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Electric Elio May Be Closer Than You Think. Or Not.

Discussion in 'Elio Drivetrain' started by ArthurKent, Jun 21, 2014.

  1. ArthurKent

    ArthurKent Elio Aficionado

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    Several weeks ago, new battery technology was announced after years of development at a prestigious Japanese university - the Ryden dual carbon battery, being commercialized by Power Japan Plus.
    What's impressive about these claims is the fact that a premier Japanese race team, TAISAN, which has had extensive experience with electric race cars, has partnered to create a go-kart test vehicle in
    August, followed by a battery pack build to power one of TAISAN's electric vehicles, including their Tesla roadster, which has been a big disappointment due to battery issues.Thus it won't be long before
    the world will know, for sure, from an independent user how the new batteries fare. The claimed operating characteristics of this new battery are simply astounding : recharge rate 20 times faster, no
    thermal issues, completely safe, able to discharge 100% without harm, a lifespan that, for most applications is essentially unlimited, especially with respect to automotive applications; able to accept charge rates from regen braking without need for capacitors and with virtually 100% efficiency.Energy densities roughly the same as current li ion batteries.Cost unknown, but not more expensive than current batteries.
    Automotive cost efficiencies : no cooling system required (Tesla Model S has a water-cooled, fan driven radiator system). Regen braking system much simpler, cheaper, more reliable, more efficient.
    Ability to use 100% of battery capacity means a smaller, cheaper battery pack with the same capacity. Fast recharge ability means a much smaller, cheaper, and lighter battery pack is acceptable.
    So the question at hand is, would an electric Elio make sense, economically? And what would all this mean in terms of vehicle weight?
    To guess battery pack capacity required (and therefore size and weight) I look at the Tesla Model S,weight 4700 pounds, a car whose 85 kWhr battery pack weighs roughly 900 pounds. At Interstate highway speeds,
    it averages roughly 2 miles per kWhr. Battery pack costs somewhat less than $40,000. Examining cars that are somewhat close to the Model S's weight and their highway gas mileages leads me to estimate that a gas powered Model S would likely obtain somewhat less than 26 MPG cruising the Interstates, or more than 3 times less than an Elio. This all leads me to estimate an electric Elio mileage as 7 to 8 miles per kWhr.
    However, looking at the mileages of the Chevy Volt and its comparative weight leads me to believe an electric Elio might achieve 10 miles or greater per kWh. I assume that,since a Ryden powered Elio could be recharged in a couple of minutes, at most, then a 200 mile range would do for all except those who travel extensively. That would call for a battery pack somewhere in the rather wide range of 18 to 28 kWhrs.
    Such a pack would probably weigh in the range of 180 to 275 pounds and cost between $7,000 and $11,000, unless the battery gigafactories can come thru and reduce the cost to between $4700 and $7500, as they are claiming. Be willing to accept a 150 mile driving range and the cost reduces to an estimated $3500 to $5600. There are other somewhat (for me) imponderable cost effects - the cost of the electic motor
    versus the savings from eliminating the gas engine, automatic or manual transmission,cooling system, exhaust system, fuel system. Certainly there is no need for a costly automatic transmission,
    which most people prefer, so I'm assuming an electric Elio would in actuality be competing against a $7500+ gas powered, auto Elio. If the battery costs are at the low end of the estimates, then, together
    with the lower fuel costs that one gets with the electric, the electric version would probably be the better choice for many. It's also conceivable that the costs of the new batteries are significantly less, which conceivably would make the choice a no-brainer.
    A lot of ifs and unknowns floating around, but this is my best guess,at this point in time. Obviously Elio Motors could provide a much more accurate cost projection of everything except the batteries, which, unfortunately, is the biggest and most important cost of all.
     
    CaribbeanZombie, Lil4X and zelio like this.
  2. Rickb

    Rickb Elio Addict

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    Curb weight of the Lit Motors C-1 Concept enclosed cabin electric motorcycle is 800#. Elio's conversion from I.C.E. to electric with a smaller battery pack requirement may not change the current curb weight of the Elio much at all..........or possibly make it lighter weight.

    The C-1 specs state 110 mph with a 200 mile range rated at 450 MPGe with cost to operate at 0.6 cents per mile.

    There is current battery technology to manufacture a battery that is more affordable with a 500 mile range. I'm predicting an Elio EV option in the next 3-5 years. It would also make for a high performance option Elio with twin Electric Front wheel hub motors. I know we just need to get Elio to production.......it's close perfect FUNctionality as is.....but is fun to think about the options while waiting.

    I think someone will do a custom Elio Conversion to electric soon after production..............and it will be one fast off the line rubber burning high performance Elio.
     
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2014
  3. Jim H

    Jim H Elio Addict

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    Unfortunately, it is 230 miles to any decent sized city from Las Cruces. That wouldn't get me there. I want the first generation gas powered Elio.
     
  4. eddie66

    eddie66 Elio Addict

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    This is all great news, but when I read these posts, I can't help but think that since the whole concept of the Elio is a narrow, 3 wheel trike that gets great gas milage, wouldn't most people opt for more passenger space, and storage if gas wasn't an issue? I'm not saying there isn't a fun factor involved here, but if economy isn't the issue, why not put that technology in a more spacious vehicle? I think the market, for an electric Elio, would be limited. Just my personal opinion.
     
    Last edited: Jun 23, 2014
    Hotscoots, zelio and Horn like this.
  5. CrimsonEclipse

    CrimsonEclipse Elio Addict

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    I'll place this in the "Believe it when I see it" category.
     
  6. olddog1946

    olddog1946 Elio Addict

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    While drag racing from light to light would be fun, I'd probably be falling asleep on any trip over a mile.
     
  7. ThreeWheelBurnin

    ThreeWheelBurnin Elio Addict

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    Careful.. You might offend our friends from El Paso... :)
     
  8. Rickb

    Rickb Elio Addict

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    I'm hoping for both........the C-1 for around town and shorter distance drives and the motorcycle ride experience.........the Elio for around town and long distance drives. The start of a motorcycle collection and I've never owned a motorcycle or an EV.
     
  9. Rickb

    Rickb Elio Addict

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    Me too. I don't believe anything until I see it..........otherwise it's just an interesting possibility.
     
    zelio likes this.
  10. Rickb

    Rickb Elio Addict

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    From the quiet ride? Could always listen to Born to Be Mild on the premium sound system!
     
    Jim H and zelio like this.

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