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Tesla batteries retain more than 90% capacity past 160,000 miles, informal study shows

By William Gayde · 42 replies
Apr 15, 2018
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  1. kapital98

    kapital98 TS Guru Posts: 324   +256

    This thread got political really quick. Some good post though.

    It's good to see real world data. It's always a little scary just relying on the manufacturer's stress tests to predict long-term results. While not perfect, this data goes a long way in helping promote this issue (one of the most important for electric vehicles).
  2. Urgelt

    Urgelt TS Enthusiast Posts: 66   +37

    The longevity of L-ion batteries is much more complicated than merely a matter of recharging cycles. One variable is, max charges do more to reduce longevity than partial charges. Which is why Tesla's battery management circuitry and software don't normally permit max charging, and this is factored into their expected ranges.

    You can reasonably expect the range of a Tesla driven 160,000 miles to be roughly 90% of its original range under average driving conditions. Whether that implies a need for a battery pack replacement depends on the customer's preferences, really.

    By the time a Tesla's battery pack yields 90% of the original range, it's quite possible that improved battery packs yielding longer ranges will be available. Prices should fall, too, as better battery chemistries become available. We can't *count* on those improvements, but honestly, 90% range for an old car shouldn't be that much of an issue for most owners. And during those years of operation, the cost of energy and maintenance costs for a Tesla should be much lower and involve far less hassle than for an equivalent ICE vehicle.

    So I don't see battery replacement costs as a show-stopper.
  3. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 15,072   +4,080

    Musk tapped Panasonic for a couple of billion dollars to, build, (ostensibly), "his",battery "giga-factory".

    Given Musk's typical egocentric behaviors and heavily overstated personal accomplishments, it would be difficult to say whether he's, "sourcing his batteries from Panasonic", or, "doing Panasonic a huge a** favor by letting them build batteries for him".:D
    wiyosaya likes this.
  4. wiyosaya

    wiyosaya TS Evangelist Posts: 4,119   +2,406

    There have been studies done by reputable sources that electric is cleaner even if the electricity comes from the worst of polluting coal-fired power plants. I suspect that this is part of the reason why a city in China announced not all that long ago that they were converting all their public transportation buses to EV buses.

    There are other losses and pollution, too, in the gas chain, such as transportation from refinery to end user, refining losses and pollution, and probably others that people do not normally think of when considering the pollution chain of ICEs. These simply do not exist in EVs.

    As electric storage technology improves and it is, EVs will become the norm.
  5. JamesSWD

    JamesSWD TS Maniac Posts: 331   +182

    Now if only we could get such performance from a phone battery.
  6. Squid Surprise

    Squid Surprise TS Evangelist Posts: 2,563   +1,548

    So a Tesla has 90% of its range after 160,000 miles.... what range does a “regular” car after the same mileage? I’m thinking far closer to 100%.... but I guess 90% isn’t that bad...
  7. wiyosaya

    wiyosaya TS Evangelist Posts: 4,119   +2,406

    As I see it, that will happen - eventually.
  8. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 15,072   +4,080


    I.m not sure when posters stopped reading the chart altogether, and this topic became "all Teslas have a range of 90% after 160,000 miles".
  9. You hate Elon, we all get it.

    Didn't matter if this was an official study by Baby Jesus your comment would be I hate Elon.
    Badvok likes this.
  10. Badvok

    Badvok TS Maniac Posts: 298   +155

    The mass of the batteries in an EV far exceeds an ICE (e.g. a Nissan Leaf is 50% heavier than a Nissan Micra).
    In comparing pollution/eco viability you need to:
    a) compare an ICE car using renewable fuel (petrol/gas from Wind/Solar + Water + C02) to an EV that is charged from renewable sources.
    b) compare an ICE car using fossil fuels to an EV charged by fossil fuel generated electricity.
  11. ShagnWagn

    ShagnWagn TS Guru Posts: 760   +593

    That is a very tough answer to get an accurate answer. As far as my personal experience, combustion engines do lose efficiency as time goes. A lot of it has to do with maintenance by the owner, though. Components such as plugs/plug wires, air filters getting clogged, carbon buildup in the chamber and intake, etc etc. Then you have components not in standard maintenance such as clogged injectors, A/F meter, oxygen sensors, catalytic converter clogged, and any amount of other sensors failing (engine checklight) that owners don't care to fix.
  12. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 15,072   +4,080

    We don't see too much of you when the topic isn't Musk related, or Badvok.

    I guess you just swoop in to lead the worship contingent. I can't help noticing you always call him by his first name. Do you know him personally, or just imagine that you do?

    This is a study by Musk groupies, and Tesla fanatics. I will give them credit for most likely doing everything by the book, which results in great outcomes.

    You know Musk didn't design or build Teslas right? He just hypes them for the money. He's Tesla motors talking head. Try and wrap your head around "Elon's".
  13. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 15,072   +4,080

    A huge chunk of energy loss related to operating an automobile, is in poor tire maintenance..A car with old and/or under-inflated tires, will render very poor mileage as compared to what the sticker said when it was new. Obviously those factors would, (or should), have a direct effect on an EV's range as well.

    Those things said, an EV has many less moving parts (?), and save for the battery, there are, (AFAI can guess), simply less things to break.

    This is all sort of an academic discussion, which we, (myself included), should have confined to the batteries in a EV alone. Moving on anyway.....

    But, so many other factors enter into play when considering keeping a vehicle, long term. Perhaps even going so far as to considering the longevity of the clear coat, and quality and durability, of the weather stripping.

    My point being, it's really two completely different matters, whether exchanging vehicles based on mileage, or on time retained.

    The Teslas on the road thus far, have been, to a large extent, toys of the well to do. But when they, and other EVs hit the mainstream and used markets, lots of other factors besides battery life will come into play.

    Can you still get parts for it?

    "I don't have a garage, or even parking in front of my row house, how do I charge it"?

    I could go on about vast changes to infrastructure which would be required for mass adoption of EVs, but I won't. After all, it's all about the batteries.;)
  14. Woah calm down there John, I quite like a lot of things Bill Gates does and although Bill didn't do it all himself he has managed to generate a lot of money for his company. I just wish they could get their software under control.

    I think what they might have to do is partner with companies and people who are experts in those fields and maybe that could make all the difference.

    Wonder if I use the software and see what the fuss is all about, nah going to go with internet warrior instead........ hear me roar... raaaaa
  15. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 15,072   +4,080

    What Musk does best, is hoodwink suckers. Oh, and what Tesla does best, is fail to meet deadlines, and loose money.

    Now what your precious "Elon" should do, is start selling his toy flamethrowers to help Tesla along, instead of crapping around with his, "boring company", which he actually started as a joke.

    I'm actually surprised you didn't start back in calling Mr. Gates, "Bill".
    mosu likes this.
  16. Why wouldn't I call Bill Gates by his name Bill, and by the way "Bill" is the incorrect use as his name is Bill.

    This has to be one of the dumbest things, seriously where do I get off calling a guy by his name.....what a jerk.

    By the way I was specifically writing about Bill, love that guy
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 18, 2018
  17. Badvok

    Badvok TS Maniac Posts: 298   +155

    WARNING: Don't feed the troll!
    Flebbert and Squid Surprise like this.
  18. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 15,072   +4,080

    Isn't this post off topic?

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