Real-world experience of an Electric Vehicle – 18 months with a Hyundai Ioniq EV

Once in a while at Ausdroid we prefer to evaluate issues which are outdoors the field, however extra lately, the field has expanded and whereas as soon as speaking about vehicles may’ve been a bit off matter, the fashionable electrical car (or EV) is squarely within the realm of know-how… and so we’ve been speaking about them a bit extra.

It’s possible you’ll recall that again in August 2021 I reviewed Hyundai’s Ioniq Electrical EV. The conclusion of my evaluate was reasonably optimistic … and so, not lengthy after finishing the evaluate, I put my cash the place my mouth was, and went and acquired the identical automobile.


Having pushed a number of EVs and hybrids in 2021, the choice wasn’t actually all that troublesome. The choice factors again then had been:

  • Worth – the Ioniq EV was a bit cheaper than the Tesla Mannequin 3, although slightly dearer than the MG ZS EV. Given it was an ex demonstrator, I paid round $46k for mine, which in contrast very favourably to the pricing / options of others.
  • Fashion – it’d simply be me, however the Tesla Mannequin 3 seems slightly bland, and it’s not likely like a automobile inside. I like conventional automobile stylings, and the Ioniq was extra my flavour.
  • Options – Tesla’s interface within the automobile is sort of cool, however I like Android Auto and Automobile Play, and I like cabin structure that fits how I drive. The Ioniq is extra polished to me… and never as minimalist because the Tesla.

What did I miss out on? Not all that a lot:

  • The Ioniq’s vary is rather less than the Tesla – relying on the mannequin you pay for – however 311km vary is ideal for what I want.
  • Tesla has extra bells and whistles in its vehicles, however truthfully, I don’t actually need most of them, and there’s some I simply don’t need.
  • I reckon the Tesla is less complicated to cost – the cost port is extra simply accessible, and it doesn’t have the silly cap on it that the Ioniq does. It’s a small annoyance.

How’s it been?

Fairly truthfully? Sensible.

The automobile I drove earlier than the Ioniq EV was a Skoda Octavia wagon, a automobile I had needed for ages and reasonably loved driving too. It was frugal on gas, simple to drive, had loads of area and simply met my wants effortlessly.

Transferring to an EV, I misplaced a number of issues – the Octavia had extra baggage area and I do are inclined to cart round a bit within the boot. It had barely extra leg room, and naturally, it might go quite a bit additional than 311km on a single tank of gas. It might routinely get round 600-650 out of a tank.

Nonetheless, the elephant within the room – which grew to become far more important within the final 18 months – was gas costs. Gas has turn out to be extremely costly, and with its 43 litre tank, it might value round $75 – $80 to fill it, and that value has remained pretty steady. By way of bang for buck, that’s round 13c per km.

The Ioniq, at anyplace between free and 14c per kWh to fill its battery, can value anyplace from nothing to $5.40 to fill it. Bang for buck, that’s round 1.7c per km.

Wish to put that in actual phrases? If I drive a median of 20,000 km a 12 months (which I do), in a petroleum automobile that prices me round $2,600 a 12 months in gas. There’s additionally the costlier upkeep – an ICE automobile has extra shifting elements and requires extra labour to maintain it on the street – however let’s simply depart it at gas.

The identical distance in an electrical automobile prices me simply $340, and that’s presuming that I pay for each kWh put again into the automobile; a very good quantity of my recharging is completed in the course of the day, so it prices me nothing as a result of the photo voltaic covers the automobile’s consumption.

$340 for a 12 months’s price of driving, vs $2,600 is a major change, and as quickly as I figured that out, I’ve not regarded again even as soon as. I’ll gladly tolerate having to cease and cost on longer journeys – which I hardly ever do anyway – when it prices me so little to run the automobile.

About these longer drives – do you will have vary anxiousness?

Solely twice has the automobile given me a little bit of a fright, and a type of occasions it was merely a scarcity of planning. The opposite one… nicely… I’ll clarify, however earlier than I get to that, the brief reply isn’t any. I hardly ever pay an excessive amount of consideration to the battery cost stage, distance remaining or the rest.

I certainly did for the primary few months of possession as I didn’t need to get caught out, however when you recover from the brand new automobile wow emotions and settle into your routine use, you get used to what the automobile can do and dealing with it turns into second nature. For me, for instance, I cost the automobile most evenings and – if I’m dwelling in the course of the day, or know I’m going to be – I’ll organize to cost the automobile in the course of the day when it prices me nothing.

For longer drives, I’ve acquired a Kind II charging cable within the boot so I can just about use any public charger to prime up if I have to, however I very hardly ever use public charging infrastructure. I simply don’t have to.

So.. vary anxiousness isn’t a each day, weekly and even month-to-month factor. Let’s speak in regards to the two occasions it was.

Mid 2022, we took a weekend as much as Orange to get a little bit of R&R. The drive as much as Orange was simply inside the automobile’s vary, however we determined to cease at Lithgow anyway for a fast cost whereas we purchased a drink and used the toilet. That acquired us comfortably to – and residential from – Orange with none vary points in any respect.

Nonetheless, whereas we had been there, we drove from Orange to Wellington. It’s round 100km every means, and the street is pretty good. Nonetheless, as we’d been driving domestically round Orange I hadn’t been all that prudent with conserving the automobile topped up, and so we left with round 260km vary. Ought to’ve given us a 60km buffer which I believed could be okay.

Seems, that’s not fairly the way it labored and I discovered a useful lesson – EVs driving at 110km/h are inclined to chew by means of the juice slightly quicker. Seems that spherical journey of round 200km almost drained the battery, and we made it again into Orange with round 20km vary left on the automobile. By this stage, it was flashing up warnings and I need to admit there was an honest time there the place I suspected we mightn’t make it again to the quick charger on the town. Fortuitously we did, and 45 minutes – and lunch – later, the automobile was full and again to regular.

The opposite event was related: driving 120km every means and never charging the automobile in a single day meant that the next morning, I used to be developing about 20km brief on the vary estimate and needed to in a short time discover any out there public charger on the best way to prime off so I might make it dwelling.

The lesson right here? If you recognize you’re going to be driving additional than standard, cost up earlier than you go, and if want be, chuck the 10A wall charger within the boot – sure, it expenses slowly and it nonetheless means it’s essential discover a energy socket, however no less than you’re not going to finish up caught on the aspect of the street. Worst case, you discover a pleasant enterprise, sling them $10 to plug your automobile in for a few hours, and get on with it.

The opposite choice, in fact, is to keep up NRMA Roadside Help membership, and so long as you’re not a goose, in case your automobile genuinely does run flat in your means someplace, they’ll offer you a tow to the closest public charger or your vacation spot. Not a foul deal.

Have there been any main downsides?

No, not likely.

There’s some belongings you shouldn’t do with an EV – the additional weight and comparatively low clearance means they’re not likely suited to going off-road, they usually’re not likely designed to tow something. Theoretically, you can tow a small field trailer or related with the Ioniq, however I wouldn’t – your vary could be vastly decreased.

The battery being the scale that it’s, typically EVs don’t include a full-size spare tyre. Some include an area saver, and a few – just like the Ioniq EV – don’t include a spare in any respect. You do get a “wheel restore package” which, from expertise, is mainly ineffective.

For working about city, I’m not too fussed by this – even with a sluggish leak, you’ll be able to normally discover a servo close to by, blow the tyre as much as a excessive strain, and that’ll allow you to drive far sufficient to a storage or a tyre place to get it repaired. Worst case, the tyre’s ruined and should you should run the automobile on a flat for a brief distance you’re not going to do a lot injury, or you may get the automobile towed.

Nonetheless, should you’re driving longer distances a bit extra frequently, or extra susceptible to a tyre puncture – driving in industrial or industrial areas the place there appear to be extra nails and screws on the street – shopping for a space-saver spare and throwing it within the boot most likely isn’t the worst concept. A spare and a primary device package gained’t take plenty of room, they usually’re not arduous to make use of for the peace of thoughts it presents.

I actually ought to get onto that.

In conclusion

The final 18 months with a Hyundai Ioniq EV have been a breeze; it’s began conversations with strangers who’re eager to study extra about how the electrical vehicles work. It’s met each want that I’ve had – driving myself to work, driving the household round on weekends, and lengthy distance driving. It’s value me 5/8ths of nothing to run within the scheme of issues, and if I’m cautious, I can cost it without cost. It has loads of room for me – I’m 6 foot tall and pretty stable – in addition to companion, children and crap within the boot.

There’s mainly nothing I’ve not been in a position to do, and it’s saved me a fortune in working and upkeep prices.

There’s plenty of speak about vary anxiousness, and sure driving an EV does imply it’s essential assume slightly bit about the place you’re going and when, but it surely’s hardly a demanding expertise. There’s nice providers on the market that can assist you work out longer distance journeys and charging choices – PlugShare’s Journey Planner is the most effective by far – and it actually takes away the necessity to panic.

Proudly owning an EV has been a breeze, although I do admit there are some folks for whom it simply may not work so nicely – charging EVs in strata buildings will be troublesome as there aren’t energy factors close to alloted parking areas in some buildings, should you routinely drive lengthy distances, then charging may begin to eat into your time, and should you don’t have off-street parking, charging an EV could make you reliant on public charging infrastructure which – whereas bettering – is much from in all places.

Acquired questions? Ask them within the feedback, I’d love to remain and chat.

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