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A Porsche Taycan Just Beat Tesla for the Fastest EV Cannonball Run Record (thedrive.com)
76 points by clouddrover 9 days ago | hide | past | favorite | 133 comments





I do wish people would not publicize cannonball runs. Racing on public streets is dangerous and should not be encouraged.

The Porsche Taycan looks worse than the high performance Tesla's based on published EPA numbers but it has some advantages the EPA numbers do not show. The Taycan can maintain high power output for longer before overheating.

This makes it good for racing, probably better than the Teslas, but please do your racing on proper race tracks.


it really speaks to the obvious bias on this site that on this story multiple comments are shedding crocodile tears about safety but on the stories where tesla is bragging about its speed and performance you only see comments admiring their technical prowess.

Doing cannonball is the easy way. These guys can’t cut it on a track so they compete in recklessness.

Did you read the article? Because of aerodynamics constraining range the average trip speed was 64mph.

Did YOU read the article? This average speed included hours of stops to charge, so the average moving speed was much higher.

> At their height, they hit around 160 MPH, which is incredibly close to the Taycan's top speed.

I think we should have some sort of multi-tier license system so that scenic routes are sometimes limited to certain license classes.

For example, Highway 1 is a beautiful drive, but it's often kind of ruined by idiots in minivans driving 5 miles below the (already low) speed limit and being too rude and self-centered to pull of into a stopping lane and let the dozens of cars behind them pass.

If, for example, on Saturdays the 1 was restricted to people with a "reasonably competent" license (indicating that you're willing and able to safely drive e.g. within stated speed limit to speed limit + 10mph), with ticketing expected for people driving too slowly, that would be awesome.

You could have further refinements along the lines of once a month the road is restricted to people with "very competent" licenses, indicating that they intend to drive high-performance vehicles at high speed.

I think the social utility of this kind of policy would be very positive. The negative externality to mediocre drivers of not being able to drive on scenic routes occasionally isn't very large, but the benefit to good drivers would be huge!


Far simpler would be to adopt Germany-style passing rules - ticket heavily for passing on the right (or in other unsafe ways) and for not letting people pass who signal they intend to. Then if someone wants to go slow, they just have to contend with being passed and having to pull a side when someone behind them signals intent to overtake. The person overtaking will have to wait their turn to pass safely. Roads remain public and we likely reduce the number of accidents from unsafe passing/overtaking.

> for not letting people pass who signal they intend to.

That's not what you get ticketed for. As long as you're overtaking the cars in the lane to your right at a reasonable speed, you can stay in your lane. If there is a gap between cars that you can safely enter, then you have to move to the right. There is a duty to let people pass if you're driving very slowly, but this is meant for a tractor driving 15 km/h, not for someone driving 5 under the speed limit.

Especially if there are two lanes, no speed limit, the right lane has heavy truck traffic going 80 and you're going 130, the Ferrari has to wait until you're done overtaking, even if that takes you until the end of the no-speedlimit section. And if the Ferrari gets pushy (e.g. honking/high-beams), they are risking not just a ticket but criminal prosecution (on top of any penalties for violating the minimum safe distance).


Good call, was way oversimplifying. Everyone needs to wait their turn and be courteous about it. Doesn’t always happen and results do get quite horrific.

Brit here who has driven a lot in both the US and DE, int al.

You are talking about "undertaking" - which needs two lanes. The P(GP?) is on about people driving slowly on a scenic route and I've had a look at the road in question and it has one lane for quite a lot of its length.

I'll asert: Accidents on an autobahn in DE do tend to be quite nasty when they happen.

(Observation: I lived in West Germany for about 10 years and my family name literally means "german")


The road is a single lane in each direction with fairly regularly spaced turn out lanes where the car could safely enter without slowing down a lot and let a few of the followers pass them. What happens in practice is that many professionals like truck drivers use them and most tourists do not, so you end up going with the speed of the largest RV.

> on about people driving slowly on a scenic route and I've had a look at the road in question and it has one lane for quite a lot of its length.

Quite a few places are building regular intervals of "2+1 roads" for regular passing opportunities:

* https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2%2B1_road

* https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vision_Zero

If people know they'll shortly have a chance to pass 'easily' they may become more patient.


> ticket heavily

Might be worth pointing out that even if traffic fines are handed out liberally in Germany, they are generally considered laughably cheap.

By fining a constant amount (instead of an income/wealth dependent one), all fines do is make something illegal for poor people.


The ticket for hogging the left lane would need to be substantially more expensive than most other tickets if you want cops to actually enforce it.

I would argue that if "reasonably competent" means "gets in accidents less frequently and has fewer moving violations", the "idiot" in the minivan is very likely more competent than the joy rider. Also one person's scenic route is another person's shortest route, or maybe only route.

So long as policing for revenue and fishing stops exist I don't see how moving violations matter.

That’s not what competence means.

> The negative externality to mediocre drivers of not being able to drive on scenic routes occasionally isn't very large, but the benefit to good drivers would be huge!

This is literally 95%+ of people on those roads. It'd never happen.

Most drivers are wildly incompetent.


A competent driver I my opinion drives slower than the speed limit.

Then you’re probably a dogshit driver.

Instead of spending millions to billions of dollars overhauling our traffic system to allow multi tiered licensing people can just cope with their commute occasionally being 8% slower.

[flagged]


your idea isn't good enough to be this condescending

It would also fix the problem of people who race on public roads under the impression of being good drivers.

Their families would miss them, tough.


It’s OK to enjoy doing things that are mildly dangerous. You don’t have to live your life in a cushioned bubble.

It's not ok to enjoy things that are dangerous to _other_ people.

I ride a motorcycle btw.


> It's not ok to enjoy things that are dangerous to _other_ people.

Almost every activity you could possibly do, including being alive, has some negative risk externality to other people. E.g. if you are alive, you are more likely to spread a disease to someone else than if you are dead and buried in the ground. If you drive anywhere, you might possibly run into someone, but if you stayed at home they'd be safe.

If your philosophy is "you can never do anything that's dangerous to someone else", it's a hopelessly bad zeroth-order approximation that would completely cripple you if you actually followed it.


You are talking about racing on public streets.

The risk of hurting someone in an accident due to a mistake is very different to the risk of hurting someone after you decided it's ok to race on public streets because you believe that you are such an awesome driver.

Everyone in the road has accepted a certain risk of accidents happening. If you increase everyone else's risk by racing, you are being a selfish prick.

There is no way to wave this away with "it's ok to take risk for fun" or "risk is inherent to live". You are talking about risking other people's lives for a thrill, that you could easily get differently, without risking the live of bystanders! You can literally race the lemons 500 with an investment of 500 bucks!


> The risk of hurting someone in an accident due to a mistake is very different to ...

Source? I really doubt this is true, due to selection effects.

In any case, my original proposal was to specifically allocate road usage to different license classes at different times, which would help address your concern.

> If you increase everyone else's risk by racing, you are being a selfish prick.

Replace "racing" with "driving" and the statement doesn't meaningfully change.

> You are talking about risking other people's lives for a thrill, that you could easily get differently

Every single thing you can possibly do imposes a negative externality on someone else.

"Don't do anything ever" is an idiotic approach to address this. A much more reasonable approach is to manage risk, e.g. by sectioning off road access sometimes like I proposed.


"driving 5 miles below the (already low) speed limit"

I've driven at insane speeds in the past, I've also driven in ways that can only be described as nearly insane. I can't say I'm proud of that but I've still survived to 50 (so far). Most of the time I would describe my driving style as safe with occasional relapses 8)

I'm a Brit so I'm not familiar with Highway 1 but a quick search seems to show it is a CA road. My first virtual run on it shows three lanes on both sides, so I'll head north to SF. OK one lane. It's a provincial coastal road with adjustments.

Either get a car with a massive acceleration and overtake or enjoy the view. The speed limits are there for a good reason and I've driven a fair bit in the US (mostly FL and NY) and I don't find your limits mad. You could also lobby whoever builds roads to add another lane where you want it. On that last: in the UK we are 50 years into debating adding another lane to the A303 at some points. For some reason people are a bit wound up about the bit that goes past Stonehenge. The A303 is the super fast (lol) upgrade for the A30 (which is still there) that links London to the south west of England. It stops rather oddly at Ilminster, where it becomes the A30 again.

A relative of mine did the "compulsory purchase" of land through Hampshire, Wiltshire and Somerset for the A303, back in the day.

I live in Yeovil, Somerset, UK. To go north to say Bristol, I have two options: A37 or A372 and M5. Parts of the A37 are virtually Roman road with tarmac slapped on top 8) the A372 goes through Ilchester (formally a Roman town). Both of those roads are a bit slow but with speed limits from 30 to 60 mph. They are both delightful to drive in 3D - I love getting gears right with just the right amount of power (we have gears in our cars here 8)

Anyway, why not calm down and enjoy the view. What I've virtually seen of Highway 1 tells me that it is a road to be enjoyed and cherished and loved.


> I'm a Brit so I'm not familiar with Highway 1 but a quick search seems to show it is a CA road. My first virtual run on it shows three lanes on both sides, so I'll head north to SF. OK one lane. It's a provincial coastal road with adjustments.

It is a CA road, and the section that the GP is talking about is specifically the coastal part between Santa Cruz and San Francisco, or south of Monterey. These areas are one lane in each direction.

> Either get a car with a massive acceleration and overtake or enjoy the view.

It is frequently impossible to overtake. Both directions of traffic tend to be fairly steady, and there's enough turns and blind spots that safely passing is not possible. The turnout sections are often too short for more than a single car to overtake the lead car, and only if its right behind the lead car -- if you're a couple cars back there's no chance.

We're not even talking about insane speeds here. Doing 50 or 55mph on the 1 in those scenic parts is wonderful. That happens to also be just about the speed limit. But far too often there will be someone either taking in the scenery a little too much, or too scared to go any faster. Then you end up in a caravan of cars all doing 35-40mph on the road, and little chance to pass. At that point, it becomes hard to 'calm down and enjoy the view' -- you're no longer driving for pleasure, you're effectively stuck in heavy traffic.


People live on highway one. Maybe not the best example. I think the Blue Ridge parkway or that road in Rocky Mountain National might be better.

I have mixed feelings about this.

At the end of the day, we all pay for the roads, we should all be allowed to use them.

But I have done a little speeding on scenic routes.


You think people would comply?

People from out of county are already violating Covid travel restrictions.


Speed limits have no minimum because driving on a road is situational; bad weather, unfamiliarity with the road, new driver, bad driver, personal safety limits, discrepancy in speedometers, and etc.

How would you go about policing this? If there is traffic, everyone is driving under the minimum!


Most states have a blanket law that 10/15/20 below the speed limit constitutes obstructing traffic and is usually a ticketable offense.

In the digital age with sensors and data so cheap there's also no reason we can't set speed limits based on the Xth percentile everywhere with an automatic annual adjustment.


> In the digital age with sensors and data so cheap there's also no reason we can't set speed limits based on the Xth percentile everywhere with an automatic annual adjustment.

People tend to have an aversion to automation applied to law enforcement. See the criticism of red light cameras in the US.


I'm advocating for automating the rules, not the enforcement. In most places speed limits would probably rise. My understanding is that some traffic light timings are already automated in this manner.

After rereading your comment I see where I misread, my apologies.

By definition, x percent of the people are below the xth percentile. That’s not a sane way to set limits

That sounds like a pretty sane way to set a limit that by definition should not be exceeded.

It's also the way civil engineers recommend speed limits be set. I think the current number they use is 85th percentile.


Yes, California for example:

> The 85th percentile speed is the single most influential indicator of what is safe and reasonable, and it is used to determine the speed limit by rounding to the nearest 5 mph increment, and posting the speed limit at that speed. If there are sufficient conditions not readily apparent to the driver, as determined by a registered engineer, the posted speed limit can be lowered by 5 mph, and such a decision must be clearly documented in the E&TS.

https://dot.ca.gov/programs/safety-programs/setting-speed-li...


Ya, let’s implement speed limits based upon an known organizational issue that can result in catastrophic failure. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Normalization_of_deviance

There are posted speed minimums on the tollways here in Chicago. You can't go below 45 in freeflowing traffic.

Explain that to all the people trying to merge at 35.

I have no problem with semi trucks, overloaded scrap haulers, genuine shitboxes that can't floor it without something slipping and whatnot merging at low speeds. Everyone else has no excuse.

Those vehicles shouldn't be allowed on freeways in the first place. They can use surface streets.

Stateside, many interstates have minimum speeds listed.

While as a reckless fast driver I totally understand where this is coming from let me also tell you the other side of it.

Road system is as socialist system as it can get. The road that you think is paid for is being used by different people for different reasons. Highway 1 in particular is very dangerous if you drive recklessly. I would rather prefer that minivan with 5 kids to home reach safely than to let me pass. The first time I drove it in my 20 year old Camry, I was scared less. Today I cross it with breeze in my jeep.

> You could have further refinements along the lines of once a month the road is restricted to people with "very competent" licenses, indicating that they intend to drive high-performance vehicles at high speed.

None of your ideas are bad, USA is a very large country and I think it should be possible to build private roads with the kind of system you discuss. Since the heart of innovation has not done so, something tells me that the economics will not work out.

* I am an off roader and the kind of market you describe exists for off roaders. Instead of "competence" it is about vehicle's capability. Entire USA is full of back country and off roads which are open to different kind of vehicles and there is a super large community of people driving on them all the time. I think such a market for high performance fast cars does not exist.


Isn’t better to drive slower on scenic roads to have more time to observe the scene?

Or do you think there is an helicopter filming you from above like James Bond movies?


Driving slower on a scenic road that has no traffic is great -- you can take in more of the view, enjoy the 'scenic' part of scenic road. But when you get stuck in a caravan of cars behind someone driving well below the speed limit, you end up having to pay more attention to the driving. As soon as there are other cars around you, you need to be paying attention to them. If the road isn't flat and straight, you have to deal with speeding up and slowing down. You gotta keep an eye out for someone coming up behind you not paying attention, or the guy in front of you maybe not braking in time..etc.

Once the density of traffic is high enough, you no longer have the luxury of 'observing the scene' -- you need to be paying attention to the driving and the other drivers. This is the situation that tends to happen on Hwy 1. People bunch up, and so everyone is just driving in these clumps of 10-20 cars doing 5-10 below the speed limit.


Some people enjoy driving spiritedly.

I've long maintained that "spirited" driving on public roads is "jackass" driving.

The best thing we can do is keep each other safe.

I'm guilty of driving fast in in the past. I'm glad i aged past it and found other sources of identity.


It’s very clear that you’re the sort of person who belongs in the lowest tier of driver’s license, so this proposal isn’t for you.

> The best thing we can do is keep each other safe.

This statement is nonsense and indicates pathological risk aversion.


My impression in this case is that some people like to feel superior to other people

Well one might say that is true about the people who are insisting that driving slowly to enjoy the scenery is the better way to enjoy a scenic highway than driving spiritedly and enjoying the drive.

I think it's pretty easy for anyone who isn't highly biased to see that both approaches are enjoyable.


But if you don't care about the scenery, you could always do your spirited driving on a different freeway with more lanes, while the drivers who are there for the scenery don't really have that option.

Life is risky. In my (likely unpopular) opinion, things like this are what make it worth the risk, at least for some people, and I'm willing to give them the space they need to make it happen.

From a risk perspective, I do prefer things like the Broadway Bomb[1]. Sure, pedestrians are maybe at a bit of risk of collision, but at least they are mostly gambling with their own lives.

1: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Broadway_Bomb


Ignorant comment of the day. Racing at high speeds though public spaces is incredibly irresponsible and highly dangerous to both you and, more importantly, the people around you.

You don’t own the road, you share it. You don’t get to put others lives at risk because you feel like it. If you decide it’s a risk worth taking, do it in a safe place, like a race track, so you don’t kill anyone else when you make a mistake.


Racing on public streets is murder.

We had some cases here in Germany where innocent bystanders were killed by idiots racing in the city.

Take all the risk you want - for yourself. Not for others.


Murder is defined as including premeditation or criminal intent in most jurisdictions so unless you go out intending to kill people pretty much nothing you do in a car qualifies.

That would be first degree murder. Many jurisdictions have the concept of second degree murder, often including an element of "disregard of human life", and that is being charged in some street racing (and DUI) cases: http://lapdracing.com/StreetRacingcanbeMurder.html

Then go to a track day? Or are you saying that the risk you enjoy feeling is that of whether or not you'll kill an innocent bystander and go to jail for vehicular homicide?

Or if you want to take even more risk, do some rally and go full speed through a forest. That way you can also get your car destroyed if you make a mistake.

What an incredibly stupid and dangerous take. Life having risks doesn’t justify putting innocent peoples’ lives at risk.

To the surprise of no one - it's well know that the Taycan focused a lot in repeated long term performance, an area where electric cars have historically been weak (Google "Tesla limp mode") https://imgur.com/TLJsalm.jpg

Then again, Porsche is a much more expensive car and Porsche engineering is top-notch. Most brands don't care that Porsche beats them. But hype that makes people assume weird things.


If you read TFA, you'll find that it was suprising, for the simple reason that the Taycan cannot use the Tesla supercharging network.

The Cannonball Run has very, very little to do with repeated 0-60 pulls.

I have no idea what this comment is trying to say.

Most brands making performance cars absolutely care that Porsche beats them.

Trying to imply that a brand that's been putting their performance EV through the paces at the Ring doesn't care a competitor just out out a plain better performance car in a similar segment on their first attempt reeks of sour grapes.


Cannonball Runs have gotten a lot easier during the pandemic because traffic is drastically lower than usual.

I'm not sure comparing this to a pre-pandemic record makes any sense.


I think for EV’s the traffic impact isn’t that valid - you need to aim for around 100km/h for greatest efficiency (watt/km), and then there’s the charging of the batteries - usually an hour or two with fast charging.

If the optimal overall speed is determined by greatest efficiency, which means a reasonable maximum speed, then I would think traffic would have an even bigger impact: it's not profitable to compensate for heavy traffic with absurd speeds in rural highways, so the overall speed is really just determined by (1) amount of traffic, (2) battery size, (3) charge time, and (4) aerodynamics.

In this case I'd expect traffic is really the dominant factor.


need a big truck to draft behind for max efficiency :)

Tesla fast charging at Superchargers is closer to 15-30 minutes, depending on several factors (temperature, battery pack size, state of charge, etc). I have had some 45-60 minute outliers on rare occasions, but it isn’t the norm (over my ~30k miles of road tripping).

It also means you aren't waiting for superchargers, and also it's generally faster to charge if the charging station is empty.

I think now might be a good time to stop obsessing over acceleration of EV cars. What Tesla did with their high-performance EV cars was to prove that electric did not equate to a milk float, and they shut up the performance-car obsessed pistonheads and the car press with their 0-60 times.

But this is turning into a penis-waving / megapixel arms race, where EV journalism is obsessed with only two metrics - range and performance. We're at the point now where EVs are generally faster than their ICE counterpart (due to smooth power application, consistent torque and no requirement for gear changes), with a range that will meet the needs of 95%+ of daily commutes.

There are a whole range of different types of EV vehicles, in terms of size, luxury, and purpose to meet different needs, but the reviews seem to obsess over a drag race.

What we need now is a good EV charging infrastructure. Widely available rapid charging that will give your EV 2 hours of driving for 20 minutes will mitigate the need for bigger batteries. And not just for Tesla.


>> What we need now is a good EV charging infrastructure.

Haha. I've just started working on the charging end of this, after years of drivetrain stuff. The J1772 standards for chargers has some good features and some... politics. Biggest complaint: why mandate a PHY for broadband over power lines when the signals dont go over the high current conductors? Next up, everyone wants to play middleman with billing systems and cloud connections.

Tesla, can we all just use your connectors before more of this nonsense gets built?


The various billings groups, cards, keys, accounts, phone apps is frustrating, but I don't see any drive to unify this. Electric vehicles are becoming mainstream, and I think regular customers will find the various providers confusing. For example, I planned to do some shopping at a place where I knew they had free charging. I figured I would be in the store for about 2 hours, which for a 22kW charger should have fully charged the car. Despite being relatively tech-savvy, I wasn't aware that my 120kW limit applied only to DC charging, and not AC charging, so it was reduced to 11kW. Which it only did for 5 minutes because apparently I needed to navigate to a website and 'ok' it online for it to continue.

Until a non-tech savvy person can simply drive up and pay for the electricity like at any other petrol station, EVs are going to run into some serious issues and disappointed customers. At the moment it works for those who are willing to put the effort in.


I have a horrifying vision of huge "dongles" everywhere ... like USB/headphone/etc but for cars. $100 each, aftermarket is $50 but they slowly ruin your batteries, etc.

Thankfully the cars are at least converging on the Type 2 connector. It's a shame though that with the ubiquity of contactless payments, I can't use many stations without registering and applying for a fob or card to arrive in the mail.

Like I said, everyone wants to be a middleman and get a piece of the action, and your usage data.

The end game should look just like pumping gas. Maybe even take cash at the dispenser. I bring this up at work. Build what vehicle owners want, not what industry investors want.


I think the big problem is people still care about this stuff. Car heads have always bragged about the speed of their vehicles, that’s not going to change just because electric cars are faster off the line.

You're right that it's purely a bragging point. A status symbol, or if it's really just for personal enjoyment, then a gimmick that will amuse you the first 10 times you launch from the lights.

Sure, having a reasonably quick car is useful for overtaking and pulling out, but then we'd regard performance as being 'good enough', rather than marking down a car for doing 0-60 0.2s slower than another.

I wonder if EVs will change things. It seems the likes of Kia and Nissan are able to put pretty powerful and efficient electric engines into their motors (150kW is not bad). I think what limited the availability of high performance ICE cars was the fuel efficiency and tax. If that's not such an issue with EVs, then performance will become less of a bragging point I guess.


For those who aren't familiar with the history of the Cannonball Run, the podcast Criminal did a very entertaining episode on it recently:

https://thisiscriminal.com/episode-155-cannonball-12-18-2020


I'm shocked that Porsche and Electrify America condoned this.

"Though Porsche Cars North America does not condone, promote, or acknowledge any sort of activity that would violate the rules of the road, we were pleased to see how well the Taycan and the charging infrastructure did during Kyle’s test," a Porsche spokesperson said in an email

> "Though Porsche Cars North America does not condone, promote, or acknowledge any sort of activity that would violate the rules of the road,

And yet in the very next sentence they acknowledge it


Not only that but they reported that a team from one of the organizations was actively assisting by monitoring the charging.

nevertheless

>Fortunately, Conner tells us that he had the engineers at both Porsche and Electrify America on speed dial for this run. Despite it being New Year's Eve, he was able to work with the teams to ensure that the car was operating to its potential (despite the bugs) and the chargers he was visiting were both working and reliable.

does not condone, but still allocates overtime for engineers on New Year's Eve to help ...


It sounds like they at least facilitated it by providing a car and making engineers available “on speed dial” as the author states.

The lack of charges is positively electrifying!

And to thing all it took was a 2x more expensive car and a direct support of both manufacturer, one who officially "Porsche Cars North America does not condone, promote, or acknowledge any sort of activity that would violate the rules of the road", and a charging network engineers.

>Conner tells us that he had the engineers at both Porsche and Electrify America on speed dial for this run. Despite it being New Year's Eve, he was able to work with the teams to ensure that the car was operating to its potential (despite the bugs) and the chargers he was visiting were both working and reliable.


> all it took was a 2x more expensive car

Actually in most of the World the price difference is much less. For example in the UK, Model S Performance 95k GBP versus 140k.

Not that it matters as such because both are so far beyond the means of the common driver as to be irrelevant. Any company can build an awesome EV for those prices, the real challenge is building a decent one for a price that a shop worker can afford.


I wonder if the EV cannonball community will start to experiment with the battery packs. I know that some of the combustion engine runs have usually carried extra fuel tanks...could the same sort of idea be viable for the EV versions? (though I imagine the weight of the batteries would be too much to deal with).

If you don't care about battery damage, could probably increase the charge rate without a larger battery on board.

Sure might increase the ods of a battery catching fire, or reduction in battery life. But if you're trying to get the fastest time...you might not care


Might explain why this record is being set in early January when the temperatures are cooler = faster charges but not too cold.

You could always develop a small trailer-based solution that is aerodynamic and towed behind the car. Have them placed ahead of time on the route, and drive to each to swap out. Should be a relatively quick changeover (<60 seconds with practice).

You’ll need faster charging and larger batteries (larger batteries allow for sustained peak charge rates longer when you roll into a charger station at very low state of charge).

Taycan has an 800V battery pack, so can leverage higher Fast DC charge peaks from CCS chargers (vs Tesla 400V packs and Superchargers).


All the competitive (ICE) runs have additional fuel cells.

Usually just large bladder in the trunk.

I'm confused.

The Taycan range is ~200 miles. The LR Model 3 is 310, or 325 depending on when in 2019 they did the run. How does a car with 50% more range per charge take more time? Perhaps the Taycan they used could take a 270kW download and the Tesla only 150kW? It charged faster?

Also, what is the calculus on optimal speed? Two factors substantially impact range on my Model 3: Speed and incline. Driving faster means stopping more often and 30 minutes of charge time at Cannonball speeds is going to be 45 miles lost. Gasoline pit stops could be under 10 minutes and much less impactful to optimum drive speed.

I'd like to see the details of the speed driven at and the pit stops made by both the Model 3 run in 2019 and the Taycan run in 2020.

It's not adding up.


There are a number of factors.

* EPA range != real range. Porsche only did the 2 cycle test that has a 0.7 adjustment factor while Tesla does the 5 cycle test with no adjustment. Taycan has been shown to significantly beat its EPA range in a variety of conditions by nearly everyone who tests one (and is particularly good at high speed due to excellent aero). Teslas struggle to make their EPA range in nearly all conditions.

* Taycan has an excellent charge curve, sustaining higher charge rates for longer than model 3

* Most US superchargers are 150 kW and Taycan can take advantage of most of the 300 kW (thanks to 800V) at the Electrify America stations

* Traffic is low due to covid, so more opportunities to open it up

Check the Out of Spec youtube channel as there will be a breakdown of the run coming (as well as details of the model 3 run from 2019). Kyle also discussed it in quite a bit of detail on the Smoking Tire podcast (also available on youtube).

Kyle has said on a number of occasions up to about 120-130 mph it's better to drive faster, burning battery more quickly compared to driving slower and conserving battery.


charging tapers off.

It's quite possible to charge a 100kwh tesla next to a 30kwh leaf and have them both take the same amount of time.

The trick to charging efficiently timewise is to start with an empty battery and charge to say 80%.

Here's one of the best looks at this I've found:

https://forum.abetterrouteplanner.com/blogs/entry/6-tesla-ba...

the thing the graph doesn't show is % vs time, which would make it more clear. Also the graphs are old and don't show the newer higher-speed charging.

Also, you could charge depending on the distance to the next stop, because overcharging could slow you down. It slows you down by taking longer to charge to higher charge levels, and also by not draining the battery low enough so the next charge will start closer to zero where charging is fastest.

another unrelated but still interesting article is power consumption vs speed:

https://forum.abetterrouteplanner.com/blogs/entry/22-tesla-m...

https://forum.abetterrouteplanner.com/blogs/entry/9-tesla-mo...


Kyle Connor (one of the drivers) doesn't wait until anything close to 80% on runs like this. The moment the curve starts to drop they are off, charger hopping to maximize the charge curve. I think during their Telsa run the average charge time was around 8-10 minutes and the charge was rarely above 50%.

There has to be a formula for this.

You have to take into account:

charging overhead - the time to get off the freeway, get to the charger and hook up.

charging station choice. If there are two stations within a reasonable distance, sometimes pick the further one.

unexpected over-consumption - drive too fast, headwinds, extra heater, having to detour. The tesla charging/nav algorithm doesn't always take this into account. Follow their program, but drive a little too fast and it will start telling you to slow down otherwise you won't reach your destination (depending)


They could have just done a much more efficient cannonball on many factors. I’m sure it first had to beat the Tesla on paper for them to even attempt it which means theirs some calculation you could do yourself to prove it would be faster.

The Taycan being a sports car vs. the Tesla 3 being a entry-level electric car might have something to do with it.

I found this part the most interesting:

> Conner's existing record of 45 hours and 16 minutes set in a Tesla Model 3 Long Range

So this is comparing a luxury sports car to an entry level mass-market car, and they beat it by only a few percent.


No, An entry level mass-market car would beat both the Porsche and the Tesla by hours.

Just for comparison, they did the EV run in "42 hours and change"; the current non-EV cannonball record is 27:25.

25:39, actually. Arne Toman and Doug Tabbutt (with Berkeley Chadwick) set the 27:25 pre-covid, and then (after having been beaten 7 times) did a 25:39 during covid.

Yes, most Cannonballers view "covid runs" as a special case, but the record is the record.



I really love the Porsche Taycan, but Tesla's expansive charging network ties me to the Model S.

Tesla will face real problems once old school car manufacturers ramp up their EV production

Such a deja vu. Once the big boys come. I think I've heard this being repeated ever since 2013. But hearing it for 8 years makes me believe somewhat less that most of these old school manufacturers will ever bother to do much. Except for Volkswagen, they seem to be taking EVs seriously.

Other old car companies sure do talk a lot, but there's little action. They might have okish EVs, but no plans to truly mass manufacture them. Once they finally get to it, it'll be too late.

We'll see. Tesla is a "big boy" itself now. They got capital to make things happen.


> Other old car companies sure do talk a lot, but there's little action.

https://cleantechnica.com/2020/12/29/record-electric-vehicle...

85% of the electric cars sold in Europe Jan-Nov 2020 were not Tesla. Seems like the competition already caught up to them, despite the fanboys claiming it'll never happen.

For 2021, Tesla has nothing new in the pipeline for the European market, while its competitors have quite a lot of models lined up, so I'm pretty sure Teslas marketshare will continue dropping. They'll sell more vehicles than 2020, sure, but only because the EV market as a whole is growing.


> For 2021, Tesla has nothing new in the pipeline for the European market...

You mean other than soon to be introduced in Europe Model Y and 2021 Model 3?

Expect price drops as well once the manufacturing is done locally. That's exactly what happened in China and now Tesla has 6 month order queue there.


> They might have okish EVs, but no plans to truly mass manufacture them

Isn't the renault zoe selling better than tesla cars in europe?


For now. But will Renault be able to scale manufacturing to match VW and Tesla?

Just Tesla's Giga Berlin is going to push out 500k vehicles annually after the ramp up. And its max capacity is rumored to be 2000k/year, although that's probably at least 3-4 years away.

Both VW and Tesla will move to cheaper vehicles over time.


Why would you need to match Tesla? What is so appealing to Teslas is lower segment market? Not sure where you're from but European market is completely different to US' and people have different expectations from their cars, which Tesla hardly satisfies. Oh yes, and Tesla assembly quality is barely on par with some eastern European cheapos.

They are unwilling to do so in the timeframe needed to make a difference because they are too invested in their ICE vehicles.

They'll start trying once the market has already shifted and by then it will mostly be too late.


What is the time frame needed?

Once upon a time Tesla just needed to sell a lot of cars to justify their valuation. The time frame for that to happen was really not that long.

Now Tesla just needs to sell all the cars to justify their valuation. Sell all of them and then some really.

So is the idea that the rest if the industry will just evaporate and Tesla becomes the Xerox of cars?

I remember price targets being based on having half the car market in a few decades back at $1000 pre-split


The model S was released almost 9 years ago.

That should have been the wake up call to get things started on the technology side to the point where they would be ready to start ramping up production now.

Ramping up much later than 5 years from now will probably be too late.

> So is the idea that the rest if the industry will just evaporate and Tesla becomes the Xerox of cars?

If they don’t adapt they will die out.

P.S. I'm not saying Tesla's valuation is justified, just that existing car makers better hurry up or they'll be left behind.


It's possible car companies have dropped the ball, but I don't think we can outright declare it yet. VW's timing, I think, has actually been excellent.

The ID3 is a good car for a good price they can sell profitably. The program commenced in the fallout of dieselgate roughly around the same time as the Model 3.

If they went all in just a few years earlier, it would have been on something like the E-Golf, not fit to be a mainstream car, and it would have ruined the company.

Now, if they had the R&D strength of Tesla, the E-Golf could have been as good as the ID.3. But Tesla is unique.

Car companies that achieve volume production over the next couple of years probably won't suffer terribly for the delay - but it will be less ideal than VW. Car companies that haven't ramped volume production by some cutoff (say 2025) will die without question. It's too late today to start that program, so the fate is already sealed for anyone without an iron in the fire.

And it wouldn't have made sense for any company to try to compete with the Model S/X without amortizing the R&D over mainstream cars, similar to Intel's high margin Xeon chips which probably wouldn't exist in a vacuum. Tesla doesn't break out the finances enough to clearly tell, but they very likely lost money on the Model S/X program as a whole, although maybe they've turned it around in recent years. And that's with Tesla's unique R&D advantage which may have reduced costs by as much as an order of magnitude.

Even if you build that car, you have to sell it to Tesla fans, at best splitting a small market, and at worse being ignored because of Tesla's impressive mindshare.

(I'm not writing this as a direct argument to what you're saying, I think we probably broadly agree)


> I think we probably broadly agree

I think we do - like you said, anyone without an iron in the fire isn't going to make it, and VW at least have that going for them (likewise Porsche which VW own).


I guess my point is more: the top reply was "Tesla will face problems if traditional car manufacturers don't do so and so"

Tesla has dwarfed them by such a nonsensical amount that what the other manufacturers do doesn't even seem matter any more.

As far as I can tell even if they do die out Tesla faces "problems" ever justifying this valuation

I won't ever spend my money trying to short it, especially when blind faith in the ponzi scheme continuing has been so profitable, but one really has to wonder what will happen when in say 30 years, Tesla is the new Toyota and the current valuation still doesn't make sense, let alone what ever truly ridiculous valuation they'll have tacked on along the way...

I feel like some machinery to stop this kind of thing from happening should exist though.

Imagine that GM was considered "too big to fail" at one point and compare it to what Tesla has become, truly something.


> Tesla faces "problems" ever justifying this valuation

On this we agree.


Some real in depth analysis there.

Annalists have been saying this for years. I'm skeptical. Along many other reasons, there aren't enough batteries to go around.

I don't know how the battery situation will play out but in Europe Tesla sales have already flattened (while other manufacturer EVs are picking up) which is not a good sign.

Perhaps Tesla's market share in Europe could have been better had they had actually cars to ship there?

Just saying. Tesla had a record year and consistently high demand for Model 3 and Model Y.


Nopes. The big boys are more like obese octogenarians on a wheelchair. By the time they actually arrive on the station, the train would have reached other side of the globe.

The greatest weakness of these large companies is the rent seekers called dealerships. Like he drug dealers these absolutely bottom scrappers are the biggest hurdle for innovation in this space. So I will not raise my hopes.


It has already happened in Europe.



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