[Oeva-list] Update on HB2328

Scott Hippe scott.hippe at me.com
Wed May 4 23:57:53 PDT 2011

I agree with all those things you say and to me it reinforces the need to think of the battery pack as fuel.  This could be a
good discussion for future meetings.  I would like to hear all opinions.

One of the things non-EV people seem to fear (based on what they say) is that they seem to assume that an EV is worthless
when the battery pack reaches 'end of life'.  They fear this 'big expense' to occur some time in the future.  And they equate it
to their experience of having a high mileage ICE car and the transmission goes out.  Then their car becomes 'worthless' and they have
to decide whether to sell it for scrap, or dump in more money to fix the the transmission and perhaps risk something else
going out. I am sure many people reading this have faced this sometime in their lives.

But with my thinking, if the pack is thought of as fuel, then you are not dumping money into this car to replace some broken part,
but simply pre-buying more fuel.  Evaluating the used EV is easier than the used ICE because, yes, we expect millions of miles on an
electric motor and there are so few parts in the drive train that could fail and escape your attention.   So if the body is in good shape and the interior is not ripped, one would be happy to buy a new pack, because that money is pre-buying fuel for the next
100,000 miles or more. If I were to buy a used EV, the best time to buy would be right at the end of life of the pack, or
right after the pack was swapped with a new one.  In both cases, you can accurately value this purchase.  It would be harder to
value a used EV with 50,000 miles on the pack, because you may have no idea how the previous owner drove and treated the pack
(i.e. wasted fuel).

The other reason I think of the pack as fuel is because then the current cost of an EV actually becomes competitive with an ICE
car without any incentives.  A $25,000 ICE can be compared with a $35,000 EV because of the prepaid fuel concept.  At the time
of purchase, most people never consider that they are going to spend $12,000 or more on gasoline over the next 100,000 miles.

Perhaps we should not get hung up on the meaning of fuel, my purpose is simply to create an analogy that makes it easier to have a common ground to evaluate the economics between an ICE or EV purchase.  Once we get someone understanding
true costs, then we can talk about other interesting topics like how much electricity was consumed fueling their ICE car and other
social costs.


On May 4, 2011, at 10:57 PM, Theoldcars at aol.com wrote:

> Hello Scott
> I disagree about including the batteries as part of the fuel cost for these reasons.
> One an ICE motor or transmission can fail at 100,000 or 150,000. I have had to replace transmissions at 50,000 miles and even one motor. This is out of small fleet of ICE vehicles and they always seem to last at least until the warranty is up.
> An EV AC traction motor is good for about one million miles. The gear reduction is a sealed unit and will not fail for a very long time. So the EV drive would save you the cost of replacing motors at 200,000 miles.
> Yes the replacement cost of the pack is expensive but it is about the cost of the 5 engines you don't have to buy for one million EV miles. Even after one million miles your only service work would be to replace two bearings. This would be far less costly then any ICE rebuild. Even if you had to replace the whole AC drive and gear reduction unit the cost would be a bargain compared to an ICE motor. As an example the drive pod for an S-10 EV which includes the motor was brand new in the box 1500 dollars list price from GM. They sold out several years ago.  I suspect a few EV guys figured out what a bargain that was for an EV project.
> Also I would not be surprised if the batteries last 150,000 to 200,000 miles if not abused. They would be useable for even longer if you can get by with less range. Right now I am driving an S-10 with 12 year old NiMH batteries. Range is about 50 miles but they just refuse to die as long as you treat them kindly. The RAV4 EV under the right conditions using the same chemistry is good for 150,000 miles. The Leaf should far exceed the cycle life of these older NiMH modules.
> I do agree that pack costs will come down. Also it is most likely that by the time a replacement pack is needed battery technology is going to be greatly improved.
> Not sure if this changes your point of view but some things you might consider.
> Don
> In a message dated 5/4/2011 6:30:50 A.M. Pacific Daylight Time, oeva-list-request at oeva.org writes:
> Message: 3
> Date: Wed, 04 May 2011 06:26:50 -0700
> From: Scott Hippe <scott.hippe at me.com>
> Subject: [Oeva-list] Fwd:  Update on HB2328
> To: oeva-list at oeva.org
> Message-ID: <A25ED67A-A467-4BBB-A19C-C4CC6256A449 at me.com>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"
> In my opinion, EV fuel is the battery + electricity.  The battery is "prepaid fuel".  For a Leaf, if you assume battery cost is $10,000.00 and you expect
> 100,000 miles on a battery, your total fuel cost over 100,000 miles is $10,000.00 + $2,000 (electricity).   That works out to $.12/mile.  If you treat
> your battery well, and your battery lasts more than 100,000 miles, well thats just an additional benefit.  We also assume that when it is time to
> replace the battery (essentially prepay more fuel), the battery cost will be much lower due to technology and mass production.
> To compare an ICE, 30 mpg * $4.00/gallon = $.12/mile as well.  But it is easy to assume that over the next 8 years that the price of gas will increase.
> Also there are all kinds of social costs produced by the ICE during the 100,000 miles that are not accounted for.  And the 3333 gallons of gas that the
> ICE uses over 100,000 miles required a significant amount of electricity to produce and deliver which is of course also hidden from view.
> Scott
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