Posted 05.11.2014 in News by Christopher
The weather was picture perfect in Chino Hills as members of EV Quorum and electric car veterans Electric Vehicle Association of Southern California (EVAoSC) pitched canopies at Ruben Ayala Park. A light breeze kept things cool throughout the afternoon.
I was certain that the shiny new Cadillac ELR would be the novelty of the day until EVAoSC member “Electric Bill” Dale, a dead ringer for Gandalf, straight from the Shire right down to the mischievous twinkle in his eye and impromptu magic tricks, glided up in a perfectly restored 1999 Corbin Sparrow. It seemed a perfectly fitting ride for a wizard. Newly outfitted with Lithium Ion cells, the personal transporter was a reminder of both the longevity of electric vehicles and how far EVs have come in the past 15 years.
In addition to the EV Quorum member cars, EVAoSC members George Steinheimer and Bruce Buller brought EVs to allow people to guest drive. George brought his new slate-finish Fiat 500e, Bruce with his beautiful red Chevy Volt. Thanks to EVAoSC president Jim McCarthy for attending and coordinating the club's participation.
Automotive journalist Lynn Walford stopped by to sample the wares and talk shop. The idea of solar charging was appealing, although Lynn thought that it might need to come after some other electrical upgrades. Panel upgrades are not an uncommon requirement for older houses, an issue I've discussed at some length with solar installers. Fortunately some new innovations in the market may make those older retrofits cheaper and more practical. More on these soon...
It's always gratifying when people come from a distance to attend the ECGD, and the Van Schaack family held the distinction at Chino. Chris hails from Portland, and his dad and brother, Jim Sr and Jr, from south Orange County.
An educational rep from Aerovironment showed off the amazing new TurboCord dual-voltage charging cord. This is by far the smallest and lightest charge cord I have ever seen. It's great for everyday use, and if you have a second home or visit a relative or friend frequently and can get the matching outlet installed, this is a great portable 240v charging solution. It comes in a great looking soft shell black nylon travel case.
PHAT Energy was also on hand to explain the technical basics and economics of charging an EV using solar. The knowledge I gained included how the system is sized to match your total energy and power needs when adding an EV load to the system, which honestly had been a little fuzzy until David Jones kindly explained the finer points of figuring this out.
The biggest thanks and kudos of the day is due to EV Quorum member Farhad Sorourifar, a longtime advocate on the front lines of the EV and solar revolution, who helped me ferry an extra EV up to Chino Hills from San Diego. Because another staff member became unavailable at the last minute, Farhad stepped into the breach and worked late into the night to make sure the all the cars made it up there in time for the event the next day. Thank you Farhad!
One more quick word of thanks to Mike Campos, the Park Ops supervisor, who came out to chat and had some helpful advice for our future events there. Thanks Mike!
The Electric Car Guest Drive event in Chino Hills was held on Saturday May 10th. EVs available to view and guest drive included the Tesla Model S performance sedan, two Fiat 500e, Chevrolet Volt, Ford Focus Electric and Honda Fit EV. The black Cadillac ELR was on hand for static display, looking angular and very modern next to the flowing, rounded curves of the Corbin Sparrow.