[ExI] Electric cars too heavy for old UK multi-storey car parks

Dave S snapbag at proton.me
Tue Dec 20 13:57:14 UTC 2022

On Monday, December 19th, 2022 at 11:19 PM, spike jones via extropy-chat <extropy-chat at lists.extropy.org> wrote:

> BillK, it has never escaped my notice that ExIchat seems to be nearly devoid of car guys.

I don't come here for car chat but I'm a car guy: multiple-time regional autocross champion in my '05 Mitsubishi Evo. I'm not a mechanic but I did most of the work on my cars.

> OK for BillK or anyone else with a modicum of interest in cars, you perhaps already know what a lot of the car magazines said about Tesla. I don't mean Consumer Reports, I mean actual car hobbyist groups and magazines. If you hang out ever with that crowd, you already know the prevailing opinion on the heavy super-powerful trendy spendy high-endy cars such as the 12 cylinder 7 series Beemers: nice cars, but the extra four cylinders are not really justifiable. They add a lot of cost and a lot of weight, which makes them handle poorly on a tight track analogous to city streets and autocross. Those 12ers are great on the Autobahn, or the open freeway, but on a small track such as autocross, the 8 cylinder 5 series Beemers prevail over their costly Bond James Bond 12 cylinder brethren.

The 7 series are luxury sedans with very good performance, but not designed for the track. 

> Suppose we recognize what the car guys already knew: heavier more powerful cars have their advantages in some rare cases, but light is good in cars. Now carry that lesson over to the high performance long range Teslas. Those rigs are really heavy. Never mind parking structures for now, just think about handling on a small track, the street or autocross racing. The Teslas have similar drawbacks to the 7 series Beemers: they are too heavy and have two additional problems: the moment of inertia about the vertical axis is too high and the weight distribution just is all wrong.

Again, these are cars not designed for the track. Even in Formula E, the electric formula series, we can see that electric race cars are nowhere near competitive with gas cars.

> My apologies for all this to any Tesla model X drivers, for the above is all my own humble opinion rather than any canonized collective wisdom.

The X is the boring crossover. The S is the performance-oriented Tesla.

> Moral to the story: if one is a car guy, and completely ignores the cool factor that goes with the high end stuff, the model X and such, then the electric cars just aren't there yet.

Agreed. In order to get there, they'll have to add a whole lot of lightness.


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