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Where Can You Find an Electric Vehicle Charging Network? Estonia

timothy posted about a year and a half ago | from the can't-get-there-from-here-by-electric-car dept.

Power 220

MatthewVD writes "How hard can it be to find an electric car charger? So hard that New York Times reporter David Broder had to drive in circles and drain his Tesla's battery. Charging infrastructure has been ultimate chicken or egg problem for electric cars adoption but finally, there's a good test case. In Estonia, drivers need to travel only 37 miles to reach a CHAdeMO quick charger. There are 165 of the direct current plug-in chargers, that can charge a car's lithium battery in 30 minutes for an average cost of $3.25. The question now is, will the electric vehicles follow?"

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Nice! (1)

cyrano.mac (916276) | about a year and a half ago | (#43214867)

And it's only a thousand kilometers to Estonia!

Re:Nice! (5, Funny)

MightyYar (622222) | about a year and a half ago | (#43214943)

"It's 1000 kilometers to Estonia. We've got a full charge, half a packet of cigarettes, it's dark, and we're wearing sunglasses... Hit it."

Re:Nice! (2)

Dexter Herbivore (1322345) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215111)

We're on a mission from God!

Re:Nice! (2)

fnj (64210) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215149)

You drive. You drive. I think there's something wrong with me.
-- Dr. Gonzo

Re:Nice! (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43215185)

I told some Estonian fellows that they’re slow.
“What did they reply?”
“Nothing, but they beat me up the following day. “

Re:Nice! (1)

Synerg1y (2169962) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215441)

and when you get there... 30 miles to get "fuel", no big deal, will get right on it after work.

all of Estonia, huh? (4, Insightful)

Trepidity (597) | about a year and a half ago | (#43214905)

That's almost as big as West Virginia!

Re:all of Estonia, huh? (2)

aliquis (678370) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215067)

That's almost as big as West Virginia!

There's also less people and lower GDP per capita.

https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/geos/en.html [cia.gov]
Population: 1,274,709 (July 2012 est.)
GDP - per capita: $21,200 (2012 est.)

Re:all of Estonia, huh? (5, Informative)

Forty Two Tenfold (1134125) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215219)

FEWER people, and they have electronic everything, schools, taxes, public offices and public information is public. Oh and they have way lower poverty rate than the US of A. And incarceration, but hey, EVERYONE has.

Re:all of Estonia, huh? (3, Informative)

hedwards (940851) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215317)

You're saying a former Soviet block nation which is about the size of West Virginia has newer things than the US? Of course they do, most of the Soviet crap was garbage and it's really easy to get new stuff if the old stuff isn't still viable for use. Just buying the average or below average gear would do it. It's a lot tougher to justify getting a lot of that stuff if the stuff you have is working fine.

As for electronic everything, is that really desirable? We have most of that stuff available over the internet here as well, it's just not all that it's cracked up to be.

What's more, you're ignoring the fact that things like this don't scale very well. Look at China, as an example, the government is reforming their educational system, but it's probably going to take 40 years or more for it to really take effect as they have about 1/3 of the teachers and schools necessary to get the job done. What's more, you're talking about a country which has about half as many students as the US has total people.

I know it's really popular to bad mouth the US, but try and exercise at least some common sense, will you. Managing a tiny country like Estonia is several orders of magnitude easier than managing one the size of the US and managing the US is considerably easier than managing one the size of India or China.

Re:all of Estonia, huh? (1)

Lumpy (12016) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215457)

Actually it's easy to upgrade your infrastructure when the leaders are interested in LEADING instead of lining their own pockets. Like US government officials.

Re:all of Estonia, huh? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43215529)

That's a different issue. But, you're full of shit if you think that things like this scale in a linear fashion.

Re:all of Estonia, huh? (1, Funny)

Charliemopps (1157495) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215749)

The difference is that Estonian Officials are cheaper... so the Green movement could afford them.

Re:all of Estonia, huh? (1, Insightful)

gl4ss (559668) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215861)

I think he was upselling estonia a bit.

let me tell you what estonia really is. it's the finnish mexico. no offence estonians but you know it's true. finns go there for cheap booze and they come over here as cheap labor. average income in estonia isn't that hot really.. and I don't know where he got that usa has higher poverty rate - they don't. as such this is kinda big deal for estonia, but this is far from the effort it would take to do the same thing for lapland.

(average pay in 2012 was 823 euros / month. I think they got the poverty line drawn a bit differently than USA)

Re:all of Estonia, huh? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43216329)

Of course they would. Things are more expensive in the US than a lot of places, so the use has a higher $ for the poverty line

Re:all of Estonia, huh? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43215517)

They have less poverty, less crime, less people in jail... I'll get modded down but compare their demographics to the US. Notice anything?

Re:all of Estonia, huh? (1)

networkBoy (774728) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215771)

They have a higher ratio of Estonians to USians?
heh.

Re:all of Estonia, huh? (3, Funny)

CanHasDIY (1672858) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215965)

They have less poverty, less crime, less people in jail... I'll get modded down but compare their demographics to the US. Notice anything?

You mean, aside the attempted fallacy of equivocation?

Re:all of Estonia, huh? (1)

CastrTroy (595695) | about a year and a half ago | (#43216057)

The problem with poverty rate is that "poverty" is relative to other people in the country. You can't compare poverty rates in 2 different countries. Somebody who's in poverty in the US may not be in poverty in Estonia if they made the same amount of money. Somebody who only makes $10,000 a year would be considered living in poverty in the US, but in some other countries you could live quite well off that.

Re:all of Estonia, huh? (1)

ByOhTek (1181381) | about a year and a half ago | (#43216345)

That's, I think the point of comparing poverty rates rather income.

How much you get for income isn't as important is what resources it can provide you with. What the relative incomes describe is how much room the countries have to rise or fall.

Re:all of Estonia, huh? (5, Interesting)

ACS Solver (1068112) | about a year and a half ago | (#43216257)

As a Latvian, I have to say I respect what Estonians have done. They've managed to be the leaders or pioneers in certain things like electric vehicles or electronic voting. Nice social stability there and Estonians are generally doing well. Yes, the average income of ~800 EUR doesn't look too good by most Western country standards, but they're doing the best out of all ex-Soviet countries. Already in Eurozone, and fastest growing EU economy. With their small population and little in terms of natural resources, that is impressive.

Re:all of Estonia, huh? (5, Interesting)

ebno-10db (1459097) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215781)

That's almost as big as West Virginia!

But 14 times the size of Rhode Island! More to the point, Estonia is many times bigger than many of our major metropolitan areas (including the surrounding suburbs), and with a population of 1.3M it has fewer people than many of them too. In the US electric car infrastructure should be concentrated in metropolitan areas.

Despite Tesla's desire to show their cars and the current infrastructure are suitable for interstate travel, most people are going to be interested in them for commuting and travel within their area. Even the quick charge stations are a lot slower than filling your car with gas. The "perfect time for a meal break" won't cut it if you're trying to make serious time. Most electric cars will probably be bought by people who can afford more than one car, or by somebody who's spouse/partner/[future-politically-correct-reference] has a conventional car (I'm seriously considering doing that when my car dies, which will be before my wife's). Ergo a charging infrastructure within a metropolitan area should be fine.I you're on I-80 in the middle of Wyoming, use petroleum distillates.

Rental cars might be a good market too. When I fly somewhere on business and rent a car, I rarely take it that far. Most few day business trips could easily be handled by a single charge. Maybe companies could call themselves green because they require their employees to rent electric cars.

Lastly government could play a role here (yes, I'm an evil statist). All those white strippo cars with "official government use only" signs could probably be electric, since they rarely make long trips. Best of all: those little local postal delivery trucks with the right-hand drive are a perfect candidate. They typically drive three doors down, stop the engine, deliver mail to a few houses, and start up again. I'd be surprised if the starters last more than six months. They also travel a short and well defined route every day.

Re:all of Estonia, huh? (1)

SpaceMonkies (2868125) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215931)

They are a little country that does a lot of things right, and lead the way in technology in many ways. I think it's great that they do this, and they deserve credit accordingly. However to say that this would scale to other countries of larger size is fairly disingenuous. Places like the United States are much, much larger and a comparison between the two is effectively meaningless. Submitter also fails to mention that the NY times journalist was looking for a charging station that was poorly lit at night time. The journalist had his failings in his story, however it's intellectually dishonest to say that he was trying to run down the battery while looking for a recharging station for a moment.

s/David/John/ (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43214923)

David Broder was the White House correspondent for the Washington Post for many decades, who passed away a couple years ago. When I read the summary I thought, that can't be the same guy who got into a pissing match with Elon Musk!

The Netherlands (4, Interesting)

Dexter Herbivore (1322345) | about a year and a half ago | (#43214963)

I just recently got back from the Netherlands and it amazed me how seriously they take charging points, they were everywhere. Along with high rise bicycle parks. I suppose when your country is mostly below sea level you take global warming and conservation as a proven fact. Simple countrywide risk management I suppose.

Re:The Netherlands (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43215243)

"I suppose when your country is mostly below sea level you take global warming and conservation as a proven fact."

Dude you are wacked, WTF does global warming have to do with fucking ELEVATION?

I suppose all tyrants are above sea level also then?

You need to change your meds.

Re:The Netherlands (1)

RaceProUK (1137575) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215271)

Dude you are wacked, WTF does global warming have to do with fucking ELEVATION?

Everything, when you're below mean sea level.

Re:The Netherlands (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43215447)

Fucking MOVE.

Morons.

Re:The Netherlands (2, Insightful)

hedwards (940851) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215363)

A considerable portion of the Netherlands is below sea level. And because of the way that the laws of physics work, you can't just make the dikes taller, you have to ultimately replace them with ones that are stronger at the bottom as well, otherwise you start getting cracks. And I doubt the EU would be too fond of having numerous children skipping school to plug the holes with their fingers.

Re:The Netherlands (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43215539)

Assuming there is global warming one assumes that sea levels may rise, yes I fucking understand that simple fact. Gee fucking whiz.

Assuming sea levels rise people who live below it may suffer, yes I fucking get that also.

So fuckface, a) you cannot prove to me that sea levels will rise and b) if you really believe it will happen you better fucking move because you are a stupid fuck if you believe living under FUCKING SEA LEVEL IS SMART.

Stupid fucking socialist.

Re:The Netherlands (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43215629)

Dude, it's gonna start any day now. Any day!

Re:The Netherlands (1, Offtopic)

CanHasDIY (1672858) | about a year and a half ago | (#43216049)

Got to give some credit to this AC - most of the 10-year-olds I know can't put down the Xbox controller long enough to read Slashdot, let alone actually bang out a post.

The profanity is spot on, though. Reminds me of those Halo 2 sessions from back in the day.

Re:The Netherlands (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43216127)

Thou cockered, beef-witted puttock!

Re:The Netherlands (1)

CanHasDIY (1672858) | about a year and a half ago | (#43216017)

And because of the way that the laws of physics work, you can't just make the dikes taller....

Right, because if you do that, they all move to the US and join the WNBA.

I'll be here all week, ladies and germs! Don't forget to tip your waitress!

Re:The Netherlands (4, Funny)

PopeRatzo (965947) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215467)

Dude you are wacked, WTF does global warming have to do with fucking ELEVATION?

A future Secretary of Energy, fresh from CPAC.

Re:The Netherlands (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43215633)

You couldn't be more wrong, the Netherlands is one of the least "green" powered countries in the EU. There is almost no stimulus to go green, instead we just import nuclear energy from surrounding countries and are building a couple of coal powered energy plants.

Re:The Netherlands (1)

Charliemopps (1157495) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215997)

The might be concerned about global warming... or... more likely... The Netherlands has had one of the largest oilfields in the world for decades. So large in fact that for much of the past several decades the Netherlands has had very low gas prices. But that oil field is now dwindling. They will have to start importing gas soon. On top of that, their entry into the European union meant that there is now a 19% VAT tax on top of any local taxes that are already on the gas. It's estimated that 65% of the price of gas in the Netherlands is now taxes. The end result is the current price of Gas in the Netherlands is the highest in the world at over $9/gallon, and it will continue to climb as their oil fields become more depleted.

So... concern for Global warming? Or concern for their pocketbook... you be the judge. If gas were $9/gallon here I'm fairly sure you'd see charging stations popping up all over the place. Keep in mind those charging stations are being powered by coal fired power plants... so this idea that you're saving the environments a little laughable.

Re:The Netherlands (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43216273)

"On top of that, their entry into the European union meant that there is now a 19% VAT tax on top of any local taxes that are already on the gas. It's estimated that 65% of the price of gas in the Netherlands is now taxes. The end result is the current price of Gas in the Netherlands is the highest in the world at over $9/gallon, and it will continue to climb as their oil fields become more depleted."

You are wrong on many counts, but this just doesn't make any sense. If it is due to EU why are the surrounding countries (all EU members) cheaper? The price is high because of local levies and a high VAT (21%) over the total price (including levies). Fuel is a simple way for the gov. to get money. As far as gas (not gasoline) prices are concerned, since there was a huge gas (not oil) field high crude oil prices were beneficial to the gov. since that mend:
-higher tax income on local consumption
-higher sales price to foreign countries.

The high crude oil prices mend that old oil fields are suddenly cost effective again. So oil fields closed in the 199Xs are reopened, but the Netherlands always has been a netto importer of oil.

Re:The Netherlands (2)

FridayBob (619244) | about a year and a half ago | (#43216143)

It just so happens that I live in the Netherlands, but I'm not impressed with the availability of charging points. At least, not in my municipality. Things may be better in Amsterdam. There is an NPO, called "e-laad" (e-charge), that was set up by the power companies to install charging points all over the Netherlands (also on request), but then their budget dried up. Which is strange, because if there is a demand, why is there no more supply? This makes it tempting to conclude that the power companies want to look like they're paying the concept more than lip service, but are not really that enthusiastic. On the other hand, it's not like I know a lot of people who can't wait to get their hands on an electric care either; they're still a relatively rare sight. Nevertheless, I look forward to receiving my Lit C-1; with a range of 200 miles or more, I doubt that I'll be making much use of public charging points.

You Don't Get Out Much (4, Informative)

Wovel (964431) | about a year and a half ago | (#43214969)

The Broder story was BS. It has been pretty soundly refuted from Tesla and other reporters. I guess the people approving these stories don't actually read slashdot...

Re:You Don't Get Out Much (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43215189)

It sounded tongue-in-cheek to me.

Re:You Don't Get Out Much (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43215333)

David Broder had to drive in circles to avoid a charging station. Had he driven in a straight line, he certainly would have passed one.

But yes, it is another nearly incomprehensible summary on Slashdot. Oh look, it's Timmy!

Re:You Don't Get Out Much (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43215367)

The fact that he mentioned that Broder had to drive in circles in order to drain the battery should have been the clue that finding a charging station was actually quite easy for Broder.

Re:You Don't Get Out Much (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43215727)

except the "driving in circles" trying to find the officia Tesla Supercharger station, which was the point of the article.

The real truth in the story is that average idiot had an experience that reflects how average idiot drives. Having met him, he's not bright enough to a) go to college to get a degree in something that pays above minimum wage, b) tie his fucking shoes, or c) make that shit up. What the hell the lady in grey was thinking when they hired him is beyond me; he really is a pretty good example of average idiot.

Re:You Don't Get Out Much (0)

hedwards (940851) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215385)

Um, no it hasn't, have you actually been reading the news? Tesla put up a lot of lovely charts that contradict their own version of events. And like with the Top Gear nontroversy, ultimately, they're tilting at windmills. I mean, WTF Tesla, if my car won't go because one of the brakes has seized up, I don't give a damn if it's a fuse problem or a brake problem, I would call that a brake problem either way.

Re:You Don't Get Out Much (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43215941)

You forgot to condemn Microsoft in your post of pointing out flaws in a sacred company of Slashdot. If you're going to say anything ill of Linux (in general, Slashdot supports distro-wars), Raspberry Pi, Google (unless prefaced with "it's sad how far the company has fallen"), electric cars (even if it's my stance that this model is an insult to the memory of Nikola Tesla), or Valve you MUST preceed it with a paragraph explaining your hatred of Microsoft, Apple, the United States of America, Republicans, people who take the republic governing style in Civilization, Electronic Arts (the company), Blizzard's slow release schedule, and/or anonymous cowards posting to Slashdot.

I just realized how much I hate writing long lists.

Re:You Don't Get Out Much (1)

CanHasDIY (1672858) | about a year and a half ago | (#43216169)

Also, in both those situations, Tesla engineers had to be consulted. Easy enough for a NYT auto reporter or UK car show hosts, but what about the regular Joe's that they're selling these things to?

If you're not rich and/or famous, and your Tesla breaks down on the roadside in Mobile, AL... what would you think the chances are of Tesla flying an engineer out ASAP to update your firmware?

My guess would be anywhere between "slim" and "none."

Re:You Don't Get Out Much (2)

CanHasDIY (1672858) | about a year and a half ago | (#43216141)

The Broder story was BS. It has been pretty soundly refuted from Tesla and other reporters. I guess the people approving these stories don't actually read slashdot...

Since you've obviously picked a side here, you probably won't be interested in this update from Jalopnik:

A source who has seen the data logs explains how it's possible how Broder and Musk could both be truthful but sort of wrong. The high-voltage battery in the pack, allegedly, had enough power to move the car a much greater distance than needed to move the car onto a flatbed, maybe as far as five miles, but the 12V battery that powers the accessories and gets its juice from the high voltage battery shut down when Broder pulled into the service station.

When Broder decided to turn the car off, which was a mistake, the parking brake (operated by the 12V battery) was rendered unusable. If Broder was told not to turn the car off, it's his mistake. If Tesla told him to do it, or didn't inform him he shouldn't do it, then it's their mistake.

If anybody sold you a $100,000 sports car, then told you the only way to keep the brakes from locking is to leave it running, unattended, you'd probably write a shitty review yourself.

Early adopters always have a hard time... (4, Insightful)

celticryan (887773) | about a year and a half ago | (#43214973)

Seems like this is something technology always deals with - cars and roads OR cell phones and cell towers - early adopters always have difficulties. How is this surprising?

Re:Early adopters always have a hard time... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43215225)

Seems like this is something technology always deals with - cars and roads OR cell phones and cell towers - early adopters always have difficulties. How is this surprising?

It is apparently surprising to some people. Almost every article about electric vehicles have tons of comments from people how say that it will never take off.
I suspect it is the same kind of people that can't imagine a solution to a chicken/egg problem.

Re:Early adopters always have a hard time... (1)

CanHasDIY (1672858) | about a year and a half ago | (#43216235)

Seems like this is something technology always deals with - cars and roads OR cell phones and cell towers - early adopters always have difficulties. How is this surprising?

It is apparently surprising to some people. Almost every article about electric vehicles have tons of comments from people how say that it will never take off.

Yea, I mean, it's not like they've been trying to make a successful electric car for neigh over 100 years or anything... [about.com]

What I find funny is, the problem with today's electrics are the exact same problems with the electrics from my Great-Grandpa's era - battery tech sucks.

Re:Early adopters always have a hard time... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43216185)

The problem nowadays is that nobody takes chances. It's not like there was a dozen companies manufacturing locomotives before the tracks were laid.

Companies these days have absolutely zero view of the long term, nor do they want to. Does it mean profit for the next 3 months? Do it! No profit? Screw that idea, and you're fired for bringing it up.

The only company that comes to mind that really goes out on a limb with new(ish) ideas is Nintendo, batting around all kinds of unusual control systems or games that extraordinarily few other gaming companies would have even thought of, let alone put money behind. A few indie developers maybe, but nobody that would throw millions behind untested ideas.

I'm sure I'll be shot down horribly for the previous paragraph, but that's my perspective, and what came to mind.

But I digress. Electric cars will take decades yet to really take off, since user adoption will be horrendously slow, since infrastructure will be horrendously slow to come, which will be horrendously slow because it costs money without an absolute guarantee of record profits absolutely immediately afterwards. It all comes down to those who build the infrastructure, and if they will take a risk. They will not, nor will they ever in our lifetimes.

Standards (2)

virgnarus (1949790) | about a year and a half ago | (#43214995)

So, is that an average cost of $3.25 per gallon of amps? Or $3.25 per litre of voltage?

Re:Standards (1)

nedlohs (1335013) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215121)

per however many kilowatts are used in an average 30 minute charge.

Re:Standards (1)

jeffmeden (135043) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215179)

per however many kilowatts are used in an average 30 minute charge.

facepalm. You mean kilowatt-hours. Or, you can call them joules, or calories, or maybe even BTUs. come on, read a wikipedia article already.

Re:Standards (2)

Bill, Shooter of Bul (629286) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215261)

No, Its not 3.25 per Kilowatt hour. They paid 3.25 for the half hour. The amount of charge transferred is not known. It could be 3.25 per kilowatt hour, but there is not enough information to state that.

Re:Standards (1)

jeffmeden (135043) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215663)

No, Its not 3.25 per Kilowatt hour. They paid 3.25 for the half hour. The amount of charge transferred is not known. It could be 3.25 per kilowatt hour, but there is not enough information to state that.

You are right that there is not enough info (never said there was) but it is the right question to ask, since you can't "use" a kilowatt and for utility billing purposes, a half-hour guesstimate isn't going to fly.

Re:Standards (1)

nedlohs (1335013) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215279)

Yes I do, though that's harldy going to motivate me to read a wikipedia article.

Re:Standards (1)

hawguy (1600213) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215311)

per however many kilowatts are used in an average 30 minute charge.

facepalm. You mean kilowatt-hours. Or, you can call them joules, or calories, or maybe even BTUs. come on, read a wikipedia article already.

In his defense, he did say "killowatts in 30 minutes", so if the power draw is constant, it's an easy conversion to KWh.

Re:Standards (1)

networkBoy (774728) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215835)

How about hogsheads of electrons? Not sure exactly how many joules that is, but it's quite a few as long as you can keep them in the damn container.

Though I would imagine that it is many KWh that transfer in 30 min.

Re:Standards (1)

Forty Two Tenfold (1134125) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215227)

That's kilowatthours.

Re:Standards (2)

CrimsonAvenger (580665) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215641)

So, is that an average cost of $3.25 per gallon of amps? Or $3.25 per litre of voltage?

$3.25 for ~30 KWh (charging rate for these things is about 65 KW).

So, 330 of the things in Estonia, they each support one vehicle at a time...~8000 EV's per day supported by the entire network, assuming that every one of them is being used 24/7?

Hmm, wonder how far your average EV goes on 30 KWh....

Good Job! (2, Funny)

jamesl (106902) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215013)

Estonia now has three charging stations for each and every electric car in the country. Good Job!

Re:Good Job! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43215547)

Shoot jamesl on site at the charge of being troll. We have more than 500+ iMIEVs in use by government and TENS MORE in private use (even one taxi company that has exclusively only LEAF-s, all five of them).
To add that all together, there should be three EV-s for every public charging station instead.

Why the fascination with electric cars? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43215015)

They never recoup the extra green house emissions that are incurred in their production.

Re:Why the fascination with electric cars? (2)

Wovel (964431) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215037)

Torque...

Re:Why the fascination with electric cars? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43215183)

This is a very good answer. The only problem is that they just won't be popular on the drag strip because they don't have the chest thumping, soul warming throaty roar of 8000HP engine. The traction control, though, is in the "Fucking awesome" category of a well done electric dragster. Less than an inch of wheel slip before the pad sticks again.

Re:Why the fascination with electric cars? (1)

ebno-10db (1459097) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215865)

The only problem is that they just won't be popular on the drag strip because they don't have the chest thumping, soul warming throaty roar of 8000HP engine.

That can easily be overcome in an era when you can download ring tones and multi-kW sound systems are cheap.

The traction control, though, is in the "Fucking awesome" category of a well done electric dragster. Less than an inch of wheel slip before the pad sticks again.

No wasting time on gear shifts either. In all fairness though drag racers are the only people that have good reason to slip the tires - heating them up increases traction before the start of a race.

Re:Why the fascination with electric cars? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43216011)

Fake noise is stupid. I'd have to think through shifting. Cooling the power supply though, that's an art form.

Re:Why the fascination with electric cars? (1)

ebno-10db (1459097) | about a year and a half ago | (#43216089)

Fake noise is stupid.

Not if it brings in the fans. You think dragsters pay for themselves?

Re:Why the fascination with electric cars? (1)

Ol Biscuitbarrel (1859702) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215275)

Estonia gets 90% of its power from oil shale, [wikipedia.org] the filthiest of the fossil fuels, so it's apropos to consider what the GHG balance here is.

John M. Broder, not David. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43215043)

Summary has it wrong. They are different people.

Direct current (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43215117)

Does anyone else find it slightly ironic that Tesla's charging stations are using direct current...

Re:Direct current (4, Funny)

jeffmeden (135043) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215209)

Does anyone else find it slightly ironic that Tesla's charging stations are using direct current...

You wouldn't want the charging station to kill any wayward elephants, now would you? I mean, think of the elephants

/Edison

Re:Direct current (1)

necro81 (917438) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215827)

Does anyone else find it slightly ironic that Tesla's charging stations are using direct current

No, insofar as batteries are inherently direct current devices. You can't charge a battery bank from alternating current unless you first rectify it. The motor that drives it is an AC induction motor, which Tesla made the greatest contributions to.

Re:Direct current (1)

CanHasDIY (1672858) | about a year and a half ago | (#43216259)

Does anyone else find it slightly ironic that Tesla's charging stations are using direct current...

Not anyone with even a basic understanding of electricity...

Yea, I see what you tried to do there.

Almost proud... (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43215125)

Sounds great on paper! Not so great when you consider that our electricity here in Estonia comes mostly from oil shale which means there is no environmental advantage to electric vehicles. So all of this in the end comes down to fuel cost - getting an electric vehicle only makes sense if you are rich enough to be buying a new car (most normal people over here buy 5-10 year old used one), but if you are rich you don't care how much fuel costs.

Honestly Estonia is one of the worst countries for this recharging network...

On the other hand all of this came from CO2 emission license thingy sales so it was almost free and we did not have an alternative anyway...

Re:Almost proud... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43215331)

"CO2 emission license thingy sales so it was almost free"

license sales = almost free

Must be a European thing. Uh huh.

Re:Almost proud... (1)

PRMan (959735) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215867)

FEWER people, and they have electronic everything, schools, taxes, public offices and public information is public. Oh and they have way lower poverty rate than the US of A. And incarceration, but hey, EVERYONE has.

most normal people over here buy 5-10 year old used one

But in America, almost everyone can afford a new car...

Re:Almost proud... (1)

avandesande (143899) | about a year and a half ago | (#43216177)

They also don't have the safety and crash standards that are found in the US that drives up the weight and the cost of EVs here...

Re:Almost proud... (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43216253)

That is not entirely true.
Something as large scale as a power plant can operate at a better efficiency than a car engine, it can also be better filtered etc. So even if it is a 'dirty' power plant it can and will (unless it is really poorly designed) still be better for the environment than the equicalent number of 'dirty' car engines.

Broder is a hack (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43215137)

Broder is a hack. There were charging stations near, he just wanted his car to fail.

Multiple trips have retraced his route and have had zero problems (even in similar weather). His name lending credibility to the front page of slashdot is an outrage.

Charging points (1)

Firethorn (177587) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215193)

Personally, I think that while fast chargers are important, they're not critical. I think the critical thing is to drop the price of the cars. A $30k EV with the capabilities of the Model S(range, passangers, weight, etc...) even if the interior isn't as nice would be a HUGE jump.

Basically, as long as people can point out valid down sides to EVs, you have to be able to point out upsides - and the core one would be 'money saved', while maintaining superior performance in as many other points as possible - comfort, power, ease of use, etc...

EVs pretty much win on the other features - modern ones are often as or more powerful than their competition(electric motors scale up well), they're quiet and non-polluting so the 'comfort' angle is addressed, no shifting at all makes them easy to use. EVs are great except for one big problem - the batteries. They're too expensive for not enough capacity. That's improving, but it's going to be a while.

Re:Charging points (2)

0123456 (636235) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215289)

EVs are great except for one big problem - the batteries. They're too expensive for not enough capacity. That's improving, but it's going to be a while.

You could have said pretty much the same about electric cars a century ago, so it could be a long 'while'.

Re:Charging points (1)

RaceProUK (1137575) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215327)

EVs are great except for one big problem - the batteries. They're too expensive for not enough capacity.

Not to mention the large amounts of pollution from the production of them. Oil's far from clean, but it's not as bad.

Personally, I think EVs will only take off (and over) when we sort out a hydrogen infrastructure.

Re:Charging points (1)

larry bagina (561269) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215689)

Yeah... EVs don't become more environmental than gasoline until ~80,000 miles. (Give or take, assuming you don't have to replace your batteries first).

Re:Charging points (1)

RussR42 (779993) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215387)

They're too expensive for not enough capacity.

Remember this? [slashdot.org] Air breathing batteries with energy density similar to gasoline.

Re:Charging points (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43215671)

Don't forget solar. Solar-powered race cars are averaging over 60 mph.
It's not unthinkable to tow a solar trailer behind an EV to give it a boost while driving during the day.
These cells [gizmag.com] would be perfect for that application.

There's an app for that... (1)

MrLogic17 (233498) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215345)

If you're looking for USA changing locations, search your Droid/iOS app store for "Charge Bud". Has a list of charging points.

I'm sure there are other resources for that data as well.

Re:There's an app for that... (2, Insightful)

PRMan (959735) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215901)

I'm looking for click-in standardized replacement batteries. I pull up to a station. Unclick my batteries and put them in the charger and immediately click in replacements and leave. I'm not waiting around for 30 minutes to charge my car.

Estonia does a lot of things right (1)

onyxruby (118189) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215389)

They are a little country that does a lot of things right, and lead the way in technology in many ways. I think it's great that they do this, and they deserve credit accordingly. However to say that this would scale to other countries of larger size is fairly disingenuous. Places like the United States are much, much larger and a comparison between the two is effectively meaningless.

Submitter also fails to mention that the NY times journalist was looking for a charging station that was poorly lit at night time. The journalist had his failings in his story, however it's intellectually dishonest to say that he was trying to run down the battery while looking for a recharging station for a moment.

Estonia has cars? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43215515)

How do you drive a car through all that mud?

Nice work, editors (1)

MAXOMENOS (9802) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215591)

So hard that New York Times reporter David Broder had to drive in circles and drain his Tesla's battery.

You realize that Broder's story was thoroughly, totally debunked by Tesla [dailykos.com] , right? I mean, there was a story on Slashdot about it [slashdot.org] .

Re:Nice work, editors (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43215875)

Broder's story was thoroughly, totally debunked by Tesla

Um, Tesla happens to be the vendor of the product being reviewed!

Sorry, you aren't a winner this time.

Re:Nice work, editors (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43216043)

I mean, there was a story on Slashdot about it.

You're making the fatal assumption there that Slashdot editors read Slashdot. That never has been the case, as dupes prove, and probably never will be.

The editors have an entirely write-only role. They're not even allowed to read what they write themselves, which is why the summaries are so full of nonsense and errors.

Just Like Diesel (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43215673)

People as far back as the 70's dissed diesel cars, asking where do you get diesel; That was the more ridiculous argument but powerful enough to have them avoid diesel cars.

You might be a Greentard (0)

TheSkepticalOptimist (898384) | about a year and a half ago | (#43215877)

Advocating that everyone should buy an electric vehicle but then also advocating everyone to turn off their lights during Earth Hour and conserving energy in general.

If you don't understand the stupidity of people wanting both those conditions then you might be a Greentard.

some assumptions (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43216227)

John Broder (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43216293)

John Broder != David S Broder

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_S._Broder

http://topics.nytimes.com/top/reference/timestopics/people/b/john_m_broder/index.html?inline=nyt-per

Solar power (1)

Tablizer (95088) | about a year and a half ago | (#43216335)

In states with a lot of sunshine, it would be nice to have solar panels on electric cars. It won't do the entire job, but would reduce the need to find a non-home charging station.

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