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Old 07-09-2019, 01:52 PM   #21 (permalink)
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I wish just one of these major manufacturers would just take one of their existing least expensive, simple cars and add a single fwd electric motor and a medium size Li-ion battery to get the $7500 tax credit, and sell it for a before credits msrp of $19,999. Keep it simple stupid.

Just look at say the Prius C. Drop the ice and transmission/transaxle, add a better electic motor, and quadruple the battery. It already is loaded with electric features and low current draw components, good aero, and is a bit over $21,000 msrp.


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Old 07-09-2019, 02:43 PM   #22 (permalink)
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Isn't that basically what the Leaf is? Nissan's cheapest car (Versa) with a medium battery (24kwh?) and a FWD electric motor. Base price is higher than that because there's a lot more cost in the traction battery.

EDI: I just checked and the smaller battery options don't exist any more and the base price is up to $30k now. Competing upmarket now, I guess.
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Old 07-09-2019, 03:12 PM   #23 (permalink)
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The Leaf is a new EV-only platform, and is significantly larger than the Versa.

The e-Golf is a factory conversion - and in my opinion it is the best EV, functionally.
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Old 07-09-2019, 05:29 PM   #24 (permalink)
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The electric Focus also isn't terrible. To me all of these seem like they have the $7500 tax credit cooked in. They Jack the profit margin $7500 thinking most likely the customer has that subtraction in the back of their minds. Basically the manufacturer is getting the incentive not the customer.
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Old 07-09-2019, 05:44 PM   #25 (permalink)
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That was the whole point, that manufacturers need the incentive to build the vehicles. It turns out that even with the $7,500 credit factored in, EVs range from unprofitable, to barely marginally profitable. Tesla is somewhere around break-even on their lowest priced Model 3.

I'd have thought a low priced commuter EV might be fairly easy to make profitable, but it seems not. The battery alone in a 40 kWh vehicle (~150 mile range) is about $5,000. You don't want to merely recoup the marginal cost to build a vehicle though, so the price to the consumer must be a bit higher.

With sufficient volume, I'd think a $19,000 commuter EV would be possible, but I don't know. Perhaps the public acceptance of less than 40 kWh EVs is gone when higher range options exist at much higher prices.
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Old 07-10-2019, 12:24 AM   #26 (permalink)
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At this point I think Arcimoto looks to be the best value but I still don't see how removing a $10,000 ICE powertrain for a $10,000 electric powertrain causes a $15,000 price increase.
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Old 07-10-2019, 12:31 PM   #27 (permalink)
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Well, how much is an ICE powertrain? It's certainly less than $10k on something like a FWD sedan.

Of course, the major expense in an EV is the battery, at something like $145 per installed kWh. Nissan's "low" range Leaf would then have a $6,000 battery. Add motors, controllers, chargers, etc... don't know what the final cost would be.
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Old 07-10-2019, 02:19 PM   #28 (permalink)
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I don't know, I would think at least $10,000 probably going up to $30,000 for even non-exotics. You have an engine, a transmission, a fuel system, an exhaust system, a starting system, a cooling system, and an emissions system. Certainly even the simplest 3 cylinder and manual transmission still is well over $5000 brand new with factory warranty support.
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Old 07-20-2019, 09:02 AM   #29 (permalink)
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The rumormill has it that Honda is going to market the E on its already acclaimed cult status, rather than affordability, let alone range ...

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