Instead of the TDI . . .

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The Crazy Train continues to pick up speed. It just won’t go very far… .

VW – clearly unhinged now – has revealed an updated version of its unsalable electrified Golf.

This one is New And Improved!

Instead of a maximum range – under ideal conditions (this part always said at triple Warp Speed by a fast-talking, sotto voce announcer like they do at the end of a radio commercial about a car dealer’s month-end “give away” sale prices) of 86 miles, you will get 126 miles of range!

Well, in city driving . . .

Maybe.

Hopefully?

SONY DSC

Possibly . . . before the lights go dim and the eGolf rolls silently kaput to the side of the road.

That’s 126 miles (city . . . 105 on the highwayassuming it’s sunny and warm out. But not too sunny, so you don’t need to use the AC, which draws electricity (lots) and so reduces the car’s real-world range (also lots).

Or too cold and dark.

So you can avoid using the heater – and the headlights – which also burn up electricity, it being the car’s only source of power.

The clapping seal media never mentions this stuff. They snap up the press kit mackerel about 126 miles of range and New! and Advanced!

It’s beyond malpractice.

Do they not think people will notice that their mileage will vary? Do they not consider it relevant to mention the electric car-specific problems of range affected dramatically by heat and cold and use of accessories?

But don’t worry! The new eGolf is Advanced! It will offer as (sotto voce, fast talk) optional equipment a “fast” charger that gets you going again in only one hour!

But you’ll go even less far than when you first started out.

The mackerel-eating press never mentions this, either.

Here’s the scoop:

The nature of batteries being what it is, a full charge in a short time results in shortened battery life. Hence (once again, sotto voce) 80 percent of charge after a one-hour hook-up on the optionally available “fast” charger rig.

What is 80 percent of 126? You are good to go for another 100 miles – maybe, if it’s not too cold or too hot and you don’t drive very fast – before needing another one-hour hook-up to the electrical umbilical.

If it’s highway driving (105 mile best-case range) you’re looking at 86 miles before your next one-hour pit stop.

PS (and sotto voce, again) the base trim eGolf without the optional – that is, extra cost – “fast” charger system needs six hours to  recharge itself.     

No word yet about the cost of the optional “fast” charger system. But expect the New and Advanced! eGolf to cost at least what the old one did – which was about $30,000.

Meanwhile, the TDI diesel-powered Golf – which could go 594 miles in between fill-ups without caveats about conditions and which took less than five minutes to refuel and stickered for about $22k – has been fatwa’d out of existence.

The multi-leveled dishonesty – and idiocy – makes my teeth ache.

There is no sane explanation for any of this. The people running VW – and the other automakers – aren’t imbeciles and they’re probably not crazy, either. They know perfectly well – one hopes – that a $30,000 car with a best case range of 126 miles that needs at least one hour to recover the ability to go another 100 or so isn’t going to sell unless that’s all they’re allowed to sell.

Which as it turns out is exactly the case.

Not yet here, but in Europe – which of course is VW’s home market (ditto BMW and Mercedes, who’ve also guzzled the electric car Kool Aid). The various governments over there are threatening to or actually have imposed “zero emissions zones” where it’s illegal to drive a car that isn’t electric.

For the earf, you see.

Actually, for the elites – the people (like the people in government) who have the looted riches to be in a position to afford a $30,000 electric Golf or a $40,000 Tesla  or (even better) an electrified six figure BMW 7 Series such as the one I test-drove (and reviewed, here) recently.

It at least has heated and massaging seats.

Again, these people aren’t stupid. They have entire departments of marketing people who crunch numbers and know their demographic. The have to know that two-thirds of the people who buy new cars will be priced out of the market by electric cars.

Leaving aside the issue of the functional gimps.

What they are doing, I have come to believe (because I do not believe they are stupid) is pushing unaffordable, functionally untenable electric cars as a way to get people out of cars. And by “people,” I mean us.

They will continue to drive – just as the elites in the former Soviet Union cruised blithely on empty highways in their well-padded Zil limousines.

It’s us who’ll either be taking the bus – or riding our bicycles. Which they’ll probably go after next.

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43 COMMENTS

  1. I might be wrong Eight, I think the most important part is a regulator as to how the mixture is regulated I havent a clue,carbs are basically just fuel meters, the fuel ignites after it vaporizes, Home Depot used to sell a sweet little generator that ran off a “grill bottle”

  2. This electric car business reminds me of the old behind the seat gas tank pickups I used to own, no AC -200 mile range (if you were lucky) pretty reliable, at least there was a gas station every 15 miles back in the day, cant say the same for charging stations. I used to spend several hours standing in line practically every Saturday back in the day at the local NAPA store and chasing parts for my old clunkers and the little bit of gas I used cost a good deal of my penurious paycheck , not to mention the joy of crawling under these old clunkers and refilling the gearboxes, changing oil , points, plugs, trying to keep an exhaust system on the old hoss. Maybe things do get better .

    • kevin, you make a good point and it’s one I wouldn’t want to not have had. It was sheer necessity for me to learn to wrench at an early age although not a hardship since I’ve been a gearhead as long as I remember.

      I recall having to do a pinion seal first, which was easy enough. But then it was an axle seal, a bit more work but easy enough. Then the brakes had to be done. That’s when a guy told me to take the wheel off, use a screwdriver to back off the adjustment wheel(I didn’t know about that until then)for the brake shoes so I could get the drums off. This was back when brakes were more of a passing thought than really made to do something serious. Those shoes must have been 7″ long and an inch and a half wide or so. What awesome stopping power.

      Those old vehicles helped to keep you in shape and build muscle. In deep sand you learned that steering wheel could spin around on you and break a wrist or finger. Nothing like the master cylinder being under the floorboard.

  3. Electric cars have a very specific use case, I write this is the owner of an EV.

    They are good as an alternative to public transportation for commuting for the rich (let’s face it, the bus is for losers, amirite?)

    Cars powered by distillates still have the advantage of long range to weight and quick replenishment of fuel supply.

    EV boosters ignore the initial cost of build and the long tailpipe when justifying their choice. They are not at all pragmatic and they appear to be masochistic to the point of self-flagellation.

  4. If you look at the history of the auto industry, you will see that they tried electric, a hundred years ago. They also tried steam. Gasoline (and diesel) won for general use cars because of ease of use and economy. That hasn’t changed in a hundred years, and to be honest, there isn’t a compelling reason to change. They do work that well for the majority.

    The electric cars that do work, are golf carts. They work because they don’t go far, are light, aren’t that expensive (at least in relation to a regular full use car), are small and don’t go very fast. They have their use, and could have more uses, if they weren’t prohibited from some of the roads they could be on. Those are the electric cars people could use if they were allowed on bicycle paths, lanes and trails. They could also be on residential side streets without too many problems. They aren’t problems in the private golf and retirement communities where they do drive on streets.

    They don’t appear on public roads for only one reason. The government has deemed them not street legal.

    • Exactly! That’s a point I have long made: Uncle, by paving over the whole country with smooth-paved high-speed roads, has made all other forms of transportation impractical/dangerous/illegal. Had they not done so, I’m sure there would be all sorts of transportation in use today- from horses, to velomobiles, to small lawn-mower engine powered buggies, etc.

      But instead, Uncle has created a “problem”, and now is proposing various “solutions” to said “problem” (From tax-funded mass transit, to living in congested cities like sardines, to subsidized impractical electric cars…), which are more of a problem than the “problem” which they are supposed to be the answer to.

      The usual Hegelian dialectic. And we get to pay for it all, as we lose our rights.

  5. So, here is a “car’ which, after being fully charged, MIGHT, under perfect conditions just barely get me to town, and let me do my shopping and errands, and if I’m lucky, I might make it home. If I’m not lucky? Since the odds of there being a quick charger right where it dies are about nil; and since you can’t walk to the eGas station and carry back some ‘lectricity in a can, that would mean calling the flatbed to cart it home.

    And then, even if i make it home, supposin’ I get home and need to run out again? Oh! I’m sorry….have to wait till tomorrow for it to charge!

    We are truly entering a new dark age. Mega corps are building these abominations, and thinking that they can sustain their business by doing so; The media is hyping them. The gov’t is subsidizing people with our money, for being so foolish as to buy them; and apparently someone is apparently buying them. Wow! The scope of darkness and ignorance that allows such consditions to previal, is truly mind-numbing.

    • We’re not far from triple digits temperature-wise now(95 yesterday). That car, on a typical hot day, let’s say not over 105, would get me to Sam’s. The tow truck would get me back. I think I could make it to Wally and back ok with not a lot to spare on a hot day(I’m not going to be blistering as I did when young……besides, my beer would get hot too….unacceptable).

      I’ll continue to look for that early 90’s GM diesel pickup. When diesel is cheap, that 120 gallon nurse tank is an “investment”. Oh, I forgot, all that weight will ruin my fuel mileage….as if the sheer amount of tools and extra oil, coolant, etc. doesn’t weigh enough to break the rivets on my tool box. I’ve had my last crossover box. I’ll be going back to side boxes.

      Texas used to have DL and insurance stops soon after mandatory ins. came about. I was stopped once for one of those in my pickup with side boxes, headache rack and home made bumper, all painted the same color of the truck. I was digging through my stuffed glovebox for my insurance papers when the trooper, who’d just seen my CDL, said “Oh well, this is a company pickup, don’t worry about it”. Technically he was right since it was registered to the farm but didn’t have farm tags.

  6. Brings new meaning to “Electric Golf Cart.”

    Hey, if it can hold enough charge to carry me and my clubs across all 18 holes, back to the Clubhouse, and then home again……this thing may work out Great! 🙂

  7. Europe needs electric cars to offset the pollution from the cars and buildings being burnt by the newly arrived “refugees”.
    Now I see the light: These pyrophiles are benefiting their host countries tremendously by taking gas-burning cars off the road by the simple expedient of torching them.

    • Escher, yep, that about covers it. The only reason it isn’t like that in this county is because of something the progressives can’t understand, the 2nd amendment…..even though it’s a far cry from what it is supposed to be. This won’t last much longer either since there are always so many back doors being created to disenfranchise large segments of the population. Wages of 1985 still in effect, war on drugs renders a substantial number of people who can’t legally get a firearm which the Just Us system uses to demand more cops and prosecutors to deal with the black market created thusly garnering more taxes for themselves and their unions, etc. The good side is guns are cheaper than ever although I can’t say the same for ammo. The bad sign is every day it seems another federal agency arms itself to the teeth. Of course this could be good when they can’t hold onto it.

      There was a leak last week from the military of their plans in the future to create and install martial law. They view us as the enemy….and when I say us, I mean everyone not one of them. Don’t know how this flies in PoLeez depts. and state agencies. They probably see themselves getting a bye and being part of the ruling class at that point. BTW, I noticed where CDNNSports.com has Ruger AR’s for $600, a damn good price and a good gun well above the cheap stuff like Bushmaster.

  8. Another gotcha – the fast charger could require you to increase the size of the electrical service to your house.

    Many houses were built with 100amp service. Which is enough to run everything people could possibly want to do at the same time – dry clothes, run the air conditioner, and cook dinner.

    But the fast-chargers can draw 22kw of three-phase power, something that is rare for a residence (they almost always have only single-phase in the neighborhood). If you do 22kw on a single-phase system, that’s a 180 amp draw. You’d have to replace the cable that runs out to the pole plus the meter, plus the circuit breaker panel.

    I still like electric cars as a second car, if you live in a city.

    • Great article Eric.

      Per Chip’s point, what happens when the wet dreams of the eCar fan boys some how, some way, magically materialize? How does the current grid support charging a massive number of these cars? Let’s not forget that these will adding to the load during “peak” usage hours – not just at night. If everybody is charging their battery packs while parked at work, while all the factories are simultaneously sucking down the current, where is all this power actually coming from?

      Shit – we have brownouts occasionally during hot summer days when too many people have their 7kW A/C units running.

      Wind? Solar? Puleeze.

      Let me guess – then “we” will be “asked” to “contribute” to new electrical infrastructure.

      Sounds like a recipe for long term blackouts.

      • They don’t intend to have the grid support it. They won’t be building new generation capacity either. Our electricity use will be rationed and the population managed.

      • Thanks, Blake!

        I agree with Brent. I think the plan is to ration both cars and electricity. Again, all these people can’t be this stupid. It boggles the mind. So, what is the alternative? That they know perfectly well it’s not feasible to have millions of electric cars running around, that they are not “the future.”

        • I wonder if there is a reason why Uncle wants the American people to have reduced mobility?
          My VW (Porsche) 3.0 TDi can do 800+ plus highway miles on a tank of used vegetable oil if necessary.
          Could there be a reason why the government doesn’t want us to be able to travel more than 100 miles at a time?

          • Hi Alex,

            The reason is control.

            And, agenda.

            There is a very real effort under way at the highest echelons of government to push people into urban “cores” where they will live a car-free lifestyle. Google Agenda 21…

      • I think the power companies are well aware of the potential impact to the grid. And I think that some of them are still in the “wait and see if this is a fad” stage.

        But some of the more forward-thinking are likely looking at this as an opportunity to upgrade their systems — replace some of the hardware that was installed with 1960’s level of usage in mind.

        Of course, there’s the NIMBY people to worry about (why won’t they go away?) Not only do they not want new power plants, they don’t want the transmission lines either. Enjoy being in the dark, Luddites.

      • You really think wind power is a joke? I have some of the largest wind powered fields on earth around me and they’re all growing every day. Now wind generators are much cheaper to build and maintain and have variable vane props so they can operate on days like yesterday with gusts over 50 mph. The originals had to be shut down on days when the wind was over 20 mph but no more.

        We live in a valley but either way out of here there’s a hill we drive over. One direction we can see the largest field in the world, Horse Hollow and the Snyder Field in the other direction. On a hill near Sweetwater, Tx. you can see(in the dark)3 fields including Horse Hollow. It’s quite the sight since about every 5th unit has a big, red flashing light on top. You can see hundreds of these lights that are flashing in unison. I’ve stopped on that hill and watched them while doing my log book. I don’t know where you run out of them, but I’m guessing at the Rio Grande. I’ve been all over the west Tx. oilfield and have never run out of them. They continue on the high plains too all the way to N.M. Since Texas has its own power grid there are only 3 points it can share electricity but mainly it doesn’t because of ERCOT. BTW, NIMBY doesn’t get much traction in Tx. Texans for the most part are practical. You don’t find the out of touch crowd till you get to D/FW or the Communists inhabiting Austin. Native Texans have sympathy for the old ranching families in that area. I’m sure most realized long ago to cash in on ridiculously priced land and move to less socialist areas. Some call it progress but it’s mainly a haven for yankees who have brought their yankee problems and “solutions”. I won’t even go to Austin any longer.

        • I’ve never understood why they got the lights to flash in unison. Maybe they monitor the 60Hz frequency, and so if you have one that is flashing “wrong” it’s a sign it needs repair. Dunno.

          Austin isn’t as bad as you make out. Other than the traffic – it’s worse than you imagine. But there certainly is a whole lot of wishful thinking going on. And I think that’s because of all the young college students here who haven’t had the optimism beaten out of them yet. 🙂

          • Chip, I visited friends an hour from Austin this past week. A couple guys had to go to Austin on bidness and asked if I wanted to go for them. I declined and visited with the dogs and cats with some cold Shiner while they were gone. Neither of them drink but they were nearly ready to start when they got back. To top it off, one of them didn’t get loose till 3pm on Friday so they got the full brunt of the clusterfuck.

            40 years ago I frequented Austin, took loads there when I could and visited a lot of friends who lived there and always ended up on 8th street.

            I’d bet the flashing lights are in unison for safety. Having thousands of lights flashing willy-nilly might be very distracting and dangerous for non-professional pilots, maybe for professionals who have to stay lower out of the paths of larger planes, those small freight haulers who stay low.

            UT folded on the issue of the Confederate war heroes and statues and has them stuffed back somewhere no one sees them. They just jumped right in on re-writing history. Talk about No Country for Old Men, sheesh.

            Blake, I understand people who don’t live in west Tx. worrying about those wind generators not being productive because the wind doesn’t blow all the time. I figure those 2-3 days of the year it’s dead still aren’t a deal breaker. I’ll give everybody here a little lesson on those generators. I’ve worked right under them on pipeline ROW’s that are often close to roads in those fields. There are days when the wind is close to nil but the updraft off the canyons generate enough wind to turn them. The first time I was right under some and the wind was dead calm and they were spinning I realized the reason for their placement, at the south edge of elevated spines for a great many. There’s also some geographical phenomena that goes on in the Colorado River valley that keeps those mills turning. Even the units on flat ground are close to what some call “the breaks” which cause updrafts to the north. If the wind isn’t blowing from the west or south it’s coming from the north.

            • 8, there are a lot of windmills being erected, but only because they are subsidized. They are not, at this time, (and maybe never) economically feasible. Rare earth magnets being one of the ‘ecological’ downsides. And the poor birdies.

              • PtB, I spent the last two hours researching wind energy. It seems as if subsidy ranges from 0 to $54/Mega Watt Hour in the US. Some subsidies have been based on the amount of power produced which has led to more sophisticated power units. Others have not related to efficiency….which they all should if it’s to be subsidized. I found this article that shows subsidy isn’t a must for building farms and showing a profit. Big corporations, for the most part, are gluttons for money obtained from any source so they’ll continue to collect the $54 or whatever the going rate is as long as it’s there.

                I did find this one article that seemed to be an honest representation of what is and what can be. https://www.wind-watch.org/news/2013/04/02/wind-power-subsidies-no-thanks/

        • Hi 8:

          I didn’t mean to imply wind was a joke, just that it can’t supply the grid when the wind isn’t blowing. Just like solar can’t do much where the sun don’t shine. If nobody cared about NIMBY, I’d say it was feasible.

          I’ve flown from DFW to McAllen many times and spot what appears to be hundreds of miles of wind farms in that path.

          The company I work for has a plant in Reynosa, so I fly that route quite frequently.

          Here in SE Michigan, we have a few sprinkled here and there. Nothing like in TX though.

          Thanks

        • Eight,
          Windpower has been promoted because it has not worked. As it gets to a point where it would work, then it is opposed. It’s ugly, it chops up birds, it creates moving shadows…. The goal is to limit and control energy. Viable wind power will be crushed, curbed, limited, whathaveyou before it gets there. Likely on environmental grounds.

      • Many EV owners also have solar power on their houses, so they don’t draw anything from the grid. That’s the ONLY way mass EV adoption will work: if most EV owners have solar power, so they don’t draw from the grid.

        • Hi Mark,

          Solar works if the draw isn’t large. But if you want to recharge an EV in anything less than several hours, you need a 240 volt hook-up (like for a washer/dryer). And for that, solar is inadequate.

          • Yeah, if you want to charge your EV overnight, you almost need a 240V outlet; using 120 will take too long. At least the solar helps lessen their draw on the grid.

            That said, I thought that most solar systems involved a storage battery, so there’s juice when it’s dark or cloudy out. Wouldn’t the storage system provide enough juice for the EV?

            • Hi Mark,

              It’s one thing to power a few household lights and a router. It’s another to power a well pump, refrigerator, microwave… or an EV.

              It can be done, but you will need lots of panels – and batteries – neither of which are free.

              How much do you want to spend to avoid paying for gas?

              • That’s why I DIDN’T put a solar system on my house; it was too expensive. I know, because I looked into it. The thought of living off the grid is appealing, but installing a solar system is cost prohibitive.

                I live in a small place, so my electric bills are inexpensive; even during the dog days of July & August, my bills are less than $100 a month. Even an inexpensive solar system would be well into the five figures. Therefore, even if I were to spend $100 a month for electricity every month (I don’t, but play along here), it would take 8-10 years to recoup the installation costs. IOW, by the time I recouped the cost of the solar panels, it would probably be time to REPLACE them!

                Secondly, my 2015 Ford Focus gets 30 mpg in the city, while getting 40 mpg on the highway. That’s PLENTY good enough for me. It’s close to hybrid territory without the hybrid price or complexity. The cost differential between what I paid for my Focus last year vs. a Tesla Model 3 was almost a factor of 3! Yes, you read that right; the $44k Model 3 is THREE TIMES MORE EXPENSIVE than what I paid for my car. There’d be no recouping the cost differential before the car fell apart; even if a Tesla lasts 15-20 years, I still wouldn’t recoup the cost differential in gas savings.

                Until EVs come down some more in price and go up some more in capability, an ICEV will be best for most people. I know it was for me, so I cast my dollar votes accordingly.

                • Consider this( I have ) why not make a little 2-3kw emergency back up system to run a few essentials? I might be wrong , I would select Iron Edison batteries( very long lasting) Total Solar is hard to justify , everybody would do well to have a backup electric system.

                  • I keep a small, Honda generator for that purpose. I can’t run everything on it at once, but I don’t have to; I simply need to run what I need, when I need it. Honda calls that power management. Anyway, I can run my refrigerator and other things, so I don’t lose my food. Honda generators are SUPER quiet and efficient. I love mine!

                  • Hi Kevin,

                    I have a back-up gennie (gas) that produces 5,500 steady watts, enough to run most of the necessary things, such as my house lights, wifi and well pump. I heat with wood so no worries keeping warm even if the power is off for days at a time!

                    • If I was going big time on a backup generator it would be propane, the 4000 watt gen I ( gas) will keep things afloat till the power is restored.

                    • Hi Kevin,

                      I converted my generator to dual fuel; it runs on gas and propane! There’s an article here – somewhere – about it!

                    • eric, I’m about to inherit a big gasoline generator. I have 400 gallons of propane now and nearly always have 200 gallons on hand. I plan to make it dual fuel. Do you recall what brand propane kit you have?

        • MarkyMark – “Many EV owners also have solar power on their houses, so they don’t draw anything from the grid.”

          Can you point to ANY home solar that has enough storage capacity to recharge an EV from even 50%? (Sun during day / charging at night)

          If not then the grid is the storage and they are most certainly drawing from the grid.

          Also, please do try the math for yourself. How much collection capacity would be required to power a Tesla for 150 miles a day? Never mind storage.

          • It would take quite a large one, consider this even if it took 3 days to charge when there was no gas you would still have a couple hundred miles of range.Total EV makes little sense for everything , the people that can afford are usually the ones that are wealthy enough to not bother with something like that ,I look on it as a productive hobby .

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