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Ingineer
Posts: 2741
Joined: Fri Oct 15, 2010 1:09 pm
Delivery Date: 13 Jul 2011
Leaf Number: 6969
Location: Berkeley, California
Contact: Website

Re: Longer range option

Sat Nov 05, 2011 11:56 am

We have experimented with this, and it is definitely possible to add a range extension pack, or even a (sacrilege) ICE generator/pusher trailer for really long hauls.

Question is, what are you willing to pay for it? Adding Lithium is VERY expensive! A decent 10kW pack would cost over $10k installed.

A trailer initially sounds silly, but it would be easy for "temporary" rentals to LEAF owners who don't have other cars, or are looking to transport their car long distances, such as moving from summer home to winter home and vice-versa twice a year. (Vice-LEAFa!)

We will build one if there is enough interest.

-Phil
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TonyWilliams
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Location: San Diego
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Re: Longer range option

Sat Nov 05, 2011 5:33 pm

Ingineer wrote: We will build one if there is enough interest.
-Phil
There is at least one other outfit actively working on this with lithium manganese cells. Apparently, there's concern over the trunk for crash protection.

How do forsee getting the auxiliary battery power into the main traction battery?

I came up a little short today, and hit Turtle (for the tenth time) 1.8 miles from my house. Fortunately, I actively and regularly practice rolling as far as I can, since I have two uphill grades just prior to my house.

Anyhoo, new record for me.... I made it.

mitch672
Posts: 1956
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Location: Boston, MA

Re: Longer range option

Sat Nov 05, 2011 9:05 pm

Phil,

perhaps something like this http://www.evnut.com/rav_longranger.htm" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false; can be done, but made cleaner and updated... It has some unique features, such as steerable wheels that assist while backing up, so you don't jacknife it, etc.

Mitch
2012 Advanced Plug in Prius (sold)
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Herm
Posts: 3765
Joined: Sun May 23, 2010 3:08 pm
Delivery Date: 29 Aug 2012
Location: Timbuktu, Mali

Re: Longer range option

Sat Nov 05, 2011 9:38 pm

TonyWilliams wrote: I came up a little short today, and hit Turtle (for the tenth time) 1.8 miles from my house.
Maybe its time to slow down a tiny bit?.. it sounds like you almost have enough range.

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TonyWilliams
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Location: San Diego
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Re: Longer range option

Sat Nov 05, 2011 10:14 pm

Herm wrote:
TonyWilliams wrote: I came up a little short today, and hit Turtle (for the tenth time) 1.8 miles from my house.
Maybe its time to slow down a tiny bit?.. it sounds like you almost have enough range.
I did slow down... just exactly (apparently) the right amount, as I did drive into my garage. 1.8 miles, with as much as 200 feet elevation gain (in short bursts).

I just had to work a bit harder for it than usual.

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JPWhite
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Re: Longer range option

Sun Nov 06, 2011 6:38 am

TonyWilliams wrote:
I did slow down... just exactly (apparently) the right amount, as I did drive into my garage. 1.8 miles, with as much as 200 feet elevation gain (in short bursts).

I just had to work a bit harder for it than usual.
Maybe you should trade for a Volt. As the battery pack capacity degrades overtime your ability to make it home is going to get harder to accomplish.

Just saying.
--
JP White
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TonyWilliams
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Re: Longer range option

Sun Nov 06, 2011 8:12 am

JPWhite wrote:
TonyWilliams wrote:
I did slow down... just exactly (apparently) the right amount, as I did drive into my garage. 1.8 miles, with as much as 200 feet elevation gain (in short bursts).

I just had to work a bit harder for it than usual.
Maybe you should trade for a Volt. As the battery pack capacity degrades overtime your ability to make it home is going to get harder to accomplish.

Just saying.
For the money I'd have to spend to get a Volt, I can think of plenty of other options. Plus, my options don't include burning oil, which I would do plenty of in a 40 mile range Volt.

I need more electric range... either a aux battery, quick charging options, or both.

RichCohen
Posts: 3
Joined: Mon May 14, 2012 1:18 pm
Delivery Date: 27 Apr 2012
Leaf Number: 8404

Re: Longer range option

Mon May 14, 2012 1:56 pm

Ingineer wrote:We have experimented with this, and it is definitely possible to add a range extension pack, or even a (sacrilege) ICE generator/pusher trailer for really long hauls.

Question is, what are you willing to pay for it? Adding Lithium is VERY expensive! A decent 10kW pack would cost over $10k installed.

A trailer initially sounds silly, but it would be easy for "temporary" rentals to LEAF owners who don't have other cars, or are looking to transport their car long distances, such as moving from summer home to winter home and vice-versa twice a year. (Vice-LEAFa!)

We will build one if there is enough interest.

-Phil
I also are an ingineer (BS EE, MS System Eng.), but I been doing software for the past 40 years. I wondered if anyone else had though of the generator trailer. It sounds like a very good idea to me. We only make 4-8 trips over 50 miles each year and we presently have a 14-year old second car for that. However, for some of them we'd happily rent a generator trailer from our Nissan dealer. The main issue is price. It should be a lot less expensive than renting a car.

The main design issues I can think of are making the trailer safe and adding another power connection to the Leaf. The trailer would not provide as much impact resistance for it's gas tank as a regular car, so that tank will need extra protection. Adding a input power port might be a warranty issue. Adding some engine instrumentation for the driver might also be an issue, but a short-range radio link might work well.

Here are my requirements:
1. Range: 200 miles between refueling. 300 preferred
2. Fuel: Regular gas. Diesel would be acceptable. Premium is not acceptable.
3. Speed with trailer: 65 mph on the 80% steepest up-hill grades with full fuel, 2 people and 100 lbs of baggage. 75 mph preferred and 90% of all grades also preferred.
4. Trailer should be low enough that rear mirror can see traffic.

Herm
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Delivery Date: 29 Aug 2012
Location: Timbuktu, Mali

Re: Longer range option

Mon May 14, 2012 2:48 pm

How much would you be willing to pay to rent that trailer?.

75mph up a heavy grade will require a large generator, probably 50kW or bigger.

RichCohen
Posts: 3
Joined: Mon May 14, 2012 1:18 pm
Delivery Date: 27 Apr 2012
Leaf Number: 8404

Re: Longer range option

Mon May 14, 2012 3:19 pm

Herm wrote:How much would you be willing to pay to rent that trailer?.

75mph up a heavy grade will require a large generator, probably 50kW or bigger.
I'll settle for 65 on a heavy grade it that saves money.

My local Enterprise Rent-A-Car charges $32/day for an intermediate size car, $25 for a compact. That's before sales tax and for 3 days from noon Friday to noon Monday. I'd be willing to pay $10-$15/day for a trailer. More than $20/day and I might as well rent a whole car. I know that doesn't leave a lot of room for profit, but that's my perspective since I'd be using it for a vacation trip. If I had to relocate, I'd be willing to pay more.

We bought a Leaf because our average daily driving is under 25 miles and the worst case over 3 months was 35 miles.

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