Greg & Wayne’s eXCellent XC40EV adventures

Well today was a great day (not weather-wise though as it was raining cats and dingos!) We picked up the XC40EV today from Melbourne City Volvo (contactless delivery so we will be on our own with respect to setting it all up, but as Sean the sales mgr said we prob could teach them about the car LOL). Anyway, I think it had about 85% charge when we picked it up (forgot to note the exact number in the excitement), and 46% when we got home. This first trip (which is mostly uphill and about 80% 100-110 kph speeds) we averaged 27.6 kWh/100 km. That’s respectable given the speeds and the elevation change. The car drives great - although the maps weren’t displaying in the driver’s instrument cluster (just a blip of TV-like static when trying to display)...when we got to Wayne’s mum’s to pick up the dog, I re-set the infotainment head unit (IHU) and hey presto, all good. Must have been a minor software glitch? Hmm...also Wayne drove it first and said when he took off the outside mirrors were pointed down at the kerb, so they hadn’t rotated back into normal position after reversing? We’ve shut off that feature now anyway as you don’t need it with the 360-degree cameras and all the ultrasonic sensors. I noticed when I reversed into the shed I was fairly close to the roller door opening on the driver’s wheel arch and the ultrasonic sensors were going and a red line appeared in that area on the 360 display, and the car didn’t want to move without a more firm press on the accelerator pedal, so it really does try to help you smashing your car! :) Hope this turns out to be a fun experience - I’m pretty elated that we got this instead of the Tesla Model 3, as you can imagine! :) Now we just need to go thru and set up profiles, log into our Google accounts, pair phones, etc. Looking forward to some local road trips in the near future, COVID allowing. That's Wayne in black and me in blue.

timboVolvoHordzPhilia_BearChrisAshDVSLaurieVolDanEssbosarebee242GTand 8 others.


  • SpacSpac @Spac Canberra-ish.

    How difficult would it be to paint an egg crate grille on the front? 😁

  • The grille is a strange one, but as others have said it’s the only thing that differentiates it from the petrol car (if you want that!) They can be wrapped, or you can buy the “Black Stone” one from Volvo (probably expensive). I think I can live with it...if it gets a bunch of stone chips then maybe look at something down the road.

    Couple more pics taken this morning. I removed the number plate covers as condensation built up behind them. Sorry no more free ads from MCV. We also spent an hour setting up WiFi access, Volvo accounts, pairing phones, agreeing to allow Google and Volvo to monitor every aspect of our lives etc. Car doesn't have a mobile signal in the drive here...they must be using Optus instead of Telstra for the mobile connectivity...that could be a pain. Will have to monitor. We plugged the car in just now...says it will be charged at 9:20 tonight LOL. We set the max SOC to 80% and with the provided cord you can only charge at 10 amps was charging at about 2200 W, so that's 2.2 kWh per hour. We're still waiting for Powershop to move is over to their special EV plan...that gives very cheap EV rate of about $0.10 per kWh from midnight to 4 AM, peak from 3 PM to 9 PM and off peak at all other times. So for is that will work well as we can start charge at bedtime and keep going until 3 PM next day and still not use any peak. During the day we have heaps of excess solar so most charging then will be solar anyway. May take a drive into Daylesford today and try the Chargefox charger there...I think it's 22 kW peak.

    I need to shift the yellow 245 over a bit as the XC was beeping and carrying in saying everything was too close LOL as I was reversing in.

  • I wish I could get off peek power 😑

    Any thoughts of putting in a 30amp power point so you can at least do 6.6kw charging?

  • We've thought about different charging options but I think for the driving we do slow charging will be fine. We will see how we go. Would be nice to install a Zappi or other brand that can utilise extra solar and put that into the battery instead of feeding back to grid. We currently have that type system for our hot water and it's paid for itself over a year or two. We only have a 6mm T&E cable run from the main house meter box (about 20 m) to the shed where we'd be charging, and that feeds the house water pump, shed lights, roller doors and hoist. Also have a 2.2 kW solar system and inverter on that shed (in addition to 3 kW solar on the house. To do faster charging we'd either have to get a wallbox charger with the Type 2 cable and plug end or we'd have to buy the type 2 to 30 power point cable.

  • I have a 22kw 3 phase zappi at work where I have 55kw of inverters.... pity the car only allows a 3.5kw charge rate.

    I've also had issues with it stopping the charge when it goes over about 30kw being exported where it says it's waiting for excess solar. I don't think they've had one fitted to a solar system of this size.

  • Nice XC60! My dad has one in the US (not the full-blown Polestar one though as he didn’t think he needed the Brembo brakes, orange seatbelts and Ohlins dampers at the age of 77! I don’t think we’d be over-taxing a Zappi with excess solar...only issue is the shed where we charge is on a separate solar system so we might only be able to take advantage of that when it’s exporting unless the Zappi has a remote current-sensing clamp with WiFi communication...the main meter box on the house (which also has a solar system) would really be where we’d want to be monitoring the current for excess solar. I’ll read up on them!

    For the fun of it we checked in at the Daylesford Chargefox charger for a half hour tonight. It’s a 24 kW peak CCS2 DC “fast” charger. $5.63 for 16.09 kWh ($0.35/kWh) that’s about 64 km added to the range...normal XC40 at 10 l/100 km on 98 octane at $1.77 (yesterday’s price!) would be $11.32. So charging at this charger is exactly 1/2 price per km vs the petrol car. Given our home electricity rate off-peak is about $0.189/kWh it would be 1/4 the price of petrol. Our super-low night EV rate is about $0.099 so we’re getting down to the 1/8 price of petrol. Of course petrol is high priced at the moment...and in freeway driving the petrol XC40 probably would do better than 10 l/100 km...anyway, quick back-of-the-envelope calculation below:

    Assume XC40 petrol 10l/100 km, petrol 98 at $1.75/litre = 17.5 cents/km

    Assume XC40EV 25kWh/100 km, charging off peak $.189/kWh = 4.725 cents/km

    So savings vs petrol is 12.775 cents per km

    So, if you buy an XC40 T5 R-design loaded, it’s $15,000 cheaper than an equivalent you need to drive 117,416 km to make up for that price difference. HOWEVER, there’s virtually no maintenance on the EV, and you’d probably be spending a fair bit on dealer service on the petrol XC40. Not really the point of buying an EV but it does show that over the long term there is a potential for significant savings. Of course if you have to buy a new EV battery for $20K at the 8 year mark, well, start over again! :)

  • @carnut222

    If I had off peek

    I would have a 30-50kwh lifepo4 pack at the house. If pack is running at under 50% or whatever from just solar... top off the pack during off peek... then zero usage during anything but off peak times

  • Yeah, we’ve looked at batteries before but price-wise it didn’t pay off very quickly...probably because we have low usage to begin with...even with the EV charging. Of course with the new EV we’ll be using that more as the range is more practical, so I would expect the usage to go up a bit. As you can see below our average daily usage is less than 6 kWh (3 kWh in summer, 9 kWh in winter). We’d still have to pay the supply charge...we also do send excess to the grid (especially in summer) so we get a credit for that...based on the peak/off peak rates we currently have, I’d make a guess we’re probably averaging about 25 cents per annually that’s 365 days x 6 kWh/day x $0.25 = $547 per year. We still have to pay the daily supply charge regardless (which is probably covered by the solar exports credit) even if we were able to go to zero net usage by going to an optimised battery system, we’d only be saving around $550 per year give or take. Yeah, I guess you could pay that off in 10 years if you could get something for $5500...and it would give you independence for grid outages which would be nice. Given our average usage is less than 10 kWh per day, we probably could get by with a 20 kWh battery pack. Oh, hey we already have one in the old 240EV...may be time to re-purpose that pack? So just need smart inverter-charger. I do think it would be sad to retire the 240EV though given it was such an epic project. Wonder what the bits would be worth if we sold them or sold the whole going car to fund a new LiFePO4 pack? Hmm...decisions!

  • I would be very interested in the ev 240 without the existing pack so I could put my own pack into it and daily it!

  • I’ll keep that in mind if we decide to sell it! :)

  • A thorn between two electric roses?

    I really love bright car colours. The Fusion Red is also called (or used to be called?) Ember Red. I like the orange tint. The XC40 really has some nice body sculpting.

  • I wished they offered the EV in yellow as an EV only color.... the electric bumble bee!

  • Plugged the car in at bedtime last night and started charging (10 amp max charge current with the provided cable). We have the battery charge limit set to 80%. We'll allow up to 90% or even 100% if we want to maximise range on a longer trip. Car was finished in the morning after breakfast and took 27 kWh. It's kinda strange to see that fairly large figure as the electric 240 never takes more than about 12 kWh on a charge (but we usually charge when it drops to 50%). Difference between a 19 kWh pack and a 75 kWh pack!

  • Yeah a guy on FB bought one and got a wrap. Originally he was going to go for an orangey-red but it ended up being a Porsche red and it looks pretty similar to the bright red model car in this pic. He photoshopped a bunch of different colours and it looked good in yellow and orange for sure!

  • Just found the pic from FB of the guy in the UK who got his wrapped. He also de-badged the back...not sure I like that.

  • Took the XC up to the shops today. Need to run the numbers but looks like it uses about the same amount of energy as the 240EV...guess it weighs about 750 kg more and has dual motors, 20-inch wheels and all the mod-cons, but with the regen braking I thought maybe it would be a bit better. A few comparison pics - I’m planning to do an article for the Volvo Club magazine (“Rolling Australia”) soon. The vision out of the 240 wagon is so feels safer to drive. The cameras in the XC are a must for reversing! When I hopped in the car this AM it had no mobile connection so the Google maps were complaining. Hmm, when I got to town I tried re-setting the LTE/modem (didn’t seem to do anything?) and also re-booted the IHU. Still no mobile connection. Went in to do grocery shopping and half hour later when I got in the car, all good. The Volvo Cars app where you’re supposed to see the car’s status (locked/unlocked, climate, state of charge) doesn’t work too often. I think if the car goes to sleep or is parked in the shed where the mobile signal is poor, the car and server and phone can’t all communicate. Too technical for my mechanical engineer’s brain LOL! Hopefully the car will improve with OTA (over the air) software updates as time goes forward. Given this Android Auto Operating System is rolling out in all the Volvos starting for 2022, they had better get it sorted ASAP!

    A few comparison pics below. When we were building the 240EV, Tesla wasn’t even on the radar, and we had no thoughts of making a front boot (“froot” or is it front trunk “frunk”) [As I read that it sounds like I have a speech impediment, not that there’s anything wrong with that!] Anyway, looking at the pics, if we had re-positioned the inverter and not fitted the decorative strut brace, we could have had a frunk large enough to take a large suitcase...or another 20 kWh of batteries. Hmmm... I think I have a Volvo emblem and diagonal from a Volvo bus/truck kit...wonder if I should put that on the looks kinda naked without it!

  • RoinikIan @Roinik Mount Gambier, SA.

    They're about as aero as each other.

  • Haha well, surprisingly looking at the technical data for the 2022 Recharge Twin from Volvo, the aero isn’t that bad at 0.329 Cd...I know we were trying to get down to 0.32x with the VE Commodore during the design phase!! Frontal area is fairly large since the XC is so tall. Some screen grabs below from this presentation that may be of interest:

    It’s saying the 245 has a Cd of 0.45 (that’s a 75 model...later ones could be a tad better) and I saw on the Google that the 240 has a frontal area of 2.05 square metres.

    XC40EV CdxA = 0.329x2.56 = 0.842

    240 CdxA = 0.45x2.05 = .922

    Sooo, since the frontal area of the 240 is so small compared to the XC40, the 240s aero drag force isn’t much worse than the XC40EV. :)

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