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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Would I be criminally insane to try to drive a family of four plus (small) dog and luggage for a long weekend (up on Friday, back on Monday), from central Berkshire to Loch Lomond and back?

I've planned a route on Zap Map - 4 stops at Hopwood Park M42 Services, Lymm M6 Services, Tebay M6 Services, Annandale Water A74(M) Services for rapid recharges, which I estimate will take 30-40 minutes each, so the whole journey wil probably take 10 hours.

Or I can take my petrol engined estate car, and do it far more quickly.

My main concern if taking the Leaf is the amount of rapid charging in a single day - will that cause an issue by slowing down the later charges becasue of battery heat, thereby slowing the journey significantly? And of course the other big risk is charger problems at any of these locations, which could completely ruin the weekend.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
Yes I'm leaning that way...what do you mean by manage the heat? Do you mean driving slower helps keep battery temp down? Actaully, what happens when you hit the red on the temp gauge? Does the car stop itself then you have to wait for it to cool, or does it limit itself to a low speed? Doesn't sound great if it happens on a fast motorway...

Another thought - does anyone think I could do this on 3 charges, with a 12-bar car which shows about 130 miles on the GOM after full charges? Hmm? :eek:
 

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Rapid charging heats the battery, driving fast also heats the battery. So 70mph motorway combined with 4 rapids will likely see the temperature round the top of the dial. If you drive slower, the battery might cool down a bit between charges.

If it gets too hot you get much reduced charging speeds and limited power. It doesnt limit itself to a speed exactly, just limits how much power you can produce. If you were already at 70, it would very likely happily stay there, its just not going to accellerate very quickly.

I think if it were me, i'd be taking the petrol car. 4 charges will be annoying, and frankly i dont believe thats all it'll take. I've plotted a route from fife to blackpool in the past in my LEAF30 and ABRP recons 4 charges required for that...

I've just input your proposed route, reading to loch lomond, and it recons 8 charges needed...
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
8 charges to do 414 miles? I can do a comfortable 100 miles on a full charge, with contingency, in the summer months. 4 is surely ideal? There are no stages over 90 miles on my plan, one is even as little as 67 miles.
 

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I can do a comfortable 100 miles on a full charge, with contingency, in the summer months. 4 is surely ideal? There are no stages over 90 miles on my plan, one is even as little as 67 miles.
You won't be on a full charge except at the start of your journey. After that you'll be on about 80% after each recharge, or you'll be waiting much longer than the 40 minutes you've estimated if you try to charge to 100%.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Really? I'll be using Chademo rapids which will put me back to 100% in 40 minutes or so. I did this at an Instavolt charger, after having driven 80 miles to the charger, on another thread I posted a few weeks ago. As I said my proposed route is using stages of approx 85 miles or less. All of the chargers are Ecotricity - is there something about those which won't charge me to 100% on a rapid like that Instavolt one did?
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Yeah you're all probably right, if a bunch of EV users reckons ICE is the option, then it probably is...
 

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Yeah you're all probably right, if a bunch of EV users reckons ICE is the option, then it probably is...
Its all down to the WAF for me - its not a case of whether its possible or not, it clearly is, but there are some uncontrollable variables that could get you in trouble (chargers not working, rapidgate etc) - not worth the risk :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Gosh darn all you folks with the sensible heads on. I was looking forward to an electric adventure but you're probably right. Harumph. :cry:
 

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At least two of your planned stops still have the old Ecotricity units installed. If you replanned to pick up the new Gridserve service centres that could eliminate possible glitches. Replan to miss Lymm and Tebay.

Stafford and Knutsford have been fitted with new units. And the new hub at J27 on the M6 is pretty reliable. Also the Lancaster park n ride hub is en route. Not sure about further north.

But in the circumstances described I would just take the ICE.
 

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I have to be honest. That sounds like complete misery to me. Sorry way too many stops given the range. That's a long drive even in an Ice with a fully loaded car.

What happens when chargers don't work ? Or are not available ? Multiple times.....

I have a leaf 30 you couldn't pay me enough to attempt that as you are suggesting....
 

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8 charges to do 414 miles? I can do a comfortable 100 miles on a full charge, with contingency, in the summer months. 4 is surely ideal? There are no stages over 90 miles on my plan, one is even as little as 67 miles.
I have a Leaf 30 with a decent battery still and can easily get a hundred miles out of it as well. But not in the circumstances you are suggesting.

On a motorway full loaded in these temperatures you will need air con for some of the journey unless you are willing to drive for hours in discomfort.

No way you are getting 100 miles range in a fully loaded leaf with a load of motorway and some aircon use.

Being safe I would allow for 70 - 80 miles range. I would allow for 6 charging stops minimum . Seriously with a family of 4 in a hatchback that is taking misery to an entirely different level.....
 

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interesting thread. Basically it seems most people have the small city cars like the Zoe and Leaf and to me just like their ice counterparts they are not ideal for longer trips. A city car is better then my big estate in a city, my car is too big to fit most parking spaces comfortably and uncomfortably wide on narrow streets and older french underground car parks are a serious nightmare to manouvere around. But on the motorway it is a milemuncher and is comfortable leaving me quite relaxed even after a 600km drive (all with still probably 400km left in the tank). I would not chance a weekend spoilt but looking at events in Germany we can only hope and pray BEV get better range even in the little cars. For me every time I use my big diesel estate to pop up to the village 4km away I feel worry about the co2 generated and want my BEV to arrive ASAP but i am still thinking of a long trip just before it arrives as even with an EQC 400km range as a newbie I have concerns. My takeaway from this is one needs to carefully balance the long journey need with day to day and possibly look for a bigger battery car than you may initially think you need exactly as happens with ICE and also why so many still reject BEV out of hand beause of their summer trip. A conundrum that will probably be alleviated as BEV become more and more mainstream.
 

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Gosh darn all you folks with the sensible heads on. I was looking forward to an electric adventure but you're probably right. Harumph. :cry:
Seriously I would ignore the sensible advice and see if your passengers are up for it.
I find a few stops on long leisure journeys refreshing, chance to read a chapter of my current book. If it's going to stress out the passenger then that's an all together different scenario. In which case take the train.
 

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interesting thread. Basically it seems most people have the small city cars like the Zoe and Leaf and to me just like their ice counterparts they are not ideal for longer trips. A city car is better then my big estate in a city, my car is too big to fit most parking spaces comfortably and uncomfortably wide on narrow streets and older french underground car parks are a serious nightmare to manouvere around. But on the motorway it is a milemuncher and is comfortable leaving me quite relaxed even after a 600km drive (all with still probably 400km left in the tank). I would not chance a weekend spoilt but looking at events in Germany we can only hope and pray BEV get better range even in the little cars. For me every time I use my big diesel estate to pop up to the village 4km away I feel worry about the co2 generated and want my BEV to arrive ASAP but i am still thinking of a long trip just before it arrives as even with an EQC 400km range as a newbie I have concerns. My takeaway from this is one needs to carefully balance the long journey need with day to day and possibly look for a bigger battery car than you may initially think you need exactly as happens with ICE and also why so many still reject BEV out of hand beause of their summer trip. A conundrum that will probably be alleviated as BEV become more and more mainstream.
The Leaf is a decent sized family hatchback Vs the Zoe which is a city car size wise. Space wise in the cabin and boot a Leaf is more comparable in size to a Quasqui or a Model 3 . The Leaf and Zoe are not comparable size wise.

I can easily get my family of 4 in my Leaf and we do use it for weekends away but not at those distances. I only use it within 80 miles or so with destination charging available when I go and stay with family for example. Everything is comfortable and no range anxiety.

You are correct in saying it's city car range wise though really and that is what most people buy them for me included.

I have an Eclass estate ICE for longer journeys and towing our van. I don't use the estate in town at all or for shorter journeys . It's too big to drive around town park etc I find. It's only used for long distances. Towing etc. Over 80% of our mileage is done in the Leaf since we got it.

I will eventually get a BEV to replace the Merc. It needs to be able to tow a van for 300 miles at least though. It will be years before there is a sensibly priced vehicle can do that .
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
All good comments, thanks everyone. My ICE is a Honda Civic Tourer, so about the same amount of passenger space as the Leaf, but with a much bigger boot. When I was a kid we used to drive Berkshire to Scotland, family of 4 plus boisterous labrador/boxer cross, in a.....wait for it.....wait for it........Reliant Regal!
 

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All good comments, thanks everyone. My ICE is a Honda Civic Tourer, so about the same amount of passenger space as the Leaf, but with a much bigger boot. When I was a kid we used to drive Berkshire to Scotland, family of 4 plus boisterous labrador/boxer cross, in a.....wait for it.....wait for it........Reliant Regal!
I think your brave, and if your children are not young, and you have adequately planned, like you I would see it as an adventure and just go with it. Good luck and a happy safe journey whatever you decide.
 
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