So you know it doesn’t exist?

I wrote in a previous blog post about my experience with a non-working revive charger.

On my first use of the chargers, mine was the only electric vehicle using them. On my second visit to the chargers, quite a few of the chargers were in use and my car’s charging port is on the front nearside. There was one optimal space where I parked. I plugged the car in and then used the Revive (web) app to find the charger and start the charge. However the (web) app said no such charger existed. Which I thought was weird. As there wasn’t a suitable alternative space, I moved the car, parked in a normal space and caught my train to work.

I decided to email Revive and see if there was an issue with the non-working revive charger. I did get a response.

We are aware of the issues with this charger and our faults team are currently investigating.   Please be advised, that the charger RV01082 has been removed from our network until further notice. Once charger is available again, it will show on our live map.

I do think that they should at the very least turn off the faulty charger, or even put a sign on it…

I will wait until it appears on the map.

What do you mean it doesn’t exist?

I had seen a few months back they were preparing the Worle Station Diamond Batch car park for EV charging, well they had put in the space markings, but there were no chargers. The chargers are now installed and I have used them before and was pleased with their speed and cost. The Revive charger charges 55p per kWh. This is less than the 85p that MFG charge. Obviously, there is the £2.40 car parking charge as well. I said before:

I was actually quite impressed with the speed, taking just over three hours to charge from 25% to 100%. I would certainly use these chargers again.

They are Revive chargers, which I had also used before at Sand Bay. The chargers at Diamond Batch are 22 kWh chargers so are not “quick” compared to the rapid chargers you find elsewhere. However they are ideal for a station car parking, you park, plug in, catch the train, go to work, come back, your car is charged to 100%. It’s also great that there are no idle fees, this means you can set your car to charge and not worry about moving it once you have a 100% charge. This is ideal for this kind of car park, where you are likely to be parked for the whole day.

Now it hasn’t all been plain sailing. On my first use of the chargers, mine was the only electric vehicle using them. On my second visit to the chargers, quite a few of the chargers were in use and my car’s charging port is on the front nearside. There was one optimal space where I parked. I plugged the car in and then used the Revive (web) app to find the charger and start the charge. However the (web) app said no such charger existed. Which I thought was weird. As there wasn’t a suitable alternative space, I moved the car, parked in a normal space and caught my train to work.

Worle Railway Station

The following day I went to charge the car and used a different space with a different charger. This worked as it had the first time I had used these car chargers. All worked as expected. It took three hours and forty-three minutes to go from a 8% charge to 100%. At the end of it, there was a 152 mile predicted range, which is expected at this time of year.

GWM ORA 07

Originally called the Lightning Cat, this year ORA will release the ORA 07 to the UK.

ORA 07

Nice video.

I do quite like it.

Now we have an EE WiFi Hotspot

Fibre
Image by Joshua Kimsey from Pixabay

The UK telecommunications giant, BT acquired EE for £12.5bn in 2016. Last year BT said the BT brand will take a back seat as it will make EE its flagship brand in the consumer market.

A change in the way we take our brands to market. We have to be more focused and more efficient. We are evolving from today’s approach in the consumer market where BT and EE both take centre stage, to one where a flagship brand will lead our approach to future innovation, convergence, and services beyond connectivity.

When I was in London last week I noted that a BT WiFi hotspot I had used before was now an EE WiFi hotspot. I could still log in using my BT Broadband credentials.

When I got home I noticed that BT have reconfigured our router so that it is now broadcasting the EE WiFi SSID.

Not sure what difference this makes.

Radioline issues

The Funky Cat comes with a few pre-installed online services (as well as 4G to facilitate access). One of these is Radioline. I didn’t think too much of it as I didn’t recognise much of what was there.

It was only later when checking it in more detail that I realised that the country setting was set to Germany. Once I set it to the UK there were a lot more services and podcasts I recognised.

I didn’t like the fact when listening to a podcast, it would on returning to it, to find it would restart.

It was only later that I realised I needed to create an account, which was actually quite a simple process to sync with the car. This meant that the car would remember where I was in a podcast.

Though using it recently I was surprised to find the app language had changed to German. The country setting was still the UK. No idea why it did that. Still took a while to change it back to English.

Charging at Diamond Batch

I had seen a few months back they were preparing the Worle Station Diamond Batch car park for EV charging, well they had put in the space markings, but there were no chargers. I was on my way to Bristol I was catching the train to work. I wondered if the chargers were installed and saw that they were and decided I would try out the chargers.

They were Revive chargers, which I had used before elsewhere.

These are 22 kWh chargers so are not “quick” compared to the rapid chargers you find elsewhere. However they are ideal for a station car parking, you park, plug in, catch the train, go to work, come back, your car is charged to 100%. It’s also great that there are no idle fees, this means you can set your car to charge and not worry about moving it once you have a 100% charge. This is ideal for this kind of car park, where you are likely to be parked for the whole day.

The Revive charger was charging 55p per kWh. This is less than the 85p that MFG charge. Obviously, there is the £2.40 car parking charge as well.

I was actually quite impressed with the speed, taking just over three hours to charge from 25% to 100%. I would certainly use these chargers again.

More chargers at Reading Services

I had read some time ago that non-Tesla electric vehicles could use some selected Tesla superchargers. Alas none in the Bristol area can be used, so I’ve never had the chance to try them out. As well as using the chargers at  Studlands Retail Park in Newmarket in Suffolk, I also used the Tesla chargers at the westbound Reading Services on the M4.

They use to have a couple of Gridserve chargers for electric vehicles, they have since expanded the provision to fourteen Gridserve chargers and twelve Tesla superchargers. There are an additional four BP Pulse chargers at the petrol stations as well.

When I arrived at the services I was not the only interloper (non-Tesla) electric vehicle to use the Tesla chargers, there was a BMW as well.

I found it interesting that these Tesla chargers are opposite the Gridserve chargers. The Gridserve chargers are 20-30p a kWh more expensive than the Tesla chargers. I used the Tesla chargers there, as it was easy through the app (and cheaper than the Gridserve chargers.

Not all plain sailing…

electric car being charged

I had read some time ago that non-Tesla electric vehicles could use some selected Tesla superchargers. Alas none in the Bristol area can be used, so I’ve never had the chance to try them out. On a recent long distance journey to Norfolk I  stopped at the Tesla superchargers in the Studlands Retail Park in Newmarket in Suffolk, and it all worked really easily and smoothly.

On my return journey, I decided to use the superchargers again. It was mid morning when I arrived and there was a fair few Tesla cars in place charging. As a result I had to use the space differently than on my previous visit. The first Tesla charger I used, I had to stretch the charger over the bonnet, I plugged in and using the Tesla app, set it to charge. However it wouldn’t charge. Tried again, but still no joy. Ah well I thought, I would use a different charger. The car though wouldn’t unlock the charger. I did my usual lock, an unlock routine, but that still didn’t release the charger. I had to use the manual cable release under the bonnet, which took me an age to find, but this once found worked fine.

I then moved spaces and tried again. This time the charging worked fine. I headed to the café in the Tesco and had a coffee and did some work.

Once I had a good charge on the Funky Cat, I headed off.

Tonight, Matthew, I’m going to be…

…a Tesla

I had read some time ago that non-Tesla electric vehicles could use some selected Tesla superchargers. Alas none in the Bristol area can be used, so I’ve never had the chance to try them out.

So on a recent long distance journey to Norfolk, I planned a stop at the Tesla superchargers in the Studlands Retail Park in Newmarket, in Suffolk. I had a backup to use the nearby Instavolt chargers at McDonalds if I couldn’t use the Tesla superchargers.

I had never used the Tesla superchargers before, so wasn’t 100% confident it was going to work. I created an account on the Tesla app, set up the payment, and then plugged the charger into the Funky Cat. On the app I set the charging going. I was pleased (and a little) surprised it worked.

The chargers were in a retail park, but the Costa coffee was still under construction. It was rather cold and chilly. I had to go elsewhere for refreshment.

After charging to 80% I headed off to complete my journey. It had take less than forty minutes to charge from 9% to 80%, which I thought was quite impressive.

The charger was cheaper than other rapid chargers I have used. Using these off-peak these are 55p per kWh compared to 85p for the Gridserve chargers I usually use at services. 

I believe part of the compatibility issue is the length of the charging cable. The Tesla superchargers when charging Tesla vehicles, don’t need a long cable, as they only need to plug into the charging socket in the boot area of the Tesla. Other electric vehicles, their charging sockets are all over the place. The Funky Cat is on the front passenger side, on other cars I have seen them at the front, in the middle, rear driver side, and so on. The Tesla superchargers at Studlands had cables of a sufficient length.

It’s a pity that the ones in and around Bristol are Tesla only.

How low can you go?

Up until recently the lowest predicted range I had seen on the Funky Cat having charged to 100% was 141 miles.

I know that the predicted range is dependent on the ambient temperature, as well as previous power consumption over (I think) the last 200 miles.

I was though a little surprised to see recently when charging to 100% that the predicted mileage was just 133.

I was even more surprised when charging to 100% later in the week, that the predicted mileage was now, just 122 miles.

I suspect I might get more than that when I actually start driving, but it does give you a bit of range anxiety, and 122 is a lot less than the 182 I had at the beginning of the month.