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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello everyone. I'm just wondering about how long does it take to charge the car while driving.
Thanks
 

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... but our third-party friends at PowerSource are working to change that with an aftermarket mod. Check these forums to learn more about the just released TOM module.
 

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In Sport Mode, it will hold your remaining Stealth miles constant -- provided you are at 26-27 or below. Above that, it will let the battery drain at about half normal rate. The car (as released from the factory) is meant to run on battery, and use the engine for keeping you at a usable battery level - but not meant to let you fully recharge the battery using the engine (as that would just make it no better than a gasoline car). We're told that the original Concept Models of the Karma had modes to recharge in place, or (nearly) fully recharge while driving. But, pressure from some gov't agencies made them retract those modes in the production versions. So, we have "Stealth" which is all battery. And, "Sport" which is "extra power with slow battery drain" above 26 (~50% full charge), and below that it is "maintain/sustain" mode. You may see the miles drop 1 or 2 below where they were when you engaged Sport, but the engine will bring it back up to that level over time.

The after market TOM module (developed by an ex-Fisker tech guru) is meant to restore those modes as well as some other bells & whistles.
 

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Excellent recap JCMorrill.

I drove one of the preproduction "roadshow" cars and did see with my own eyes that the car would increase range when in Sport mode. As you mentioned, it was a political and not a technical reason for the limitation, as the TOM module is clearly demonstrating.

Brent
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I'm thinking to buy a Karma and that's why I asked but the problem is that I live in Sweden and don't know if someone can fix it if I get a problem with it,but thank you very much for the information it was very useful :)
 

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Can you shed some light on what happened between the roadshow and the production cars?
I thought I read on this forum that the reason for the change was a compromise in the ICE behavior with the state of California to make it pass emissions.
 

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I thought I read on this forum that the reason for the change was a compromise in the ICE behavior with the state of California to make it pass emissions.
The main issue with the emissions was on startup with the exhaust catalyst not while driving. Quantum Technologies and Fisker Automotive at the time ran into some "business" issues and that caused much of the finger pointing during the launch (HCU among others). CARB, EPA etc had little to do with the behavior currently implemented on the vehicle.
 

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It seems to me that using an internal combustion engine to charge your car battery is very inefficient compared to a large utility power-plant. Why not just wait to plugin and not diminish your MPG? Just using logic, am I wrong?
 

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It seems to me that using an internal combustion engine to charge your car battery is very inefficient compared to a large utility power-plant. Why not just wait to plugin and not diminish your MPG? Just using logic, am I wrong?
When you are driving in range sustain mode you are essentially doing the same thing (this is actually more efficient due to no propulsion load). Keeping the SOC high on the battery allows for a greater performance envelope and you essentially charge 3+x faster than plugging in. Point is it is up to the owner to decide if they would like to plug in or charge off the ICE. For me, many times its easier to just charge off the ICE and fill up rather than wait 5-14 hours for a full charge from an outlet. Plugging in at a public charge station is pretty useless unless you plan on spending most of the day somewhere.

Reason I bought the Karma was to have the flexibility to use the vehicle in a manner that fits my lifestyle rather than be tethered to an outlet. YMMV
 

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Hi PowerSource, Trying to wrap my head around this. What does SOC stand for and what is "range sustain mode"? BTW, I rarely use the ICE.

Also, will you be releasing your new software soon?
 

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SOC is state of charge i.e. 100-15% SOC is 50 miles etc
Once you hit 26 or 27 miles (depending on which SW version you are on) in "sport" mode you get into range sustain mode. This means that the amount of current you can pull is limited by bus voltage on the battery pack and thus your performance is severely limited. By keeping SOC at a higher threshold you are able to pull more current and keep voltage sag at bay- which means more real power to your wheels. Our software is really plug in hardware that releases some of the limits such as max current draw (this is artificially limited to make "Sport" mode feel different at 180kw instead of 210kw- which is the real A123 spec for the battery pack. But Fisker thought it would be best to create a delineation point between the two and limit performance so that Sport really felt like Sport and Stealth was a quiet "poor performance mode."
 

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i don't belive it's for making the car pass emissions etc, california has a new standard called "BEVx" (http://www.greencarcongress.com/2012/01/bevx-20120129.html) which as far as i know the BMW i3 REX is the only car that is qualified for that standard so far, all the "problems" and limitation that the US version of this car had that gets people hacking it is as a result of this standard that mainly have you use the oil fuel only as an emergency while on "real" plug ins like the fisker and volt you are not limited as the car will always keep the charge.
 

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I have to agree with Steven;"It seems to me that using an internal combustion engine to charge your car battery is very inefficient compared to a large utility power-plant. Why not just wait to plugin and not diminish your MPG?"

I recently completed a 4000 mile trip in my Karma. Electrical outlets were not commonly available at hotels/motels. At friends places I visited, of course I charged the battery. When I couldn't charge the Karma, I just cruised along on the ICE without any problem, stopping for gas when necessary. BTW, the 10 gallon tank exceeds my bladder range. Several days on the month long trip, my electrical range was zero. Overall, I averaged 31.13 mpg.

Had my Valentine One radar detector confiscated in Canada plus a $175 dollar fine for having one. Picked up a new one in NJ.

Performance may be improved with the Power Source option, but how much? Any 0-60mph times/100mph times? I don't remember any time on the trip that I needed added performance.
 

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I have to agree with Steven;"It seems to me that using an internal combustion engine to charge your car battery is very inefficient compared to a large utility power-plant. Why not just wait to plugin and not diminish your MPG?"

I recently completed a 4000 mile trip in my Karma. Electrical outlets were not commonly available at hotels/motels. At friends places I visited, of course I charged the battery. When I couldn't charge the Karma, I just cruised along on the ICE without any problem, stopping for gas when necessary. BTW, the 10 gallon tank exceeds my bladder range. Several days on the month long trip, my electrical range was zero. Overall, I averaged 31.13 mpg.

Had my Valentine One radar detector confiscated in Canada plus a $175 dollar fine for having one. Picked up a new one in NJ.

Performance may be improved with the Power Source option, but how much? Any 0-60mph times/100mph times? I don't remember any time on the trip that I needed added performance.
Will try to answer some of these questions.

Driving at 0 miles would be the rough equivalent of 3kwh of stored energy in the battery pack your max power to the motors would be around 140-150kw ~200hp.

Driving at 45-50 miles you would have somewhere in the neighborhood of 16-18kwh your max output would be 210kw in "stealth" mode, so at a minimum roughly 80hp difference.

Here is a 0-60 run we took some time ago with 37 miles SOC in sport mode.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1opWTswzA2I

We notice a significant difference in Sport v Stealth and High SOC vs Low SOC with the Karma. Many like having the options to be able to rebuild the pack if needed on the fly and to hold SOC to save for later (as well as full performance all the time).

If you live in a hilly part of the world driving at 15% SOC (0 miles) the vehicle will likely go into reduced performance mode as the generator many times cannot replenish the pack quick enough. As a general rule of thumb it is not helpful to the pack to keep it at 0 miles for lengthy periods of time.

Porsche with their e-hybrid plug-in panamera and cayenne offer charge on the fly as well to replenish the pack as the expectations for these cars is to have the full performance available at all times. This is also an issue with vehicles like the Model S who are significantly slower at lower SOC. Our Tom unit is more geared towards the no-compromise power enthusiast who wants it all.

We had a shop car that was driven constantly at 0 electric miles (never plugged in and no Tom unit) and it took 3 weeks to balance via charger.

Will post some graphs and more technical information later.
 
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