Evadman

    Evadman Administrator Emeritus<br>Elite Member

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    I convinced my employer to install a charger at my place of work, and they installed 2 blink chargers. Imagine my surprise when I tried to use them and found that they cost 1 or 2 dollars per hour depending on the method used to sign up for blink. This is plugged in time, not charging time.

    The parking place is just over a mile walk from my desk, and I spend the majority of my day in meetings, so it is very difficult to leave a meeting, put on a coat, walk a mile, unplug my car, walk a mile, put away my coat, then go back to work. That means the car will be plugged in during the work day, though the time spent charging is around 4 hours.

    That means I am paying 4 to $8 if I unplug, or I am paying $10 to $20 for a normal 10 hour workday if I can't get to it to unplug it. It costs me less than 50 cents at home. If I drive my gas SUV, it only costs $9.50 (assuming gas is $4.50). Why would I use a blink charger at that rate? My employer provides the electricity, so blink is making a ton. It is cheaper for me to buy a generator, put it on a trailer, and haul it around. In fact, I have already done the math on that. It costs just slightly under $2 an hour for 16 amps at 240v of electricity out of a gas powered generator when you sink all the costs including buying a hitch, the decrease in mileage, the generator, and the generator maintenance. If I use a natural gas generator, then the cost drops from $2 per hour for 16/240 to 28 cents per hour (1.8 therms usage, maintenance, etc) for 16/240. I could pay off a natural gas generator in less than a year compared to the rates to use blink.

    Sorry blink, but the folks that have purchased electric cars are generally better at math, and will be able to figure out that any cost over 30 cents an hour is profit; and that is at residential rates.

    Blink is a joke.
     
  14. sontakke

    sontakke Senior member

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    But when you are plugged in, nobody else is able to plug in to that port. I thought folks who purchased electric vehicles are smart enough to grasp that concept :)
     
  15. Evadman

    Evadman Administrator Emeritus<br>Elite Member

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    If this was a public port in the middle of a garage, I would understand that. This is a pair of private ports put in for employees that are about a mile walk for anyone who would be using them. At 30 cents an hour or something like it, I wouldn't mind the extra expense. At these rates, forget it.

    Allow me to put this another way. There are 9 people with electric cars here and all of us refuse to use these chargers because of the rate. That's the entire population of possible users; 9. The chargers were put in, and 100% of the possible user base will not use them. They just sit there collecting dust, and we plug in at random outlets around the campus.
     
  16. sontakke

    sontakke Senior member

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    The way this is usually handled by a shrewd company is to take out all of the random and free (or cheap) outlets and force you to use their expensive outlets. For example, when a bottled water vending machine is installed in a school or in an office building, the first thing they do is to take out the free water fountain! Same concept.

    Count yourself lucky that you still have low cost (or free) outlets around.
     
  17. LTC8K6

    LTC8K6 Lifer

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    Sounds like electricity theft. :p
     
  18. sontakke

    sontakke Senior member

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    Many place in US actually have free charger for electric cars. They are not stealing it, it is given to them freely.
     
  19. Evadman

    Evadman Administrator Emeritus<br>Elite Member

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    This. Approval to use those outlets has been granted.
     
  20. LTC8K6

    LTC8K6 Lifer

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    That's it, I am never using a smiley again. Absolutely no one sees them.
     
  21. *kjm

    *kjm Platinum Member

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    Who the hell do you think is giving it to them:rolleyes:

    I just don't get how much he loved his truck or why he had it in the first place and now can get by with this...... unless I missed that post:confused:
     
  22. tonymil1

    tonymil1 Junior Member

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    I can't speak for Evadman, but for me, $3 in electricity to go 100 miles is huge. 6,000 miles since May which means I've saved over $600 by not having to buy gas.
     
  23. *kjm

    *kjm Platinum Member

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    Oh I’m not ripping on him I just don’t see how you go from a truck to this car if you used your truck. For me I use my truck to haul game and tree stands (hunter), yard waste, 300 board feet of lumber (couple times a year), motorcycle and so on. No way I could get this car unless I kept my truck also.
     
  24. Evadman

    Evadman Administrator Emeritus<br>Elite Member

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    I absolutely loved my truck. It got it on my birthday as a present to myself originally, and it has been though hell. You can run though the archives to see everything I did to it over the years. At one point, I am pretty sure it was the fastest dodge pickup on the planet. I shattered the ring gear in the dana 80 rear end twice, and both times drove it home in front wheel drive. From hauling 2 pallets of concrete in the bed, to absolutely destroying anything I ran into on the road, or actually ran into offroad, my truck was awesome. Getting hit by a forklift? A scratch on the bumper. Running across the hood of a drunk driver that decided going though a red light was a good idea? Didn't even spill my drink from the cupholder. I beat the crap out of that truck and it always came back for more. Hell, my dodge even fought with a train in a snowstorm, and won.

    I have had 2 vehicles for a long time. Alongside the dodge, I had a suzuki sidekick 4 door that also went though hell. I got that sidekick over so far on it's side that I scratched the mirror on the ground without going all the way over. When the FJ cruiser came out, I traded in the sidekick and got the FJ. Over time, I found out that the FJ took over almost all the duties of my dodge. I had originally gotten the dodge for work, helping to move bunks of plywood, doors, windows, etc. I got the V10 because 'I always wanted one'. Sadly, that came with a fuel bill that approached $200 a week when gas went from $1.50 to $4.50.

    So the dodge was relegated to something I didn't drive much. I used it when it was snowing so I could yank people out of ditches with the 12,000lb winch I put on the back in a custom 1/4 and 1/2" thick plate steel bumper with a pair of batteries. How's that for weight transfer? I used it to show up coworkers who thought their brand new mustang was the shit... until a 4 wheel drifting dodge slid by sideways in the parking lot. I used it when life was getting me down, and I needed a smile on my face that could only be solved with a heavy right foot on a go pedal. But all in all, I didn't use it much.

    Around the same time, I bought a new house, and I found out the truck was 2 feet too long to fit in the garage. it would work just fine out in the driveway, but It didn't move much since I didn't drive it much. Fuel back and forth to work in my FJ (even at 17 mpg vs the 5 I got in the dodge) was taking a huge dent out of my wallet. I needed a commuter car to save money. I decided to get the MiEV. That left the question on what to trade in, or to have 3 cars.

    Well, 3 cars would require jockeying them around without a 3 car garage, so that was quickly put down. So which 2 should I keep? When I got down to it, I loved both my FJ and my dodge. But of the 2, I drove my FJ way more, and it could do almost everything my dodge could. It was cheaper to drive, and had some of the same fun factor off road, though it can't soak the abuse that my dodge could.

    So in the end, I had to pick between 2 vehicles that I loved. It took a very long time to decide to get rid of my dodge. there were 3 things that helped me decide in the end. I didn't want my dodge to just sit in my driveway, it deserved to be used, driven, and loved as I loved it for 11 years. The 2nd reason is that the one thing I would have changed about the truck is that I should have gotten a diesel engine instead of the v10. The diesel versions are pretty cheap, so if I decide to get a project truck, that is probably what it will be. And 3rd, I knew that if it really came down to it, I would be able to find it again. The amount of abuse it can tank, and the body/design queues of the truck that I added make it difficult to miss. 20 years from now, I am positive it will still be pulling trees out of the ground and running over lesser cars like the MiEV like speedbumps. I WILL be able to find it. It was an extremely hard decision to make, but I had to make it.

    That is why I chose to switch the dodge for the MiEV.
     
  25. slag

    slag Lifer

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    Wow.. you get the shaft big time. I cannot imagine having to walk a mile from where I park to get to my desk. That is just insane.