29 April 2012

His and Hers

We are now a two Think household
Our second Think City EV was delivered a couple days back.  My wife was rather skeptical when we bought the blue Think last year, it was quite different from the Mini Cooper EV we had before.  On the down side the Think is not as quiet as the Mini EV, has a little less range, less power and less regenerative braking. 

On the up side, the Think has a huge amount of cargo space, absolute reliability, a very good heater, the seats are more comfortable, and surprisingly I find it handles better than the Mini EV did.  In one year and almost 10,000 miles of driving, I had the blue Think fuss at me about charging exactly twice.  Both times there was a good reason, such as being plugged into an old worn out timer.  The Mini EV fussed at me more than twice a week about charging, and for months during winter the Mini EV refused to charge at 240 volts at all.

Our new Think before it left the Elkhart Indiana factory.  Is that a battery pack in the background on the left?

I have had some questions from readers about whether there are any "gotchas" with the Think, and we struggled to think of anything more to say than the obvious (last year's bankruptcy) or the trivial (as noted above).  But then we remembered two things:

The sun visor has limited utility on the side.  The visor is rather short since the car is narrow, and the sloping windshield puts it fairly far away.  I have taken to keeping a wide brimmed hat in the car for those times when the sun bothers me.  I had forgotten about this, but it cannot quite be categorized as trivial.  On the other hand this is a city car, not likely to be taken on cross country trips often, where the sun can beat down relentlessly.  I hope the new Think model (next year?) will have a side visor.

The other issue we had briefly was a little trouble getting into reverse on rare occasions.  Once it became clear what was happening, I simply moved the shifter back and forth through all the virtual "gears" several times quickly and the problem disappeared.  I suspect there was some dust in the switch.

My car pool colleague and her husband wish they could buy an EV, but they cannot charge at their present apartment which has neither assigned parking nor outdoor power outlets
It is interesting to hear from people in Maryland who are buying EVs when they do not have a garage.  In one case, a home owner does have a reserved parking spot and is working with his Home Owners Association to get permission to have an electrician run power out to the assigned parking spot.

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