Beta

Slashdot: News for Nerds

×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

CNN Replicates John Broder's Drive In the Tesla Model S

Soulskill posted about a year and a half ago | from the not-that-anybody-hasn't-already-made-up-their-minds dept.

Transportation 525

karlnyberg writes "Adding a third voice to the conflict between Tesla's Elon Musk and New York Times Reporter John Broder, CNN/Money's Peter Valdes-Dapena drove from DC to Boston (primarily to test the SuperCharger network). As he says in the article: In the end, I made it — and it wasn't that hard. ... As for the Supercharger network? Turns out that works, too.' He expands on this a bit: 'Looking back on the trip, it would be even easier if Tesla would install one of their fast-charging Superchargers along the New Jersey Turnpike. (These charging stations can fill up a nearly dead battery in Tesla's longest-range cars in about an hour, which is enough time to stop for a meal.) Tesla's working on that, spokeswoman Shanna Hendricks said. But the first priority was to install enough to make this trip, even if you had to take it easy most of the way. But I didn't have to take it that easy, which is good because the Model S provides a pretty amazing mix of smooth and silent performance along with brain-squishing acceleration. So even if you're not driving from Washington to Boston, it's an impressive car, all on its own.'"

cancel ×

525 comments

Problem with egos really (5, Insightful)

parallel_prankster (1455313) | about a year and a half ago | (#42909837)

On one side you have John Broder who it seems like wants to see this tech fail for some reason or the other (This is just my personal opinion from reading his prior articles). That is the kind of mindset he was in before he even started test driving this. On the other side you have Elon Musk who wants to sell people this new tech which will obviously have some issues in the beginning (which Musk would rather not talk about instead and blame everyone else for it.) . The truth probably lies somewhere in the middle. However, Musk's blog post was so convincing I almost find myself not rooting for John Broder at all!

Re:Problem with egos really (5, Insightful)

MickyTheIdiot (1032226) | about a year and a half ago | (#42909857)

Just another journo that you can safely not read. I think Broder was caught in a near-total lie.

Re:Problem with egos really (5, Informative)

SternisheFan (2529412) | about a year and a half ago | (#42909959)

The CNN reporter duplicated the test, charging it properly, and had 96 miles to spare at the end.

Re:Problem with egos really (5, Funny)

j00r0m4nc3r (959816) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910123)

That's only because he didn't circle around the parking lot until the battery was drained. That is the proper procedure as we all know...

Re:Problem with egos really (0, Redundant)

westlake (615356) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910413)

The CNN reporter duplicated the test, charging it properly, and had 96 miles to spare at the end.

The same conditions of road and weather?

Re:Problem with egos really (4, Interesting)

synapse7 (1075571) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910425)

There may have been some faults on Musk's end, but it does seem Broder was caught in multiple lies about the journey. I'm not sure I buy Broder's reason for the stopping and starting in a parking lot for five minutes was him attempting to find a charging station, unless he can not turn his head side to side.

Re:Problem with egos really (5, Insightful)

poetmatt (793785) | about a year and a half ago | (#42909937)

At what point do facts somehow become less convincing than John Broder's fabrication? Facts should be cut and dry, end of the day. If John is on one "side" and Musk is somehow on another, then you are simply misrepresenting "sides" to the story that don't exist. The opposite of facts is not another side to a story, it's called bullshit, and appropriately so. NYT doesn't get an all clear to do that any more than Faux news.

Good thing we have penny arcade to sum up Broder:

http://art.penny-arcade.com/photos/i-5xVV2tB/0/950x10000/i-5xVV2tB-950x10000.jpg [penny-arcade.com]

Re:Problem with egos really (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42910387)

Come on! That is TWO ***TERRIBLE*** reviews, one from the NYT and one from Top Gear. Tesla is a shithole company and has this coming to them for LYING and pushing crappy gutless electric cars that NO ONE wants. What kind of an idiot would buy a car that takes hours and hours to refuel just to drive a couple of hundred miles? No one, that's who.

Re:Problem with egos really (2)

Catbeller (118204) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910405)

To be fair, the "NYT" didn't lie - Broder did. The NYT backed up one of their journalists. Which they should! You don't throw your soldiers out into the enemies tender mercies, just 'cause. But if Broder lied - or was confused - then he has lost their protection, one would think. Let's see how this plays out. Reportorial lying is not well received at any paper.

Re:Problem with egos really (5, Insightful)

Bogtha (906264) | about a year and a half ago | (#42909943)

That's a fallacy [wikipedia.org] . It's entirely possible that Broder or Musk are entirely full of shit.

Re:Problem with egos really (2)

jythie (914043) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910075)

Well, there are a number of layers to this, and it can be useful to unpack them. In a way the OP has a point, both have a known bais and preformed a similar test with drastically different results. Once all the data is looked at, of course it is possible one of them is, as you say, completely full of shit.. it is also possible they both are a bit off, and a whole range in between. However the final outcome does not negate initial bais, and looking over their respective reviews and results should be done with that bais in mind.

Re:Problem with egos really (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42910095)

Which is why he said "probably". You may be able to link to wikipedia, but you cannot read.

Re:Problem with egos really (1)

MickyTheIdiot (1032226) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910129)

Except Musk has evidence by way of log files. Now he has a duplicated journey that backs up his view of events.

If two people are lying (with falsified evidence) then it's Broder's term to put up or shut up.

Re:Problem with egos really (1)

Sockatume (732728) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910177)

Regardless, they should just let more and more people do test runs like this and whether the issue was bad Tesla advice, a total fluke or a malevolent con job, it'll get averaged away. Musk shouldn't have sunk into a he-said she-said pissing contest on the internet, he's a CEO not a slashdotter.

Re:Problem with egos really (4, Interesting)

interkin3tic (1469267) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910331)

I'm also more likely to trust someone whose bias is out in the open as opposed to someone whose bias isn't. Musk has an obvious interest in selling his cars but made no effort to hide that. Broder on the other hand didn't say "I'm an oil shill and have X interest in trashing electric cars."

Re:Problem with egos really (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42909955)

On the other side you have Elon Musk who wants to sell people this new tech which will obviously have some issues in the beginning (which Musk would rather not talk about instead and blame everyone else for it.)

Musk sounds willing to talk about actual limitations, he doesn't like being lied about & criticized for problems that don't exist.

Re:Problem with egos really (4, Insightful)

squiggleslash (241428) | about a year and a half ago | (#42909993)

Journalism is journalism, it's a form of entertainment and the major problem with it is that it's our only source of what's happening outside in the world unless we know people involved in those events that we trust (which we don't. And if we did, well, that'd be just one person too.)

My epiphany about journalism came in the infamous Observer piece accusing Demon Internet (a major UK ISP) of selling child porn because it had an NNTP server, and anon.penet.fi - an anonymous emailer system that was used by groups like Amnesty International - of being a conduit for child porn even though that was almost a technical impossibility. The Observer was, at the time, one of Britain's most respected newspapers, largely independent, fearless, and frequently willing to speak truth to power. There were minor issues during a recently previous period in which it was owned by a gold mining company, but it wasn't owned by them any more, and even during that period it had a nearly unblemished reputation for truth.

The Observer just made shit up, used a very obvious piece of sophistry to justify it, and put it on the front page. And never apologized.

Why? Because they could. Scandals sell papers, and if you can take some snapshot of the world and create a tortured argument that it was scandalous, you can invent a scandal.

And so we get to Broder, who may or may not be as guilty as Musk says, but, even discounting 90% of what Musk claims, operated his Tesla in a way no Tesla owner would have done in the real world in a deliberate attempt to get the failure he wanted.

Why? Because he could. Scandals sell papers, and if you can take some snapshot of the world and create a tortured argument that it was scandalous, you can invent a scandal.

Re:Problem with egos really (3, Insightful)

MickyTheIdiot (1032226) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910147)

If journalism is now just "a form of entertainment" then as a democracy where people are trying to make decent decisions about their government and what corporations they interact with we're in DEEP SHIT.

I doubt that Ed Murrow saw journalism as a form of entertainment.

Re:Problem with egos really (1)

jythie (914043) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910185)

I kinda wish more people had stories like that, well, not that journalism is so corrupt, but that more people had at least a few good experiences with seeing internal knowledge of a story vs media portral. If such experiences were more wide spread then a greater chunk of the population would be a bit better at taking the media with a grain of salt.

Though one thing I do think has really improved the experience over the last few years are the comments. While there is a lot of garbage in them, often a few people with actual domain (or local) knowledge will chime in and recenter the story. Granted they sometimes have their own problems, but at least the details and corrects get out there in some form.

Re:Problem with egos really (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42910065)

However, Musk's blog post was so convincing I almost find myself not rooting for John Broder at all!

You mean like Elon Musk claiming that Broder was lying because he didn't turn the heater down at the 182 mile mark (Which he never said he did), despite some miles later... SHOCK, A 10 degree drop in cabin temperature!

Or how he 'was trying to kill the battery' because he drove around a building looking for the charging station? And charged it? And not, you know, letting it die?

Or how about his claim that only a moron would leave on a 60 mile trip when the indicator said he could go 30, because he listened to Tesla's representatives who said plugging it in for an hour so that the batteries were 'reconditioned' and the range would be recovered as the batteries warmed up, after they lost most of their charge over night? (Which Tesla has said repeatedly, in the past and after the failed test drive)

Look, I love Tesla, and Elon Musk is a great guy doing wonderful things, and I would love a Tesla Roadster or Model S or Model X... but he's wrong. Tesla's logs don't prove shit. And you know what pisses me off the most about it? Basically, THE CAR JUST RAN OUT OF GAS (Metaphorically, at least). It's GOING TO HAPPEN. Broder's review was otherwise mostly positive. Elon Musk just can't handle any implication the car is anything other that totally positive. I would still love to buy a Model S, but christ Musk's whining any time anybody is anything less that completely fawning is getting old...

Re:Problem with egos really (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42910295)

When he started on that 61 mile leg, the *car* told him it would go 32 miles. By rights, he should have been left 29 miles short of his destination. Instead, the car made it 51 miles, leaving him only 10 miles short. Still, it's no different than attempting to drive 60 miles on one gallon of gas in a car that gets 30 MPG. Only an idiot would try that and blame the *car* when they failed, all while driving past multiple stations along the way.

Tesla's logs show that, despite Broder's claims, he *didn't* fully charge the vehicle at any stage after the initial charge to start the trip.
Broder *claims* he was told by a Tesla rep that a 32 mile charge would take him 61 miles without trouble. Unfortunately, he doesn't have any evidence to support that claim.
As a result, I'm going with the common sense interpretation that he's full of shit because nobody in their right mind would expect a car to travel 61 miles with 32 miles worth of fuel on board.
If he can provide a recording of the call I'll believe him. Until then, I'm going to consider him an idiot who can't even tell that 32 is *less* than 61.

Re:Problem with egos really (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42910145)

However, Musk's blog post was so convincing I almost find myself not rooting for John Broder at all!

What exactly was convincing in that blog post? A few graphs and numbers Musk says prove his point? Most of the points made in that blog post were refuted by the reporter: http://wheels.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/02/14/that-tesla-data-what-it-says-and-what-it-doesnt/

So, yes, it sure seems truth is somewhere in the middle.

Re:Problem with egos really (1)

firex726 (1188453) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910303)

I've got to disagree somewhat, Broder is a fucking cheat in this whole thing.

He admitted to driving pasta charge station when the car indicated it needed to be charged.

No matter the car you're in you don't drive past a gas station when you're on "E" and then blame the car when it runs out of gas.

Re:Problem with egos really (-1)

digitig (1056110) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910333)

Broder's point was that the low temperatures (from 20F down to 10F) seriously impaired the battery performance. Valdes-Dapena doesn't seem to mention what the weather was like for his trip, so it's irrelevant.

For the life of me (1, Troll)

Lucas123 (935744) | about a year and a half ago | (#42909867)

I don't understand why everyone is so gaga over these Tesla's. Is it a beautiful car? Yeah. Is it well made? Yeah. But, the base price remains at $57,400. This is not a car for the masses. It's like writing about an all-electric Mercedes. Who cares?

Re:For the life of me (4, Insightful)

Joce640k (829181) | about a year and a half ago | (#42909905)

a) People also read about Ferraris, even though they'll never own one.

b) This sort of tech is what most people will be driving a few years from now.

Re:For the life of me (1)

parallel_prankster (1455313) | about a year and a half ago | (#42909911)

The point is it will be cheaper at some point soon if enough people get interested in it and invest in it. What will decide the future is articles like Broder's or others who take the time to review it and are expected to give an honest opinion on it.

Re:For the life of me (1)

The Phantom Mensch (52436) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910341)

It has the potential to be much cheaper once the startup costs are payed off. Just consider the parts count in an internal combustion engine vs. an electric motor driven by batteries. It's at least a 100:1 difference.

Also, think about all the service calls you won't have to make for oil changes, air filters, fuel filters, spark plugs, and so on. And 5 years down the road you might get to retrofit your car with a battery pack that doubles your range.

The masses have changed. (2)

concealment (2447304) | about a year and a half ago | (#42909931)

While you were busy working, the masses have learned that credit is cheap and so they're buying $50,000 cars now. I am not objecting to your point, because it's a good one, but am pointing out that for many people this is no longer a (mental) barrier to purchase.

Re:The masses have changed. (1)

CastrTroy (595695) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910087)

Also, Just because we are in a recession (are we still?) doesn't mean that there aren't a lot of people with a lot of money. A family (with or without kids) where there are two adults each making $75K a year should be able to afford $50,000 for a car. Unless you're living where it's very expensive (San Fran, Manhattan), a family making this kind of money should have no problem buying a car that costs that much, as long as they keep their other expenses in order. And while maybe not you, or me, or a lot of people make that kind of money, there are still a quite a few people who are in that financial situation.

Re:The masses have changed. (0)

CohibaVancouver (864662) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910345)

A family (with or without kids) where there are two adults each making $75K a year should be able to afford $50,000 for a car

Just because you can doesn't mean you should. Buy a $30,000 car and give the remaining $20,000 to charity. $20K can do a lot of good in Africa - You could send a whole village of girls to school for $20K, you could fund a LOT of Kiva loans for $20K. That's the sort of thing that makes a real difference in this world.

Re:The masses have changed. (1)

MyLongNickName (822545) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910171)

Care to cite where you are getting this info from? I seriously doubt the masses are buying $50,000 cars. I live in upper middle suburbia, and the vast majority of cars are well under $50,000. Even the BMWs are mostly below that price range. If the "masses" are buying these expensive cars, I'd like to know where and how many.

One difference between houses and cars: cars depreciate rather quickly, so interest is only a small factor in what you end up paying for your car usage where with houses, interest is a major cost.

Re:For the life of me (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42909973)

You just described 2/3 of automobile "journalism." Now that I think about it a good bit of the writing on gaming. Most folks are not going to put down the bucks for a ginormous graphics card and gamer motherboard, but it is still fun to read about the tech.

Re:For the life of me (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42909977)

Bad analogy. Just $30k [goo.gl] buys a conventional Mercedes these days.

Re:For the life of me (1)

SirSlud (67381) | about a year and a half ago | (#42909999)

*looks out window for 2 seconds, sees a few cars that cost more than 60,000*

And I live in a shitty neighbourhood. What was your point again?

Re:For the life of me (1)

dcw3 (649211) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910347)

Yup, depends where you live. I'm in Fairfax Co., VA. $60k cars barely get a head turn here. Tesla will sell plenty in areas like this, assuming charging stations are available. My office already has them installed.

Re:For the life of me (5, Informative)

Troll-in-Training (1815480) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910023)

I don't understand why everyone is so gaga over these Tesla's. Is it a beautiful car? Yeah. Is it well made? Yeah. But, the base price remains at $57,400. This is not a car for the masses. It's like writing about an all-electric Mercedes. Who cares?

As I understand it Tesla's buisness plan is to first make a high performance sports car (Roadster) to work out the bugs in the technology, then make a cheaper sedan to scale up production of components as the more components that are made the cheaper they get. Once enough production capacity is built they can then make cheaper cars using what will then be off the shelf components.

It's the chicken and the egg problem - if nobody mass produces electric cars they will never get cheap, so by mass producing lots of expensive high performance cars they build up the infrastructure to support making cheap ones.

Everyone is going gaga over Tesla because they are succeeding, and with each car they sell we get that much closer to having a cheap yet powerful electric car.

Re:For the life of me (1)

shadowrat (1069614) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910081)

I live in the washington area and i see plenty of people who are driving around in $70k + suvs and exotic sports cars. I wouldn't mind if most of them switched to Teslas.

Re:For the life of me (2, Informative)

msauve (701917) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910085)

Yeah, I wish I could still buy one of those $1999 VW Beetles [driving.ca] , new.

But, the reality is, the average price of a new car in the US is now over $30K.

Re:For the life of me (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910093)

That is a pretty typical price for a car that nice. The Roadster was very overpriced vs the Elise they built it from.

The next car the "bluestar" will be a more mass market car. It should be around $30k.

Elon is a B5 fan right? Or where else is he getting whitestar and bluestar?

Re:For the life of me (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42910163)

The Model S is a luxury model.

Amazing doesn't always start out at WalMart (2)

Overzeetop (214511) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910231)

No, $60k isn't a car for everybody. But it's the only car out there in production which has managed to combine all-electric with useful range in something that doesn't look like something out of an Anime cartoon. It's, for lack of a better term, a real car that happens to be all electric - and it something that nobody else has managed to pull off and produce.

Re:For the life of me (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42910383)

But, the base price remains at $57,400. This is not a car for the masses... Who cares?

Perhaps the thirty million Americans who can afford it.

Oh, I know, you can't, and it's not fair. Why don't you go "occupy" a bathroom stall and have a good cry about it.

Wow Musk... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42909873)

First, a CEO should only be seen, not heard. If at all, their "voice" should be that of their PR department.

Second, this "replica" test seems staged. It comes right on the heels of Musk lying in public by laying false claims. Like Musk called in a favor to one of his buddies because one of his other buddies said "dude you just called a journalist a slandered a journalist".

Re:Wow Musk... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42910013)

First, spoken like a true MBA, you cleary never made anything you where passionate about.

Second, of course it was staged, that was the ENTIRE POINT, it was supposed to be staged, they first one was staged, but the guy didn't stick to the script, then said it didn't work like they (Tesla) said it would. The had a specific scenario in mind that everyone agreed on, then the guy said the car failed the scenario, but as it turns out he did exactly follow the plan, which is fine, but you cant then claim it failed the scenario that everyone agreed on.

270 mile range seems good (5, Insightful)

ranulf (182665) | about a year and a half ago | (#42909875)

To me, 270 mile range sounds fantastic (my car only gets 210 miles to a tank). I know charging points aren't yet as ubiquitous as fuel stations and that's the point of these tests, but seriously 270 mile range is more than enough for most people to do 95% of their regular driving without even considering range.

Re:270 mile range seems good (4, Funny)

lorinc (2470890) | about a year and a half ago | (#42909989)

Forget about miles and think in kilometers. In Europe, we say that 640k should be enough for anybody.

Re:270 mile range seems good (1)

prefec2 (875483) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910395)

Most driving in the EU is short range. Most people commute only 45 or less minutes (one way). That resembles some 50 km (some commute over 100 km which is then 1-1.5 h). In miles that is 31 miles up to 62 miles one way or 62 miles up to 124 miles for a daily ride. The car could be charged during night or even at your work place. On a weekend the distances might get bigger. A cross country ride (max possible distance) would be around 1000 km (621 miles) with a charger station every 435 km (270 miles), this distance could be made with two stops. As the trip would require 10-14 hours anyway, two stops are definitely in order ;-)

On a side note: Who wants to drive that long on a weekend anyway?

Re:270 mile range seems good (5, Insightful)

Joce640k (829181) | about a year and a half ago | (#42909991)

Yep, and if you can charge it at home then you actually eliminate all those trips to the gas station. How would anybody not want that?

If roadside cafes and/or mall parking lots with chargers become common, the only remaining problem would be the price. We all know what happens to the price of high-tech stuff...

Re:270 mile range seems good (4, Insightful)

Sockatume (732728) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910213)

If it takes an hour to fully charge I could see roadside cafes, movie theatres, etc. lining up to get them. (Not meant to be cynical: if you have people who need an hour to kill and a business that lets them kill that hour they really need to get together. It'd be quite a cultural change to routinely stop in for lunch at a particular place because you can charge you car there, of course.)

Re:270 mile range seems good (2)

prefec2 (875483) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910433)

Sounds like a great plan. People should hang out more often. Beside that, people already go out for lunch, or park their car at work. Every time the car is parked it can also charge.

Re:270 mile range seems good (1)

jythie (914043) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910235)

I think the big problem will be personal edge cases, times when someone has to drive somewhere they normally would not. A home charger, for me, would cover 99% of my usage, but every few years I need to drive to somewhere odd that would be outside that range, and not knowing if I will be able to recharge would be a worry. It is the same thing that makes me nervous about going diesel... easy to get locally once you know who carries it, but a few hundred miles away from home and that 'not every station' element becomes a concern.

Re:270 mile range seems good (1)

Joce640k (829181) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910423)

every few years I need to drive to somewhere odd that would be outside that range, and not knowing if I will be able to recharge would be a worry.

Rental?

Re:270 mile range seems good (3, Insightful)

SJHillman (1966756) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910101)

I drive an average of 200 miles a week including commuting, errands, visiting family, etc. Every other month, I go to visit my parents about 150 miles away and do some light driving while I'm there. I might make a trip greater than 250 miles in a single stretch perhaps once every other year and in most cases, won't even cover that in a week. It sounds like a good fit for me - especially in a two-car home so if we need to go somewhere without charging stations, we can just take the other car.

Re:270 mile range seems good (2)

DigiShaman (671371) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910113)

Now just make small thorium reactor to self-charge these cars and I'm sold!

Re:270 mile range seems good (1)

Greyfox (87712) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910157)

Depends on what you're up to! I've driven from Denver to the West Coast a few times now. Out west you can drive for miles and not see any clue that humans inhabit the planet other than the road. No cars, no buildings, no gas stations. Range anxiety is a problem in a regular gasoline-burning car, much less anything using alternative fuels. Hell driving out here from the East Coast in a diesel U-Haul, I missed a stop for diesel near the Kansas border and had to make my way down to an off-the-interstate farming cooperative that seemed to be located in the... Twilight Zone. Going off the main road in Kansas starts feeling surreal pretty quickly.

Sure an electric would be fine for the daily commute and even most of my drives in the mountains don't usually go over a couple hundred miles tops, but there are some use cases in the middle of the country where even if you had ample recharging stations you'd probably still want a conventional car.

Re:270 mile range seems good (1)

tgd (2822) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910187)

To me, 270 mile range sounds fantastic (my car only gets 210 miles to a tank). I know charging points aren't yet as ubiquitous as fuel stations and that's the point of these tests, but seriously 270 mile range is more than enough for most people to do 95% of their regular driving without even considering range.

Short of road trips, most people can do just fine on 100% electric in a Volt (40ish miles) or a Leaf or Focus EV (~90).

I mean, really -- if you could fill up the tank in your ICE-based car every night at home, how often would you ever hit a gas station? As much as people like to bitch about the range on EVs, IMO the bitching is based on theoretical wishes for hitting the open road on long road trips they'd like to be doing more so than daily usage that is actually happening.

Re:270 mile range seems good (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910207)

That would likely be enough for me for several weeks.

I just hope they eventually become affordable. I could buy a $50k car, but I know myself I will not even waste $30k on a car that does the same job as a $20k car. Thanks all the current Tesla buyers for making this guys dream of a cheap gas free car possible, I am counting on you.

Where I can get one? (1)

TheDarkMaster (1292526) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910313)

I can go to my parents home with 270 miles range. And if I had a car (actually I do not need one), 270 miles would be more than necessary for me to go from home to work and back, many times. Where do I get one for me? I can not imagine anything better for driving in a city than a car that does not need to keep the engine running when stopped at a traffic light and does not pollute the air.

Re:270 mile range seems good (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42910349)

To me, 270 mile range sounds fantastic (my car only gets 210 miles to a tank). I know charging points aren't yet as ubiquitous as fuel stations and that's the point of these tests, but seriously 270 mile range is more than enough for most people to do 95% of their regular driving without even considering range.

What kind of car do you drive? At 30 mpg that's a 7 gallon tank. At 25 mpg 8.4. My riding lawnmower holds at least 5 gallons....

An hour? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42909913)

An hour, at $100 an hour billable or $200 what my employer is charging me? That's funny. The time costs more than the gas.

Re:An hour? (2)

trout007 (975317) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910051)

For your health you should be taking a break after 4 hours of driving anyway.

Re:An hour? (2)

MightyYar (622222) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910121)

Then you probably don't commute from Baltimore to New York City via car.

Re:An hour? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42910217)

You must not eat then...

"I'd like to eat this burger, but really by the time I'm done it would have cost me $80 in billable hours!"

Just what the media think we want to read (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42909917)

The New York Times reporter just had the car run out of power, because it makes for an entertaining and popular article.

Much like when the earlier model Tesla was tested on the UK's Top Gear TV show, just to be shown running out of battery far below its predicted range.

Populism.

How do we generate the power? (-1, Offtopic)

concealment (2447304) | about a year and a half ago | (#42909923)

Are we nuclear yet? Or still burning coal?

A gasoline-burning car is probably less polluting than a coal-burning electrical plant.

Are we nuclear yet? For us to do that, we have to take the maintenance of these plants out of the hands of potential Homer Simpsons.

Have we yet covered the Southwest with solar panels? The tech seems ripe. As long as we don't obstruct any areas where protected species are, this should be a good source of power. It's fusion power, just long-distance.

Why do I still have to commute via car, and why do I always see fifteen cars in the drive-thrus, idling for up to a half hour while they get their "food"?

I make an exception for Taco Bell of course.

Re:How do we generate the power? (5, Insightful)

dywolf (2673597) | about a year and a half ago | (#42909979)

Its been previously stated that powering the Tesla S to max range is equivalent to burning 3 gallons of gas.
Compared to the usual 10-12 gallon gas tank of a car, that's pretty much a win no matter how you get the electricity (as long its not frm baby farts; while smelly, they arent very large or practical for a pwoerplant)

Re:How do we generate the power? (1)

msauve (701917) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910195)

"that's pretty much a win no matter how you get the electricity (as long its not frm baby farts; while smelly, they arent very large or practical for a pwoerplant)"

But it counts as "green" energy, right?

Re:How do we generate the power? (2)

LoRdTAW (99712) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910089)

Lets be honest here and say that a coal/gas/oil burning plant can be much more efficient than a gasoline engine. By the time the engines power reaches the wheels, something like 80% of the gasoline's energy is wasted, mostly in the form of heat, the rest from drive line losses (also heat from friction.)

A coal/oil power station can reach 33% efficiency while a combined cycle plant can reach 50-60%. And if they use district heating like Con Edison does in NYC, then you go even higher because the waste heat is sold to heat buildings (among other things). BUT I am not sure about transmission losses and the efficiency of the charging stations (probably around 90-95%, just a guess). But overall I am sure an electric car charged by a well tuned power plant will be more efficient than a gasoline car.

Also, there are many rebate and assistance plans for adding solar power to your home. My friend just signed a contract last month for a 10kW system to be installed on his house. Within the next 10 years or so I am sure you will see many more solar powered homes.

Re:How do we generate the power? (1)

j00r0m4nc3r (959816) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910159)

Within the next 10 years or so I am sure you will see many more solar powered homes.

That's what they said 10 years ago. Just sayin...

Re:How do we generate the power? (5, Interesting)

ColdGrits (204506) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910287)

Within the next 10 years or so I am sure you will see many more solar powered homes.
That's what they said 10 years ago. Just sayin...

As I look through my window right now, I can see 16 homes.
6 of those have got solar panels on their roofs generating electricity (2 have also got solar water heating).
10 years ago none of them had any solar.

Just sayin'...

Re:How do we generate the power? (1)

jkflying (2190798) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910299)

And we do see many more today than we did 10 years ago. If a similar growth rate continues, it will be pretty normal. Where I live tons of people use solar water heaters, even if they aren't using PV.

Re:How do we generate the power? (2)

nedlohs (1335013) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910367)

And there are many more solar powered homes now than there were 10 years ago.

Re:How do we generate the power? (4, Insightful)

tgd (2822) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910251)

But overall I am sure an electric car charged by a well tuned power plant will be more efficient than a gasoline car.

You forgot another key thing -- when you take your foot off the gas in a gasoline car, it doesn't start magically creating new fuel and putting it back in your tank the way an EV does.

Re:How do we generate the power? (1)

Andy Dodd (701) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910429)

Yup. Not having to worry about power-to-weight ratio can help you get MAJOR improvements in both efficiency AND emissions controls.

There's also the fact that while we're not anywhere close to 100% nuclear, we do have a decent amount of nuclear (and other non-coal) power installed.

A grid-powered EV is a win even on a 100% coal-powered grid. It's significantly more so in our current mixed-power grid.

Re:How do we generate the power? (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42910105)

Man, if only there were some way for you to find data to support your proposition that "A gasoline-burning car is probably less polluting than a coal-burning electrical plant." Maybe we could create some sort of globally-connected network of computers, with advanced tools to search through all the data.

Oh wait. We have those things. You are wrong, and it would have taken about eighteen seconds to find that out. Economies of scale, man - your local power plant generates energy more efficiently and deals with pollution more effectively than your tiny little internal combustion engine. Even an electric car driven off of oil-burning power plants is less polluting (although only by about 1/3) per mile driven than an internal combustion engine.

Re:How do we generate the power? (1)

shadowrat (1069614) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910135)

why do I always see fifteen cars in the drive-thrus, idling for up to a half hour while they get their "food"?

well, if they were electric cars, they wouldn't be idling, they'd just be sitting there. electric car FTW!

Re:How do we generate the power? (1)

peon_a-z,A-Z,0-9$_+! (2743031) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910141)

Are we nuclear yet? For us to do that, we have to take the maintenance of these plants out of the hands of potential Homer Simpsons.

Similar to the core concept here in question, be careful not to mix media bias with technological facts. Comparing the average American nuclear worker to Homer Simpson is not accurate.

Information about American nuclear plant operators. [nrc.gov]

Aside from the actual day-to-day operation, the maintenance of the American nuclear plants is above and beyond what is necessary.

Operational Maintenance [nrc.gov]

Re:How do we generate the power? (1)

MightyYar (622222) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910143)

It's fusion power, just long-distance.

Well, then so is gasoline.

Re:How do we generate the power? (1)

jkflying (2190798) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910311)

Long distance through space *and time*.

Re:How do we generate the power? (5, Insightful)

OzPeter (195038) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910201)

A gasoline-burning car is probably less polluting than a coal-burning electrical plant.

There are huge advantages in economies of scale when centralizing pollution controls. For example each gasoline powered currently car has to carry around a certain mass of equipment in order to comply with current pollution standards. Removing that mass from a moving vehicle and putting it in a fixed location gives you an instant efficiency gain as you no longer have to waste energy carting it around with you.

In addition, centralizing the power distribution of cars to current power stations allows you to flip over to a different primary source sometime in the future, without upsetting the consumption side. So while it may use fossil fuels now, that doesn't mean it still has to 10 years down the track. Think of it as refactoring the hardware to aid in future system changes.

Re:How do we generate the power? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42910255)

For around $250 billion a 50km x 50km array of photovoltaics could be constructed in an isolated spot in the South-western US and provide enough power for the entire US.

You'd need to add some way of storing unused power for night-time use, depending on location compressed air, hydroelectric or some other form of potential energy storage could be used.

Figures are based on average production of 4kWh per m2, £100 per m2 for photovoltaics and average annual energy consumption in the US of around 3.7billion MWh per year. Prices are continually dropping, but equally energy consumption continues to grow.

Re:How do we generate the power? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42910339)

Solar is actually where the rapid charge stations get their power, and part of why they are free...a little research before you go on a rant next time would be fucking stellar.

What was the temperature? (4, Informative)

guanxi (216397) | about a year and a half ago | (#42909981)

Traffic? Did he stop overnight?

Re:What was the temperature? (2, Informative)

Necroman (61604) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910115)

Exactly. CNN did not truly replicate the test that the NYTimes did, they just did their own test that was somewhat similar. There are a lot more variables at play here than distance driven. No overnight stop without it plugged in. The temperature while driving was significantly higher for the CNN test.

This is just CNN trying to take a shot at the NYTimes.

Re:What was the temperature? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42910151)

What was the temperature?

Instead of the temperature being in the low 20s, like it was with Broder, the temperature for CNN's drive was in the high 40's to mid 50's.

So, gee, considering that there was significantly less energy used on the heater, and the batteries which don't react to horribly well with being extremely cold (And to be fair to Tesla, gas engines don't like being that cold either, it's just that the waste heat during operation eventually warms it to operating temperature. Anybody who has live in a place where it gets and stays below 20F for extended periods of time knows what I'm talking about) did much better when the primary problem faced was removed. SHOCKER!

Re:What was the temperature? (1)

Pinky's Brain (1158667) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910265)

Cold doesn't HAVE to be a problem ... the batteries generate a ton of heat, insulate them and put in a pumped liquid cooling system. If they need to heat up, just shut down the pump.

Re:What was the temperature? (2)

Bacon Bits (926911) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910377)

You're aware it's a vehicle, right? Installing insulation and a completely new cooling system occupies space, consumes power, adds weight, and costs extra money in both production and maintenance costs.

What was the termperature? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42909985)

10 degrees or 45?

The problem they don't mention: (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42910005)

The super charger takes 1 hour to recharge your battery (1.5-2x faster than regular chargers). What happens if these things gets popular? Your battery is low and the outlet is in use. So you wait (30 minutes on average... assuming you're first in the queue) so you can wait another hour to charge. An 8 hour/500 mile drive requires recharging 2 or 3 times. So now it's an 11 hour drive, best case.

Re:The problem they don't mention: (1)

MickyTheIdiot (1032226) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910181)

because it's ABSOLUTELY impossible to install more chargers.

Re:The problem they don't mention: (1)

Jmc23 (2353706) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910193)

Sure, because supply never rises to meet demand right? Like the current proliferation of charging stations will suddenly stop once there are more EVs on the road?

Is it too cold there for your brain to work or do you work for the NYT?

Re:The problem they don't mention: (-1, Troll)

MightyYar (622222) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910253)

What happens if these things gets popular?

I'd think that would be easier to deal with than the other side of things: what if they NEVER get popular? Where will you charge your $60,000 toy when Tesla is no more?

Re:The problem they don't mention: (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42910431)

Where will you charge your $60,000 toy when Tesla is no more?

Tesla could disappear tomorrow and you would still be able to charge at home, as you can today. Come on, fucktards, if you are going to troll at least make some coherent points.

Re:The problem they don't mention: (1)

jkflying (2190798) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910323)

When that becomes a problem, it will be worth building more of them. Right now there are more than enough.

Re:The problem they don't mention: (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42910365)

Did you ever wonder what filling up your gas tank was like before gasoline became the default fuel in the US?

I'll give you a hint. As a power source for a car becomes more popular, more filling stations are built to accommodate the increased demand.
Also, because these charging stations don't require massive, underground tanks for storage, they can be put just about anywhere, including the parking lot of a restaurant. Given the low cost to charge an electric vehicle from empty to full, charging could even end up being 'free with purchase of a meal' to encourage people to stop at a particular restaurant.

Okay but this doesn't explain some points (1)

91degrees (207121) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910053)

The logs in the previous test show that the speed was, for the most part, perfectly reasonable, yet projected range fell at 10% faster than should be expected.

They also showed a huge loss in projected range when the car was stopped.

Do Teslas not work in the cold?

Re:Okay but this doesn't explain some points (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42910337)

It looks like it worked fine in the cold. The dude ran it out of gas. Simple as that.

Re:Okay but this doesn't explain some points (1)

TheDarkMaster (1292526) | about a year and a half ago | (#42910445)

"Do Teslas not work in the cold?"

Here in Brazil, I do not need to worry about that. But ,supposing that does not work so well in the cold as would work here, would be fair to I not be able to have one of these because he do not work so well for the north-americans?

Not the same drive (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42910221)

In the NY Times article there was considerable discussion on the weather being cold. Affecting the battery directly by draining power via the heater and indirectly with the possibly lower performance of batteries in the cold. In the CNN article I did not see a discussion on the temperature. The follow up article from teh Times is also interesting.

Load More Comments
Slashdot Account

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>
Create a Slashdot Account

Loading...