One Tonne Life Test Driving the Volvo C30 Electric Family Car …

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Volvo C30 Electric

One Tonne Life: Test the Volvo C30 Electric Family Car

February 25, 2011

All images via One Life

Last month I was enough to visit the One Tonne project in Stockholm to meet the family. who’ve embarked on a low lifestyle experiment to radically their carbon footprints an average of seven tonnes per to just one tonne. It’s an project, but there’s amazing on hand to help, including a Volvo C30 Electric car, by the house solar panels. I got to the car for a spin and interview Volvo’s Konnberg — an exercise in my skills while driving on is, for this British girl at the ‘wrong side of the road’.

Konnberg: So the motor is running.

Oppenheim: Yes? And it’s

JK: It’s automatic, yeah.

LO: All So which way are we going?

JK: To the left. So is a full battery or electric 110 horse power and the electric is placed between the front driving the rear axle. You a lithium-ion battery. 24 kilowatt storage capacity.

You charge the with. Turn right.

You the battery with standard electricity. One phase, 230 volts. If you empty the batteries it takes you 10 hours to fully charge the again.

So, you can do that over when you’re at work, or you stop and park the car you can plug it in.

LO: Are charging stations publicly then?

JK: In some places, It’s not that common, but you can some in shopping centers and places.

JK: Nope. It’s electric. Only a battery and a

LO: Is it on the market? Is it available to buy?

JK: No. not. It’s not available We’ve started on what we low volume production and the plan is to between 250 and 350 vehicles within the

We’re looking for customers in companies, official bodies and for leasing of the vehicle for 36 months to start with. Because we need to learn, we still to get some hard data out of the Especially when it comes to the of the batteries, because I would say noone knows exactly happens to the battery over

LO: No one knows how long they last?

JK: Exactly. So, we could ourselves in a situation where a driving behaviour is hazardous to the or the life of the battery. If that’s the we can try to electronically filter that out in the generation.

We also need to more about you and your as a customer. How do you drive the vehicle, how do you the vehicle, then we can put new data as in the next generation of vehicles. So, is where we are.

LO: How many of this car that I’m now?

JK: At this moment we have 20 to 25 vehicles.

LO: Wow. So I’m a prototype — this is an exciting thing to do!

LO: Shame we go on the motorway. Is there a speed in Sweden? Or is it like the autobahn in

JK: There’s a speed limit, 120 an hour is the maximum. The limitation of vehicle is 130 kph and that is mainly on the revolution of the electric motor, it would run too fast.

LO: What happen? It overheats?

JK: It overheats. You lose performance and it might be Yes. This is a designed as a commuter vehicle, meaning you go and forth through your run at 70 — 90 kph.

LO: Is this you’re testing? Whether the performs better or worse lots of short journeys or fewer longer ones?

JK: that depends. Ideally for vehicles, we’d have one in each vehicle for a three period. Some driving 20 a day, some driving 50 a some driving 80 kilometers a

So, from a statistics point of we can get a lot of data out of that. We are doing a program trying to find in the battery performance, because no one knows. This line of in automotives hasn’t been on the for its full life time

LO: Even though electric have been around for a time?


LO: How do they differ?

JK: Previously were lead or nickel batteries. It has different chemistry, not to go detail, but it has different chemistry and the density is much, much in the lithium-ion.

LO: Meaning it holds for longer? It’s more

JK: Yes. It’s more

LO: Which means the car can go further out being charged? Is that

JK: Yes, exactly.

LO: Is there a versus distance equation an electric car battery? Do you know I mean? With petrol the you drive.

JK: The more it consumes. It’s the same.

LO: So, there’s a question of efficient driving electric cars?

JK: Yes. You the weight of the vehicle and you have to come the rolling resistance. independent of how you propel the engine.

LO: did you call it? Rolling.

JK: Rolling

LO: What does that

JK: The tires against the pavement.

LO: So, literally the friction?

JK: Yes, the You also have to over air resistance the faster you go. So, if you go 50 kilometers a rolling resistance, but if you go 100 kilometers an it’s the.

JK: Yes, So you need a light vehicle and you an aerodynamic vehicle to make it efficient. These elements hopefully come into the generation Volvo.

We don’t have the financial at the moment to start with a piece of paper. So we have with an existing vehicle.

LO: Oh, I So you mean the shape, the design of the itself, will change in to maximize the.

Volvo C30 Electric

JK: The efficiency. that’s correct.

LO: So what is role in this project

JK: I would say that at this my role is in two parts. One is to be a spokesman for the or the vehicle. The other part is to customers.

I’m not the one who sells the itself, but.

LO: You look for opportunity?

JK: Yes, exactly. So we are in the now to plan different customer starting within a couple of with priority to the Swedish Then we’re going to Norway, and other European I’m not 100 percent sure of and how we’ll go to the UK, because this is a hand drive vehicle.

So my is basically to educate, I would

This car shouldn’t be any different to than a standard vehicle in fact, there are a few more to deal with when it to an electric vehicle. For example, the vehicle.

LO: Well, the infrastructure quite in place yet. I that holds up the progress because you’re dealing something where the infrastructure is not convenient for everybody.

JK: That’s Not for everybody. If you’re living in a or a villa, actually it’s simple. But if you’re not.

LO: If you’re in the city and you can’t a place to charge the car. Do say, Well, it’s not practical yet?

JK: Not much but if you’re living downtown in an and you don’t have any specific place for your vehicle, you’re in trouble I guess. It on the country, but generally you’re not to have an extra cable out from your window of safety reasons.

LO: So it really this One Tonne Life here?

JK: Oh, this is a perfect And what’s fantastic in this is that you have an over of electricity in the solar cells on the and on the facade, meaning that you approximately 5, 000 kilowatt hour in capacity. And for 5, 000 kilowatt hour you can this vehicle for two years.

LO: Which means they’re driving for free.

JK: Exactly,

LO: What impact does have on Volvo as a company? The that people are possibly to be driving cars for free? Or is much more to do with the industry than Volvo?

it benefit your business?

JK: it does. I guess that we to talk more about the operating cost.

LO: So you’re at the full life of the vehicle?

JK: not only the original investment, people only think the investment they make on day the day they buy the car. They are not about the fuel costs.

LO: So how do you think it will influence the car Do you think it will raise the of cars? Or do you think it’ll make driving cheaper for

JK: Not necessarily. I would say that the cost, especially for the components and the is often very high.

LO: So the perception of buying an electric It saves you money in the long but upfront it’s a bigger

JK: Yes, it’s a high initially, today, but maybe not in 10

Thanks to Johan for directing me the suburban streets of Stockholm. You all be glad to hear I managed to on the correct side of the road the test drive and returned the C30 Electric back to the One Tonne house unscathed, leaving it to be plugged into the solar carport. What a smooth

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