A year with a twizy: London commuting and convenience travel about town

June 22nd, 2016 § Comments Off on A year with a twizy: London commuting and convenience travel about town § permalink

It has now creeped over a year since I have owner my Renault Twizy.

So quick stats

Since day One; I have opted for 7500miles/year battery rental agreement,- with includes recovery assistance.

My daily commute works out roughly 25miles a day.

I have had (and since sold) twizy Windows by renault(flappy ones) and have bought lexan Windows (sturdy ones which cover all the way to the back of the door-curve.
Better security. Better protection from the elements.

I installed this #TAQSI Bluetooth sound systemic the twizy, so I can now have my favourite weekender playlist on my rides about town.

Best twizy related ado is the marketing wrap and events I have done for some folks which sort of pre-paid my battery rental for a year. So this £53/month battery fee, has not really been felt on my pocket. So “yey” there.

Daily commuting, even shopping, pick-ups and drop-offs – (friends and family members who wanted to endure a tandem ride) was actually quite an interesting development. Didn’t expect to do people collect/drops all that often.

I have however truly enjoyed two things:

Incredibly cheap cost of driving. 6.1kwh battery pack that is, costs about £0.70 with my home electricity tariff. Considering my commute does get work/based charging (top up really, 1.5hours and I’m good) and places about London – not sure if I even should count that expense.

Did I mention the charging? Well, 3 hours 0-100% to charge this beast is ridiculous.

I top up when I get to work (11-12miles later) that takes just over a hour, no thanks to my merry-zealous driving style in the morning. But you get the picture. Cost of driving fuel is near-nil.

So far some snags with the twizy were sorted by warranty, but at large I found the costs of twizy servicing and parts pretty sensible. I think a new tyre is £43, so you get an idea. Couple that with free health checks you get time to time with my dealer and it’s a good deal all round.

My range
Being me, i have been very pedantic with my range counting just like many other EV owners out there. Pushing my twizy best I could with all sort of driving styles.

I think I managed 42miles range. Half range driven with a passenger! So I’m content on that note.

Sure, winter, temperature as well as Driving style makes a difference. So common EV sense approach works and the range is the similar today as last year, although feels like it’s 1-2 miles less on the range estimate.

Had battery electronics checked by Renault, these folks given me 100% healthy report. Much like yourself, I’m finding that 100% figure incredibly dubious and naive, providing that it’s a 4 year old battery, so there is bound to be some form of degradation, – alas it’s not significant enough to warrant any serious exploration on my part. You see, battery rental is there to deal with any of battery related issues – it’s a separate product – warranty – so it’s “not my problem”, so to speak. Good. So far so good.

One of serious twizy benefits – size!

I can fit twizy in my drive and then fit a Nissan Leaf right behind it. If it’s a BMW i3 I need to fit on the same drive instead, – all the easier. Parking at most notorious parking black spots, from obscure and awkward to downright impossible by conventional car means, with a twizy, I can hop in, pop to the high street bakery in the morning, and be back home in guaranteed 10 minutes or less.

Very impressive. Parking is not an issue.

There is a snag, whereby your twizy is not a car but not a bike either, so overtaking stationary one-way traffic – common sense – not possible. Maybe for for a short break? Anyway. Drive. Park. Go.

There are also, as discovered, a lot of custom mods available and developed for twizy electric – from external rear storage  to speed (ECU) mods, enabling you to turn up the power spec the twizy. Currently it’s limited to 50MPH, and say you wanted to go 60MPH – you can.subject to insurance cover and warranty alike but if you want it – you can have it.

Weather proofing. You know, like most, I have had Windows on, even at the spec of rain. And it was good. Especially during winter and winter freezing chills. But eventually, I found them too big, to unwieldy and unnecessary for commutes. Sacrificing convenience of free access to my twizy and even a casual QnA chat about my twizy ride with a fellow traffic-stuck driver in the lane next to me… I missed that. With Windows on, it’s not the same.

Besides. So far I am yet to be rained on, soaked so, when it’s raining so bad. With heaviest downpours here and there at odd occurrence a year, hmm…. Debatable. In my Personal humble opinion, winter months, sure, keep Windows fitted, come Feb-March, take them off.
Conclusion to date
if you need a daily commuter and your work has a lack of parking spaces, or you dont like the idea of
riding a bike, for mostly short distances, TWIZY is your thing.

Ps mine is still for sale. Holla me on Twitter or email me on iam[at]evmeerkat.com

Bath electric cars: Broken charging points to be replaced

February 23rd, 2016 § Comments Off on Bath electric cars: Broken charging points to be replaced § permalink

Some electric car charging points in Bath are to be replaced following complaints from drivers they do not work.
Several public charging points in the city, which are owned by Bath and North East Somerset (Banes) Council, have recently been reported as broken.
One driver told the BBC “only three of about 15” were working last week.
Banes said it was “aware of some issues” and it planned to install new units by the end of March.
The BBC found at least three charging stations – at Charlotte Street car park, and at Lansdown and Newbridge park and rides – were currently out of service.
Electric car owner Will Guyatt said: “To find a public charge point is not working, you really are stuffed, because you then need to find somewhere else to charge.”
‘Very unreliable’
Calvey Taylor-Haw, from Charge Your Car – which oversees charging points in the UK, said there had been problems in Bath for a while.
“We’ve had numerous calls about those particular charging stations and they are very unreliable.
“We’ve taken the decision to mark them as ‘off-line’ on our map.”
Erik Fairbairn from the charging point supplier POD Point, which supplied many of the machines in the city, said reliability was “not perfect” and said discussions were taking place with the council about upgrading them.
“These were charge points sold a number of years ago to the council. They haven’t necessarily had the relevant support contract in place.
“Now a number of them are not perfect. We’re hoping the council will say ‘come in and sort them out’.”
A council spokesman said Banes was “in the process of switching its supplier and replacing electric charging points” in the Charlotte Street car park and Lansdown park and ride.

from: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-somerset-35639000

Will this work? – We hope so: “Electric cars to use bus lanes in UK cities”

January 26th, 2016 § Comments Off on Will this work? – We hope so: “Electric cars to use bus lanes in UK cities” § permalink


From Guardian Website

UK cities are to allow electric car drivers to beat congestion by using bus lanes, as part of a government drive to encourage uptake of the cleaner vehicles.

Milton Keynes and Derby will copy similar measures in Norway and allow the cars to drive in miles of bus lanes, while owners in Hackney will be able to plug in at street lights. York drivers will be able to recharge their batteries at a solar-powered park-and-ride and electric car owners in Bristol and Milton Keynes will be allowed to park for free.

The schemes were announced by the Department for Transport on Monday as part of a £40m pot shared out among eight towns and cities. Nottingham, Bristol, Milton Keynes and London are the main beneficiaries, but Dundee, Oxford, York, Derby have also won funding.

Electric cars are seen as a key way for the UK to meet its carbon budgets and cut the illegal levels of nitrogen dioxide pollution that blight many British cities. While still relatively niche compared to combustion engine cars, the number of 100% electric cars registered in 2015 nearly doubled on the year before, to 9,934.

In Norway, incentives including generous tax breaks and allowing electric cars in bus lanes have spurred uptake of the cars which now account for nearly one in five of all new cars sold.

London, which suffers the worst air pollution in the UK, gets the lion’s share of the funding. The Go Ultra Low fund will give the capital £13m for “neighbourhoods of the future” in several boroughs, where electric cars will be prioritised over other vehicles.

The transport secretary, Patrick McLoughlin , said: “I want to see thousands more greener vehicles on our roads and I am proud to back this ambition with £40m to help the UK become international pioneers of emission-cutting technology.”

Steve Gooding, director of the RAC Foundation, gave the initiatives a cautious welcome but said ultimately it was up to industry to drive take-up.

“We are all in favour of encouraging drivers to go ultra-green, but the risk of relying on perks such as access to bus lanes, free parking and exemption from London’s congestion charge is that they can be at odds with other policies such as promoting public transport and easing congestion,” he said.

The government has pledged to continue a long-running electric car grant, but it will decrease in April from the maximum £5,000 currently available to between £2,500 and 4,500, depending on which models buyers choose.

#twizytweaks : covering the gap around the steering column on twizy for Less Winter’s Icy Breeze.

October 14th, 2015 § Comments Off on #twizytweaks : covering the gap around the steering column on twizy for Less Winter’s Icy Breeze. § permalink

To be honest when I first came across this video on YouTube covering the steering column gap, I didn’t really give it much notice.
now however, that it is winter-ish, and ice cold slowly creeping in I have experienced this icy chill factor firsthand, when riding 50 miles an hour while wearing my loafers – that I couldn’t feel my toes anymore.
so this is what I have done to fix this small snag…
#twizytweak hashtag to be used for all my tweaks and upgrades.

Found some type of non-slip floor-mat rubber.

Measured the dimensions of the gap.

Cut it out. Note that I opted to arrange it in such a way that I don’t have to secure this mat. Instead it can “hang” over the steering column – and it won’t turn right of left as its cut tight in place.

I may have cut the hole too small, as I was keen to ensure it fits like a “funnel”. Since you cannot place such DIY mat of yours flush with the floor as steering column has a corner fitted there.

Side effect of this is that my steering is squeaky, guess some grease should do the trick.

I say pick thinner rubber mat option – easier to work it and should do the same trick – some old car mats is a good place to start.

FIXED:How much can electric car save me on Fuel Economy. Fuel vs Electricity Calculator. UK

October 4th, 2015 § Comments Off on FIXED:How much can electric car save me on Fuel Economy. Fuel vs Electricity Calculator. UK § permalink

Edit the Form below as necessary to work out your Fuel Costs.

Right now it defaults to a typical assumptions of 1000 mile ( near one month of estimated driving) trip, which suffices an average household. Change figures as you see fit.

One assumption is that electric car’s average travel is 70 miles – appropriate for mk1 generation of electric cars typically released prior to 2013. Czero/Imiev/iOn/Leaf/ However, Newer and updated higher-Trim-levels like Nissan’s LEAF Acenta & Tekna are mk2 (post-2013)/Bmw i3 are more efficient – averaging 85 miles on a single charge.

Another assumption is that you will charge at home for 40% of your charges, and paying for your electricity. The remaining 60% charging will be done at public charging networks like Source London and Ecotricity, – which currently are free.


How you like Them Apples: Apple Poaches Fiat Chrysler Exec for Electric Car Dream

July 21st, 2015 § Comments Off on How you like Them Apples: Apple Poaches Fiat Chrysler Exec for Electric Car Dream § permalink

It’d all gone a bit quiet for a little while there when it comes to Apple’s electric car. With apparently 200 staff working on a self-driving electric minivan codenamed project “Titan“, Apple can now push that number up to 201. It’s just acquired the skills of Fiat Chrysler executive Doug Betts.

The manager for Fiat Chrysler’s global quality efforts from 2007 through 2014, Betts (whose role has yet to be divulged) is expected to work to ensure the myriad traditional car, green energy and connected tech elements that will make up the Apple car come together as a meaningful, drivable whole. Hopefully in a better state than the unreliable recent batches of Chryslers and Fiats.

As well as going on a poaching spree of Tesla talent, Apple’s also recently nabbed Paul Furgale, the deputy director of the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology’s Autonomous Systems Lab, adding futher fuel to the autonomous driving fire. With Apple not expected to reveal any car plans until 2020, the long game now seems to have its major players. [WSJ]

Go Uk! Torbay’s first electric car handed over to Far Eastern client

July 2nd, 2015 § Comments Off on Go Uk! Torbay’s first electric car handed over to Far Eastern client § permalink

THE first electric car designed and made in Torbay has been handed over to a Far Eastern client.

Steve Harper, of the Shado Design Consultancy of Paignton designed the Revolutionary Electric Car, and has now completed the first prototype of the new four-seat electric vehicle which will become part of a new range of electric vehicles which can be manufactured anywhere in the world.

The cars feature inter-changable batteries and the first has been built for a business consortium based in Singapore.

Shado, based at Trojan Industrial Estate, designs a range of products from cars, trucks, and hovercrafts to showrooms and offices.

» Read the rest of this entry «

Free? Why Electric Cars may soon be even more Cost Effective

June 14th, 2015 § Comments Off on Free? Why Electric Cars may soon be even more Cost Effective § permalink

Eco-friendly cars have long been a good investment for Londoners. Driving an electric vehicle means you are exempt from both congestion charges and VED (road tax) both pet hates of the average motorist. There are an abundance of charging points around the City and local government offer a grant that will give you up to 75 per cent off the cost of installing a domestic charge point. With no fuel charges and the majority of car journeys in and around London covering less than 10 km, an EV will often prove to be the most efficient choice.

Of course, depending on the model, they can be expensive to buy new, even with the local government grant of up to £5,000 towards the purchase of an electric car. It is my belief however that this won’t be the case for much longer. Some industry commentators believe that by 2020 only 2 or 3 per cent of the cars on our roads will be electric. The CEO of Renault-Nissan, Carlos Ghosn, believes the take-up will be much faster, with ten per cent of all new cars being electric-powered by 2020. Ford goes further still: Derrick Kuzak, Ford Group’s Vice President of Global Product Development has said that electric drive models could account for a quarter of Ford’s global automotive sales by 2020. » Read the rest of this entry «

Not Surprised: Electric vehicles will travel much further than drivers expect, study finds

April 1st, 2015 § Comments Off on Not Surprised: Electric vehicles will travel much further than drivers expect, study finds § permalink

With the average UK driver not truly realising their daily trip in miles, to judge their driving requirements, it may not be as so surprising. Nonetheless, please read on:

Electric vehicles (EVs) will meet the daily travel needs of drivers longer than commonly assumed, according to the first study of its kind carried out by scientists at the US Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.

Many drivers and much prior literature on the retirement of EV batteries have assumed that EV batteries will be retired after the battery has lost 20 percent of its energy storage or power delivery capability. This study shows that the daily travel needs of drivers continue to be met well beyond these levels of battery degradation. » Read the rest of this entry «

March 2015 Cheapest Electric Car Lease Deal: Nissan Leaf Acenta on 3+35 term, 10k/a £299/mth

March 20th, 2015 § Comments Off on March 2015 Cheapest Electric Car Lease Deal: Nissan Leaf Acenta on 3+35 term, 10k/a £299/mth § permalink

via evmeerkat.com

3+35 10k Miles p/a
Initial Payment: £897
Additional Fees: None
£299.00Per Month, INC VAT
Call Direct 0113 834 6848
By Your New Car Limited
What did you think of the deal? Did this work out for you?
Tweet @evmeerkat or leave comments below

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