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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've read a lot of good posts on how to maximize the battery life so I thought I'd throw in my 2 cents. I am averaging 70-72km per charge and have about 2000km on the odometer so far. Unlike a lot of posters, I always drive in Hill 2 and there's some skill involved but once you get used to it, you'll see that slightly depressing the gas pedal disengages the engine breaking and allows you to coast as if in neutral. You can reconfirm this by looking at your System energy usage. After a while it becomes second nature but the reason why it helps is that you are using the regen system almost all the time.

Right now I'm also playing around with acceleration driving habits. OK, so this is probably where some physics geek could tell me I'm dead wrong but it seems that I am not losing as much mileage as I thought by driving accelerating the car as I would in a normal sports car. I am guessing this is because I do not speed and on the highways I usually have the car in sport mode where the gas consumption is really efficient. Assuming we are law abiding citizens, we are all bound by speed limits and once we reach them, we have to stay within that speed. So accelerating a bit faster to get to that speed versus taking a longer time and accelerating slower, uses almost the same energy. For example, if I were to accelerate using 60kwh for 3 seconds, wouldn't that be the same as accelerating slower ex. 30kwh for 6 seconds to get to the same speed? I'll let the physics geeks answer that one :) but from the tests I've run so far, I don't see a large increase in energy consumption.

Once I've reached the desired speed, I manage the gas pedal so that the needle is pretty much in the middle as long as possible and when I need breaking, I ease off the pedal and the regen kicks in.

I refuse to drive like a ninny... I know this forum is filled with "Fisker Lovers" who can't take a bad comment on the car but I'm your average Joe who probably shouldn't have spent that much on a car but I've followed the company for 5 years and really wanted to experience what I believe is the way of the future. My thought is that if you spend $120k on a car, it better well be extraordinary especially when you think of the other cars you can buy for that money. Driving like a ninny is not my view of experiencing "extraordinary" so when I hear about people saying "be patient or learn to love your car", I just roll my eyes. If I wanted a lesson on how to spend money, I definitely would not be looking at a car investment for that. At least I am 'learning' how to drive my car like the way it looks and still get decent mileage out of the battery but I have to say that I will not be recommending this car to friends as it is really for early adopters who are OK with getting less if they are 'getting more' as supporting a worthy cause like an eco-friendly car.

That being said, Fisker has the potential to become something great but only if it fixes simple things like the touchscreen delay, bad bluetooth, a high pitched whine that sounds so cheap and ultimately battery capacity. It is a car that looks like it costs $150k not $120k and if they fix this stuff, they can charge more but they really need a longer electric range. Fortunately battery technology is getting better so I just hope that Fisker is looking to partner up with some of these companies and get us a car that can go 150km+ on a single charge. That would allow them to charge more for the car and make it a lot more practical.
 

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Fisker has the potential to become something great but only if it fixes simple things like the ................ high pitched whine that sounds so cheap .
At the risk of being branded a "Fisker Lover", I love that high pitched whine!

Regarding the subject of the post, thanks for the tip on using hill mode. I didn't know about the slight gas pedal depression. Like you (and many other EV drivers), I sometimes have fun trying to maximize my range. And when I don't feel into it - there is always the ICE.
 

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I love that high pitched whine too! And I don't mind being branded a Fisker fanboy because it is true!

Hockeydad: Thanks for sharing your experience with the Karma and your recommendations for getting the most out of the battery. I tend to drive as you do--accelerating more or less normally and then using Hill Mode 2 to brake. However, I have noticed that actually stepping on the brake pedal while in Hill Mode 2 will send the 'Regen/Accelerate' needle much further left (more regen) than just letting the car coast to a stop with the regen. Have you tried that to see how it would affect your mileage?

I don't get 72 km per charge, no matter how carefully I drive. Then again, I live in the Hollywood Hills, so going up the hill kills my battery. :-(
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
ok, I may be dating myself but remember back in the day when the 'in thing' to do was to replace your car stereo system with something aftermarket? Now, if you weren't too careful about getting the proper wire gauge or how you wired it, you would get this whine that went up and down when the car went faster or slower... it reminds me exactly of that. To me, the whine is an example of very, very, very poor quality and craftsmanship... to me it implies cheap ass components in what should be a very luxurious car. I love the look on the outside but we've basically bought a very expensive turtle shell :)

I'm a Fisker fan, don't get me wrong, I still bought the car after following the company for 5 years but I'm telling you that if they don't change their ways, they'll be gone in the next 5 years. They may say they're paving the road in challenging the incumbents but the big car companies aren't stupid and it doesn't take much to design a good hybrid car these days especially with the technology that's available. If Fisker markets itself as a high end car then they can't afford to have things like that electrical motor whine and they need to solve the software problem. You'd never see even companies like Hyundai put out a NAV system like Fisker did. Now of course Fisker doesn't have the resources and they don't have the #'s of units to get feedback from and test like a big car company has but that just means they need to work harder ... the big car companies would only be too happy at seeing another up and coming competitor go bankrupt. The auto sector is a tough one and to be a player, you need to be well funded or hope on getting bought out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
sorry, I forgot to give a response on the braking... yes, the braking would definitely add a lot more power however it also requires you to accelerate again and there is natural loss of energy in doing that so it's a losing battle. Take this extreme example... let's say you needed to travel 100ft. In one case, you just accelerate to 40mph, maintain that speed and then use the engine braking system to bring you to a stop. In another caes, you accelerate to 50mph, break until you're back to 40mph, accelerate again to 50 mph and then break to stop at the end of 100 ft.

The act of breaking and acceleration generates a LOT of energy loss from drawing power out of the battery, putting it back in and then of course from the heat lost in the braking and there are probably a lot of other energy leaks in the process.

So I think the key is to try and minimize braking even though it does add more power back to the battery for that short period but you need to make up for it by using more power to get you where you want to go.
 

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Interesting. For me, the high pitched whine is just the electric equivalent to the growl of an internal combustion engine. I never have associated it with cheap/improper wiring.

As for braking/regen/range...I try to use the brakes only if I have to, but prefer to use Hill Mode 2 to slow down. In other words, I think we are on the same page.
 

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Having been a jet fighter pilot for 20 years and an airline pilot for the next 20, I don't even hear a high pitched whine. But I can still taste a good red wine.
 

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I have discovered that the key to getting mileage from the battery is to avoid use of the compressor. With the AC off I get 45-50 miles/charge. With the AC on it drops to 30-35.

My dealer confirmed that the AC in battery mode is a huge energy draw....
 

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It is recommended to use the seat heaters in stealth mode for maximum range.
Cheers,
 
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