What a climb! Grenoble was at 250m and we climbed to 650m on the highway before turning off for the big climb. 16kms and 22 hairpins later and we were at 2065m in the ski resort.
We had 140kms (35%) of rated range at the bottom and 37kms (15%) at the top.
In addition, other cars were with chains or were sliding but we drive up with our 21″ summer tyres with no problem (except a small 4 wheel drift on one corner :).
And now it is in the garage and charging thanks to smittenbysnow.com.
Glad to have made it. So, you CAN cross Europe and go skiing in your electric car everyone!
This morning we drove down from the Pyrenees to Montpellier with 100 Km of range left. However it took us 30 minutes to find the recharge point in IKEA (it was round the back in the loading area behind closed security barriers) and then…. our worst nightmare … It didn’t work!. It would try to charge but would fail after a much of ominous clicks and bangs.
It took another 45 minutes to find the maintenance engineer but in the end we explained how important it was to recharge the car (there were no other fast charge points within 50 Km) so he helped us find a red 32A 5 pin socket hidden behind there cardboard compactor.
I plugged in our portable wallbox and wished for luck… And we got it!
It was awesome to see the car charging at 102 Km per hour as we were very near to being stranded. Very many thanks to IKEA staff for being so helpful.
So now we are running about an hour and a half behind schedule, but at least we know we will arrive.
We are right up beside Andorra in La Seu d’Urgell Parador where an excellent 22kW charge point has been prepared in the hotel underground car park.
The second leg of today’s trip was 287kms with some good climbs near the end. We left Zaragoza at 18.00 with 444kms of rated range and arrived here at 21.00 with about 10% charge remaining (I increased speed in the last hour with the intention of arriving with about 10% left).
So that’s 624.7kms today with no trouble at all. It is important to plan these trips and to control driving style in order to not use more power than necessary. So far we have used 123kWhs which is about 14€ of power.
When we arrived we jumped into the pool and sauna hence the delay in writing this entry.
Here are some pictures of the Parador…
The entrance to the hotel:
And the inner patio / atrium lounge:
The car is nearly fully charged so tomorrow we are up early and off down the North side of the Pyrenees to Montpellier where I hope IKEA will greet us with one of their excellent Nissan/Hagger 22kW charge points. Let’s see what happens… 🙂
We did 337kms in 3hrs 40mins including a 10 minute coffee break (so average speed was 96km/h).
We used 58,9kWh of energy so that translates to about €8 of power at night time rates or €10 normal rate.
There is about 27% of the battery left although the pessimistic range estimator in the Model S says that is just 96kms in ideal circumstances. Should be more like 120kms.
Now we have 3 hours to walk eat and shop (there’s a shopping mall adjoining the hotel which is great). Nice to have rest with the family frankly.
The boots are packed…
And the battery full …
It’s 10.20 and we’re off.
Snow chains for 21″ wheels over here are not that easy to find. THese are actually supposed to be for 4×4 vehicles, but they seem to fit as well as any chain and don’t foul any of the brake or suspension parts.
Should these give any trouble we’ve also got snow socks:
The trip is going to be through the Pyrenees mountains as this is slightly shorter than going round by the coast. It will take us past Andorra and up along the Mediterranean coast before going up to Valence, Grenoble and then our final destination, La Plagne.
The charge points are:
- Zaragoza lunch – the Hotel Reina Petronila (already visited there),
- Seu d’Urgell overnight – the Parador – the have confirmed that the 22kW power outlet has been prepared
- Montpelier lunch and shopping – IKEA – My friend James Morlaix has spoken to them but until we get there we will not know if it works or not
- Grenoble overnight – Friend’s house with regular Schuko outlet
- La Plagne – Smitten By Snow (www.smittenbysnow.com) have organised charging in the undergound car park.
Total trip is 1347kms, with some interesting mountain passes on the way and a good climb to wrap things up:
I am packing a portable wallbox and Mennekes cable, the UMC with red 16A adapter and Schuko adapter too, plus a few extra plugs and sockets just in case. Its always good to carry a multimeter, head torch, knife, scissors, screwdrivers and pliers in order to be able to adapt to any strange power outlets.
Hope to be off before 10am tomorrow. I’ll keep you posted on progress…
Last weekend we went back to Valencia, all 5 of us plus the dog. That’s becoming a simple drive now… 2 hours at normal highway speeds, then a rest stop at the Alarcon Parador, and then another 2 hours to our final destination.
So, on Friday we will do something a little more challenging… We will all pile into the Model S and do our anual drive from Madrid to The Alps, a week’s snowboarding, and then the return trip.
That will be 1400kms each way with a 1800m climb in the final 15kms. We will do two overnight stops with a total of 4 recharge stops on the way: Zaragoza, Seu d’Urgell, Montpellier and Grenoble.
I’ve got snow chains (not easy for 21″ wheels) plus snow socks if we are in a rush, and the car park at the resort seems to have a power outlet where we can leave the car charging during our week’s vacation.
To be honest, it is not quite the same as our normal drive… instead of arriving Saturday evening we are going to arrive Sunday morning. This is a shame, but if we can do the entire trip in an electric car, all 5 of us plus our gear, well I think it will have been worthwhile.
I’ll post details of the trip tomorrow, and we’ll blog as we go along so you can follow our progress.