#1 July 15, 2014 14:36:00

gary.caldwell@ncl.ac.uk
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Leap of faith


Having been following this thread,  centred mostly around the Nissan Leaf, we decided to bite the bullet and get an electric car - it was actually driven by my petrolhead wife who used to have a 4.2L Audi A8!


We've just signed the paperwork for the Renault Zoe and the cost per month (including battery hire) is actually less than we have been paying for our Citroen C4 Picasso (albeit only £8 per month less, but hey….). The cost breaks down as £209.32 per month (factoring in the £4,600 trade in value of the Citroen) plus £70 per month battery rental. I was quite frankly amazed the finances stacked up as I, along probably with many others, based all my assumptions on the Nissan Leaf. We have committed to keeping the car for 3 years and Renault predict that after the 3 years the value of the vehicle will depreciate to a bit over £6k. We will then either have to clear the finance or hand the car back to Renault.


We trialled the car for 24 hours and were really impressed by it, working out as roughly 100 mile range fully charged. We do about 1000 miles per month with my wife doing a 50 mile round trip to her workplace 15 days per month. Granted, long trips will pose a bit of a hassle but with a bit of planning it should be fine.


The 7kW home charger isn't ideal for our 4kW solar array, but at least the panels will be providing some power to the vehicle.


I'll keep the thread updated as we start to see the running costs come through.





Edited gary.caldwell@ncl.ac.uk (July 15, 2014 14:36:00)

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#2 July 15, 2014 17:54:00

Capetown
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Leap of faith


Good luck with it Gary! Keep us informed of your progress.







The gene pool has no lifeguard!

Edited Capetown (July 15, 2014 17:54:00)

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#3 July 15, 2014 22:16:00

rogerhoward
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Leap of faith


Yes, how interesting Gary.


I guess that another aspect is that you'll know exactly how much it costs you, unlike us petrolheads who base a lot of our assumptions on approximate ‘miles per gallon’ estimates that may be notorious optimistic - http://www.thisismoney.co.uk/money/cars/article-2135617/Fuel-farce-Official-figures-heavily-overstate-cars-mpg.html


My Leaf-owning neighbour down the road opted for paying £100 extra for a faster 6.6kW/32Amp home recharging point rather than the standard free 3.3kW ones, but he doesn't have Solar PV.


We'll probably be wistfully thinking of you the next time we notice the jolt with our car's gear change, which here strangely seems to most often be when the Good Lady's at the wheel.


It will be fascinating to hear of your experiences!










Economy 10 tariff provides 6.9p/kWh off-peak import between 12am-5am, 1pm-4pm and 8pm-10pm; http://www.pvoutput.org/aggregate.jsp?id=21047&sid=18934&v=2&t=m on approx. 63% off-peak usage, 22% solar usage, and 15% peak-rate usage.
1,900kWh annually is exported, mostly in summer, on approx. 3,200kWh generation. Approx. 4,500kWh/year is imported, mostly for (a) winter and springtime off-peak Storage Heaters, and (b) off-peak hot water Immersion heating (which is “dumb”, i.e. not linked to the solar PV).
PV array is split East-West. Income is from Phase II 21p/kWh Feed-in-Tariff plus smart metered 3.2p/kWh Export Tariff.

Edited rogerhoward (July 15, 2014 22:16:00)

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#4 Aug. 22, 2014 12:19:00

Rick M
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Leap of faith


Though I don't drive myself, a friend is thinking seriously about it and the MOT of his current car in October would be a good time for me to forward your findings to him.


I actually run a voluntary group whose members aim is to reduce their CO2 from personal travel domestic energy use. Part of what I do is highlight ways forward and so I will also brief them.


 


 





Edited Rick M (Aug. 22, 2014 12:19:00)

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#5 Aug. 26, 2014 09:01:00

FabiaVRS635
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Gary,  It may be worth asking if the dealer will supply the 3-pin ‘brick’ charger with the Zoe which would allow you to charge at 10 amps max instead of 32 amps on sunny days.  Otherwise there are aftermarket versions available which allow you to specify 6 or 10amps.  I assume you will be using an economy 7 tarriff to charge off peak anyway.





Edited FabiaVRS635 (Aug. 26, 2014 09:01:00)

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#6 Oct. 27, 2014 05:57:00

Capetown
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Leap of faith


I've arranged for a  7 day Leaf trial starting this friday. I'm hping to do a couple of long runs when I'll need to recharge. It should be interesting!  “In This Day And Age, It's Hard To Tell If Internet Quotes Are genuine”. Abraham Lincoln.







The gene pool has no lifeguard!

Edited Capetown (Oct. 27, 2014 05:57:00)

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#7 Oct. 27, 2014 08:33:00

gary.caldwell@ncl.ac.uk
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Leap of faith


Just a quick update on the Zoe. 


We are really enjoying having the Zoe. We have had it now for almost 3 months and have done roughly 1,400 miles – so not a massive amount of driving, mostly because my wife has been off work with a broken foot and she would normally use the car for her commute. We charge the car almost exclusively at home and therefore benefit from some free power from our 4kW solar array. In fact we have only used public chargers 3 times, more so out of curiosity than need. I’ve just done a quick comparison of our domestic electricity consumption since getting the car compared with the same period last year and over the past 3 months we have used an extra 332 kWh, costing £42.25. So that works out as roughly 4.2 miles per kWh or around 3 pence per mile travelled. We generally get 100 miles per full charge but could probably get another 15 miles out of it if really needed.


 


We really like the car. The only issue we had was with the government funded home charger. The first unit installed kept tripping which meant that charging the car up was a headache. The same issue happened with the next 2 replacement charger units before the installation company changed the design of the internal RCD-thingy (sorry I’m not much of a technophile). Since then we have had no difficulties at all.


 


The car is very nice and comfortable and is certainly big enough for our family of four. It has really quick acceleration at the lower speed range, particularly from a standing start (in fact it can take you really rather off guard the first time you drive it). When you are at 60+ it’s not so lively. But all in all it is a lovely little car to drive and because the bulk of the weight of the car is so low to the ground it corners really well.








Edited gary.caldwell@ncl.ac.uk (Oct. 27, 2014 08:33:00)

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