What Drives Us episode

#365 The Rise of the EVs

8 May , 2020   Video

  1. Paul talks about the ground-level pollution created by gasoline powered lawn equipment. It’s better for you and the environment if you swapped them out for something with a plug or battery.
  2. Tony discusses that Lincoln has cancelled their anticipated partnership with Rivian to produce a luxury SUV EV. We would like to think that this is just a temporary thing.
  3. Kacey tells us about Tesla’s latest software update and how it improves stoplight recognition and smart summon mode.
  4. Georgia talks about a JD Power survey indicating people’s heads are still stuck in the sand when it comes to alt fuel vehicles.
  5. Mark talks about Rivian declining to accept a $1 million grant that was guaranteed to them from Normal, IL where they have their factory. Normal promised that if Rivian invests $22 million the town would kick in $1 million. Since then, Rivian has secured Billions in funding and decided the town could put the money to better use.

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What Drives Us episode

#349 Whose Data is it, Anyway?

16 Jan , 2020   Video

In this week’s show:

1) The current NTSB requirements for black box data is woefully short of all the data required to determine the actual situation of a modern-day crash. Manufacturers are not required to hand over additional data. Should owners be able to pull the data themselves to turn over to the police? Should they be able to pull data from a used car prior to purchasing it?

2) Tesla’s stock has soared recently to the point that the company is now valuated higher than GM and Ford, combined! It doesn’t help that Ford and GM have seen their own valuations dropping in the recent months.

3) The Boring Company’s 0.8 mile tunnel is completed under Las Vegas between convention centers. It’s likely not going to reach 140mph like previously advertised, it might use skates to move cars or not. Details are few and far between.

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What Drives Us episode

#348 Dieselgate Saves VW

14 Jan , 2020   Video

This week:
1) States face roadblocks on path to lower tailpipe emissions.
2) BMW remains committed to ICE cars for at least 30 more years.
3) The Prius is no longer Toyota’s top-selling hybrid.
4) Sony shocks CES by unveiling a car.
5) The Fisker Ocean might actually be areal thing.
6) Tesla’s Gigafactory 4 has to tread lightly in the forest.

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audio only,What Drives Us episode

# 347 Robot Replacements

3 Jan , 2020   Video

1) Tony reviewed the Toyota RAV4 Hybrid. Be sure to check out his two separate reviews:
Ride-along review: https://youtu.be/ed4CUB73QWE
Walk-around review: https://youtu.be/hty_KFkWZMY

2) At the beginning of the 2010s, Lithium-Ion batteries were projected to herald in the era of the electric vehicle. We discuss accessibility of battery components and the drop in prices.

3) Volkswagen has released conceptual animations of very cute little battery charging robots. You park your car anywhere in a parking garage and the robots will not only bring a mobile battery pack, the pack will plug itself into your car.

4) December saw a flurry of Tesla software updates. We pick them apart.

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What Drives Us episode

#335 Dunk Dunk Dink-Dunk Dunk

1 Oct , 2019   Video

1) VW ID.3 would not sell enough in the US, or would it sell too much?
https://insideevs.com/news/371779/vw-canada-considering-sales-id3/

2) Amazon orders 100K delivery vans from Rivian
https://techcrunch.com/2019/09/19/amazon-orders-100k-electric-delivery-trucks-from-rivian-as-part-of-going-carbon-neutral-by-2040/

3) Lime shuts down car rental service, Limepod
http://mail01.tinyletterappcom/transportation/trucks-fot-wunder-farmwise-oslo/15282170-techcrunch.com/2019/09/19/lime-is-shutting-down-car-rental-service-limepod/

4) Waiting for Godot
https://www.teslarati.com/elon-musk-boring-company-las-vegas-loop-tunnel-update-pictures/

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audio and video,One On One,What Drives Us episode

One on One #1 – We Welcome Our Hydrogen Fuel Cell Robot Masters

20 Jan , 2017   Video

Debuting a brand new show, One On One, where two people wrestle over a recent issue for an in-depth discussion. Today, Danny Cooper and Russell Frost talk about the real future of hydrogen, Toyota, Fuel Cell vehicles and also a little on factory automation and the future of jobs making things.

We cite these links during today’s One On One:

Toyota part of consortium spending 10.7B Euros on hydrogen

Another take on the press release above

Toyota chairman says hydrogen needs more time

Turns out, the rumors of hydrogen’s death may have been premature

Toyota claims to have an EV on the market by 2020

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audio and video,Featured,Features,What Drives Us episode

#201 Afternoon Delight

12 Oct , 2016   Video

Danny and Russell take on the show as a duo this week. Here’s what they talked about:

MB says fuck pedestrians, we’re protecting our customers

From Tony

Leaf upgrade

From Mark

Bolt begins oozing out

Chevy Bolt Allocations are given to some California and Oregon dealers.

And yet…

http://insideevs.com/dealer-reveals-additional-chevrolet-bolt-pricing-details/

“The next step in the process is to begin taking orders for the 2017 Bolt. Rumors suggest that could happen as early as this week, but only in the states of California and Oregon for now.

There are plans to go nationwide, but that’s not expected to happen until 2017.”

From Paul

Nice attempt at educating the public on clean vehicles although the linked videos are on the same youtube channel as their Super Duty truck videos. 🙁

Does Tesla even have the legal ability to make all the cars it’s promised to?

And yet…

Tesla sales still strong

The Force is strong with this one

“Clearly, it is kinda ridiculous now to say that an automaker with 1,000-plus workers is working on nothing at all. So, let’s drop that vaporware status and ready ourselves for some big reveals coming from Faraday soon –“

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Article,EPA,Hypermiling

It’s a Game of Averages

11 Sep , 2016  

I’m in the process of recording these articles in a series of videos.  Click the image to the left to watch them.  While there, be sure to subscribe to the channel.


-Tony Schaefer

Many times, when discussing hypermiling techniques, someone will ask about how to approach a hill, or what to do in rush-hour traffic, or when driving in bad weather can’t be avoided. The only sane answer is, “get over it.” Let’s face it: if you are going to scrutinize every single mile or every single minute, you will go insane. That is why hypermilers talk in terms of tank averages and lifetime averages.

Tank Average

This should be your smallest unit of measurement except for the rare exception. It is only over the course of an entire tank that you can take multiple factors into consideration: morning versus evening commutes, good weather versus storms, etc.

If you wish to maintain daily logs – and for various reasons, I have suggested just that – bundle them into the tank average and then throw them away. Daily logs are for analysis and review only. For example, another article suggests keeping daily logs for the sake of identifying the best daily commute. Once these logs have served their purpose, dispose of them.

The easiest way to calculate the tank average is to divide the miles driven by the amount of gasoline used to refill the tank. However, here are some factors to consider:

  • Some cars use bladders inside the gas tank to help contain vapors. Depending on the ambient temperature, the bladders might be more or less flexible in warmer and colder conditions, respectively.   For example, the second generation Prius used a gas bladder. In the summer, almost 10 gallons of gasoline could be pumped whereas in the winter as little as 8 gallons was the maximum. The Prius fuel bladder was removed starting in 2010. This is an issue because it adds a variable when attempting to accurately calculate the amount of gasoline used during the tank.
  • There is always the debate whether the on-board calculations provided by the car are accurate enough to be used. Some people choose to perform their own calculation rather than trusting the car. Anecdotally, some people have used both and shown that over a period of time, the over/under evens out and both methods arrive at the same Lifetime Average. However, for the individual tanks, which method you use is up to you.

Lifetime Average

Of course, the granddaddy of all averages is the overall Lifetime Average. This reflects your entire driving experience with the car. Lifetime averages do not need to start when the car is brand new; it is the one-number record of you and the car working together as a team, regardless of how old the car was when you two first met.

As you can imagine, calculating the lifetime average requires that you know exactly how many miles you have driven and exactly how much gasoline you have consumed. Not just for one tank or one month or even just one year. In order to calculate an accurate lifetime average, you must have been recording accurate fuel data for the entire time you have been driving the car. Trust me: this can get tedious but it is what must be done to achieve the goal.

12-Month Rolling Average

As you drive your car year-over-year, you might become curious whether you are becoming a better hypermiler. Actually, it’s great to constantly want that feedback to spur improvement. The problem is that the Tank Averages can’t be compared one-to-one and after a while the Lifetime Average barely budges.

This is where the 12-Month Rolling Average comes in. Whereas the Lifetime Average will forever be influenced by those first few crappy tanks, the Rolling Average will eventually let them go to reflect how you’re doing now. Though you can’t throw them out completely because they are part of your historical record, they are no longer an accurate representation of your current driving ability.

Calculating the 12-Month Rolling Average requires that you go back one year (sounds pretty obvious, doesn’t it?). Where it can get complicated is that the number of tanks will vary. For example, if you average a refill every other week, you cannot simply take the last 26 tanks and assume that’s a year. There will be those long-distance road trips in which you consumed a full tank in only two days. So just be careful and make sure to do the math based on the dates: sometimes 28 tanks, sometimes 32.

Conclusion

If you only keep two averages, they should be the Tank Average and the Lifetime Average. These give you a real-time feel for your hypermiling abilities and an overall view of your entire driving experience. Adding the 12-Month Rolling Average provides an updated perspective, showing how you’ve done over the past year.

Table of Contents

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