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Electromobility live stream – all you need to know

On Friday afternoon, April 16th, 2021 there was a unique LinkedIn streaming. Radim Roček Sales and Marketing Manager at Phoenix Contact Czech Republic led the stream and connected the following persons: Michal Žďárský & Jakub Nábělek who were participating in FIA New Energies championship in Spain; Adriano Mones Bayo, business development director Spain and LATAM Phoenix Contact E-Mobility GmbH. Other participants were Martin Klíma, head of e-mobility E.ON Czech Republic and myself – Petr Beneš, electromobility enthusiast.

 

The key highlights from the stream are the following:

Michal Žďárský and Jakub Nábělek drove from Prague to Valencia for FIA New Energies championship. Smooth 2000 km with Volkswagen ID.3 77 kWh battery, 7x charging, average consumption 21 kWh/100 km, average speed 110 km/h, highway speed approximately 130 km/h. 18:36 h driving time, 6:30 charging time. It is just a great result and they faced no obstacles at all during the trip thanks to travel with an EV. There was no need to plan charging in advance as the charging network is so great, especially in Germany.
After the first regularity stage (75 measured kilometers) of the race (Friday, April 16th, 2021) expectation was that Michal and Jakub will be quite high in the ranking. Friday’s stage was 122 km and the overall consumption was 12,4 kWh/100 km. In the race, there were many different EV models.

Adriano Mones Bayo came to Valencia as well. He drove from the north of Spain, half of the distance with half of the time compared to Michal and Jakub. His consumption was 16 kWh/100 km. The trip was made with an ID.3 58 kWh battery model. The difference in the consumption is also due to the lower average speed and flatter profile.

Martin Klíma said there is a piece of fake news regarding not enough available power for EV charging in the Czech Republic. This is obviously not true. We do not have to be worried. The Czech Republic has a surplus of energy. At the moment, more energy is made from coal which is not clean. However, renewable energy will play a more significant role in the future and will contribute to the replacement of “coal energy”. There is no need to be afraid of not having a stable energy grid. In the Czech Republic, there is a perfect state of the power grid distribution, we do not need to be worried at all about malfunctions. Every time when E.ON wants to build a new charging station, it is necessary to ask for permission from the grid distribution. E.ON sees clearly no obstacles with available power.

Radim Roček mentioned that we can hear many times “what happens if all cars start to charge at the same time“. The answer is – modern controllers can control the power used from the grid, thus there is no reason to be afraid of the charging.

Petr Beneš is currently using electric cars only, in total driven 75 000 electric km. His first long-distance trip with Ioniq 28 kWh battery was in summer 2018 just two weeks after the purchase of the car. It was an unplanned 600 km trip (one way). All went absolutely fine. With the experience, it was obvious that the following winter and summer long-distance trips will be made with an EV. Comparing charging network density in 2018 and today it is clearly remarkable that the amount of charging stations is constantly increasing and thus the travel with an EV is not a problem. And it is not a problem at all even with an electric car with a 28 kWh battery. Together with Radim, he drove around the Czech Republic in an EV. This was a “second round” around the republic, the first one was done by Michal. The 1300 km round trip in deep frost showed that EV is managing heavy weather conditions and long distances perfectly.

According to Adriano, Spain holds the middle position in Europe with regard to the amount of charging stations. Germany, UK, and Norway are the leading countries. It is necessary to keep in mind that EVs will be in 90 % of the cases charged at home or in the office. Therefore the public charging infrastructure is for specific cases (long trips). There are roughly 8 200 charging points in total in Spain (20 % are DC) and it seems to be sufficient for the current amount of EVs on the road. The good news is that recently Spanish government approved a subsidy program for the purchase of electric cars and installation of chargers (home and office chargers), with an expected investment of 400M EUR. This is an important step for the electric future.

Martin mentioned that there are talks about not having enough chargers for EVs in the Czech Republic. This is also misleading. There is enough power and chargers for EV charging. At the moment there are 8 cars per 1 charging station in the Czech Republic. The building of the chargers is done faster than the increase of EVs on the road. It is positive news. However, at the moment business case for the building of the chargers is not positive, and to change it, it is necessary that more EVs are produced and sold. This is generally the biggest obstacle – too few e-cars. Generally, already at the moment, the charging infrastructure is very good and it is improving. Martin has the same EV as Petr – Kia e-Niro 64 kWh battery, he made a long trip last summer 3 000 km in total without any issue. Infrastructure in Europe is very good and fast improving.

Radim highlighted that indeed it is necessary to increase the production of electric cars. Volkswagen is the partner of Michal’s and Jakub’s race. Hoping in a significant ramp-up of the production of all cars from VW Group including Škoda Enyaq or ID.4.

Michal and Jakub are driving combustion engine cars in their daily life. Was there any difference in the trip to Valencia with ID.3 compared to an ICE car? The biggest difference is the planning of the charging. It is required to plan to charge the car accordingly, including profile and consumption estimation. In an ICE car when there is a low fuel level, just refuel at the nearest petrol station and that’s it. Nevertheless, during long-distance trips, it is necessary to take a break. During the trip to Valencia, they took a break each 350 km for a coffee and relax while the car was charging.

Radim shared his memories from a previous discussion with Petr – when driving an electric car it is necessary to change the habit. And thus: parking means charging. Petr confirmed it with the story from his trips to Austria. He was always passing by Salzburg and there is one fast charger just next to Burger King’s fast food. So whenever he was driving to Austria, his son was asking: “Are we going to charge in Salzburg?”… Obviously Petr’s son was not really interested in charging in Salzburg, he preferred a snack in Burger King. 😉 With this story, Petr demonstrated the habit – when the car is parked, it can be charged. Wherever it is.

Radim was curious to get to know how many cars are in the competition and what is the competition rule? 40 cars in total, out of it 17 cars are participating in FIA Championship. The entire race is not about speed. It is more about being precise on checkpoints – to be there exactly when it is required by the regulations. Also, the speed average is measured on several check-points during stages. Obviously, the navigation is then also important – not to miss the way. 😉 The required average speed is around 40 km/h. Another part is also competition in consumption.

Where is the future of electromobility according to Adriano? The future around the year 2030 is pretty clear. In many countries, ICE cars will not be allowed to be sold anymore. The key focus has to be on the building of charging infrastructure.

Michal sees the future of electric cars first in the companies. Due to its price. Currently, the price difference between ICE and EV is still big. Anyway, in the future, the number of electric cars will grow.

 

Petr Beneš, elektromobilní nadšenec, uživatel elektromobilů Hyundai Ioniq Electric a Kia e-Niro, benes_petr@seznam.cz, www.linkedin.com/petrbenes-electromobility

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