Electric Vehicle News, Reviews and Analysis

Electric vehicles (EVs) have come a long way in a short time. Barely a decade has passed since the ambitious Silicon Valley startup Tesla Motors introduced the world to an electric car capable of traveling more than 300 miles on a single charge. Since then, Elon Musk and Tesla have convinced many dubious onlookers that electric vehicles are not only here to stay, but that they can become the future of transportation.

Other automakers have joined the EV movement at very different rates. The Nissan Leaf, for example, debuted in 2010 and went on to become the best-selling all-electric vehicle in the world for a time. Competition from the BMW i3 followed, as well as the plug-in hybrid Chevy Volt and its all-electric successor the Chevy Bolt EV, but only the Tesla Model 3 has been able to steal the Leaf's crown. Heading into a new decade, electric vehicles are set to go from strength-to-strength, with new models like the Hyundai Kona Electric and Kia Niro EV competing in the entry-level category and the Audi e-Tron, Porsche Taycan, or Jaguar I-PACE vying with Tesla at the top end of the market.

With entire classes of vehicle still lacking an electric version, such as pick-up trucks and affordable SUVs, there's huge potential for expansion and growth in the EV marketplace. For now, Tesla is still blazing the trail, but legacy manufacturers are lining up to electrify their fleets and promising startups like Rivian and Byton are waiting in the wings with exciting new electric vehicles.

The future is bright for EVs and you can keep up to date with all the latest stories right here on Torque News.

2010 Toyota Prius Plugin Hybrid

Why Didn't Toyota get a charge out of the Plug In Prius?

In 2010 I was offered the chance to be a subject matter expert in a special program offered by Toyota to test and show their soon to be released 2012 Plug In Prius. One snowy day in January 2010, the car arrived for me. Me and my whole family where extremely excited to say the least. My wife and I and a couple of kids hoped in the back and we went off for a test drive. It didn’t have any EV charge as it had just arrived.
Car Fire

EVs are Smoking Hot, They Don't Normally Catch Fire

A Car was on Fire on Saturday in Kaufman County Texas over the weekend and a strong smell of fuel was reported. To our surprise it wasn’t a Chevy Volt, or Tesla or Nissan Leaf according to reports. It was a gas car fire. The Story didn’t even state what type of car it was; however, from the video you can tell it wasn’t one of the three vehicles I referenced above.

Three Reasons I Prefer Nissan LEAF over Kia Soul EV

He writes that he really likes the Soul and on paper he feels that it's a better car than Nissan LEAF and many respects. "But I chose the LEAF because of the following" reasons, he writes, and lists three reasons for his choice.

The first reason is the lack of nearby Kia dealers. It will take him to drive 45 minutes to get to the nearest Kia dealer that actually stocks Soul EV. This is, of course, closely related to the second and particularly the third reasons, discussed below.

How to tell when electric cars have made it, and why we don’t need a cheap one

Is the future electric? Are electric vehicles destined to displace the internal combustion engine for passenger vehicles once and for all? If so, how long is that going to take? And why does an all-electric Nissan LEAF cost $30,000 when it looks just like a Nissan Versa you can get for a shade under $12,000 if the dealer is desperate?

Two Reasons It's a Bad Idea for GM to use Tesla Superchargers

The Chevy Bolt is a smaller car with presumably a smaller battery. Pumping that current is not a good idea; Tesla gets away with because of battery size. Sure the Bolt could be designed to throttle back the charge, but then you lose some advantage to the quick charge.

Second issue is battery chemistry. Not all lithium batteries are created equal and they. Tesla uses NCA. The Bolt, if the whispers are to be believed, is supposed to use NCM.
From what I've read NCM degrades faster than NCA.

Nissan LEAF Battery Charging Difference Explained

Andrew Chiang replies and says, "yes," it is normal, but also writes that it is worthless. He points out to a discussion at MyNissanLeaf.com and continues: "If you have 2013+ LeAF, you are FAR better off depending on the % SoC (State of Charge) display. I just "love" it when my GOM starts off at 80 miles and when I drive 8 miles, it goes up to 88.... Or, if I go up a steep hill (e.g.

Why GM Should be Applauded for The Chevrolet Bolt and What Should It Do for Success

No other automaker besides Tesla has jumped in to announce a 200 mile BEV. Ford and Chrysler had been non-committal, Toyota and Honda are going hydrogen, and the Europeans believe more on PHEVs, though BMW and Audi may have "concepts" for the future. Even the current BEV market leader, Nissan, hasn't announced anything about its next-generation LEAF or if it will incorporate a 200 mile battery.

On ordering a 2016 Chevrolet Volt

The new body design of the 2016 Chevy Volt has had mixed reviews with some people claiming on social media that they’ll get a 2015 before they’re gone because they don’t like the new body style. Others, especially those that have seen the new Volt in person seem to like the design very much. And so the debate begins.

Here’s what’s known about configuring the new Volt:

There are two trim levels, the LT and the higher-end “LTZ” (also known as “Premier”). There is a definite demarcation between trim levels, with the entry-level LT missing out on some very nice features.

Toyota Prius Driver Points To What Accelerating Too Fast From a Stop Can Do

"Since I got my Toyota Prius, I am very conscious about not accelerating like a jackrabbit," writes Ravi D Rao at Plug in Prius Owners public group. He also explains that another reason for his driving habit is being Eco-concious. He does admit that he often finds himself being passed by cars, which, Rao says, meets them again at the next traffic light.

Month to Month Leasing of Nissan LEAF a Good Alternative to Buying a Used One

Yesterday I asked about the residual value of a used Nissan LEAF. Obviously several factors, like market conditions and battery technology, determine it. While the prices of used LEAFs are falling, some LEAF owners suggest a month to month leasing as a viable option instead of buying a used one.

You will be surprised what happens when asking a Tesla owner for their keys on your wedding day

As a young professional in the SAAS world you come across a lot of surprises much of which are pleasant and some not so much. When stepping out of the office into the real world and diving right into the the deep end of wedding planning a pleasant surprise is evermore glamorous.

Tesla Model S P85D Breaks Two EV Coast-to-Coast World Records

Josie Hankey reports about this new world record.

The electric vehicle (EV) coast-to-coast world record was unofficially broken by a team of six with an elapsed drive and charge time of just 58 hours and 55 minutes. Drivers Rodney Hawk, Deena Mastracci and Carl Reese departed from Los Angeles City Hall in a Tesla P85D on April 16 at 11:41 p.m. PST and arrived at New York City Hall on April 19 at 1:36 p.m. EST, setting two new records for the fastest U.S. coast-to-coast time and least charging time in an EV.

What Determines The Residual Value of Nissan LEAF

In this picture you see the residual value of 2014 Nissan LEAF 5dr HB S, estimated by Cars.com. But there are issues related to battery replacement and battery life, which I don't know if are included while calculating the 2014 LEAF's residual value. I asked the question to some Nissan LEAF owners and here is what they commented.

Tacoma Owners Say What They Would Like To See in an Electric Tacoma

I asked this question if Toyota Tacoma drivers are ready to accept an electric Tacoma, should that be available one day. Here are some of the interesting responses people shared under my question at the Toyota Tacoma Enthusiasts FB group.. The general sentiment is openness, but but some improvements are necessary.

One comment writes that while there are hybrid trucks out there he doesn't think an all-electric Toyota Tacoma would be strong enough, but "hey, technology is advancing every day."

Neither Chevy Volt Is a Modified Cruze, nor LEAF a Modified Versa

Earlier today we published one EV owner's opinion refuting this line of thought, saying comparing the LEAF to a battery-powered Versa is not giving the LEAF designers much credit. In this opinion piece, an EV owner and enthusiast Ivan Jue makes a brief comparison between Nissan LEAF and Versa as well as Chevy Volt and Cruze, writing one cannot judge the book by its cover. Here is what Jue says.

Is Nissan LEAF Simply a Modified Versa?

The story in question reasoned that the Nissan LEAF is simply a modified Versa because Versa is the cheapest new car on the market, at just above $12,000 and the LEAF is nearly three times the cost of that. Marc Fontana from SF Area Nissan LEAF Owners group completely disagrees and says we should not be mislead by the similar design of Nissan LEAF and Nissan Versa.

Chevy Volt Owner Only Gets Minor Bruises After Being Hit By a Truck

Two days ago, on May 10, I saw this picture of a crashed Chevy Volt on Chevrolet Volt's official Facbook public page, shared by Karl Blinkinsop.

He shared his picture and wrote this comment. "The Chevy Volt is no match for the Mack truck that rear ended me Wednesday during standstill traffic on the interstate but I do think its cleaver designed saved my life. RIP my 2012 Chevy Volt, can't wait to get a new one."

Then Karl wrote that he is "OK, just bruised ribs, no one else was in the Volt."

Why VW Recommends Using the VW eGolf Battery Sparingly When It Comes to Fast-Charging

VW's statement about DCFC reads: “Requires charging at select DC fast-charging stations. Frequent and consecutive high-voltage charging (including DC charging) can permanently decrease the capacity of the high-voltage battery. See your Owner’s Manual for details." There really isn't much more than that in the big manual. And the warranty doesn't apply if the owners manual is not followed.

Pages