Finally an EV Driver – Hello Smart ForTwo Electric Drive!

7 08 2014

 

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Well – the cat’s out of the bag… I am now a very proud owner of a Smart ForTwo Electric Drive!

I needed to replace my old Protege5 since it needed so many repairs and was rusting like crazy. It was used as a commuter… so all I needed was something inexpensive to get my wife and I to work. The total distance round trip of my commute to work when I drop my wife off downtown is 50km and 30km when I’m going into work alone. Perfect for an EV!

Then I saw this amazing deal that was shared on Facebook – a 3 year lease on a Smart ForTwo Electric Drive for 100$/month with 2000$ down! This deal was just too good to pass up and I had to jump on it. I mean, I was already spending 150$/month on fuel alone for my Protege… Not only did I really want an EV as my next car but this also made financial sense for me to finally take the leap! Taking the repairs needed to keep my Protege on the road and fuel costs into account, I would basically be leasing the Smart for free! (Not the mention the pollution it emits).  As a bonus, the lease term of three 3 years, as a Tesla fan, is perfect timing. The affordable Tesla Model 3 will be coming out when my lease is up. 🙂

I’ve been dreaming of driving an EV for so long! I’m just so happy with the car and my decision to finally take the plunge. I’ve been driving it a lot for the first two days of my ownership (I’ve even given 8 people a ride in it already) – and it’s like driving a small go-kart. Definitely not a Tesla Roadster, but it’s still just as fun to drive. I can’t wait to get to the next stop sign or red light just so I can press on the gas (or electron) pedal again. The acceleration is just so much fun off the line, it really takes off!

Big thanks to Star Motors in Ottawa for matching this ridiculously awesome lease rate that was only offered at Toronto dealerships!

Now I just need to figure out my charging solution, I’ve been relying on a regular 110V plug and I can get by with it for now based on my driving habits. But it would be good to upgrade to 220V to charge this thing in under 6 hours.

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6 responses

7 08 2014
John Rowell

Congratulations Martin on your new ride! Not a Tesla, but definitely electric =)
A 240v charging station will charge it 2-3 times as fast, and can be had for around $600. The AV Turbocord is kinda nice cause it’s also portable. With this charger and the right adapter cord, you can simply plug in to your dryer outlet for faster charging. If you do buy a charging station and need an adapter, just drop by my website http://www.evseadapters.com and I’ll give you a free one!

7 08 2014
teslatradeup

Wow! That’s amazing John! Thank you so much!

I’m still figuring things out – I might opt for a hardwired solution because I might get one for a really good price… but if that falls through, the TurboCord was going to be my solution. Only thing, they are charging over 850$ for it here in Canada… I think they are gouging because we get a 50% rebate from our provincial government for Level 2 charging solutions.

I’ll let you know when I finally decide! 🙂 Thanks again – that’s so kind!

7 08 2014
JP Pelletier

Congrats on your purchase, have fun!

You may also want to look into the EVDuty 240V charger, made in Quebec, the cable uses a rubber that stays flexible even in deep winter temperatures.

http://roulezelectrique.com/la-borne-evduty-fabrique-au-quebec/

7 08 2014
teslatradeup

I’m really kicking myself right now – when finishing my basement I ran a 10/3 wire that can handle 30amps from my basement to the garage. It seems like all the 30 amp chargers require a 40 amp breaker. So I’m assuming my wiring won’t work for the 30 amp chargers. Or am I still okay using this wire, with a 40amp breaker?

However, the Smart won’t take advantage of that anyways. It can charge at it’s maximum rate on a 16amp charger. So that’s all I need for now… but when I get the Model 3, I’ll want something more powerful.

27 07 2015
James Strickland

I don’t think 10/3 is good enough – it should be 8 gauge. The continuous output allowed is 80% of the circuit breaker capacity, so for a 40A charger you need a 50A breaker, etc. For now you could likely install a 30A EVSE that can be configured to be on a 30A circuit, and limit its output to 24A. This is still more than the Smart ED can take, and it’s actually just fine for a Model S for overnight charging. I mean, sure, if you drive 400 km one day, have to charge overnight and drive 400 km the next day then you might have an issue as a full charge at 5.7 kW would take about 13 hours. But how often is that going to be an issue? There’s even other alternatives if you’re in a bind – the Brookstreet hotel in Kanata has an 80A Tesla charger, for example. That’s 16 kW! And it’s free to use!

5 08 2015
teslatradeup

Hi James – thanks for the comment! I’m going to go with a 25 Amp charger from Sun Country Highway (Costco: http://www.costco.ca/Sun-Country-Highway-25A-Electric-Vehicle-EV-Charging-Station.product.100107644.html). It’s the perfect one for my wiring and will be more than enough for my needs.

My commute when driving my wife into work is 50kms round trip… so this will do just fine and will be more than enough when the Model 3 comes out for the amount of driving we do. 🙂

Now that I’ve been driving an EV for over 1 year – I’m getting a way better feel of what I need. 🙂

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