Question of the Day: Who Here is Ready For an Electric Car?

Jonny Lieberman
by Jonny Lieberman

Please read before screaming. Earlier today our man Wilkinson posed a very good question. Can our (in many cases) ailing power grid cope with EVs? Now, I'm lucky. I live in Los Angeles where DWP supplies the juice. DWP's union (wisely) refused to go private when out-on-his-ass former Governor Gray Davis was using Enron to help privatize most of California's electrical production. Long story short, LA has power to spare and was one of the only counties unaffected by the rolling blackouts a few years back. So, I'm confident us Angelenos will be able to handle plug-ins, capacity-wise. But where the hell do we plug 'em in? I live in a classic LA hill home. It's four flights of stairs up me. Meaning street parking. Short of running 200 feet of extension cord down a hill and across a street, I can't charge an EV. Hundreds of my neighbors are in the same outlet-less boat. That's just in my 'hood. In other words, if I had an EV, I wouldn't know what to do with it. Would you?

Jonny Lieberman
Jonny Lieberman

Cleanup driver for Team Black Metal V8olvo.

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  • Garak Garak on Jun 12, 2008

    I'll buy an EV when it can withstand Finnish winter conditions. That's not going to happen soon - or most likely ever.

  • Wmba Wmba on Jun 12, 2008

    Boy, you can tell it's Spring when you folks think about going all electric. I have a 15 mile commute each way, which would be fine during good weather. However, when it's minus 15 degrees Celsius in early February, the snow's still falling, and I need to heat that windshield and rear window (to keep 'em clear) and my freezing feet, and need to get to work, and the last thing I need is max torque at zero rpm, I think electric is a bust. 8kWh of juice will be gone before I leave the driveway after shovelling away the plow's wall of snow. Same thing applies in reverse for A/C in Houston in summer. What about traffic jams? You want extra stress wondering whether the juice is going to last? A solar power panel on the vehicle's roof would make about enough juice to run the DRL's during a trip through Death Valley at high noon. Oh, and you want a sunroof too? The local electric company bought electric Chevy vans for meter readers 15 years ago. Big ads, blah, blah, blah. I know all about 'em, 'cause I worked there at the time. Experiment lasted about 3 months. Kaput. I'm not ready for all electric, and neither are very many other people. Of course there are amateur kits out there to convert your current pride and joy to electric. Easy to do. Good luck if you try it. Just don't short out any batteries in your enthusiasm, because the result isn't much different from flicking that lighter to see if there's any gas left in the tank. And if you think that doesn't happen, let me tell you about a friend who appeared at school one day in winter with a huge red sunburned face and no eyebrows.

  • Zeitgeist Zeitgeist on Jun 12, 2008

    Samir I just can’t see electric cars being as wild, thrashy, insane, noisy as good ol’ ICE cars. Look at this. Stephan Wilkinson suggest a better Qotd "What kind of stickers are on your car? Why?" I predict 150 answers. oldyak would Elvis drive a EV? Would Elvis read TTAC? Wouldn't it be ElVis?

  • Zenith Zenith on Jun 12, 2008

    I'm ready. I've been ready for a long time but the manufacturers have told me that I won't like the 100-mile range so they haven't offered me one. I drive 28 miles round-trip to work,and have an ornamental lamp post