damon henry via EV wrote:
EVs *can* be less complex and more reliable. Industrial and commercial
EVs have certainly proven this point many times over. It is no problem
at all to find electric vehicles that have been running for many decades
and millions of miles with very little maintenance or repair.
I don't disagree with your assessment of less complexity, more reliability, but
the less expensive part is tough to accomplish. This is primarily because of
the energy storage systems. An ICE vehicle just needs a stamped piece of metal
to store it's energy. An EV needs a complicated, expensive battery (or pie in
the sky fuel cell). There will always be a huge price difference in this part
of the technology regardless of mass production economics, so the cost
difference will have to made up elsewhere. The most likely place would be the
drivetrain, since the rest of the vehicle is kind of a wash, If you can build
the electric motor/inverter/gear reduction for less than internal combustion
engine/transmission/control electronics, you have a chance of matching price
for comparable vehicles.
But whether the auto companies can produce such EVs is a completely
different matter. Certainly, the ones they have built up to now have
been *more* complex, *less* reliable, and much more expensive than their
ICE counterparts. And when they need repairs, the parts are considerably
more expensive and harder to get.
I have a 2001 Toyota Prius. The ICE parts of it are typical Toyota; they
run and run. Guess what part of the car is the least reliable, and
hardest to fix? The batteries. Like every auto company, Toyota used a
special custom battery pack that they no longer make. This will be the
"guaranteed obsolescence" plan for all the auto company EVs.
The other EV parts are likely to have similar issues. Ten years from
now, what do you think the chances are of getting a replacement charger,
inverter, motor, or other specialized EV parts? Based on our previous
experience with the auto company's EVs, I'd say slim and none. Your only
recourse will be to find a working one in a junkyard, or fix it yourself
(without service information or parts, of course).
Yes, aftermarket companies that will try to produce replacement parts
and batteries. But you can bet the auto companies are doing everything
in their power to make such replacements impossible.
I continue to think that it won't be the big auto companies that make
our future EVs. They will come from new "upstart" companies like Tesla,
that don't have a vested interest in perpetuating the present ICE model.
In computing, the mean time to failure keeps getting shorter. (Alan Perlis)
Lee Hart, 814 8th Ave N, Sartell MN 56377, www.sunrise-ev.com
Please discuss EV drag racing at NEDRA (http://groups.yahoo.com/group/NEDRA)