Author Topic: [NGC] Test Rode the Livewire, OMG!  (Read 3815 times)

Offline twowheeladdict

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Re: [NGC] Test Rode the Livewire, OMG!
« Reply #60 on: March 13, 2020, 05:42:52 PM »
I can honestly say, during my short demo ride, I wasn't even aware of the regenerative braking.  I think the amount and setting is adjustable, so who knows what they had it set for.  It didn't try to toss me over the bars when I closed the throttle, nor did it free-wheel like a two-stroke.

I played with all the settings during my ride.  If it hadn't been cold out i would have tested the range for sure.  I never noticed any obtrusive regenerative braking. 

I'm sure a lot has to do with what types of bikes you are used to before riding the Livewire.  I enjoy thumpers and twins so I am used to engine braking.  I-4s have much less engine braking IMO. 
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Offline alanp

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Re: [NGC] Test Rode the Livewire, OMG!
« Reply #61 on: March 14, 2020, 11:27:35 AM »
You can justify the stops just like Tesla owners do.  "You know, on any long trip you need to stop for a (2 hour) lunch anyway, so an electric car fueling is no different from a gasoline one."  LOL!  You can't make this stuff up.

That may have been the case with the early Teslas, but the newer ones will take a full charge in under an hour. 

Many people have major misconceptions about electric vehicles and charging.  Having owned a Chevy Bolt for 2 years and 30,000 miles (which does not charge anywhere near as fast as a Tesla), I estimate I have saved about 12 hours of time compared to fueling and maintaining my prior gas car (a Mazda 3 6-spd manual).  Here is how that works out in my case.

The Bolt has 200-250 miles range (less than a Tesla).  My wife and take a lot of trips around Colorado to ski, hike and sightsee.  We can get to Ft. Collins, Colorado Springs, Vail, Breckenridge etc. and return the same day without needing to recharge.  If we go further away than that (like Steamboat Springs or the Aspen area), we spend the night and recharge while we sleep.  Doing this has never posed a problem, and these trips are of a length that we would choose to spend the night regardless of the car we are driving.  Anyway, in 2 years and 30,000 miles, we have stopped 2 times of approximately 1 hour each to recharge.  We did go to the restroom, get a coffee, check our email, etc. during those stops, but if we had been in a gas car we would have probably done more of a 'grab and go', so I am counting this a grand total of 2 hours WAITING for the Bolt to charge since I have owned it. The car has required zero maintenance of any kind, and all other charging is done "while we sleep". 

Compare this to the Mazda 3.  In 30,000 miles I would have waited as follows:
Fueling.  Approx. 100 gas stops (1 every 300 miles) x 5 minutes = about 500 minutes or 8 hours
Oil changes. 6 changes of about 1 hour duration each = 6 hours.
So, 14 hours of waiting for fueling and maintenance of a gas car vs. 2 hours for the electric car. 

While everybody's circumstances are different, it would take quite a bit of long distance driving for this to become even equal, much less a disadvantage for going electric.  And the Bolt is much faster, more powerful and capable on the mountain passes, and both my wife and I find it a total joy to drive, even compared to one of the best economy drivers cars out there.   
 
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Re: [NGC] Test Rode the Livewire, OMG!
« Reply #62 on: March 14, 2020, 01:56:07 PM »
I took a test drive in a Bolt.  Very impressive car.  Played with regenerative braking.  Being a stick shift guy, it's like learning to drive all over again.  Well thought out car and surprisingly fun to drive.   The funky formica style dash is kinda neat too.

I wonder how the Chevy sales people handle it?
John L 
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Offline alanp

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Re: [NGC] Test Rode the Livewire, OMG!
« Reply #63 on: March 14, 2020, 02:25:53 PM »
I took a test drive in a Bolt.  Very impressive car.  Played with regenerative braking.  Being a stick shift guy, it's like learning to drive all over again.  Well thought out car and surprisingly fun to drive.   The funky formica style dash is kinda neat too.

I wonder how the Chevy sales people handle it?

It seems some Chevy dealers make a real effort to support the Bolt, but I believe most do not.  You can be pretty sure the service departments aren't thrilled about them! 
It is an impressive little car, and it only took a couple of weeks before both my wife and I became complete electric car advocates.  Advances in tech will continue to come, but I think for most people, even these "early adopter" examples represent a vastly superior way to build a car.  And Teslas are a whole other level of amazing. 
The regen braking does take a bit of getting used to, but once you do it is great.  It is my wife's single favorite feature about the car and one of the things I think Chevy has done a better job of than anybody to date.  I suspect the brake pads should be good for several million miles.   :grin:
« Last Edit: March 14, 2020, 05:21:00 PM by alanp »
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Re: [NGC] Test Rode the Livewire, OMG!
« Reply #63 on: March 14, 2020, 02:25:53 PM »

Offline twowheeladdict

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Re: [NGC] Test Rode the Livewire, OMG!
« Reply #64 on: March 14, 2020, 03:28:58 PM »
You can justify the stops just like Tesla owners do.  "You know, on any long trip you need to stop for a (2 hour) lunch anyway, so an electric car fueling is no different from a gasoline one."  LOL!  You can't make this stuff up.

Looks like you can, and did.  :grin:

Actually, my wife prefers sit down restaurants when we travel, and a walk around as well so electric would work for us if we wanted one, which we don’t. Now when they can coat the outside of the car in solar cells that look like the car is carbon fiber, so it charges in the parking lot at work I might be interested.
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Offline s1120

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Re: [NGC] Test Rode the Livewire, OMG!
« Reply #65 on: March 15, 2020, 07:27:36 AM »
I took a test drive in a Bolt.  Very impressive car.  Played with regenerative braking.  Being a stick shift guy, it's like learning to drive all over again.  Well thought out car and surprisingly fun to drive.   The funky formica style dash is kinda neat too.

I wonder how the Chevy sales people handle it?

I worked for VW when they came out with the eGolf. It was really a great car, but the staff had no idea what to do with it!! Only one tech was trained to work on it in the shop, and most sales guys just forgot about it. I think it finely sold 3 years later. Funny story though, another salesman dealer traded one from another dealer in another state. They didnt want to add the cost of towing it, so he was driving it back. Well seems he forgot about the shorter range, and ended up having to stay somewhere halfway through the trip home. That all being said, you really need to have the whole dealership fired up about it. If the staff doesn't understand, or is not into it at all, it will just die on the vine. Better or worse is debatable... the fact that its different, and needs to be handled as such is cut and dry.
Paul B

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Re: [NGC] Test Rode the Livewire, OMG!
« Reply #66 on: March 15, 2020, 10:05:12 AM »
It seems some Chevy dealers make a real effort to support the Bolt, but I believe most do not.  You can be pretty sure the service departments aren't thrilled about them! 
It is an impressive little car, and it only took a couple of weeks before both my wife and I became complete electric car advocates.  Advances in tech will continue to come, but I think for most people, even these "early adopter" examples represent a vastly superior way to build a car.  And Teslas are a whole other level of amazing. 
The regen braking does take a bit of getting used to, but once you do it is great.  It is my wife's single favorite feature about the car and one of the things I think Chevy has done a better job of than anybody to date.  I suspect the brake pads should be good for several million miles.   :grin:

Agree about the regen braking, I am an old stick shift guy that learned economy driving to coast and not use brakes.   :wink:
John L 
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Offline John Warner

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Test Rode the Livewire, OMG!
« Reply #67 on: March 15, 2020, 08:10:39 PM »
The way to go, at least for Bikes, has got to be Quick-Change Battery Packs.
You get low on charge, you pull into a dedicated 'service' station, and swap your near-dead Pack for a freshly charged one, simply pull out the old, plug in the new, like a giant Power Tool Pack.
Pay the fee, and you're on your way again in a minute or so.

Of course, this would require all the manufacturers to cooperate, and standardise the various sized Packs they use, but if they want to sell, that's what they'll have to do.


I know they're the 'future', or at least will be in a decade or so, when they're fully 'sorted', and are much more environmentally friendly than they are now, but for me, a huge part of the riding experience is the Engine sound, and the vibes.
I want to feel there's a living fire-breathing beast under me, not some sanitised over-sized Sewing MAchine.
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Offline alanp

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Re: Test Rode the Livewire, OMG!
« Reply #68 on: March 15, 2020, 11:18:22 PM »
The way to go, at least for Bikes, has got to be Quick-Change Battery Packs.
You get low on charge, you pull into a dedicated 'service' station, and swap your near-dead Pack for a freshly charged one, simply pull out the old, plug in the new, like a giant Power Tool Pack.
Pay the fee, and you're on your way again in a minute or so.

Of course, this would require all the manufacturers to cooperate, and standardise the various sized Packs they use, but if they want to sell, that's what they'll have to do.


I know they're the 'future', or at least will be in a decade or so, when they're fully 'sorted', and are much more environmentally friendly than they are now, but for me, a huge part of the riding experience is the Engine sound, and the vibes.
I want to feel there's a living fire-breathing beast under me, not some sanitised over-sized Sewing MAchine.

I agree in theory that a battery swap approach would resolve a lot of issues.  But it would require Significant coordination and organization by the manufacturers and I haven't seen ANY activity on that front. 
I also agree with you on Engine sound, and too am not interested in an electric bike for that reason (and I also like shifting).  I am completely sold on electric cars, but cars are tools* (that can be fun) and bikes are toys* that need to be fun and visceral to ride.  That is one of the reasons I never liked BMW's, they always seemed too sewing machine like to me. 

* solely my opinion, I realize this isn't true for everyone.
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Online Ncdan

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Re: [NGC] Test Rode the Livewire, OMG!
« Reply #69 on: March 16, 2020, 07:49:52 AM »
Here’s the million dollar question. If it were not for the fact that with an electric vehicles saves one from being at the mercy of big oil and their varying prices would you still purchase an EV? Now let’s add one more variable. If your state or maybe even the federal government added a sufficient “use of highway “
Tax for your EV, would you still be all that interested in joining the stylish move of the EV world?

Offline alanp

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Re: [NGC] Test Rode the Livewire, OMG!
« Reply #70 on: March 16, 2020, 11:26:33 AM »
Here’s the million dollar question. If it were not for the fact that with an electric vehicles saves one from being at the mercy of big oil and their varying prices would you still purchase an EV? Now let’s add one more variable. If your state or maybe even the federal government added a sufficient “use of highway “
Tax for your EV, would you still be all that interested in joining the stylish move of the EV world?

I can unequivocally answer that with a YES.  My somewhat "low end" Chevy Bolt is my favorite of all the cars I have owned.  More importantly I think, it also my wife's favorite car.  My wife is the epitome of a non-car person.  She never cared about much of anything regarding a car as long as it ran.  But she actively LIKES the Bolt.  Says she ENJOYS driving it.  We both like the car because it is electric and the differences that makes to the driving and ownership experience.
You mention "varying gas prices" and the potential for use taxes.  Keep in mind, regardless of these factors, the "fuel" cost for an electric will be FAR LESS than any ICE vehicle.  Take for example a Prius:

-Prius gets 50 mpg.  Gas costs $2 per gallon.  So, $2/50 miles
-Chevy Bolt.  I have averaged 4.4 miles per kilowatt hour (miles/KWH) over the life of the car (30,000 miles).  Electricity here cost $0.10 per KWH.  That comes to $1 to go 44 miles, or about $1.1/50 miles. 

So, approximately 1/2 the cost of a Prius to run, even factoring in low gas prices.   Plus no oil changes.  No brake pads (you can drive for a week without even touching the brake pedal).  No need to inconveniently stop for gas.  Quiet.  WAY more power and acceleration, like sports car vs. underpowered economy car more.   
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Online Chuck in Indiana

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Re: [NGC] Test Rode the Livewire, OMG!
« Reply #71 on: March 16, 2020, 11:30:54 AM »
^^^^ and.. we really need to curb burning fossil fuels. If our Prius ever wears out, we'll go full electric.
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Offline s1120

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Re: [NGC] Test Rode the Livewire, OMG!
« Reply #72 on: March 16, 2020, 11:35:24 AM »
Here’s the million dollar question. If it were not for the fact that with an electric vehicles saves one from being at the mercy of big oil and their varying prices would you still purchase an EV? Now let’s add one more variable. If your state or maybe even the federal government added a sufficient “use of highway “
Tax for your EV, would you still be all that interested in joining the stylish move of the EV world?

Some states already have a extra "use tax" on EV's.  That being said, I enjoy the sound and feel of a IC engine. Granted I would LOVE to have something like a 70's era small import pickup thats EV for beating around town, going to the home center, dump, store etc. Short trips of 30-40 miles..  Jump in and buzz around town.
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Offline twowheeladdict

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Re: [NGC] Test Rode the Livewire, OMG!
« Reply #73 on: March 16, 2020, 12:35:23 PM »
Here’s the million dollar question. If it were not for the fact that with an electric vehicles saves one from being at the mercy of big oil and their varying prices would you still purchase an EV? Now let’s add one more variable. If your state or maybe even the federal government added a sufficient “use of highway “
Tax for your EV, would you still be all that interested in joining the stylish move of the EV world?

My "use of highway" tax is on my yearly registration.  They call it a "wheel tax".  Are you saying an additional tax based on mileage in lieu of the taxes collected at the gas pumps? 

I would like to have an electric dual sport bike for riding around the woods in a stealthy way so I can hear and see nature and get in an out of places undetected.  I may end up with an electric full suspension mountain bike, especially if they want to tax electric motorcycles.   
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Offline Darren Williams

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Re: [NGC] Test Rode the Livewire, OMG!
« Reply #74 on: March 16, 2020, 01:58:45 PM »
I kind of look forward to the time when my garage is re-shuffled and I can have either an electric adventure bike or sport-touring bike as my main commuter. That new Zero is coming close, as I would need quite a bit of weather protection for riding year round.

I would like to get down to 3 bikes. An FJR, Tenere 700 and a Zero SR/S. Oh, and gotta keep the Griso. Dang, that's one too many.
The best part of riding a motorcycle is to tilt the horizon and to lift the front coming out of a corner and to drift the back end powering thru loose dirt and to catch a little air topping a hill and... yeah it's all good!

Offline John Warner

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Test Rode the Livewire, OMG!
« Reply #75 on: March 16, 2020, 03:03:17 PM »
You can bet no Government is going to lose out financially when EVs are the vast majority of vehicles on the roads.
They find some way to tax/charge you, so you'll be no better-off financially.

I would also bet that the price of EVs will go up massively, once there's no alternatives to go for.
« Last Edit: March 16, 2020, 03:04:38 PM by Doc. »
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Re: [NGC] Test Rode the Livewire, OMG!
« Reply #76 on: March 16, 2020, 04:16:55 PM »
I know Oregon has looked hard at a "highway use" tax based on miles driven.  Gas tax revenue is flat and will only get worse as electric cars proliferate.  The "plan" is to require GPS miles on all motor vehicles to get a current registration. GPS tracking is already installed on most commercial vehicles.  Just a theoretical money grab at this stage, but one can see where this is going.  It would really cripple the kind of recreational riding we do as motorcyclists.  Might make a weekend joy ride too expensive.   

Offline twowheeladdict

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Re: [NGC] Test Rode the Livewire, OMG!
« Reply #77 on: March 16, 2020, 05:38:41 PM »
I know Oregon has looked hard at a "highway use" tax based on miles driven.  Gas tax revenue is flat and will only get worse as electric cars proliferate.  The "plan" is to require GPS miles on all motor vehicles to get a current registration. GPS tracking is already installed on most commercial vehicles.  Just a theoretical money grab at this stage, but one can see where this is going.  It would really cripple the kind of recreational riding we do as motorcyclists.  Might make a weekend joy ride too expensive.   

We all have a say  You can take it (you know where) or fight it. 

I am enjoying my modern motorcycles today, but my retirement plan might mean a stable of "vintage" plated bikes that are one time only plates.  Trailer them to different locations to "test my improvements"  Insurance will be cheap as well. 
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Online Ncdan

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Re: [NGC] Test Rode the Livewire, OMG!
« Reply #78 on: March 16, 2020, 06:06:14 PM »
My "use of highway" tax is on my yearly registration.  They call it a "wheel tax".  Are you saying an additional tax based on mileage in lieu of the taxes collected at the gas pumps? 

I would like to have an electric dual sport bike for riding around the woods in a stealthy way so I can hear and see nature and get in an out of places undetected.  I may end up with an electric full suspension mountain bike, especially if they want to tax electric motorcycles.
Yes an additional tax for EV as there are no tax’s collected through gasoline at the pumps. This has been talked about since the start of EVs. I think it is speculation that at some point when EVs got wide spread enough this tax would be added. The reasoning is that roads and bridges still have to be produced and maintained and that owners on EVs would have to pay their fair share for the use and maintenance on the highways. I can see both sides of that future argument.

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Re: [NGC] Test Rode the Livewire, OMG!
« Reply #79 on: March 16, 2020, 07:46:45 PM »
Someone said EV?  Been riding one for years.

John L 
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Offline twowheeladdict

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Re: [NGC] Test Rode the Livewire, OMG!
« Reply #80 on: March 16, 2020, 09:18:16 PM »
Yes an additional tax for EV as there are no tax’s collected through gasoline at the pumps. This has been talked about since the start of EVs. I think it is speculation that at some point when EVs got wide spread enough this tax would be added. The reasoning is that roads and bridges still have to be produced and maintained and that owners on EVs would have to pay their fair share for the use and maintenance on the highways. I can see both sides of that future argument.

Well, screw that!  If they don't make it economical I'm not going to play.  When I retire my goal is going to be to pay the least amount I can to the Government.  I might even become a entitled liberal.   :tongue:
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