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Chapter 3 - 'disaster' strikes - Well not quite

Older Issues > Autum/Fall/Winter 2018 > Electric to IFA
Electric to IFA - Special Coverage
Travelling to the IFA Trade show in Berlin by only Electric Means

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Chapter 3 T- 1 day - 'Disaster' almost strikes
Planning has gone well. Everything is under control. It is one day to go until we get to pick up the Model X and the phone rings...

The car we are supposed to take has been badly damaged by the previous driver and can't be driven. White.Car who I have to say have been absolutely brilliant have really tried but they just can't find another Model X available. So plans need to change. Now we totally get this. Incidents happen. Teslas are in high demand and you can't have a huge inventory of them.  

So what are the options. As I previously mentioned the two main reasons for going for the Model X were the space for equipment and the fact it had Air Suspension to help with the ride comfort. Fortunately have come up trumps and managed to find a nearly new Model S we can have that does have Air Suspension and although it doesn't have as many seats as the X it does potentially have more usable boot space. We can compromise. 

Now this does affect the planning. I mentioned the Low Emission Zones registration in the last article. This last minute change obviously affects that. White.Car are doing a brilliant job of re-registering this new car for Antwerp but unfortunatley there is just not enough time to get the badge needed for Berlin. Now we can plan round this and not go into the Berlin Zone but again it shows the craziness of the Low Emission schemes.

The other thing we have to look at is the effect on range of having a smaller battery pack as this is likely to be a 75D rather than the 90D of the Model X. One thing which compensates though is the Model S is a bit more efficient than the taller Model X and can drive slightly faster at the same consumption. Looking at EVTripPlanner we actually end up with slightly less time spent on the journey.

So yes this could have been a disaster I've noticed other rental companies seem to have much smaller availability of EVs so I feel fortunate our Sponsor chose

Now interestingly this Model S is very new and we will be able to also review the new 2018 features which is good.

Moving aside from the trials of the day, I did get asked whether I thought if we didn't have access to the SuperCharger network whether the journey would still be as easy?

Suprisingly there are actually far more non-SuperCharger Rapid Chargers on our route. Looking at the Chademo for the Leaf and CCS say for the Kona I counted over 150.  Most of them are limited to 50KW which would have slowed the journey a little bit but factoring in the need to stop for lunch we could probably stop in almost the same places  as with the Tesla and have only 10 to 20 minutes impact on the total journey. 

What would change would be the journey cost as the charging would incur a financial charge albeit not too expensive a one. Most of the chargers were on the PlugSurfing network and charge a fixed 7 euros 49 cents per session or a journey cost of around 30 Euros. Still incredibly reasonable.

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