Cruise ! in Prius to Sydney

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acmotor
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Cruise ! in Prius to Sydney

Post by acmotor » Tue, 14 Oct 2008, 21:20

As you know, T and A are driving a hired prius 4000k to Sydney for the AEVA AGM
Next G broadband and mobile phone cuts out 20km east of Norseman and only comes back in for 20k either side of Eucla and Nullabor station.
Telstra may cover 80% of Australia with communications but we have gone without for more than half the trip so far.
Andrew is coping (just) with the loss of internet access !

Andrew’s quotes… “this thing is a power assisted 1.5litres of fury”
“you can feel the real power from the AC electric motor when you tear down the road to overtake” “It is slow off the line but once it gets going the electric is quite a boost”
“There isn’t much wind noise but plenty of road noise coming up through the floor boards”

Vehicle is better in cross winds and truck passes then some reviews have suggested.
Fuel consumption is interesting. It is worse on a totally flat road as the synergy system can do nothing but run the ICE at a steady rate. In this case consumption is around 6 l/100k.   In lightly hilly areas the car computer is pumping back and forth to the battery back and edrive is switching many times. Consumption drops to 5 l/100km.
This is all at 110km + .

NO BASS in the in car sound system. Andrew is seriously disappointed.   

As we all know, country driving is not hybrid territory and city is BEV territory so why make a hybrid ?

I’ll post some pics.

This post made from the Eyre Hwy near Nullabor station.
Last edited by acmotor on Tue, 14 Oct 2008, 11:33, edited 1 time in total.
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Johny
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Post by Johny » Tue, 14 Oct 2008, 21:56

Gee guys, don't assume we (down in Melbourne) know where/when/how you are going. First I'd heard of your trip.
It's good to know you are checking out the high-profile commercial half-product though.

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Post by acmotor » Tue, 14 Oct 2008, 22:10


Image

Image

Car computer display has many screens, audio aircon, consumption and energy monitor.

Johny, we left Perth early Monday after the Perth AEVA open day on Sunday. We are 1867 km from Perth now, heading for macca's in Ceduna.

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acmotor
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Post by acmotor » Tue, 14 Oct 2008, 23:02

The EV button on the dash board has been dubbed the 'stealth mode' button. It is useful when entering or leaving a service station and as a matter of principle we feel obliged to use it !

It selects EV only mode below 50kmph for a short distance 1km or so with very light accelerator (otherwise computer beeps at you and starts the ICE anyway)
I did say this vehicle only pretends to be electric !

The emotor is 50kW and clearly has more power than the ICE. It seems the ICE is just pedalling there in the background, just waiting for the real motor to cut in !
The real potential for hybrid is to lose the ICE altogether !

Fuel is around $2 per litre out here and roos !!! we have given up driving at night.

The car computer display really doesn't tell EV people much. Graphics show the 'power' being directed back and forth, but you can't even change the wheel trim on the slowly rotating wheels in the graqphics !
We would really like to see volts and amps an kW and Ah, you know, all those interesting things..... and to be able to fiddle with the settings !

There are 8 bars for the battery energy status. We haven't seen them below 3 or above 7. (we have tried !)
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Post by Johny » Wed, 15 Oct 2008, 01:57

Hey that's a fancy display, but as you say - not enough REAL info. I didn't even know that they had any out-of-the-ice ordinary display at all. Guess I've never looked at one.
This is a bit of fun - keep up the posts.

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Post by acmotor » Wed, 15 Oct 2008, 17:54

That was fun. Image.... A

Up through the ranges from Pt Augusta to Wilmington. Tight winding uphill. Why drive down the highway when you can take the alternate route ?
Hair pins signed ! at 35km. Great road and driving conditions, no traffic either.
Don't underestimate the 400Nm of electric boost. Yes the vehicle drifts very tidy under power and fun cornering ...and the battery pack is empty at the top of the hill.ImageImageImage

I've come up that hill many times and I can assure you that was quite neat.
Forget the fuel ecomony, we have decided that this vehicle is at home in the hills. BTW fuel consumption skyrocketed to 6.3 l/100km    Image
Consumption peaked at 14 l/100km when foot into it but then sucked that back into the battery pack on decel.

Image

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acmotor
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Post by acmotor » Wed, 15 Oct 2008, 18:32

Image

Lots of this road ! SA east of Pt Aususta


Image

There is no tacho, oil pressure, oil temperature instruments. You just assume the ICE is 'cool'. Not much you can do anyway. It it all under computer control.
The only fiddle control is the little electric level for R N D and B.
B is for regen/engine braking more than normal (although still not really much) B is good for comming down hill or into a town to wash speed off.


Image

Fun in the hills. Camera angle is g induced !
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Post by Johny » Wed, 15 Oct 2008, 19:00

Are you going up the Barrier Highway through Broken Hill?

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Post by Simon » Wed, 15 Oct 2008, 21:00

acmotor wrote:
There is no tacho, oil pressure, oil temperature instruments. You just assume the ICE is 'cool'. Not much you can do anyway. It it all under computer control.
The only fiddle control is the little electric level for R N D and B.
B is for regen/engine braking more than normal (although still not really much) B is good for comming down hill or into a town to wash speed off.

!


Sounds like your having fun!
If you are driving for maximum effeciency don't use the B gear. It wastes power by turning over the ICE. The only time you want to use B gear is when you are coming down a BIG hill and the battery gets fully charged (no regen).
   

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Post by Andrew » Wed, 15 Oct 2008, 21:55

Yeah, we only use the B gear to slow down for country towns along the way.

We raced some commodore ute while over taking a truck, had to slow down while the commo changed back into the left lane, after the over take, so we could passed it. The AC electric motor was pulling mighty hard! The battery meter was dropping like the whale from hitch-hikers guide to the galaxy Image Should have seen the look on the commo driver's face as we tore passed!!! Image

Update: just stopped at the Murray River.

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Post by Andrew » Wed, 15 Oct 2008, 21:58

Johny wrote: Are you going up the Barrier Highway through Broken Hill?


Nope. we're going Sturt highway for the scenary.

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Post by Striker » Wed, 15 Oct 2008, 22:27

Hey guys,

Good to see some pictures up.
Sounds like Andrew is being nicer about the Prius now that he's had a bit of a go in it.

See you guys for dinner on Friday.

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Post by acmotor » Thu, 16 Oct 2008, 16:16

We've taken the Midwest Hwy so we can come in through Bathurst and Katoomba. Just passed through West Wyalong. Didn't see an East one !
Stayed at Mildura last night.

3941km driven from Perth so far. Battery (what there is of one)is still not flat, gen set keeps charging it !

Talking about batteries, when we went to pick up the hire car in Perth, the girl did the paper work and went to find the vehicle and bring it out front (City depot). She was gone a long time and eventually came back looking a bit concerned. "It's got a flat battery" she announced and we had to restrain our laughter.
We went to have a look and sure enought, it was all quite dead. Not even a dash board light !
Anyway, we went to the airport depot as they had several priuses there.
After rejecting the camoflage brown vehicle we drove off in a white one.
Do the car companies sell off all the unsafe road colour vehicles to hire companies ?
Last edited by acmotor on Mon, 24 Nov 2008, 19:38, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by Johny » Thu, 16 Oct 2008, 16:35

Cowra for lunch? Odd that you didn't offer to short a tap off the main battery pack to the 12V system to 'jump' start it. Image

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Post by acmotor » Thu, 16 Oct 2008, 17:03

Nope, on both.

We are just comming into Bathurst.

It is very green countryside for mid October.
19 deg C and nice cruising roads.

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Post by Johny » Thu, 16 Oct 2008, 17:06

If you haven't done it before and the time isn't too critical, it's fun to take a spin around the race track. Locals are used to it but you have to hold speed under 60k. It's usually open to public.

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Post by acmotor » Thu, 16 Oct 2008, 17:14

That's the plan.
We've got it up on google map now.

Image
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Post by Johny » Thu, 16 Oct 2008, 17:19

Years ago the family did it in a AWD Corolla. We screeched around the tight downhill bend (the only place you can fang it at 60k) and whizzed past a local walking up the hill. He didn't even glance up to look. Later that day I was overtaking a car on the highway and my 2.5 year old piped up with "Are we still racing daddy?".

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Post by acmotor » Fri, 17 Oct 2008, 03:05

Ok, feet up in Sydney.
4384km from Perth in 4 days.

Guess who flattened the prius battery going up Mt Victoria to Katoomba ?
The prius would accelerate from any speed going up but man when the battery was drained about 500m from the crest it was like adding a horse float to the back. The car computer graphics showed zip left in the battery pack, no emotor assist and it even started diverting energy to the pack from the ICE ! A 1.5 litre with extra gear to haul is bad news on a hill. Fair enough - it was being put to the test.


Image

Oh and at least this #1 on the grid won't have clutch problems !
Mind you, there were a few shaking heads around, but they humoured us.
Even more head shaking when we said we had just driven from Perth.
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Post by acmotor » Thu, 23 Oct 2008, 01:50

Katoomba was spectacular and the hills were fun. ( hills are a treat when you come from Perth !)
All the AEVA business is done.
The Sydney field day was interesting and there was a good turnout.

We did the tourist things - centrepoint tower, harbour bridge, Rocks, Darling harbour etc and then drove up the north side beach suburbs as far as palm beach. End of the line. Selected a house with grass down to the Hawksbury and a jetty. Then stopped dreaming and hit the road back to Perth.

Stayed at Goulburn one night and Euston the next. Called into Adelaide and now heading for Kimba.

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Post by acmotor » Thu, 23 Oct 2008, 04:56

Image

South west outback NSW. It is very dry out here compared with the Bathurst area. Sign says Maccas 100km one way and 160km the other.
That must set a record for the furthest away maccas sign.

GPS "lady dashboard" has some moments. She tried to take us on a short cut through Westmead hospital in Sydney and we were almost right until we reached a boom gate. That wasn't on the emap !
Then another time we were guided off the M4 to a back street and then back onto the M4 a few k later. Seems she saved us a few hundred metres on the corner ! We needed to adjust the shortest route sensitivity. Then there was the pot-holed track at the junction of the Hume and Federal that must have been quite superior to the main ramp that joined the two highways, she said so and who were we to argue !
She did manage to get us toll free across the Anzac and harbour bridges northbound on a Sunday after we punched in 'avoid tolls'.

But now it is...
'Take the third exit and proceed 1149km' I guess her job is done.   

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Post by Striker » Thu, 23 Oct 2008, 05:25

She doesn't update you every 20 kilometres that you need to keep driving straight?

When I borrowed a satnav to do some driving in Melbourne, on the way down it kept reminding me to "Continue straight for 400 kilometers", updating me in 20 kilometer intervals.

If it hadn't had an off button, I would have thrown it out the window.

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Post by acmotor » Thu, 23 Oct 2008, 13:45

Correct on the 20km updates. We made the mistake of switching her off on the way over and took the wrong road in SA, so we just laugh and put up with the 'update' now.

Another trap is to use multi waypoint routes and not actually go to the waypoint itself. She quietly loops you back and keeps trying to actually reach the entered waypoint even though you have moved on.
There needs to be a 'forget about it' button !

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Post by acmotor » Thu, 23 Oct 2008, 21:17

Ok, we've climbed Mt Wudinna and lunched in Minnipa.
Strolled out the jetty at Streaky bay and now headed for Nulabour station on the Eyre Highway.

Outside temperature is rising. 35 deg C now and fuel consumption is going up with it. Turning the aircon on/ off shows nearly 1 litre/100km extra up to around 6.8 l/100km. Lady dash keeps counting down 'continue one thousand one hundred kilometres'.
We even changed to imperial units so it sounded less !
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Post by acmotor » Thu, 23 Oct 2008, 21:38

Image

The jetty at Streaky Bay.
It wouldn't be hard to hang around here for a while !

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