Toyota Rav4 Electric Vehicle on eBay

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Main Forum' started by clintd555, Jul 5, 2006.

  1. clintd555

    clintd555 New Member

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  2. ScottY

    ScottY New Member

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  3. finman

    finman Senior Member

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    http://www.darelldd.com/ev/

    Read all about it. Great website...kinda sad, but another chapter in "it figures...good for humanity, bad for big oil, let's stop production".

    Cheers,

    Curt.
     
  4. EricGo

    EricGo New Member

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    Sorry guys -- there was no conspiracy here. The Rav4 cost Toyota around $100K each to build.

    It was an expensive beta program that paid off for Toyota, by leading to the hybrid, and that lucky people like Darrell took advantage of.

    Before Darrell has a fit, I'll be the first to say the EV Rav is much more car than the Prius, and I would ****love*** to have one; it just happens to be *way* too expensive for the market.
     
  5. ScottY

    ScottY New Member

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    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(EricGo @ Jul 5 2006, 04:22 PM) [snapback]281599[/snapback]</div>
    Care to provide a source?
     
  6. bobr1

    bobr1 New Member

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    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(ScottY @ Jul 5 2006, 01:24 PM) [snapback]281601[/snapback]</div>
    I, too, would like to know more about this $100K figure.

    Often times, when a limited run of a new product is made, the per-product costs are astronomical, but if those costs are spread over more models and parts become more standardized, per-unit costs drop.

    For the RAV-4 EV (correct me if I categorize something wrong), the following costs should be exactly the same as a standard RAV-4:

    Body (Shell, Doors, Windows)
    Frame
    Most Interior Components
    Wheels and Tires
    Airbags
    Stereo
    Headlights, cabin lighting, etc.

    The following costs should be deleted:

    Gasoline Engine
    Supporting Mechanics (alternator, starter)
    Exhaust and Emissions System
    Fuel System (gas tank, fuel pump, etc.)
    Conventional air conditioner

    The following costs should be added:

    Really big battery array
    Really big electric motor
    Charging system
    Control Electronics
    Electric air conditioner

    So, do these final added items really bring the unit cost up to $100K? Even if production were continued?

    - Bob R.
     
  7. Tideland Prius

    Tideland Prius Moderator of the North
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    Well the RAV4 sold for $40k didn't it? Then had some incentive to drop it back to the 30s if I remembered correctly. Yeah, it's not $100k but I mean, to show the cost of it.
     
  8. donee

    donee New Member

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    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(clintd555 @ Jul 5 2006, 04:31 PM) [snapback]281575[/snapback]</div>
    Hi Clintd555,

    I think the reason they are not making the Rav4EV is due to the battery availability/economics. To make a reliable vehicle battery requires absolute cleanliness. In the "Prius that Shook the World" it was mentioned that any spec of dust would eventually grow cancer-like into a serious defect in the NiMH battery. To be able to make a reliablie vehicle battery takes an expensive clean-room production facitility. And there are economic consequences of this production facility.

    A Hybrid car has a bigger market due to the low-temperature usability. And Toyota right now has a duty to itself to maximize its proffit on the scarce vehicle battery resource that it invested heavily in. The Prius and other Hybrids do that.

    Over time, things will change. But this may take ten years or so until Hybrid saturation occurs. When that happens excess battery production capacity could happen. Then again, if a battery with better economics, better energy density and better power density comes along maybe excess production capacity can happen sooner.

    To use a Rav4EV, if the battery is anything like what the Prius is using, in winter weather, would require continuous warming during disuse, to insure its ready for use. The power capacity of the Prius battery drops dramatically below freezing. This would limit the vehicles usefulness for communting, unless one is commuting to a dowtown heated or subteranean garage (like some do).

    With excess vehicle battery production capacity, electric cars will be great alternatives in areas that stay above freezing overnite.

    BTW, ever think that maybe fuel cell cars might have this same issue ? They need batteries as fuel cells are very expensive and like to run a constant output level. The battery then provides the accelleration boost. But not if it can only put out 200 watts in sub-zero weather!

    This line of thought creates an idea. What we need besides plug-in hybrid cars is cars with plug-in hybrids with plug-in engines. During the summer months we run all electric, and during winter one just slides in the engine and voila temperature versatility!
     
  9. hycamguy07

    hycamguy07 New Member

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    I too think it boils down to cost, I don't see the average public rushing out to spend an extra 20k or more just to have a 2003 or newer EV model with 0 - 33k miles on it.

    06 Gas models:
    Base model:
    $20,300 MSRP

    Sport model:
    $21,875 MSRP

    Limited model:
    $22,555 MSRP

    Used EV model:
    $40,200.00


    The 2003 new RAV4 EV’s sticker price was US $42,510.

    Cost to build:
    http://www.gaspig.com/zeroemission.htm

    Rav4EV write-up:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Toyota_RAV4_EV

    If they were able to make it cost more like 3k over the limited model people might be more inclined to buy..

    Eric go, I was agreeing with Tideland Prius's post... ;)
     
  10. EricGo

    EricGo New Member

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    I wasn't talking about the cost to the consumer, but rather Toyota's cost. I'll try to track down a reference later on. Perhpas Darrell knows ?
     
  11. darelldd

    darelldd Prius is our Gas Guzzler

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    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(EricGo @ Jul 5 2006, 05:02 PM) [snapback]281692[/snapback]</div>
    I do, but don't have it right handy. The generally-accepted cost to Toyota is about 100k for these cars.

    But the conclusion being drawn from that price is a bit wide of the mark. These vehicles were all hand built! New technology, and hand built. How much would it cost to hand build a few Honda Civics with all new technology? Pretend they were never previously built with an ICE, and none of those parts were available off the shelf! A quite a bit more than $100k would be my guess! These cars were never meant to be practical to build or purchase. They were built for a specific reason: To comply with the ZEV mandate. Had the mandate held, follow-up generations of EVs would have benefitted from the "prototype" vehicles that a few of us are still driving today.... and would have enjoyed higher production numbers, etc. NOBODY knows what a modern EV would cost to build in mass quantities, and nobody knows what kind of market there would be. The one thing we do know is that it is VERY expensive to build a few hand-made prototypes - yet that doesn't translate directly into any particular type of car being too expensive to produce. To underline my example, just look at fuel cell vehicles. Today they cost $1 million to make. And yet the auto makers insist that they'll be able to lower that cost to consumer levels in short order. So a hand-built BEV costs $100k to build.... and they say that's too much, even though they can obviously build them today... and ten years ago. A FCV costs $1million to make... and they say that's not a problem... even though they can't seem to build more than just a couple of them today, and keep saying they're ten years off.

    What's wrong with this picture, exactly?

    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(donee @ Jul 5 2006, 04:26 PM) [snapback]281676[/snapback]</div>
    You bring up some great points! And yes, I DO think about fuel cell cars in this fashion. Most people don't realize that FCV's need batteries in order to function properly. They also don't realize that a fuel cell don't work in freezing conditions because the exhaust gasses freeze up and destroy the PEM! Energy must be used to keep the exhaust system warmed constantly, blah, blah.

    Many of the modern battery technologies are exothermic, and actually work quite well in the cold. Heck, I spend most of my time trying to keep the batteries COOL! Yes, there will be some reduced range in the cold, but nothing like most people assume with experience from lead-acid batteries.


    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(clintd555 @ Jul 5 2006, 12:31 PM) [snapback]281575[/snapback]</div>
    They made them from 1996-2002 for fleet use, and then 2002-2003 for retail use. There were exactly eight months when a private individual could lease or buy one of these vehicles. The day the ZEV mandate crumbled, the order system was removed from service, and no more vehicles were placed. There are currently about 250 of these vehicles in private hands.

    As others have pointed out, there is plenty more on my web site (linked in sig). The Rav4EV is our second (out of three) full-function EVs that we've owned. It is the most practical, most integrated production EV ever built to date. And it is our main vehicle. The car we choose to drive seven days a week, while the Prius sits in the garage for weeks at a time.
     
  12. Godiva

    Godiva AmeriKan Citizen

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    So, Darell. Are you going to put a bid on this one? Looks pretty nice. It's a 2003. Low miles. Lots of nice add ons. You could pass this one on to your daughter when she gets that license and still keep yours. Alternate driving them for the next ten years until she's old enough.
     
  13. darelldd

    darelldd Prius is our Gas Guzzler

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    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(Godiva @ Jul 5 2006, 11:19 PM) [snapback]281871[/snapback]</div>
    Yes, it is nice. I know the guy selling it (we're a pretty small community!) I don't like the 2003 as much as the 2002 - and I have a hell of a time considering paying WAY more for a used one than I did for a brand new one!
     
  14. clintd555

    clintd555 New Member

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    With the non-success of this EV, it's really hard to expect there to be others to follow. <_<
     
  15. EricGo

    EricGo New Member

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    Fair points, Darrell.

    Calling the Rav EV hand-built is a bit misleading though. They started from a RAV, and added the EV parts. So is the $US 100k just the EV mod ? I gutess we will never know.

    One side of this not discussed yet in this thread are battery considerations. The RAV EV has about 30 kwH capacity, for about a 100 mile range. So upfront, as your Prius purchase demonstrates, the EV is usually one of two cars in the family. Second, although the EV battery has perfomed beyond expectations, I doubt Toyota is going to warranty out to 150K without using battery conservation techniques similar to the Prius battery, meaning only ~ 50% of capacity used. So now we are talking about 60 kWh of battery ! That is a lot of space, heat, and money.

    I really do think that when Toyota can sell a $30K plug-in with 20 mile range, they will jump on the opportunity. Their inability to do so just shows how far away a complete EV is. Only my opinion, of course.
     
  16. daniel

    daniel Cat Lovers Against the Bomb

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    31 bids so far, and at $40,200 the reserve price is not yet met. I guess the EDrive Systems mod for the Prius appeals to me more than this. last I checked though, they still had not begun commercial installations.

    As for the cost of production of the RAV4EV, every car costs mountains of money to design and tool up to produce. Average that out over a very small production number because production was discontinued, and you have a horribly expensive car. But average those start-up costs over the production numbers of a typical mainstream car, and you have the car prices we are used to paying.
     
  17. EricGo

    EricGo New Member

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    No one knows if the $100K number is the marginal unit cost, or includes some of the R&D.
     
  18. clett

    clett New Member

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    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(EricGo @ Jul 6 2006, 10:34 AM) [snapback]281983[/snapback]</div>
    That was with NiMH batteries with only 59 Wh/kg (some other RAV4 battery specs here).

    Today, commercial off-the shelf lithium-ion is up to 220 Wh/kg. Refit a RAV4-EV with the same weight of lithium-ion and the range goes up to 370 miles.
     
  19. darelldd

    darelldd Prius is our Gas Guzzler

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    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(EricGo @ Jul 6 2006, 07:34 AM) [snapback]281983[/snapback]</div>
    Certainly the glider is a production piece. Anybody can build a generic glider without having to spend much R&D. But all the other bits are not only hand-assembled - but designed and purpose-built for *this* application. That is not an insignificant effort by any means. The batteries were even painstakingly hand-matched for capacity.

    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(EricGo @ Jul 6 2006, 07:34 AM) [snapback]281983[/snapback]</div>
    As you say... we'll never know. When was the last time we ever really knew what anybody spent to do anything? The numbers can be moved around anyway the car maker would like. GM says it spent $1million on each EV1.

    I'll bet you're right. Certainly my car didn't come with a 150k mile warranty. Neither has any car before my Prius.

    Here is where we differ. I think they *could* sell a $30k 20-mile car today. The big auto makers have NO need to "jump" on the opportunity when they're already making profits from known entities. There are many behind-the-scenes financial aspects keeping the ICE alive and well. Investments in ICE subassembly plants are a HUGE part of the automotive business. Building a car that makes that stuff obsolete is a bit like shooting yourself in the foot. I think it'll come, but it is a S L O W process because of nothing more than "good" business.


    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(clett @ Jul 6 2006, 09:31 AM) [snapback]282060[/snapback]</div>
    Thanks for this, Clett. I find most arguments are based on battery technology from the early 90's. Just because these cars exist, and there were no follow-up vehicles - people think that what we've got today is "state of the art." Yikes. It is state of the art like the Ford Model A would be today! Or a pre-windows DOS-based computer. Everybody made ONE model of EV... and never revised it in any significant way (the EV1 went to NiMH batteries - but the system was flawed in that the cars were *designed* for lead-acid only - long story!). Battery technology has doubled in energy density for many years in a row now. More advances in batteries in the past ten years than in the previous 100. But still no modern cars to use them... until the Tesla is unveiled on July 20.
     
  20. galaxies1973

    galaxies1973 New Member

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    I have to say, I never seriously thought about an EV till I read PC. And I still wouldn't seriously think about one now if I were single... I take too many trips of > 20 and even >100 miles.

    Now that my husband and I form a 2-car household, I could sorta see it as a second / commuter vehicle, with the non-EV giving us road-trip-ability. Of course, a.) there are no EVs for sale at a reasonable price, and b.) we just got the Prius in January, my Civic is still in great shape, and we're of the drive-cars-till-they-limp mentality, so no new car for us for some years!

    A plug-in hybrid would sure be nice though...

    - Michelle
     
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