Made our first road trip this past weekend. One wife, two dogs, one Tesla Signature. About 1045 miles RT. First the facts, then what I think I learned. Not sure this will help anyone, but here goes anyway.
Left SF down Route 101 with the new chargers open. Topped off at Gilroy, much slower than the advertised speed (this was my first Supercharger experience) but didn't need too much.
Down to Atascadero, decided to stop there as both A. and Buellton were new, and you never know.... Atasc. chargers were roped off with yellow caution tape. Sign said "new asphalt." I walked on it and it seemed ok so I took the tape down and charged up. Also pretty slow (160 miles per hour, although no one else was there). Bays filled up and there were 6 cars at one point. Cool! Maybe that slowed things down more.
Stayed the night at Santa Barbara, at a nice Kimpton hotel called the Canary, right downtown off State Street, which had a bonus - a 14-50 charging station that looked just like my own outlet in my garage. The valets left the car connected all night long, right by the front door to the hotel.
That enabled us to make it easily to our friends near the airport, and then to Hawthorne's 4 charging bays, where we topped off but things were very slow. This was easily the most crowded of the bays, the only one in LA basin.
Got to San Diego late afternoon and went to our friends'. Had a charging station nearby at an upscale Pizza place on Harbor Drive, near the airport and where we were staying. 30 amp, charged at a modest 17 mph. Took too long so we plugged into the 110 at our friends' house, and after two nights with a couple of joy rides in between added plenty of charge.
On way back, stopped at Hawthorne, but the bays were full. My wife went to the airport restaurant, which was ok, but at midday food trucks come for the SpaceX employees -- much better food. We bought my granddaughter a red Tesla "onesie" at the store in the Tesla design center, where the bays are located.
We were planning to go straight to Harris Ranch, but we were running late and hit traffic and 95 degree whether and got really bad mileage, so chickened out and stopped at Tejon Ranch. Strange place, deserted, but decent charging, although not enough to get back to SF. So we charged up at Harris Ranch too.
1. Hawthorne will be very crowded compared to others and due to location. Some folks just popped over to top off. A spot to be avoided, which will be possible when San Juan Capistrano is ready.
2. I saw NOWHERE that got anything close to 200 miles a half-hour. The fastest was at Harris Ranch. With the other bays empty, I charged at 245 mph until it slowed down to top off.
3. The slowdown to top off is enormous, down at the end to maybe 75 mph even with no one else around.
4. The more cars charging, the lower your charge rate. And the bays appear to be paired, so if you drive into one, leave a space between you and the next car.
5. Heat and traffic have enormous effects on range. Traffic knocked us down considerably after LA, forcing us to stop before Harris. And the heat was hitting 100 on route 5, which meant if we had tried for Harris (it was a close call), we may not have made it.
6. Charging on a 110 overnight is better, even at 3.2 mph, than hanging out at a Blink station for 3 hours, which is the equivalent.
7. Hills kill mileage, but downhills (the northside downslope of the "Grapevine") give you tremendous regeneration that adds lots of mileage to your range.
8. I noticed no difference between cruise control on or off; A/C on vs. windows open; or range on or off. I felt any differences were negligible.
9. On a long trip with weather and/or traffic, it's nigh on impossible to do a rated range unless you want to drive no faster than 62, and even then it's hard. We did 338 wh/mi. going, when my wife was not used to the car, and 335 back, when we had lots of heat and traffic
Still and all, though my wife complained numerous times about all the time spent at charging stations, we made it up and back safely and got to drive a great car!
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