Re: Kia Niro BEV
Posted: Tue May 14, 2019 1:46 pm
The forum for all aspects of the Nissan Leaf
I suspect that those of us who actually notice and care about these things are a tiny, dwindling minority
LeftieBiker wrote:That one is already linked here. Now why, exactly, should I give any credence to "Alex on Autos"...? I place YouTube vid creators in the same category as bloggers: sure there are good ones out there, but they reside in rather large haystacks.
https://insideevs.com/reviews/351535/test-kia-niro-ev-150kw-fast-charge-station/How Fast Does The 2019 Kia Niro EV Charge? We Find Out
There's a lot to like about the 2019 Kia Niro EV. I'm four days into my 8-day press loan and I'm finding it really hard to come up with a lot of things I can criticize Kia for with this car. However, one of the things I definitely don't like is how they describe the Niro EV's DC fast charge capabilities.
That's led to some confusion, and many journalists believed (and reported) that the Niro EV was capable of charging at 100kW. The reason for the confusion is that Kia released press materials that list the Niro EV's charging time to 80% as "1 hour @ 100 kW EVSE". That's technically correct, but introducing the "100 kW" definitely caused many in the industry to believe the Niro EV could charge at 100 kW.
The fact is, the Niro EV is only capable of reaching about 77 kW on a DC fast charge station, and even then it cannot maintain that rate for long. Others have already tested and proven this, including Fastned, a DC fast charge network in the Netherlands, Germany and the UK. Fastned even produced a nice graph to demonstrate the DC fast charging profile of the Niro EV. That information is very important, because how an EV ramps up and down its power, is just as important as its peak draw.
So off I went to test out the Niro EV's DC fast charging capabilities for myself. . . .
[He drives to the EA QC in Bloomsburg,arriving at 9% SoC, and initially has some trouble getting it started, possibly due to using an AMEX card] Within a couple of minutes of plugging in, I could see the Niro EV was indeed topping out at 77 kW. The station I was at was marked as a 150 kW station, and the three other stations there were all marked 350 kW. Still, the station can deliver way more power than the Niro EV can accept, so the station wasn't a limiting factor here, it was the vehicle.
What did surprise me though, was that once the state of charge reached about 35%, the car began to rapidly ramp down the charge rate and leveled off at 39 kW. That doesn't match the charging profile demonstrated by the Fastned graph above. During this time, I could hear the Niro's fans blowing on high speed. Perhaps my 2.5 hour drive at 70-75 mph had warmed the batteries up too much, and the car needed to lower the charge rate because the cells were getting too hot? It was only about 70F (21C) degrees out, which isn't very warm, but the 112-mile drive at high-speeds surely heated up the pack a bit.
Then, at 47% SOC, the charging session abruptly ended. I was inside the Sheetz and received a text message from Electrify America that my charging session has ended and I have 10 minutes to move my vehicle before I begin to incur the $.40/ minute idle fee, designed to keep people from blocking the stations once they've finished charging - which I support 100%.
I returned to the vehicle, and initiated another charging session, this time without issue. I watched as the charge rate climbed up to a peak of 78 kW, and then drop down to 60 kW and hold that until the SOC was 72%. From 72% on the charge rate continued to drop, and by the time the SOC reached 80%, the charge rate was 25 kW and I unplugged.
I averaged 3.7 mi/kWh for the 225-mile round trip, so I used 60 kWh for the round trip. Including the session fees, I paid $.40/kWh, and $24.18 for the whole trip, based on what I paid per kWh. Gasoline is currently about $2.69/gallon for regular where I live, so this would mean I paid the equivalent for the electricity as a car that gets 25 miles per gallon. (225/25 = 9gal) (9 x $2.69=$24.21)
Electrify America recently announced that they will be lowering their prices about 20%, and instituting a new per-minute fee based on the power the EV can accept. Forty-cents per kWh is much higher than what most Americans pay for their electricity, but we need to understand tha using a DC fast charge station is a convenience, and we have to pay for that. . . .
Getting back to the Niro EV, I averaged 58 kW over the 54 minutes it took me to go from 9% to 80% state of charge. Personally, I'm disappointed in that. Since the Niro EV has a large 64 kWh battery and great range, it's a pretty good EV to use for road trips. If it could actually charge at 100kW, and maintain that rate until it was ~75% charged, you'd only need about 30 minutes to get to 80% charged, almost half the time the Niro EV currently takes. While it may not be a deal-breaker for most interested in the Niro EV, it's definitely not one of the vehicle's strengths, in my book.
As for Electrify America, I maintain my high hopes that they will develop into a national network of reliable high-speed DC fast charge stations. Sure, my first experience wasn't exactly what I had hoped for, but after calling customer service, who were very pleasant to deal with, I was able to charge up and get home without too much inconvenience. . . .
https://insideevsforum.com/community/index.php?threads/increase-trunk-space-by-25.5846/Increase Trunk Space by 25%