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Canadian EV Expert Explains Why He Thinks The Mustang Mach-E Is A Different Breed Of EV

How does the 2021 Mustang Mach-E hold up in the cold weather of Canada? One EV expert, who has owned several EVs and hybrids, explains why he bought the Mustang Mach-E over the Tesla Model Y.

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Yves Racette is a well-known name in the automotive educational training world. He has developed curriculum around electric vehicle maintenance including ADAS and self-driving technologies.

He is a proud Canadian who lives in Montreal, but has travelled all around the world as a trainer for General Motors of Canada. Now he works as a consultant in the U.S. and Canada and provides training on EVs. Since 2019 he has worked for SAE International to produce training on fundamentals of high voltage xEV, safety and PPE.

This isn’t meant to sound like his resume on Indeed but rather to show his impressive background in electric vehicles. Yves is a friend of mine and he recently took ownership of a 2021 Ford Mustang Mach-E. So I was interested to know his take on it, as someone with intimate knowledge and experience on EVs and as an early adapter. Plus I found the Canadian viewpoint on the Mustang Mach-E to be interesting.

Yves agreed to do a question and answer with me and also provided all of these photos.

2021 Ford Mustang Mach-E Astral WhiteFirst question is a simple one, tell me what Mach-E you bought including the battery/range, color, etc.?
Yves: I own a Premium Mach-E with AWD extended Range in Astral white (Exterior) and Black onyx (Interior). It’s the 919th car that was produced. I received the car last week of January 2021.
I was the first guy to look under the car and locate an easter egg on the rear motor that says “electric ponies live here” (pictured below).

Ford Mustang Mach-E Easter eggWhat made you choose the Mach-E over another EV, specifically the Tesla?
Yves: On my part, I was always looking for a nice vehicle with the size of the Mach-E that could go from where I live (South shore of Montreal ) to Quebec city (about 2-hour drive from here and approx. 160 miles) and not have to charge the car on the way (at least in the nice times of the years which are March to October). I love the look and size of the car. The main problem with Tesla on my part is that they don’t allow us to connect to the vehicle to be able to diagnose the car with a scan tool (or Laptop). We don’t have any regulation here for the right to repair, so we might be able to do it illegally but that’s not the way that I wish to do so on my own car, and I need to have a car I can work on and be able to do the service on it without any restraint. On top of that, there were so many complaints on the fit and finish of the Tesla, which is a big difference with the Mach-E.

Have you owned a Tesla or any other EVs?
Yves: I had three Chevy Volts, my first one was in 2012, then I got a brand new 2014, and a second-generation in 2018. Before the Mach-E, I had a Hyundai Ioniq EV 2017 and I still own a Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV since 2018.

Related story: Motor Trend Proclaims Tesla Model Y To Be Better Than Mustang Mach-E.

2021 Mustang Mach-E delivery in snowWhat has been your experience with the Mach-E so far?
Yves: If I am really honest, in all of the cars I have owned, I had a great experience with the Volt I had, but this car is really a different breed. like the height of the driving position, the seats are comfortable, the power at acceleration that shoots you back in the seats and the technology embedded in that car is really amazing!

Any issues cropped up yet?
Yves: Well I could say at the beginning when you get in the first time it’s a little different than regular cars and a little intimidating at first. There is so much to get used to at once with all the technology but I was lucky enough not to have any issues with mine so far, aside from losing the front protective cap on my front camera washer.

Related story: Tesla Model Y vs. Mustang Mach-E which requires less maintenance?

You mentioned an interesting point about the comfort and quality of the build compared to the Model Y. Tell me what you mean and how you came to that conclusion?
Yves: I heard so much stuff about the Tesla’s fit with all the gap that are uneven, and the paint peeling off, etc. I am always being cautious with all these type of complaints. I will say that without Tesla’s pressure on the automotive world, we might not have seen a Mach-E electric!
Aside from this, the silence of the ride of the Mach-E is really amazing, the quality of the materials with the feel of it and the gaps, are really a notch up from Tesla. We were doing some testing the other day with my wife and our friends that have a Model Y Performance, and the girls are in the back of the Mach-E filming with their phones, at first in the Mach-E and then in the Model Y. My friend's girlfriend says ‘’I think we have a problem with our car it's shaking so much we cannot be stable enough to film in the back!``
This is telling you a lot about the quality of the ride with four adults in the cars!

Related story: Mustang Mach-E already taking market share from Tesla.

2021 Mustang Mach-E charging in the snowWhat is the charging like for you up in Canada? Is the colder weather inhibiting your range?
Yves: We have so many charging stations in Quebec right now and they are popping up so fast that we are not getting any problems on that side here for now. For the Mach-E, 30 minutes of charge is really great so far I have used it only during cold months. We have charging stations that are charging at over 100Kw, so an easy 30 min to get from 40% charge to 80% charge.
In the cold weather, if you are used to it all OEM’s models (even Tesla) will suffer and limit the range. If it’s your first EV you might be surprised but you need to know exactly what happens, so before buying one it would be better to talk to owners that have experienced it before assuming and taking the word of the sales guy.

This winter in the Mach E I was comparing with my Hyundai Ioniq:
Ioniq at 25c (77°F ) 258 Km range(160 Miles)
Ioniq at -10c (14°F) 178 Km range (110 Miles)
Ioniq at -30c (-22°F) 116km range (72 Miles)
Mustang Mach-E at *22c (71.6°F) 430Km range (267 Miles)
Mustang Mach-E at -10c (14°F) 300 Km range (186 Miles)
Mustang Mach-E at -30c (-22°F) 258 km range (160 Miles)

Did you have any issue with the Mustang name being used on the Mach-E?
Yves: I did not have any issue with the name at all! But I know a guy that started a petition on that and made the news!

2021 Ford Mustang Mach-E whiteWhat do you think is the future of the EV and where does the Mach-E fit into it? Will it see multiple generations or is this a flash in the pan/transition vehicle leading to something else?
Yves: All the new EVs are getting a lot more autonomous, and there is a good chance that in the future a lot more will be available in the market. Many unconventional OEMs are coming out with new products. Look at Rivian, Lucid, Workhorse as an example these new players are really changing the face of the market as we know it. There will be a big competition, but Ford and General Motors have clearly shown their color for the next generation with their products coming in the next few years. As far as the Mach-E I really believe they will continue and might go on building around the name, and I really wish we will see more generation of this in the future.

As an expert, can you talk about solid state battery technology and how that might play a role in the future of EVs?
Yves: Solid-state batteries are safer, cheaper, and can be used for longer without losing any performance and they are require less raw materials. The future battery might be lighter, reach a full charge in around 10 minutes, and will have higher energy density providing a lot more range (it could double the actual range). Less copper and less aluminum will be needed. Graphite and cobalt could be eliminated. Recycling solid-state batteries are much safer and it’s a simpler process. If we look in history all the new generation technologies starting from an exhaust system to a car computer are using a lot less raw materials and it won’t be different with solid states and future battery technologies.

Some people say that the grid is not capable of handling hundreds of thousands of EVs charging, so what is the future of alternate fuel and/or EVs?
Yves: We will see a lot of cars coming with xEVs in the picture, starting from hybrid, to Plug-in Hybrid to Extended range and fully electric without putting aside the fuel cell cars. I am curious to see how the semis will do in all-electric, as I think that maybe these heavy vehicles might have a brighter future in fuel cell versions especially for the long haul! if there are more fueling stations across their path as they go).

Leave your comments or if you have more questions for Yves, leave them in the comments. Maybe I can send them to him and get more answers or do a follow-up story. Also be sure to check out my colleague John Goreham's story on how the Mach-E's delivery volume is one of the highest in EV automotive history. Also, see how Ford kicks off Mustang Week by snagging another Global title.

Jimmy Dinsmore has been an automotive journalist for more than a decade and been a writer since the high school. His Driver’s Side column features new car reviews and runs in several newspapers throughout the country. He is also co-author of the book “Mustang by Design” and “Ford Trucks: A Unique Look at the Technical History of America’s Most Popular Truck”. Also, Jimmy works in the social media marketing world for a Canadian automotive training aid manufacturing company. Follow Jimmy on Facebook, Twitter, at his special Ford F-150 coverage on Twitter and LinkedIn. You can read the most of Jimmy's stories by searching Torque News Ford for daily Ford vehicle report.

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Mark Jones (not verified)    April 13, 2021 - 12:44AM

I like electric cars. I had a few when I was a kid and we raced them around a little plastic track. The cool thing is the electricity comes from a wall plug, like magic!

Strad (not verified)    April 13, 2021 - 7:37AM

The content of this article is so biased it's not even funny. I want to hear about legit information not brand smashing with false, outdated, and misleading information. "We couldn't film because it was is unsafe" are you serious. Riding in a car with sport suspension and low profile tires = stiff ride a.k.a. bumpy. OMG. I was hoping to see an article with real information of the Mach E. Reading this I now know this article is most likely claiming false info on the Mach E.

Trev (not verified)    April 13, 2021 - 11:13AM

In reply to by Jimmy Dinsmore

I think Ford has given this a decent go, and there's things to admire about it, this article is heavily slanted against Tesla and others. This is mostly an advertising piece with cherry-picked info to make it sound like it's better than it is. For a serious and balanced comparison look to Motortrend's comparison.

BlackBean (not verified)    April 13, 2021 - 11:45AM

In reply to by Jimmy Dinsmore

Experts have been wrong about Tesla and legacy auto for a decade.

This guys touts SS batteries. SS batteries is like nuclear fusion. It's so much better than anything but doesn't exist and won't exist for the foreseeable future.

Toyota arguably is closest to a production ready SS battery. However it does not offer any more range than CURRENT battery technology. And it will scale slowly, not be price competitive and longevity equal to or worse than current lithium-ion cells.

SS is just a way for the media (the mouthpiece of legacy auto and big oil) to convince people to delay buying EV's and perpetuate ICEV sales.

Keep on hoping on SS while current lithium-ion tech in production worldwide continue to improve in cost and energy density.

Paul (not verified)    April 18, 2021 - 10:48AM

In reply to by BlackBean (not verified)

Great points! By the time SS batteries hit the market in volume, Li-Ion batteries will have experienced incremental improvements to be similar in performance. I compare then to the race between LCD and OLED TVs. While OLED has indisputably better image quality, improving their yield and longevity has taken so long that LCDs have gotten quite similar in quality, particularly with large numbers of local dimming LEDs, and their prices are much much lower.

Yes SS batteries sound great, if they were available, but let's be real.

Patrick Ho (not verified)    April 15, 2021 - 9:02AM

In reply to by Jimmy Dinsmore

Did you see that he only"heard" about Tesla's fit and finish? As an 'expert' his opinion was based on second hand information and he stated that he never owned a Tesla. If he is not biased I don't know what is.... Don't get me wrong, his article is informative about EVs other than Tesla. Just don't regard him as 'expert'.

Paul (not verified)    April 18, 2021 - 10:42AM

In reply to by Jimmy Dinsmore

Your intro with over-the-top exultation of Yves' credentials sounded a little fishy at worst, awkward at best. The reasons he later cited for why the Mach-E is superior then had very little connection to his experience, they were mostly qualitative and highly subjective. Saying that the quiet interior, fit and finish, and higher seating position are game changers compared to the Model Y doesn't require his credentials, any YouTube reviewer can tell you the same things with the same level of authority. I have driven the AWD Mach-E and own an AWD Model 3, and performance wise there is NO COMPARISON between the two! The Ford dealer where I took the test drive at kept praising its performance, until I gave him a ride in my car afterwards. He fell silent and didn't say a word afterwards. The AWD Mach-E feels very sluggish in comparison, no neck snapping of any kind. And it has a very noisy drive train; in particular during regen breaking it has a very noticeable whine, very distinct from the artificial engine noise it creates. Regarding ride quality, you're comparing apples and oranges: the Mach-E is set up for ride quality over handling, being quite tippy in fast corners, while the Model Y has a heavily sports biased suspension with a much firmer ride. That said, I do think the Ford has better sound deadening and better door seals and such, their experience in that regard definitely shows.

All that said, I don't think the Mach-E is a great value proposition. The First Edition with AWD I rode had a sticker price of almost $59K, while even after the recent price hikes the Y is $8 cheaper. You get a much more performant car with considerably better efficiency and a much better charging infrastructure. I promise you that driving that Mach-E from Montreal to Florida will be an exercise in frustration with the current CCS infrastructure, while it will be a non-event in a Tesla.

Fl Cookie (not verified)    August 1, 2021 - 5:26PM

In reply to by Strad (not verified)

I have a MachE and a 2021 Tesla MY. Neither are perfect cars, but I the Ford has so many irritating issues that I hardly drive it. Tesla, complaints are much fewer - I miss Apple CarPlay and ventilated seats (also not available on MachE). Although I haven't needed service in the Tesla, I don't live near a service center so I won't be happy if mobile service can't take care of it. Not so much an issue with Ford.

Sherwood (not verified)    April 13, 2021 - 7:55AM

How does the vehicle speed impact the charging/battery range. In and around the city verses the highway speed?

Trev (not verified)    April 15, 2021 - 6:59PM

In reply to by Sherwood (not verified)

Yes. So, the higher the speed, the higher the energy consumption and thus range goes down. This is true for any vehicle - EV or gas. EPA ratings are based on a given speed limit - 65 mph. If you travel at 80 mph your effective range is worse. Conversely, if you're travelling around a city, the EV usually has a higher range and some of the impact of stop-and-go traffic is offset by the regen function. EVs range tends to be higher in the city as a result.

Charging on the other hand is not impacted by speed. That said, cold temperatures can impact the rate of charge if the pack is cold, and thus EVs heat the pack in order to optimize charging. Current EVs are susceptible to the cold as some of the energy stored in the pack must go to warming it up, so again range is impacted. Heat pumps go some way to reducing the impact of the cold on range. If/when solid-state batteries come about, temperature has less impact on these batteries. However, at this point, they're comparatively 1) more expensive, 2) insufficient storage compared to what's currently being used - Lithium-ion.

Peter (not verified)    April 13, 2021 - 3:06PM

Tesla on my part is that they don’t allow us to connect to the vehicle to be able to diagnose the car with a scan tool. First of all who would even attempt to do it themselves. And a general scanning tool does not work properly on a regular Ford, you need to take it to Ford dealer and pay a premium :) had many Fords nice car but not reliable seriously useless article. Funny how this person drives a gm car that wouldn't replace a faulty ignition yet calls Tesla unsafe what a Joker

Jimmy Dinsmore    April 14, 2021 - 8:06AM

In reply to by Peter (not verified)

Many people in the automotive repair world (like he is) would and do hook up their own scan tools and make their repairs. It's perfectly common. And it's a legit concern from a master certified expert like him to ding Tesla for that. I realize Tesla always goes against the industry standards so this might just be something to adjust to, but it's fair for them to be criticized as such for it too.

Peter Greszata (not verified)    April 15, 2021 - 11:18PM

In reply to by Jimmy Dinsmore

I got your point, my point is on my 2014 Fusion two general mechanics, their tools wouldn't give the proper codes they even told me I should take it to Ford themselves, so I had to take it to the dealer pay a hefty price, a general scan tool won't likely work on a new FORD!!!! especially with their EV lol

jules rosen (not verified)    April 16, 2021 - 8:04AM

In reply to by Peter Greszata (not verified)

I would imagine that there were manufacturers working on their own scan tools now for Tesla's as well as the Ford EV mustang. I certainly would understand the same situation as when TVs in the 1950s had tubes and then 1970s TVs had transistors the old tools simply don't work. Probably your mechanics were keeping up with the latest and the newest or you had a gremlin in your car that was only happening every other time you went over a bump? In any event it's always interesting to hear the other side of the coin

Matt Richter (not verified)    April 20, 2021 - 6:46PM

In reply to by Peter Greszata (not verified)

OBDII is a standard but doesn't go deep into subassemblies or specific modules. This is true on any car. You want to talk to the body control module? That's not OBDII. You need a factory tool.

Here in the US, we have a "Right to repair" and factory diagnostic tools have to be made available to the public (often at very expensive prices...)

How TESTA got away without putting an OBDII port on the car from the factory is amazing...

Tesla has the best efficiency in miles per KWH, but that lead is shrinking (check out the MB EQS). they have speed of engineering that the legacy car makers don't have. And they have a charging network to die for.

The legacy companies are catching up. And they are better at most facets of manufacturing cars than Tesla is.

Charging networks are expanding, the Supercharger network isn't going to be an advantage for long.

Hey! It's a good time to be a car lover. BEVs, PHEVs and ICEs all have great product out there.

bjrosen (not verified)    April 14, 2021 - 8:54AM

In reply to by Peter (not verified)

You can add an OBDII port to a Tesla in about two minutes and then use Scan My Tesla to read just about everything. This so called expert didn't even bother to do a Google search to find that out before making his statement.

Sundeep Gill (not verified)    April 15, 2021 - 12:16PM

He doesn't own a tesla and mentioned that he 'heard' several times during the interview, in regards to the complaints with a tesla. As a person who doesn't own neither, I wouldn't take his insight with much credibility.

Jimmy Dinsmore    April 15, 2021 - 12:28PM

In reply to by Sundeep Gill (not verified)

Sundeep, you must've missed his IMPRESSIVE resume of EV knowledge and also didn't read the part where when test driving a Model Y, the back seat was bouncing and wouldn't even allow for his adult passengers to shoot good video. So he did test drive it and he knows what he's talking about.

Julius Rosen (not verified)    April 15, 2021 - 12:51PM

The first writer/journalist telling the truth about the mileage drop when the weather gets cold. Now I would love to see what happens with the air conditioning on all the time in hot weather areas like Florida or Texas