better place

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better place

jeremy rutman
For kicks I took the betterplace test drive in pi glilot, tel aviv.
The ev is a top-end renault fluent selling for 120k NIS ~ 30k USD, the gas version of which costs 200K nis here (50k USD) the diff being due to tax incentives towards the ev.

The charger is a 5 pronged affair plugging into an outlet with this sheath that slams down when you pull the plug out; only card-holders (rfid or nfc or such) can get the little sheath to open up again. I didnt really get much of a feel for the car on the little test circuit , did notice that the energy efficiency monitor was at 20.1kWh/100km which seems to come out equiv. to 8.3 liters/100km or 12km/liter, no great shakes but ok. its a big car, what they call a 'boss car' here. i don't know what time frame that efficiency value was being averaged over, maybe the car being at low speeds most of the time on the test circuit was skewing to low values.  

Anyway they have a nice visitor center geared towards getting people hyped about being in the forefront of an ev revolution. say what you will about agassi's setup , having talked to the guy he strikes me as being truly a believer and not intent solely on making a buck; he's made big bucks already and could have continued in SAP if he'd wanted.  

They seem to have fleet deals with a number of businesses here and claim to have a new batt replacement station opening every week after 3 yrs of planning.  (the bp model is to provide charging stations at workplaces and batt swap stations with a 5 minute robotic swap dotting th e country, for those wanting long drives; the renault fluent starts at 100km range and can hit 150 they claim under certain conditions).