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Old 09-21-2013, 03:11 AM   #22 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by UltArc View Post
The purpose of an electric car is to travel with electricity. As you mentioned, who needs the range to go 100+ miles in one direction? Well, if one had 35 miles of electricity(much less battery), and a generator to power up and charge it then shut down, it seems like the purpose is to make electricity, and extend that range when it's needed.
I quite like the idea of a generator extending the range of an electric vehicle, but it simply cannot do that efficiently. I see that the point of the generator is to extend the range, but I see no reason for doing so inefficiently when there are more efficient ways to travel those longer distances.

Not all power comes from rainbows, sunshine, and gentle breezes- it's still a fossil fuel somewhere. But that would offer an alternative. If some one from horseville was on the fence about an alternate fuel vehicle, would they be more likely to risk an electric vehicle, or use one with a back up?
Regardless of the hypothetical ignorant consumer, it's more efficient to produce electricity in bulk and distribute it, than to have mini power stations attached to electric vehicles. I'll admit that I may have missed the point regarding a consumer being offered a choice between an EV, or an EV with a generator. The Volt is essentially an EV with generator, but it doesn't get good fuel economy when running on gasoline, and is phenomenally expensive.

Using gas is the opposite of defeating the purpose. It's expanding the purpose in a cost effective manner. Not wasting weight, money, and resources on batteries that will go unused. 40% of the batteries and a little generator could do wonders on a 200 mile commute, 20 mile commute, or 3,000 mile cross country trip.
I'll argue that the 200 mile commute and 3,000 mile cross country trip are best served by a fuel efficient gasoline powered car, and that an EV is a poor choice for these distances. As you point out, making an EV with a minimum of weight, cost and resources is efficient. This relegates their use to typical commutes and around town errands. Pairing an EV with a generator is an added expense, hassle, and is inefficient when other alternatives exist.

If you read through the other thread I linked to, you will see that I started off on the side of generators for all EV owners. Eventually I crunched the numbers and came to the conclusion that it only makes sense if someone already has a generator, or has an alternative use for a car generator, such as emergency power for the home.
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