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Discussion in 'General' started by Alex Soto, Aug 24, 2018.
The Chevy Spark
I have to agree with your family a bit, but the thing is there are very few truly good looking EV's... I think Model S is probably the best looking of the BEV's so far... I guess beauty is in the eye of the beholder though.
When you get the car, let's chat about charging options.
What sort of outlets do you have near the driveway?
Electric dryer - can often support 240VAC @30A.
Dedicated 120VAC - easily handles 1.4kW/hr, ~6 miles per hour
Shared 120VAC - can handle 1kW/hr, ~4 miles per hour
It makes sense to survey the house circuit breakers. This will give a better idea of what the circuits can handle.
Just a regular 110v wall socket. It's why I'm considering getting a EVGO subscription.
If you do charge at the house, just be sure the cord is a heavier gauge. I'm sure there's some rule of thumb about the thickness of the cord and length regarding the output of the outlet. Maybe Bob knows...
I just know it needs to be as thick and short as you can manage, to be safe.
Start with the circuit rating at the panel. Turn it off and see if anything else is off. We need to know if anything else is on that outlet. Test other empty outlets to know.
Assuming this is a single outlet, what is the circuit breaker rating.
Take 80% of the rated current and that is the maximum current that shoul be used. If a 15A circuit breaker, 12A. A 20A circuit breaker can go to 16A.
Don’t go nuts too soon until you feel comfortable with the car. Wait until your cheeks stop hurting. Then we can chat about stepping up the game.
I guess this pertains to the car, but I was considering getting a car through Fair. It's a car buying app. Anybody have any experience with this app?
I'm not familiar with the app.
I would point out, though, that we are affiliated with MYEV.com, where people can buy and sell plug-in cars for free. We even have a direct link at the top of the page.
Main points are:
Can contact seller directly and negotiate price.
Large and growing selection.
I just took a quick tour and it looks very promising. It also includes PHEV which for this BMW i3-REx and Prius Prime owner is important.
One recommendation would be to send a potential buyer a note when a make and model they are interested in shows up. Otherwise, a buyer has to poll the site to see if what they wanted showed up. A blanket e-mail of all new listings would be ... awkward. I have no interest in any BEV with the possible exception of a Tesla Model 3, clean title.
I also suggested adding a title status like salvage, lien, clean. My purchase of our 2014 BMW i3-REx had to resolve the 'lien' status with the bank. Knowing ahead of time, my banker did not feel like they'd been ambushed and all the right paperwork was done early.
I would opt to lease as well. From there you can somehow decide to get one or not.
Don't get a used EV with a declining battery. This will sound crazy, but just get a new base model Clarity. It gets about 47 miles all electric, so it sounds like 90% of your trips, including all of your commutes, will be all electric. You'll get all the credits since it's new, and if you get it now at the end of the model year you'll get great discounts. I bet you'd be able to get it for $20K or so brand new, great California warranty, and you can try out electric 'on the cheap' but actually with a new car that will last you forever.
And you won't be limited at all--when you do need to go more than 50 miles then you have the gas engine, so you have the best of all worlds. New car, all electric for 90% of your trips, unlimited range if you need it, and cheap.
I'm inclined to get the Chevy Spark. Used it's fairly cheap. I looked into the Clarity and I liked it but the price was too much for my budget.
Did you look at the Ionic electric? Assuming $10K in credits it seems like it could end up around $17K new.
Now I'm curious about how the incentives work. I'm in California, and I'm wondering when do the incentives kick in? Does the federal deduction apply when I purchase the car or when I do my taxes the following year? Is there a state deduction and when does that apply? I mean I think I looked into it, but I can't remember what I found out.
It is a Federal Tax credit that best works if you tax liability the next year is equal to or greater than the $7,500 credit. It has the effect of increasing the refund the next year when you file for this year.
I have no idea how various states handle their incentives.
That's right. The Ionic qualifies for the full federal $7,500 credit, but that's only a credit against your tax liability. So if your total federal tax liability is only $4,000, then you'll only get a $4,000 reduction in your tax. According to a database I looked at California offers a $2,500 credit of some sort, but I don't know how it works. In Maryland it's not a credit against state income tax, it's basically just an incentive and you can file for it as soon as you've registered your car. You'd have to just research it and find out.
But if you can take advantage of both of those, if I have it correctly, you can essentially take $10K off the price of a new electric car. Combine that with end of year price and financing discounts on new cars and you might be able to find a real bargain.
Obviously the key is qualifying for the full credits and how much they're being discounted right now. Just for reference, if it's relevant, my Clarity was discounted $4,381, which was simply the straight-up TruCar discount plus $500. Find one that's been a demo for a year and has 300 miles on it and maybe you can do better than that.
If it's not something you can do now, keep it in mind and maybe it'll work in a few years. The article I saw about California said they were considering doubling their credit to $5,000. If you wait a while, just make sure the credit's still available for the car you want. It'll probably be gone for GM and Toyota.
One thing to remember is the credits don't come off the price of the car, one way or the other you get that back as 'cash' either as a refund or tax not paid after the fact. Here's how it might work. The Ioniq is $30k, let's say you can find it for $27K. Add $3k for tax, title, etc, but net that out with a down payment of $3K so you end up financing $27K. At 0% for 60 months, assuming you can find it, your payment would be $450 a month. Divided into the $10K you'd be 'getting back' somehow basically your first 22 payments are covered.
Alex, based on your criteria, I would either go for a Chevy Spark or a Nissan Leaf. If you can get over the looks of the Spark, then it's a no brainer. If you choose a Leaf, go with a 2014 or 2015. Their batteries are better than the 2011, 2012, and some 2013s. I love my Leaf, and it's PERFECT for what you said you do. I test drove a Spark. Really fun, fast little car! Very small though. Less creature comforts than the Leaf as well. Test drive them both and see which one fits you best. I think they are both perfect cars for how you say you drive.
On important note on the differences with the Spark and Leaf. The Leaf will charge twice as fast as the Spark on Level 2 chargers. That's a big deal. The Spark does charge VERY quickly on a DC Level 3 Fast charger though. The Spark is more efficient though, so you will get more miles of driving per hour of charging on a regular wall socket Level 1 charger. Good luck!
California incentives are rebates, not tax credits. You fill out the rebate form with required documents like registration, loan documents and the check will be mailed to you within 2 months. I got mine. For local cities, it’s even faster. I got my $3000 check from San Joaqin county rebate in 1 month.
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So wanted to give everyone an update on my car buying experience. I bought a 2015 Chevy Spark EV. It has 24000 miles on it and it is electric blue. I it bought last night. So far I like the way it accelerates and handles. It lost a lot of its charge driving from the dealership to my house which is a 32 mile drive. It had about 70% charge and went down to about 25%. I guess it's not intended for long commutes. That's fine by me since I only drive 5 miles round trip from home to work. One day in and I'm happy about my purchase.