Posted on: June 14, 2022 Posted by: Jerry D. Pfeil Comments: 0

Electric vehicles have been plagued by “range anxiety”. Automakers continue to try to alleviate it by making heavier and larger battery packs so consumers can travel farther between charges.

The problem is that lithium-ion batteries are still expensive and heavy and in critically short supply all over the globe. Even with the bulk of a battery, even in powerful trucks, getting an efficient and expensive electric vehicle cannot be easy.

I recently tested the Hyundai Ioniq5 & Kia EV6, which are both high-end, stylish E.V.s. They have an 800-volt battery architecture, which delivers fast charging and is unheard of at this price. These stylish crossover SUVs may not be capable of driving for 7 hours on the freeway, but they can cruise for 500 miles. However, their ability to charge up to 80 per cent in just 18 minutes shows that E.V.s can still be viable interstate cruisers and circumvent battery overkill.

Particularly the Hyundai left other drivers doing double takes and taking out their phones to take pictures. The Ioniq5 was already named Car Design of the Year in the U.K. The Hyundai Global Design Chief Sangyup Lee designed the Ioniq5, also named Car Design of the Year in the U.K. Hyundai calls this new design language “Parametric Pixel”, with pixelated LED lighting, which nods to 8-bit video game designs. The design’s clean lines and origami folds are reminiscent of the ’80s designs of Giorgetto Giugiaro. He was one of 20th-century’s most influential car designers, from the Lotus Esprit (07’s favourite underwater vehicle) to the rallying Lancia Delta, the BMW M1 supercar, the Saab 9000 and the V.W. Scirocco. Giugiaro also designed the Hyundai Pony in 1975, the brand’s first car.

Hyundai’s e-GMP (electrical global modular platform) skateboard architecture gives Ioniq5 a huge 3-meter (18.1-inch) wheelbase. This is longer than the company’s Palisade SUV. It also offers excellent ingress/egress, outward visibility and plenty of space inside. The Genesis G60, a striking luxury crossover, will be born from this platform.

This platform may have the technical advantage of overachieving charging. The 800-volt architecture doubles Tesla’s 400 V and matches the six-figure Porsche Taycan. It also allows the Hyundai and Kia to consume electrons at a 270-kilowatt speed when connected to a 350-kW D.C. charger. These chargers are still in their infancy in the United States. Three of them are located in New York. They are part of an expanding Electrify America network, which offers two years of free charging for EV6 and Ioniq5 customers.

A 5-minute stop at the Frankenstein plugs can add 109 km (68 miles) to an Ioniq5. This is not as fast as a gas fill-up, but it’s still much faster than E.V.s from just a few decades ago. The Hyundai video of ultrafast chargers made its point. The Hyundai’s charging rate reached 250 kW, slightly lower than the claimed 270 kW. The Ioniq5’s charging curve is remarkable, with a charge rate of over 150 kW, enough to charge the vehicle for an entire 18-minute period. This is faster than many luxury E.V.s. Both the Hyundai and Kia can perform vehicle-to-load (V2L) charging. This allows them to use up to 80 per cent stored energy to power small appliances and other E.V.s, although they only have a 3.6-kW output.

A Target in New Jersey provided a 150-kW E.A. charger for my test. The charger pushed juice at an extremely low rate of 45 kW due to bitter ambient temperatures and other snafus. This is exactly one-sixth of the Hyundai’s maximum rate of 270 kW. The Hyundai still managed to add 161km (100 miles) in just 42 minutes. If you do the math, it takes about 7 minutes to add 161 kilometres on a more powerful charger. We’re now talking.

I was able to see both sides of the speed-versus-size problem when I drove the new GMC Hummer EV last week.

The reborn Hummer is a 1,000-horsepower, 4,111 kilos (9,063-pound), an off-road burrito stuffed with a 200-kilowatt hour battery pack. It’s the biggest and heaviest E.V. ever made. The double-stacked Ultium battery from General Motors and L.G. Chem is 50% larger than the 135-kWh pack in the Rivian R1T pickup and twice as large as any Tesla battery. The Hummer can travel 530km (329 miles) and is a 4.5-tonne pickup capable of achieving 60 mph in just 3.0 seconds. In its first Edition 1, the Hummer costs an astonishing U.S. $110,295. The 47 MPGe rating, an electron-huffing E.V., is the lowest among all E.V.s sold in the United States. The Hummer’s 1,315-kg (2.900-pound) battery is a major factor in this, as it weighs more than an entire base-model Honda Civic.

The Hummer’s 400V skateboard-platform batteries can be used for propulsion. However, it can also charge in parallel at 800 V if the vehicle is connected to a superpowerful D.C. charger. G.M. engineers demonstrated a charging session using the Hummer’s battery at 348 kW. This is close to the maximum output of a 350-kW charger and faster than any E.V. I have tested. The Hummer can travel 100 miles at this flow rate in about 10 minutes. This is faster than the Hyundai and Kia, but it’s still slower due to its heavy weight and inefficiency.

The Lucid Air sedan, built-in Arizona, can also charge under 300 kW. The Air starts at $140,000 for the Grand Touring edition and $96,500 for the Touring model. The Hummer is more expensive than $110,000, as we have already mentioned.

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