[27x02] Jun 23, 2019 Electric Car Special

I've seen this episode and deem it worthy of a....

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  • Total voters
    12

MWF

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Three home made electric cars compete for honours, and Harris Monkey gives the Tesla Model 3 a spanking (before nicking my joke about Elon Musk souding like one of those phermone colognes alleged to attract women, the bastard!)
 

AlexF1

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Well I thought it was excellent. Only minus point was the celeb barrier section which was a bit unnecessary and the guests who weren’t into cars at all. Apart from that some genuine laughs and entertainment. Felt like a mix of the hammerhead eagle episode and the endurance race in the old coupes from the early-mid 2000’s.

Thoroughly enjoying the season so far
 

freefall

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What the fuck did I just watch. This looks like a Top Gear Northern knock-off which would be killed off after a couple of pilot episodes.

Eatin me buisquits in me caaaravan
 

MossMan

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As someone following the EV revolution quite closely, I was annoyed and disappointed that the challenge segment was deliberately set up to propogate outdated and incorrect prejudice against electric vehicles:

- Range anxiety: they made a big deal about this, yet later it turned out they had delierately bought a thrashed old Leaf with a knackered battery! And I bet they had to look hard for one as well, since I've recently been reading that all EV battery life has been far better than predicted and that batteries outlast the vehicles, not the other way round. This car is exceptional; probably one where the owner abused the battery instead of charging it properly. Secondly, for normal use (commuting or shopping trips, overnight charging or charging at work) range is never an issue in real life. Again they set it up by staging a race to drain the charge and then immediately holding a short road trip. Which brings me onto the other point:

- Charging issues: 1: not enough charging points... complete rubbish since - and this is something the media constantly gets wrong - EV DRIVERS DO NOT NORMALLY CHARGE THEIR CARS AT CHARGING POINTS! There is this idea that you use an EV like a fossil-fuel car, i.e. charge it up at a public charging point, run it down, go to a charging point and fill it up again. In fact, you always leave it charging overnight or at work. The only time you will need to stop at a public charging point which isn't near your home or workplace is when you're on an unusually long road trip. Which leads to:

- Charging issues: 2: having to wait hours for it to charge. This was only ever an issue for early generations or when you plug in to a standard household socket - which almost no-one does. For any modern EV connected to any modern charging point (including those fitted at home) a typical top-up en route will take less than an hour and give you enough juice for another few hours driving. That means you drive for two or three hours, charge it while you grab lunch, then finish your journey. And even then, things are improving all the time. Last I heard, the next generation rolling out would serve up a full charge in around five minutes.

This was disappointing since instead of encouraging and reassuring viewers that EV stereotypes are all wrong, they went full-on into the cliches instead.

So after all that anti-EV bigotry, it was quite weird for the model 3 review to largely turn round and say "actually EVs are great after all!"

And they never once mentioned the one thing that everyone should know... they cost almost nothing to run! Pennies for the juice but also practically zero maintenance!
 

soupdragon

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So after all that anti-EV bigotry, it was quite weird for the model 3 review to largely turn round and say "actually EVs are great after all!"
To be fair, the question they asked at the top of the show was 'can you build your own EV'. To which the answer was 'no'.

The Leaf was an odd choice admittedly, but the fact it only had a range of 30-odd miles after 8 years, no matter how badly the previous owner looked after it, would put me off buying a used one!
 

MossMan

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The Leaf was an odd choice admittedly, but the fact it only had a range of 30-odd miles after 8 years, no matter how badly the previous owner looked after it, would put me off buying a used one!
Which is exactly why what they did was utterly irresponsible...

There was something seriously wrong with that car - it in no way represents the average second hand Leaf.
 

MossMan

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Forgot to mention... Ostensibly the question was about building your own EV, but the points they made, which I took issue with, were about EV in general.

And even the answer to the question itself... Is wrong. It's a definite yes! There are a number of outfits springing up doing excellent conversions of old cars to (much sportier) electric versions. Aston Martin themselves have an original DB7 converted, just to show it can be done "OEM" while preserving the provenance of a valuable classic.

There is a wealth of parts available to do it and because it's electric it's actually a pretty simple job. DIY conversion is thriving and there are even ready made kits available if you want to make it as easy as possible.
 

MWF

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To be fair, the question they asked at the top of the show was 'can you build your own EV'. To which the answer was 'no'.

The Leaf was an odd choice admittedly, but the fact it only had a range of 30-odd miles after 8 years, no matter how badly the previous owner looked after it, would put me off buying a used one!
Agreed. I think the episode was pretty even handed. They showed that if you were to convert a car yourself to electric power then results would probably not be that great but they also showed how far the EV has come with the performance test of the Tesla.

@MossMan, I think on this occasion you're maybe overthinking things a bit.
 

Matt2000

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Finally got around to watching it, I think it was decent. I'm personally very interested in the idea of converting classic cars to electric so it was nice to see the Spitfire and the Brat. I'll ignore the Leaf as a used electric car with an old battery is obviously going to have range issues so we learnt nothing.

Races were largely pointless but the power station race was at least fun to watch, the less said about the shock race the better and I don't know what the race at the end was all about but I hope Freddie's crash was genuine... poor Subaru. Harris brought up a good point in the last race about weight distribution though and while it's largely irrelevant in electric hatchbacks it certainly will affect conversions. I'm going to have another look at the Smart Roadster conversion I've been following to see how the weight is spread around.

The Tesla video was nicely done, great visuals as always and I really like the way the overlaid the time on the start/finish stripe. Simple but a nice touch. The races were interesting and although I'm not a Tesla fan as such, there's no doubt that the car performs well and is a damn good deal when compared to the high-performance petrol equivalents. I hate shortened number plates.

I like the northern lads and I hope this doesn't make me dislike them over time, that's my biggest concern with them doing TG.
 

dw1

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Was anyone else a bit put off by them administering electric shocks and enjoying causing pain a bit too much? It brought the Milgram experiment to my mind. As a "test" of the cars, that bit seemed quite pointless.
 

Kiskaloo

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There was something seriously wrong with that car - it in no way represents the average second hand Leaf.
The impression I got from Harris' comments at the end was when the mileage/charging-cycles gets that high, the performance of the battery is far, far below what it was new. Consumer-grade (laptop, smartphone, etc.) Li-Ions lose performance as they reach higher and higher charge-discharge cycles and I believe most electric cars use those types of batteries.
 

MossMan

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The impression I got from Harris' comments at the end was when the mileage/charging-cycles gets that high, the performance of the battery is far, far below what it was new. Consumer-grade (laptop, smartphone, etc.) Li-Ions lose performance as they reach higher and higher charge-discharge cycles and I believe most electric cars use those types of batteries.
But as I think I said upthread it turned out performance is far better than expected. Nissan is on record saying they found - to their surprise - that Leaf batteries outlast the vehicle itself. They had planned for battery swaps which no one needed.
 

Morcoveata

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Awful in every way, the bullying, the accent, the violence, the "jokes", the vulgarity!
For the first time ever I couldn't watch the rest of the episodes! Top Gear Australia was absolutely superb comparing to this horror.
They absolutely destroyed the last drop of the Top Gear.
After this hooliganism Top Gear is completely destroyed!
 
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