Prius Personal Log #1027
August 18, 2020 - August 21, 2020
Last Updated: Tues. 10/13/2020
page #1026 page #1028 BOOK INDEX
Looking for a Fight. Every now & then, you encounter someone who feels it absolutely necessary to score a win. They don't care what the circumstances are or of the fight was honest. They just want a victory. Finding they have back themselves into a corner while attempting to achieve that results in something like this: "One piece of independently verifiable evidence. That is all I asked for. You didn't do it. Because you can't. I am calling BS on your whole argument now." At that point, the spin had become so bad, it was difficult to really know what he wanted the evidence to confirm. Battles without any objective get that way. He stopped caring about achieving anything. It was only about conquest. Ugh. I kept on with my push: Forcing a limitation of "independently verifiable evidence" is just another way of feeding the FUD narrative by ensuring new offerings are excluded. 42 miles x 365 days = 15k miles of annual EV travel. There really isn't any evidence beyond that needed. If the technology is delivered in a compelling package, people will purchase and use it. Even with nothing but an ordinary household 120-volt outlet, the benefit is undeniable. In other words, you have nothing to actually argue. That replacement of over 15,000 gas miles with electric miles is an easy quantifiable benefit. No research required. True, it would be nice to know how many owners will recharge during the day too, not just overnight. But all those extra electric miles will be just a bonus. The dramatic reduction of gas engine use will be achieved regardless.
Reminder of Purpose. That other on-going exchange, the one where he backed himself into a corner, continued. This type of desperation reminds me of when I finally got banned from the big GM forum. The claim was that I was a Toyota troll, which made no sense, since all of my posts for those most recent few weeks had been about Ford. Prior to that, I was pointed out the shortcomings of Volt and what GM needed to do to actually appeal to ordinary consumers. They took that as an blind-loyalty endorsement for Toyota. But then when Ford rolled out its first Energi offering, most of their arguments fell apart. I really had been focusing on automaker business requirements all along. My posts were sincere recommendations of what the next step should be. Seeing that Ford had actually delivered closely resembled what I suggested was devastating. No matter how they replied, it was hypocritical. I had been vindicated... and to prevent me from drawing attention to their mistakes & assumptions, I lost the ability to post anything. It was very rewarding to watch that group of antagonists collapse. They had nothing to post on the topic anymore. Participation dropped to almost nothing immediately. Everyone just flocked over to the daily blog for Volt instead. Their backing into a corner was a death blow. So naturally, I'm quite curious how exchanges like this one now will ultimately play out. This was the latest: Admit what? I am unwilling to play your game. With well over a decade of research on this topic, listening to you sight limited & outdated studies borders on the point absurdity. Meanwhile, I just went over and took a look at the analytics page for my YouTube channel. There, I have uploaded 106 videos created as part of my own personal research, providing an extensive collection of real-world data sharing on this topic. So yes, I will blow off that mostly gen-1 Volt study from 2014. As for whether or not you should take my word for it, my response to that is what I have learned from history: KNOW YOUR AUDIENCE. In this case, no matter what I present will be acceptable and there's nothing to gain from winning the battle. So, I don't bother. Spin that as you please. It won't accomplish anything. Remember, the goal is to appeal to ordinary consumers. We want the mainstream shoppers to take notice. Winning exchanges here online, in a venue most will never see, doesn't have any reach or impact to that audience.
Absolutely Clueless. The post returned to my question was just his prediction again. That complete absence of critical thinking is bizarre. How can anyone be so clueless? It's to the point of an absolute, where nothing sinks in and no effort is made. There's just a reply without intellect. Ugh. This is how I decided to return that nonsense: UX300e is a BEV already. So your statement of "If Toyota does not develop the expertise needed in BEV they are done." makes no sense whatsoever. It is a Lexus brand offering currently available in China. It has a Toyota brand equivalent you'll be familiar with, C-HR. That's BEV expertise already, with more models to come next year and new platforms to follow. As for your statement of "I'm sure it helps, but the consumer won't care about hybrids in another 2-3 years.", what are you basing such an abrupt end on? RAV4 Prime shares much of the BEV expertise and its rollout demand is quite strong, worldwide. There is also a growing expectation of a next-gen Prius Prime delivering more power & range. Don't overlook the fact that there is a plug-in hybrid model of Corolla available now in China too. In other words, you completely avoided answering my question and just reposted your same statement again. So, I will ask again: What other expertise do they need?
Predictions of Doom. This is what came about from the Hail Mary reply: "If Toyota does not develop the expertise needed in BEV they are done." His post was nothing but a propaganda sighting 2023 as the end of ICE vehicles... to the point of absurdity. He clearly doesn't understand that technology alone isn't enough. There is far more to address. Those of us studying the business for decades are well aware of the challenges related to adoption. Those are barriers of enormous proportion, enough to cause an entire generation (roughly 6 years) of vehicle to pass before the masses really get on board... and that's when they see the reliability & affordability. When you factor in the resistance from those actively fighting to retain the status quo, along with those in the political scene pushing their polarizing propaganda, it's clearly not going to happen that fast. Heck, if change was endorsed... like when we get a new president who actually cares... there will be support, not doom. It doesn't change the spin though. So, I asked about the prediction: UX300e, RAV4 Prime, and Mirai all deliver a full EV driving experience already. That's a variety of systems all using motor, inverter, software, heat-pump, charger, and battery technology Toyota has developed. They are currently working on a new dedicated platform. Advancement has been steady. What other expertise do they need?
More Battles. The antagonists are out today: "Such unbelievably stupid thinking." That was the response to reading about Toyota's progress & intent with solid-state battery tech. Advancements are slow and there is much to consider... exactly what early-adopters don't like. Adding to the pile-on attempt, there was this: "...it would seem Toyota's strategy is based on a Hail Mary." Their impatience paints a world where the quick-win is the only win. It's bizarre how planning out for the long-term isn't considered important. They just figure things will naturally work out if the first step is a good one. So, there's really no point in arguing. That perspective isn't important. It's win now or die. There is no war for them, only battles... more and more battles with no real endgame. That made posting something that didn't fit their binary thinking quite fulfilling: I don't think many will accept that narrative, once they do a search for the "Prime Plant Energy & Solutions" partnership. It is the joint venture Toyota & Panasonic revealed back in February of this year and officially began in April. It's so new, most people are not aware of it yet. The announcement itself was rather subtle too. The point it, the focus on development & manufacturing of lithium-ion battery cells, with the expectation of advancing solid-state technology as well, will employ 5,100 people. The relationship which started with NiMH batteries back with hybrids continues to progress. That's very real commitment forward no one on this discussion has acknowledged. Think about it. Panasonic has been a partner with Tesla, but has been replaced with CATL and LG arrangements. So what if demand for RAV4 Prime took off at a much faster rate than Toyota had planned to supply for 2020? Worldwide rollout with the allocation available continues. Next year, they will be able to ramp up. It's not like the pandemic didn't impact the rest of the industry anyway.
No References. This was great: "Time for you to put up or shut up. Bring actual verifiable references." He provided his source and wanted me to share mine. I was so stunned by his reference though, it needed punch back instead: I have battled individuals in the past who sight outdated & misleading facts from limited samples before, but this one takes the cake. Whoa! Your "actual verifiable references" is a single study conducted way by back in 2014. There were 1,981 vehicles providing the data, of which 1,831 were gen-1 Volt. How is that even remotely relevant to the market offerings now? Everything has advanced since then for PHEV technology. Heck, even just opportunity charging alone has profoundly improved. There are far more public chargers available and the vehicle itself can accept much faster draw, which that in itself would represent greater EV usage. As for my sources, I have been actively publishing documents & video for many years. The feedback from that, combined with daily participation in a variety of online forums, has been very informative. What I find most valuable though is the local EV owners group. It has become very large and its very diverse ownership has been a priceless source of real-world data.
Out Of Nowhere. This bizarre statistic suddenly
materialized: "Utilization factors of battery only modes on PHEVs is
only around 60%." That raised my intrigue even higher.
Where the heck did that come from? Of course, knowing he was at the
point of desperation backed into the corner like that, making something up
wouldn't be a surprise. There's a certain fascination, wanting to know
how deep a person will dig the hole they are in. I have never come
across this particular tidbit. So, I very much felt the need to pursue
it. Naturally, I chose to provoke for feedback:
Finally, the reveal. Waiting for that was the point of this absurd exchange. There was a spread of misinformation somewhere. You were either the source or the conduit. Whatever the case, the problem has been identified. That value is just plain wrong. In fact, it doesn't even make any sense.
For an entire decade, we have had Volt owners pointing out there are some who travel an entire year with the same gas. It served as an example of the potential when enough battery-capacity was available to cover most daily driving. Heck, even with my much smaller capacity, seeing 2,000 miles per tank has been routine throughout the warm months.
There is no one-size-fits-all solution. Our market will offer choices. You can't just dismiss one of them based on some random source. Without any supporting evidence, there's good reason to question the sampling method. How many? When? Who? Where? Not knowing any of it is good reason not to make such a blanket decision... which is exactly the problem we have seen in the past.
My closure on this is how you continue to dump all designs of PHEV into a single category. The fact that their systems vary significantly is clear evidence this exchange has not been taken seriously... and it is the pattern of the past repeating.
The Build Up. You can tell when online exchanges are
going bad. He was clearly struggling, at a loss about how to confront
the reality of being shown an error on his part. I was intrigued.
Since I have participated in this in the past, it was all too familiar.
Detail caught him off guard. He wasn't expecting someone so well
prepared for battle. I let he have it too. The build up was well
worth posting this:
You are repeating the same mistake CARB did in the early 2000's with the ZEV mandate. They discovered the matter was far more complex, which is why "technology" now refers to more than just engineering alone. That mistake was later demonstrated again with GM, choosing to focus on the absolute of EV purity. Sacrifices made on that behalf resulted in consequences so dire, the program ultimately ended up being abandoned.
As for the "only one" claim, that's just plain wrong. We have seen prototypes of hybrid engines using E100 (pure ethanol, no fossil-fuel) and hydrogen (which can be produced from solar, wind, and water power). When implemented in a PHEV, goal achieved. There's also the reality of fuel-cell use for passenger vehicles. That will pale in contrast to the scale of industrial & commercial plans for fuel-cells; nonetheless, that would also achieve the goal.
It's that close-mindedness I do not share. I also hold new technologies to a much higher standard. Simply ending fossil-fuel use is only a single objective in a long list of those required to truly fulfill the goal. Replacement must also be more efficient and cleaner. Since we have seen BEV now that guzzle electricity, the shortcoming with your vague focus should be obvious.
As for climate being suddenly introduced as part of this discussion, claiming to be a pattern despite it never being mentioned, is just more of the same old rhetoric I recognize from the past... hence asking for goals. Remember, there must be measures to identify progress, marking milestones clearly showing what has been achieved and what remains outstanding. Omission of such information is a red-flag, a sign indicating the lack of critical thinking.
Watching you back yourself further and further into a corner means one of two outcomes... as history tells us. You will either just say "my bad", just writing this off as a teaching moment, or end further participation never to be heard from again. The first is preferred, since the feedback provided has been quite informative and more may come in the future. But wow, to think of how many instead abandoned ship when they finally noticed their mistake. I can recall quite a number of individuals who stirred the pot until something exposed a oversight on their part.
The history is fascinating... and I'm only 20 years into this effort with vehicle change.
There's More Involved. It's amazing how many regular
posters online really don't take the time to think about what they are
endorsing. There just tends to be an overly simplistic approach others
are supposed to follow, even though problems emerge only with a few minutes
of research. Ugh. Knowing this, I keep trying to share detail
when it is obviously being overlooked... like today:
The biggest arguments against reaching marketshare beyond early-adopters has been that inability to charge a second vehicle in the same household. There are both challenges of service-panel capacity and the need to plug in at the same time. A single unit would offer flexibility, allowing vehicles drawing at will without the need to coordinate and overcoming the speed limitation required when multiple EVSE share the same line.
This also stirs up the discussion again of what speed is truly beneficial at home. The rule-of-thumb that a 40-amp line (32kW draw) delivers 200 miles of range in 8 hours is a useful starting perspective. How long of an overnight window for charging will people have available, especially if they are taking advantage of time-of-use discounts?
My local electricity provider offers off-peak rate of 4.4 cents per kWh from the hours of 11PM to 7AM. That gives you only 8 hours to charge, including time for pre-conditioning. So, the possibility of a 10-hour session isn't even an option, since the line is only powered during that off-peak window. The other discount rate available is 6.74 cents per kWh for the hours of 9PM to 8AM, prior to that is 44.1 cents per kWh (very high to discourage charging during peak hours). That is a somewhat better, but hours could be limited for those who stay out late in the evening or need early morning time for their commute.
The point is this topic of EVSE setup at home isn't a simple matter of what hardware to purchase. There's more involved, which doesn't often get addressed properly. Education is essential. A poor choice can impede vehicle ownership experience much more than the initial impression gives.