210-230 EV mile range, sufficient for only vehicle in Phoenix?

macchiaz-o

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I've been thinking about battery range some more and thought it might be useful to start up a more local conversation. Not sure of all members in the Phoenix area, but I was able to identify a few: @SnBGC @Evermore @nrevezzo @urmyboyblue and @zhackwyatt.

Mustang Mach-E will be my only vehicle. I opted for the standard range RWD for a few reasons:
  • Cost and weight for additional ~70 miles is significant.
  • I was previously considering a ~170 mile Hyundai Ioniq Electric or ~258 mile Hyundai Kona EV and thought the range of either of those would be fine.
  • Most of my driving is commuting and errands.
  • Phoenix metro is a big area, but the longest drive to a friend's place wouldn't be more than 50 miles each way.
  • On the rare trip to Tucson or Flagstaff, I can stop at a DCFC if needed, not a big deal.
  • On a slightly more rural trip, let's say to Show Low as an example, there isn't enough charging infrastructure (unless overnighting at certain places), even when considering a 300 mile range vehicle.
Anyway, even with all of the above, I find myself questioning my decision to stick with standard range. The rational part of my brain (admittedly much smaller than the emotional/gut-thinking parts) is telling me that it's no big deal to rent a vehicle when needed for trips out of town.

What do you all think? I know some of you are going with SR and some ER. I'm curious to know what factors you thought about and how you decided?

Thank you!





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ChasingCoral

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It's only 70 more miles but that's about 30% farther than the SR. That seems like a significant increase. It really depends how often you plan to take those trips. However, distances are long out west. That's why I immediately went for ER, especially since I wanted AWD.
 

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I am always on the better safe then sorry mindset. Better to have it and not use it then not have it and use it. If the extra cost was a factor I would keeping my current ford explorer and save the 50K on getting a new car I don't really need.
 
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macchiaz-o

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It's only 70 more miles but that's about 30% farther than the SR. That seems like a significant increase. It really depends how often you plan to take those trips. However, distances are long out west. That's why I immediately went for ER, especially since I wanted AWD.
True. Not real often, if I'm being honest... And when they happen, most likely they are with friends or family who have ICE cars. (Or worst case I rent something.)

The more likely scenarios would be work, which could send me to Yuma, Sierra Vista, or Las Cruces. All of those seem doable in 210 or 300 mile range cars, obviously stopping for refills along the way.
 
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I am always on the better safe then sorry mindset. Better to have it and not use it then not have it and use it. If the extra cost was a factor I would keeping my current ford explorer and save the 50K on getting a new car I don't really need.
Typically I am as well... But that mindset can carry us away at some point, right? I mean, if the two options from Ford were 300 miles or 370 miles, which would you choose? What about 370 and 420? And so on.
 

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Having made do with a 70 mile EV followed by a 230+ mile EV. The SR ranged Mach-E is fine for just about any metro area in the US (aside from say LA or NYC which are huge! LOL).

Looking at Phoenix you shouldn't have any issues with that kind of range (doesn't look like it is that much bigger than Southeastern Michigan--especially if you include Ann Arbor in that circle). I've had no issues getting anywhere in the area even going on some 160 mile round trips from one end of the area to the other (one time in winter) without having to charge up.

Having said the above I did opt for the Ca Route 1 version which is the lowest priced LR version of the Mach-E, not for any practical reason, however LOL.
 

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One thing I might consider is how convenient it is for you to rent a car. Is there a good option nearby you?... Do they have a shuttle, or will you have to leave your car there (or have someone that can drop you off)? Decent vehicle and prices?

70 extra "official range" miles is less than that at high speed on a road trip. The advertised 300 miles on a 88 kWh battery is 3.41 miles/kWh. But ABRP thinks at 65 MPH, that drops to 2.92 (15% less). I'd guess at 75 MPH it's probably ~25% less. Maybe worse in the intense AZ heat with heavy A/C use. 70 miles extra (for $5000) is probably more like 50 on the highway.

I'd suggest sitting down with ABRP for a while and just try some potential road trip destinations from your home on ER vs SR battery. Most everything within 600 miles will probably only have a difference of one extra charging stop (if even that). It that worth $5000 to you?
 

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One other thought... Remember that Ford built in a very conservative 10-11% buffer into both batteries. In theory, we should be able to feel better about home-charging all the way to 100% more often than we might in a small-buffer BEV. We won't be starting short as often.

It should also (theoretically) increase the odds of an OTA range boost in the future by unlocking more of that buffer.
 

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Typically I am as well... But that mindset can carry us away at some point, right? I mean, if the two options from Ford were 300 miles or 370 miles, which would you choose? What about 370 and 420? And so on.
Exactly. And $5000 is some hefty coin. Pays for a lot of rental cars too, plus gas (which is way cheaper than EA, BTW). ABRP says my Denver-Vegas drive costs about $160 for 6 EA en-route charges. It only costs about $60 for the 2 gas stops.

Actually, I might be more inclined to spend the extra for a 420 mile battery, because then we're seriously reducing the number of slow refuel stops. Even if highway speeds dropped that to 320 miles, that would make a day's drive a far more reasonable 2-3 refuel stops (rather than 6-7). And make me more inclined to drive the BEV rather than rent an ICE. If I have to do more than maybe 3 recharges, I'm probably using ICE instead.
 
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One thing I might consider is how convenient it is for you to rent a car. Is there a good option nearby you?... Do they have a shuttle, or will you have to leave your car there (or have someone that can drop you off)? Decent vehicle and prices?
Yeah there's an Enterprise at a mall about 6-7 miles from me. Their weekly rate for a full-size car is less than $190 w/ taxes, using my employer's discount. They'll even "pick me up" though I've never tried that option so I'm unsure of the details. I think I'd be able to leave my car in their lot.

70 extra "official range" miles is less than that at high speed on a road trip.
Yeah I know, especially with the expected driving speeds out here. But far worse, I think, would be the very cold climates. Heating the car and battery is less efficient than keeping passengers cool, and the battery is a lot less effective at providing power while cold.

I'd suggest sitting down with ABRP for a while and just try some potential road trip destinations
Yeah I did that to try and verify my thoughts prior to starting this post.

Road trips in a BEV, especially a non-Tesla, are far too restricted out here. Last year, for instance, we went to the Balloon Fiesta in Albuquerque and one of our stops on the way back was in Pie Town, New Mexico. For someone heading back to the valley, that place is completely impractical to visit in any BEV. We need way more charging infrastructure, especially away from the major/boring interstate highways (I-8, 10, 17, and 40).

we should be able to feel better about home-charging all the way to 100% more often than we might in a small-buffer BEV.
Agreed. I might even charge to 100% all the time. Not generally necessary though. So I probably won't... But I have ZERO concerns about charging to 100% for the start of a road trip and during any overnight charge opportunities.
 
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Actually, I might be more inclined to spend the extra for a 420 mile battery, because then we're seriously reducing the number of slow refuel stops.
According to ABRP, even a Tesla Model S LR+ (claimed 402 mile range), with 0% battery degradation, starting with a 100% charge and with perfect outdoor weather (no wind, 80 degrees), cannot make it on a shorter, direct, and very scenic route from the National Atomic Museum in Albuquerque to the Phoenix area with a stop for delicious pie in Pie Town. And one can't even consider an extra stop at the Very Large Array near Socorro, which ought to be considered on the way.
 

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I am not familiar with driving in the Phoenix area, so I cannot chime in on that. However, I too have ordered the standard range RWD for the following reasons (in order of priority).

1) Price
2) We do have a second vehicle that we can use for longer trips
3) The smaller your battery, the lower the carbon footprint of your vehicle . I liked the perspective from this video:

I wanted to get a BEV at least partially for the ecological benefits of its life cycle. I don't actually drive a ton of miles day to day, though I will be more likely to be doing some of the around town stuff once I am rid of my truck. From what I was able to plan out, most of our trips are in a window of distance where If I need to stop to charge, the additional 70 miles wouldn't do me a ton of good.

All of that said, I totally understand the desire to have more range for most of the people on this forum. I too was planning to go with the extended range until someone else on this forum linked to this youtube video about range anxiety:

 
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Thanks, Adam. I've seen those videos before, but forgot about them. Worth rewatching.

I appreciate the reminder about the carbon footprint. This is one thing that gave me pause when I realized how much larger the Mach-E batteries are compared to the one in a Hyundai Ioniq.

I also found helpful EE's explanation of the alternative choice to keep an existing ICE car instead of switching to a BEV. That's something I couldn't manage to figure out on my own, and does help me feel better about replacing my car.
 

ChasingCoral

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I am not familiar with driving in the Phoenix area, so I cannot chime in on that. However, I too have ordered the standard range RWD for the following reasons (in order of priority).

1) Price
2) We do have a second vehicle that we can use for longer trips
3) The smaller your battery, the lower the carbon footprint of your vehicle . I liked the perspective from this video:

I wanted to get a BEV at least partially for the ecological benefits of its life cycle. I don't actually drive a ton of miles day to day, though I will be more likely to be doing some of the around town stuff once I am rid of my truck. From what I was able to plan out, most of our trips are in a window of distance where If I need to stop to charge, the additional 70 miles wouldn't do me a ton of good.

All of that said, I totally understand the desire to have more range for most of the people on this forum. I too was planning to go with the extended range until someone else on this forum linked to this youtube video about range anxiety:

Yes that video about range anxiety it’s especially good. However, it doesn’t take sparse infrastructure into account. Out west that’sa real concern.
 

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Typically I am as well... But that mindset can carry us away at some point, right? I mean, if the two options from Ford were 300 miles or 370 miles, which would you choose? What about 370 and 420? And so on.
I would pick the most that I could afford
 

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