So I just drove an EV for the first time...

Discussion in 'General' started by The Spark That Could, Apr 14, 2021.

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  1. I'm a "car enthusiast" as an I love the history of cars, different engine designs, and working on them. Wanted to get an EV but didn't expect much aside from a decent daily with low maintenance and fuel cost.

    I was wrong. Decided to have a 2014 Spark EV, the one in my profile pic, delivered for a test drive and I was blown away. The past two days my mind just kept being blown away at how well an EV performs as a daily and this was during weather when EVs supposedly perform the worse.

    Not talking about chilly weather but rather apocalyptic rain, thunder, flooding, and strong winds. You could occasionally see lightning striking vertically above you while normal lightning was striking every ten seconds or so. Visibility easily went down to 10-20 feet depending on the rain and wind. Definitely not ideal for driving but only a minor inconvenience for Louisiana.

    Yet somehow the little EV just kept on going with no signs of struggle and I had plenty of range to spare (started at 49 miles at 60-70% and ended at 40 miles after a 13 mile one way trip). Most of my commute is rural roads or the interstate so combined with the weather, it should have been pushing this EV to the limit.

    On top of being a champ, its also fun to drive. Usually I have no issues keeping the eco meter green but there were instances where I tested just how quick an EV could accelerate. Didn't really get a chance to do this much due to road conditions but passing someone was no issue. Not only that but the regen braking made the whole driving experience far better than any ICE cars I've driven.

    Using "L" (heavy regen) on city streets allows me to simply let off the throttle before making a tight turn or when approaching a redlight. There were also cases where simply letting off the throttle when someone decides to make their own lane is enough to put some distance between me and them. When I want to speed up during regen, the Spark effortlessly accelerates so the transition from stopping by regen is extremely smooth. You're not going to realize just how much more enjoyable this is until you try it yourself.

    Once I get on the interstate or fast highway, I'll shift into "D" and the transition is seamless. As I said earlier, passing someone is easy and quick. It has no issues driving at highway speed but you'll definitely see your range go down. Otherwise the interstate was uneventful. I just set it on cruise control at 65 mph, relaxed, and enjoyed the ride.

    Honestly, it's insane how different the driving experience is between an EV and ICE. This is a compliance EV driving in severe weather and strong winds yet it's a champ that got me to work then back with enough range to do it all over again. I would say this had to be one of the best commuter cars out there.

    Hopefully my experience help others understand that EVs aren't bad and won't feel inferior to ICE cars in any way. If anything, you'll never want to drive an ICE again. I kept my old ICE just in case the Spark EV wouldn't cut it but now I don't see myself using the ICE car anymore.

    Only downside is that the horn is also the highbeams. Tried to warn someone about a big limb on the road but honked instead and they didn't stop so... that was unfortunate.
    Clamps, DJP and GvilleGuy like this.
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  3. gooki

    gooki Active Member

    Great aren't they. Even our lowly Nissan Leaf is a blast to drive.
    DJP likes this.
  4. marshall

    marshall Active Member

    Yes, "Try it! You'll like it!"
  5. I

    I am right there with you. Now I just want to convert an older 911 Porsche or perhaps my 914-6 to electric and really have some fun. Congratulations on your purchase
  6. GM is selling an EV crate engine and so is VW for older Beetles and Super Bugs. I think EV motors and battery swaps will become a thing in the late 2020s in order to keep classics on the road.
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  8. Ain't it the truth?!? Every time I've had to rent or borrow and ICE car, I can't wait to get back to my EV.
    Clamps, bwilson4web and Fastnf like this.

  9. EV west makes a large number of conversion kits for VW and Porsches. Here's a link.
  10. Wanted to add to my post but edit button seems to have expired.

    My full range was actually 50 miles during severe weather with 60 mph winds but I misread the battery UI thinking it was 60-70%. Also wanted to add that it has the wrong size and type of tires that aren't optimized for range. All of this combined, plus 69k miles on odometer and highway speed, doesn't make my experience the best indicator for range.

    Will update when I get the right tires but I don't expect major changes. Got 54 miles in weather bad enough to send metal roof flying a few dozen feet (nothing a minute on a forklift couldn't clean up) so I'll expect 60-65 miles of range on a bad day.

    Bonus: You don't feel the wind in this small EV, but this roof definitely felt it.

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