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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just noticed that there has been a small change to the Fisker web site, and it how has a MPG calculator:

http://www.fiskerautomotive.com/#!/karma/performance/mpg

On that page it says the fuel economy through combined city/hwy average is 67mpg. That's a bit off from the "100mpg achievable" claim from earlier, but still good. Of course MPG numbers for a car like this are totally bunk since it completely depends on how far you drive/day and when you recharge.

-Brian
 

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brian said:
I just noticed that there has been a small change to the Fisker web site, and it how has a MPG calculator:

http://www.fiskerautomotive.com/#!/karma/performance/mpg

On that page it says the fuel economy through combined city/hwy average is 67mpg. That's a bit off from the "100mpg achievable" claim from earlier, but still good. Of course MPG numbers for a car like this are totally bunk since it completely depends on how far you drive/day and when you recharge.

-Brian
Brian: The EPA is still tinkering with the milage standard for EV and EV/ER cars (e.g., http://goo.gl/k2NRw). The current standard tries to come up with an MPG equivalent for battery use, which is a totally counterintuitive way of representing efficiency, IMHO. I had heard the 67MPG number before in connection with a Fisker and I think that refers to the MPGe rating using the draft standard. Obviously, if you drive less than the electric range, you will not use any gas at all, but the EPA insists on converting the KWH/Mile to MPG for those of us who are too dumb to understand the difference between electricity and gasoline, apparently.

Hope that helps. If you want to read the EPA's explanation, see here: http://goo.gl/7EpFp.

-- Fab.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Yeah the MPGe thing is complete crap, and the EPA should be ashamed of themselves for that one, but I don't think the 67mpg is an MPGe number. I think that's a more real-world number based on their "average" driving of electric and then gas. Still, it's a totally fictional number since it will vary from person to person.

For me, I'll be lucky if I can make a round trip anywhere here in Austin just on electric alone. With the A/C blasting and my somewhat aggressive driving style I doubt I'll get even 30 miles on a charge, so I'll get 30 free miles and then whatever the remainder is at the ~26mpg when the generator kicks in. So, if I do 40 miles a day, 30 are free, and 10 are gas, so...

40 miles / 0.38 gallons = 105 mpg for me, weee!

-Brian[hr]
Oh, and the reason I say that "MPGe" is crap is not only because it's an entirely misleading number for the customer and that it means nothing since gas prices fluctuate so much, but it's also because it doesn't take into account that the battery itself is a consumable item. I've said this before, but if you really do the proper math, it costs much more per mile to drive an electric car than a petrol car. I used to use the Tesla as an example:

If you really do get 100k miles out of a Tesla battery which, let's just say costs $20,000 to replace when the time comes (it's currently much more and only has 50% charge capacity @ 100k miles but let's ignore that), then that actually comes out to 20 cents PER MILE in battery cost alone. Tack on, let's say 5 cents for the electricity and you're talking 25 cents per mile to operate a Tesla. Now compare that with my gas guzzling Aston Martin which gets 17.5mpg on Super Unleaded at $3.80/gallon. That's only 22 cents per mile.

So, as the saying goes... nobody buys an electric car to save money. We do it for environmental / political reasons and because it's cool.

-Brian
 

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brian said:
Yeah the MPGe thing is complete crap, and the EPA should be ashamed of themselves for that one, but I don't think the 67mpg is an MPGe number. I think that's a more real-world number based on their "average" driving of electric and then gas. Still, it's a totally fictional number since it will vary from person to person.

For me, I'll be lucky if I can make a round trip anywhere here in Austin just on electric alone. With the A/C blasting and my somewhat aggressive driving style I doubt I'll get even 30 miles on a charge, so I'll get 30 free miles and then whatever the remainder is at the ~26mpg when the generator kicks in. So, if I do 40 miles a day, 30 are free, and 10 are gas, so...

40 miles / 0.38 gallons = 105 mpg for me, weee!

-Brian[hr]
Oh, and the reason I say that "MPGe" is crap is not only because it's an entirely misleading number for the customer and that it means nothing since gas prices fluctuate so much, but it's also because it doesn't take into account that the battery itself is a consumable item. I've said this before, but if you really do the proper math, it costs much more per mile to drive an electric car than a petrol car. I used to use the Tesla as an example:

If you really do get 100k miles out of a Tesla battery which, let's just say costs $20,000 to replace when the time comes (it's currently much more and only has 50% charge capacity @ 100k miles but let's ignore that), then that actually comes out to 20 cents PER MILE in battery cost alone. Tack on, let's say 5 cents for the electricity and you're talking 25 cents per mile to operate a Tesla. Now compare that with my gas guzzling Aston Martin which gets 17.5mpg on Super Unleaded at $3.80/gallon. That's only 22 cents per mile.

So, as the saying goes... nobody buys an electric car to save money. We do it for environmental / political reasons and because it's cool.

-Brian
BTW, I don't think that $0.20/mile is fair either though. You are making the assumption that at mile 100,000, you buy yourself a brand new battery and then instantly trade the car in. That's not realistic. You'd likely do one of two things: a.) Drive it to 99,999 and trade it in, or b.) Replace the battery and drive it to 199,999. The math is obviously different under those two scenarios.

It also doesn't take into account that there are many things (like fuel filters, fuel injectors, etc.) that can go on a gas engine far before 100,000 miles and that inflates the cost of a gas powered engine. I don't think that electric engines are cheap for a second, but trying to even estimate any kind of cost/mile is tough.

I actually don't blame the EPA too much. I think they are stuck between a rock and a hard place. In the end, they are just trying to give the public some way of comparing apples to apples across multiple engine platforms. It's not an easy task by any imagination, and leaving the dealers and public to their own devices (i.e. not developing a standard) is just asking for trouble...
 

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@Brian: While I agree with your conclusion, I am not sure I agree with your approach. If you are doing a total cost of ownership type calculation with the FIsker, you should also include the maintenance and depreciation of your Aston in the mix since under your assumptions, the entire car should be counted as consumable. Bottom line is that I would have probably bought a Fisker even if it had a V8 (or better still a V12) and the electric drive is a total bonus in my view.

-- Fab
 

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metalica23 said:
brian said:
Yeah the MPGe thing is complete crap, and the EPA should be ashamed of themselves for that one, but I don't think the 67mpg is an MPGe number. I think that's a more real-world number based on their "average" driving of electric and then gas. Still, it's a totally fictional number since it will vary from person to person.

For me, I'll be lucky if I can make a round trip anywhere here in Austin just on electric alone. With the A/C blasting and my somewhat aggressive driving style I doubt I'll get even 30 miles on a charge, so I'll get 30 free miles and then whatever the remainder is at the ~26mpg when the generator kicks in. So, if I do 40 miles a day, 30 are free, and 10 are gas, so...

40 miles / 0.38 gallons = 105 mpg for me, weee!

-Brian[hr]
Oh, and the reason I say that "MPGe" is crap is not only because it's an entirely misleading number for the customer and that it means nothing since gas prices fluctuate so much, but it's also because it doesn't take into account that the battery itself is a consumable item. I've said this before, but if you really do the proper math, it costs much more per mile to drive an electric car than a petrol car. I used to use the Tesla as an example:

If you really do get 100k miles out of a Tesla battery which, let's just say costs $20,000 to replace when the time comes (it's currently much more and only has 50% charge capacity @ 100k miles but let's ignore that), then that actually comes out to 20 cents PER MILE in battery cost alone. Tack on, let's say 5 cents for the electricity and you're talking 25 cents per mile to operate a Tesla. Now compare that with my gas guzzling Aston Martin which gets 17.5mpg on Super Unleaded at $3.80/gallon. That's only 22 cents per mile.

So, as the saying goes... nobody buys an electric car to save money. We do it for environmental / political reasons and because it's cool.

-Brian
BTW, I don't think that $0.20/mile is fair either though. You are making the assumption that at mile 100,000, you buy yourself a brand new battery and then instantly trade the car in. That's not realistic. You'd likely do one of two things: a.) Drive it to 99,999 and trade it in, or b.) Replace the battery and drive it to 199,999. The math is obviously different under those two scenarios.

It also doesn't take into account that there are many things (like fuel filters, fuel injectors, etc.) that can go on a gas engine far before 100,000 miles and that inflates the cost of a gas powered engine. I don't think that electric engines are cheap for a second, but trying to even estimate any kind of cost/mile is tough.

I actually don't blame the EPA too much. I think they are stuck between a rock and a hard place. In the end, they are just trying to give the public some way of comparing apples to apples across multiple engine platforms. It's not an easy task by any imagination, and leaving the dealers and public to their own devices (i.e. not developing a standard) is just asking for trouble...
Don't forget oil changes too. Plus most battery stats I have seen are given for a lifespan, not when the battery become useless, but when it reaches say 80% of its original charge capacity, much like solar cells give their lifespan in a similar fashion. So, you could actually drive much longer.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
kabalah70 said:
BTW, I don't think that $0.20/mile is fair either though. You are making the assumption that at mile 100,000, you buy yourself a brand new battery and then instantly trade the car in. That's not realistic. You'd likely do one of two things: a.) Drive it to 99,999 and trade it in, or b.) Replace the battery and drive it to 199,999. The math is obviously different under those two scenarios.

It also doesn't take into account that there are many things (like fuel filters, fuel injectors, etc.) that can go on a gas engine far before 100,000 miles and that inflates the cost of a gas powered engine. I don't think that electric engines are cheap for a second, but trying to even estimate any kind of cost/mile is tough.
Actually, I figure the $20k cost of a battery is an up-front cost. Kinda like getting a full tank of gas when you buy the car. That's why electric cars cost so much, right? So, we're paying up-front for 100,000 miles of "gas", and yes, at trade-in time the resale value of any electric car will be directly proportional to the cost of replacing the battery and how much life is left in it.

True, there are other annual costs with a gas car, but there are annual costs with an electric car too. You still have to take it in for service every 5000 miles or so just to rotate the tires, not to mention change the air filters and such. PHEV's still need oil changes as well, probably just annually tho, even if you never use the gas engine the fluids still need replacing.
 

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brian said:
]
Actually, I figure the $20k cost of a battery is an up-front cost. Kinda like getting a full tank of gas when you buy the car. That's why electric cars cost so much, right? So, we're paying up-front for 100,000 miles of "gas", and yes, at trade-in time the resale value of any electric car will be directly proportional to the cost of replacing the battery and how much life is left in it.
@Brian: Two other factor that would affect your estimate are:

(i) the residual value of an 80% battery. You are assuming that the $20K battery is worth $0 when it hits 80% capacity whereas there will most likely be a market for the 80% battery, for example storing energy at windfarms and solar plants to smooth out fluctuations. If nothing else, I would hook it up to my solar array for emergency power or to sell power back to the utility during peak time when it is overcast or raining. This means that you may not be buying a full-priced battery at 100K Miles.

(ii) battery technology is getting better all the time and as a result, you may be able to buy the same 20KWH battery for less money or buy a bigger capacity battery for the same money.

The only thing that is certain is that if enough people buy these cars, these kinds of problems will be taken care of by the market.

-- Fab.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Hehe, well as for (i), try telling that to the person you're selling the car to in 10 years. People will be more savvy then, and I'm sure the #1 question any buyer will have when buying a second-hand electric car will be "how many miles on the battery". Currently, Li-Ion batteries lose 5% charge per year on average. The knowledgable buyer will easily be able to do the math and the depreciation of the battery will not be linear with respect to mileage. People won't want to pay for an old battery. They'll expect you to cover the cost of them having to replace it.

As for (ii), yep, and that's why I only put $20k for a Tesla battery. Currently that cost is $35k, so if you want to use *real* numbers i actually costs about 40 cents per mile to drive a Tesla.

-Brian
 

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@Brian: Well, I did say that I agreed with your conclusion. A lot of this is pretty speculative at the moment. It would be interesting to see the lease rates for Fiskers (when that option becomes available) since that would be an indication of how much the car is expected to depreciate over the lease period.

-- Fab
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Yep, we're the trendsetters, that's for sure... I'm not even concerning myself with depreciation since, like all $100k+ cars, I'm sure the Fisker will be worthless in 3 years ;)

-Brian
 

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I am not planning on the Karma becoming a classic, but if it does, I would think the Signature Editions might appreciate in value if they are well cared for.
 

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I would hope they'd gain classic status... Assuming no major mechanical or electrical problems.... Gorgeous car, first high end EV... Etc
 

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brian said:
True, there are other annual costs with a gas car, but there are annual costs with an electric car too. You still have to take it in for service every 5000 miles or so just to rotate the tires, not to mention change the air filters and such. PHEV's still need oil changes as well, probably just annually tho, even if you never use the gas engine the fluids still need replacing.
I'm getting 4 years or 100.000 km of free service with my Karma! I only have to pay for new tires, window wipers, etc. All service is included, so completely free. How does this work in the US? Maybe this is the European approach by Fisker (as we are paying more for our cars in euros).
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
You know, this raises an interesting question. Since Fiskers are sold by different car dealerships I'm guessing the cost of maintenance will vary quite a bit. Our dealer here in Austin is the Porsche dealership, so I'm guessing it'll be pretty expensive to an oil change. But other Fisker dealerships which are part of, say a Cadillac dealership, will likely cost a lost less.

-Brian
 

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SoCalGuy said:
I would hope they'd gain classic status... Assuming no major mechanical or electrical problems.... Gorgeous car, first high end EV... Etc
Lack of reliability never stopped a car from becoming a classic, E-Type Jaguar, Aston DB5, and Ferrrari Daytona are perfect examples. It's more about design and the era in which the car was created. The Karma has a shot, trouble is I am not sure I am going to be around 40 years from now to experience it.

-- Fab
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Lack of reliability never stopped a car from becoming a classic, E-Type Jaguar, Aston DB5, and Ferrrari Daytona are perfect examples. It's more about design and the era in which the car was created. The Karma has a shot, trouble is I am not sure I am going to be around 40 years from now to experience it.
Yeah, it takes 40 years for a car to go from depreciation to appreciation, and usually the amount of money put into restoring it is more than the appreciation.

That being said, for quite a while now I've been wondering how modern cars will do in the future. Current classic cars are totally mechanical with no computers. Fixing a 1960's Ferrari really isn't that tough, but in 40 years from now it'll be a whole different story trying to restore the computer systems in niche cars like the Fisker. So much software and hardware specific to the car. But then again, there are 40 year old coin-op arcade systems out there that people somehow keep running, so I guess it's possible. Still, good luck finding a replacement video screen for the Karma speedometer in the year 2051.

-Brian
 

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brian said:
You know, this raises an interesting question. Since Fiskers are sold by different car dealerships I'm guessing the cost of maintenance will vary quite a bit. Our dealer here in Austin is the Porsche dealership, so I'm guessing it'll be pretty expensive to an oil change. But other Fisker dealerships which are part of, say a Cadillac dealership, will likely cost a lost less.

-Brian
The electric motors don't need an oil change and the ICE is a standard GM engine and you can get the oil changed pretty much anywhere. And on the positive side: there will be no transmission service costs, ever.

-- Fab.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Not to always be playing devil's advocate, but this myth that electric motors never need maintenance just isn't true. I mean most of the things that have ever broken on any of my cars have been electric motors: wiper motors, window motors, seat motors, pump motors, etc. There are all sorts of things that can go wrong with electric motors. Bushings wear out, bearings fail, wires melt, etc. While they're certainly going to be less troublesome than a complex gas motor, that doesn't mean they're trouble-free.

As for oil changes... dunno about you guys, but personally I don't want the moron at Jiffy Lube touching my $114k car. Nor do I want to have to go to one place for the oil change and another place for the tire rotation. Not to mention that there are always other things that need tending to like firmware updates and such. If you care about your Karma you'll take it to the dealership for all maintenance. Their mechanics will be trained to deal with specifics of the car and will know how to spot issues before they become problems.

-Brian
 

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brian said:
Yep, we're the trendsetters, that's for sure... I'm not even concerning myself with depreciation since, like all $100k+ cars, I'm sure the Fisker will be worthless in 3 years ;)

-Brian
We aren't trying to save money. We're trying to save the planet.
:angel: so noble.

BillyO
 
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