- MemberAugust 15, 2021 at 1:21 pm
It’ll be my daily driver, but I rarely go over 200 miles in a day. Since I’m getting the 400 mile battery, limiting the charge to 80% will vastly prolong the battery life (so I’ve read). Will the Aptera be able to do this?
- ModeratorAugust 15, 2021 at 4:20 pm
User settable charging levels should be available.
- MemberAugust 15, 2021 at 6:01 pm
I’ve never heard of a BEV where you can’t limit the charging level. That said best charging practices depend on the type of battery. With nickel cobalt batteries Tesla recommends charging to to no more than 90% and 80% is considered fairly optimal for battery life. With the LFP batteries I’ve read that they were recommending charging to 100%. Aptera hasn’t said which batteries they are using yet and I wouldn’t be surprised if they used LFPs in the short range cars and NMCs in the long range cars, that’s what Tesla is doing with the made in China cars and they have said that they want to do that in the US also. NMC batteries have higher energy densities and can charge and discharge at higher rates, the downside is that they are expensive and have shorter lives. LFP batteries are lower density had have poorer performance but they are much cheaper and they last a lot longer. The 400 mile version only needs a 40KWh battery while the 600 mile and 1000 mile versions will need 60KWh and 100KWh respectively. The car has to be designed to handle the larger batteries which gives you a lot of space to put the smaller batteries so the lower energy densities don’t matter, it’s well worth the tradeoff for a cheaper more durable battery.
- MemberAugust 16, 2021 at 6:55 pm
I know somebody with an earlier version of the Kandi K27. What they would so is attach a timer to the end of their extension cord so they would end up charging it up to about 80% to 85% before it would shut itself off. You know, like those old lamp timers, just make sure these can handle the needed amperage because one thing is a Kandi K27 and another thing is a more serious electric car like the Aptera.
- MemberNovember 12, 2021 at 3:11 pm
- MemberNovember 12, 2021 at 4:12 pm
Best to plan daily use as 20-80% even if that means a bigger battery.
- MemberNovember 12, 2021 at 4:21 pm
I have a wall charger in my garage that is wired to a 40A 240V breaker. I was informed that they only allow 80% of the rated capacity which yields 32A * 240V = 7680 Watts or 7.7kW.
A 60kW battery can be recharged by my unit in under 8 hours
- MemberNovember 12, 2021 at 4:45 pm
Batteries are like everything, eventually they wear out. Using the 20-80% advice from Curtis, the longest-lived option would be the 100 kw battery. That would require, for overnight charging, probably at the least a 7kw home EVSE if not one higher. Eight hours charging at a 7kwh rate would roughly recharge the Aptera to 800 miles range (80%) and presumes a discharge to approx 300 (30% low charge). The Aperta should perform at that rate, based on the experience from other EV makers using actively cooled/heated batteries would be at ten years.
The 500 mile overnight charging regime could also be accomplished with the 600 mile (60kw) battery though the percentage charge required would suggest a 90-95% max charge and a 5% minimum charge to accomplish the 500 mile daily commute.
Considering most folks in average traffic are challenged to maintain, even on highways, an average speed of 50 mph, this means 10 hours of daily travel time. Add the eight hours to charge (and sleep) with a 7kwh EVSE system (assuming the Aptera will at least charge at home at that rate on 220vac – I think there are upto 10-11kwh EVSE’s if the car supports it.) and there are six hours left for meals and face to face. It just seems an impossible commute.
As far as using DC fast charging, it would be more expensive and certainly more inconvenient than replenishing the used power from a home EVSE.
- MemberNovember 12, 2021 at 9:57 pm
The last they spoke of it, Aptera was planning to use a 3.2 kW charger in the vehicle – because it was smaller and would generate less heat.
- MemberNovember 12, 2021 at 9:02 pm
I appreciate it, it’s usually not 500 a day (closer 150-350 but can get up there and would worry that could kill the battery a lot faster. Then special batteries costing alot to redo etc etc. seems to make sense for a work car for me! Extra special marketing in style!
- MemberNovember 13, 2021 at 6:41 am
If you are really driving that much every day you should buy the 1000 mile version. Nickle cobalt battery life is dramatically effected by maximum charge level, as I recall from a paper I saw a couple of years ago at 100% the battery is good for 500 cycles, 90% doubles the life to 1000 cycles and at some lower level it further improves it to 1500 cycles. A cycle is defined as the full capacity of the battery. I would assume that the numbers for the batteries that they use in the car will be somewhat different than these but as a rule of thumb they are a good guide. If you are doing the huge number of miles a day that you say you are then you’ll want to keep the maximum charge level to 80% and to have the biggest battery that you can get. The number of miles that a battery will last is a function of the size of the battery which is why bigger is better in your case. For people who put on a normal 12000 miles a year the smaller batteries are fine, the battery will last long enough that other factors will limit the cars life (if nothing else it will become obsolete). But you are doing 10X that so if you want the battery to last more than a couple of years you should get a big one and never charge it to more than 80%. At the very least get the 600 mile battery and research the charging stations along your route. You will need to make multiple stops anyway, it’s not healthy to drive more than a few hours without breaks, however the Aptera will have a very feeble charging speed, 60KW, and if it charges like most cars where the average speed is significantly slower than the peak speed, you shouldn’t assume more than 40KW average charging rates. 40KW is 100 miles in 15 minutes which isn’t great but you might be able to live with that since you will want several breaks during the day.
May I ask the question, how are you putting on that many miles a day?
- MemberNovember 13, 2021 at 7:11 am
Joshua, wasn’t there some talk about Aptera having accommodations for Tesla fast charging and Tesla in fact granting access to Aptera? I would have thought that meant they could be charged at much higher charging rate than what you stated. Was I dreaming?
- MemberNovember 13, 2021 at 8:12 am
I believe just because they can use the Tesla charger, that doesnt necessarily mean the vehicle can charge at those supercharger rates. It all depends on what the folks at Aptera decide to make the charge rate at. From what I remember they stated it should get 500 miles in 30 minutes so Seems to still be pretty good.
- MemberNovember 13, 2021 at 8:17 am
If true, I would say that’s at least as fast as anything I’ve heard so far!
- MemberNovember 14, 2021 at 12:16 am
According to the FAQ, the currently expected fast charging rate is 100 miles in 10 minutes, which is 300 miles, not 500 miles in 30 minutes, assuming a pretty flat charging curve. Going by charge curves for other EV’s, I would expect only the 600 and 1000 mile versions to be able to keep this up for 30 minutes, and only from a low starting state of charge. I’m hoping the charge curve will be flatter than normal EV’s though, since the limiting factor for the Aptera may be the cable dimensions and/or heat management and not limited by the battery itself.
- MemberNovember 13, 2021 at 8:16 pm
Remember: The Alphas were built using some salvaged Tesla parts. There was a great deal of SPECULATION about a deal with Tesla but, in fact, there has been no official mention of same.
We have been told that Aptera will have 50 kW CCS charging capability. The higher the charging rate, the more heat is generated in the battery pack: Aptera does not have a cooling system that involves fans and radiators to dissipate that heat.
- MemberNovember 14, 2021 at 8:20 am
They teased a Tesla connector in a video but now the FAQ says CCS. They also infer a maximum rate of 60KW in the FAQ, hopefully they will rethink this but there may be engineering reasons that they’ve set it so low, specifically they might not have the cooling capacity to do better.
Tesla is opening up the Supercharger network to CCS cars and they will be offering an adapter. However it will be a very expensive way to charge an Aptera if they stick with the 60KW charging rate. Tesla has said that they are going to charge a premium for slow charging cars as they should because they tie up the stall for a longer period of time.
There actually are a lot of CCS chargers out there, most are crappy 60KW chargers with only one or two plugs per station, however if the Aptera can only charge at 60KW then the old CCS units will be fine. Also because of the range of an Aptera if you do your planning right you should be able to get to the next one if the station you are at is down.
- ModeratorNovember 13, 2021 at 8:31 am
Until we know for sure the battery specifics (chemistry, mostly), it’s premature to say what the less-wear charging options are, other than slower is better. Another consideration is that batteries are advancing rapidly still, and a replacement five or ten years from now may make sense – assuming Aptera keeps with “right-to-repair” design. Mostly, as my Tesla social media groups remind new EV users, don’t worry too much about batteries and range. Just enjoy the car.
- MemberNovember 13, 2021 at 7:54 pm
From what I’ve seen of design, kinda looks like battery packs are located forward in belly section below passenger compartment. Isn’t that permanently fixed to top half? If so would seemingly preclude battery replacement.
- MemberNovember 13, 2021 at 8:20 pm
- MemberNovember 13, 2021 at 8:24 pm
Lou, That graphic in the configurator is really misleading at best, it shows an increase of one similar size pack from 25k to 40k to 60k then a smaller one going to 100k, as reality would dictate that is incorrect, I’m not sure I would rely on the graphic for any clue as to how the packs will be placed. It’s similar in execution to the animated GIF they had for a while that showed the cooling channels throughout most of the vehicle body including the in the doors. I don’t think the illustrator they use has a real grasp on how most of it will really work.
- MemberNovember 14, 2021 at 12:02 pm
I consult for a few large home improvement companies. So travel a lot meeting with homeowners all over central cal. I was wondering if they have any type of marketing for up here. I’ll be all over!
- MemberNovember 14, 2021 at 2:14 pm
The 600 mile version should do the trick for you, you’ll be able to do 400 miles in a day on an 80% charge without doing any DC charging, for days when you have to go 500 miles you can add a hundred miles with one stop which you’ll be doing anyway.
- MemberNovember 15, 2021 at 7:46 am
I think 600 mile would be fine – especially if you are willing to stop at a charger to eat lunch. Otherwise if you’re concerned about bad weather and snow and hot/cold I’d go for the 1000 mile and you’ll never have to worry about it as long as you charge at home. In general, plan for 50% of your range as being useful minimum for trips if you stay above 20% and are dealing with cold weather. If you charge to 100% at home it’s better but ideally you’re staying between 20% and 80%. Even with a 1000 mile version you’re going to save a TON on gas.
- MemberNovember 15, 2021 at 12:22 pm
That’s interesting. But how much current can the Aptera take while charging. Is it AC or DC power or either.
- ModeratorNovember 15, 2021 at 2:09 pm
I believe AC charging only, no DC fast charging. An onboard charger with a 3.7 kW capacity was mentioned somewhere else on the forum as standard Aptera equipment.
Others may want to weigh in on this. Don’t want to spread bad intel.
- MemberNovember 16, 2021 at 7:37 am
It darn well better have DC fast charging! That’s a big deal!
If it comes with a 3.7 kw onboard charger I’m going to try to figure out a way to upgrade it to 7.7kw or 11kw.
50kw DCFC is planned.
- MemberNovember 16, 2021 at 1:18 am
CCS DC fast charging up to about 50 kW is planned for the Aptera. Converting solar to CCS DC standard is probably more expensive than converting to regular AC though.
- MemberNovember 17, 2021 at 5:49 pm
What are best practices for charging and/or maintaining charge in the Aptera 2170 battery packs? Will daily charging/topping off with 110v/220v over night degrade the battery and reduce its useful range? I frequently hear that the 2170 packs in Tesla BEV’s should not be allowed to get below 20% or above 80% state of charge and that the best way to maintain battery longevity is to keep the 2170 packs plugged in and charging from 110v/220v but still to not allow a greater than 80% state of charge. I intend to use the Aptera for commuting to/from San Diego 140 miles and/or LA/LAX area 240 miles daily and for visiting friends in Wisconsin and/or around the greater southwestern United States. Maintaining maximum battery and vehicle longevity and maximum available range are very important to me.
- MemberNovember 17, 2021 at 8:23 pm
I expect there will be a charge limit setting to limit charging at home. Almost all EVs have it. Keep it between 20-80%. If you’re going on a big trip run it to 100% right before you leave. It is good to do occasionally on some packs to balance cells. But for normal use stay 20-80%.
I’d say if you have a non-solar EV charge to 80%. With solar charge to 60% so solar has some room to charge up more.
Here’s what it looks like in my Kia Niro EV. (300 mile Li-Ion battery)
- MemberNovember 17, 2021 at 8:53 pm
If it’s correct that all EVs are best kept in the 20-80% charge range, it really makes one realize that the EPA range estimates are very misleading. Most out now or coming next year are listing 250-300 mile ranges (even best Tesla Model S only around 400). If you multiply by 60% to get usable range, we’re now looking at 150-180 miles (240 for Model S). That’s going to come as a shock to most considering switching to an EV when range anxiety remains one of their biggest concerns. Even I thought getting a 600 mile AWD Aptera (which will cut down range 10%) would safely allow me to travel 450 miles w/o recharging. Whoops! Didn’t want to shell out the considerable extra cost for 1000 mile range, but if that’s really more like 600 mile range, may have to swallow that bullet.
- MemberNovember 18, 2021 at 6:37 am
I’ll have to make a reservation to my claim. Very cold (below freezing) or very hot weather may cause the range of a 600 mile Aptera drop perilously close to the 440 mile range you need. Our Zoe gets 20% less range in winter. A 600 mile Aptera would get 480 miles of range in winter if the relationship between power requirements for heating and propulsion are similar.
- MemberNovember 18, 2021 at 11:20 am
And that’s not counting the hit I know I’m taking with AWD (-10% = 540 mile range) and Off-road package (another -10%? = 486)…so, yup, any other subtractions based on temperature or speed will most definitely put me in for at least one charge. Hoping I’ll be able to charge at Tesla charging station as I’m already aware of two that would work in terms of their location.
- MemberNovember 22, 2021 at 12:36 pm
Planning for my first EV is definitely VERY different than planning for my first and second diesel powered vehicles. Looks like I’m likely to have to constrain any Aptera I purchase to commuting and near regional exploration 300 miles or less round trip from my 92595 US ZipCode and to save the diesel for when I really need to make time and distance. With my 2017 Chevy Colorado diesel, I average 30 mpg round trip if I keep it under 80 and mid 20’s round trip on longer weekend road trips of slightly less than 1000 miles. Since beginning my plans for an Aptera EV, I have noticed that I almost never use more than 75% of my diesel range although I can refuel the diesel to 100% each time I fuel. My Aptera may well end up saving my diesel. Irony.
- MemberNovember 22, 2021 at 1:23 pm
Don’t worry about EV road tripping. You just charge on the road – It’s not a big deal. I do a road trip about once a month or so that are 500-2000 miles long with a 300 mile range EV. That includes BLM camping out in the desert with the heater or AC running all night. Just use A Better Route Planner and type in your destination and it tells you where to go and charge. They have added Aptera to the planner already. It’s like google maps except it tells you where to charge. Just take a breather and eat a burrito while you rest for 20-30 minutes. It’s pretty painless and gives you a good chance to take a quick rest.
Also, by the time Aptera is on sale the Tesla network should be open to everyone by using a CCS1 adapter in North America. They are planning to open it by the end of the year.
- MemberNovember 22, 2021 at 3:52 pm
Many thanks. I’ve been using the better route planner the past few days to work through routes to the Grand Canyon, Williams AZ, and Milwaukee. When visiting the canyon I do make at least one 20 to 30 min stop anyway. I guess the strangest things for me to adjust to is not using the upper 10 to 20% of the battery range and possibly needing to avoid the lesser traveled routes unless I opted for a really big battery. Still, even the 400 mile range all wheel drive Aptera would save me enough money to tow the Aptera to regions I want to explore and it would cover my regional commutes nicely. The more I can learn about how others are managing with real ranges of 300 miles or less the more use I can make of the Aptera. I’d much rather tow an Aptera to a region to explore than to tow a boat or a jet ski. I also want to make sure that I maximize the life of my Aptera as on average I’ve kept each of my vehicles for 13 years or more. I’m fine with rebuilding vehicle powertrains be they liquid or electron fuel. I really just want to be sure that I can always enjoy this great country of ours while being able to afford to fuel and/or recharge my ride. Again, many thanks for the perspective and the insight.
- MemberNovember 23, 2021 at 7:58 am
Charging to 100% is bad, it’s not true that it doesn’t reduce battery life. Here is an up to date paper on the subject, the lower the level the longer the life. It turns out that that’s true for LFPs also, I had thought it wasn’t because Tesla recommends charging LFPs to 100%. LFPs start with a much longer life than NMC and it’s much harder for the battery management system to figure out what their charge level is because they have a flat voltage curve as they discharge, the voltage of NMCs drops as they are discharge which makes it easy to figure out the charge level. Tesla may be recommending 100% on LFPs because they figure the life is long enough even at 100% that the tradeoff is worth it to keep the BMS calibrated.
- MemberNovember 23, 2021 at 9:02 am
Thanks for sharing these articles.
It may not always be true 100% if there’s a battery buffer. For instance, charging a Niro EV to “100%” charges it to 64 kwh with a 67 kwh battery, so it’s technically only 95.5% charged at a full charge. The general consensus, however, is if you need 100% to just use it. The manufacturers put in a buffer in some cases. It really depends on a lot of things we don’t really know yet about Aptera.
I thought the long-term storage at very low states of charge part was very interesting – and the ability to reverse capacity fade by storing it at low charge levels?
- MemberJanuary 21, 2022 at 10:20 pm
just curious if there will be any charging cutoffs to avoid over charging both from wall/charger and or solar? Second can these be set to cut off at 80 percent for optimal battery longevity when max range isn’t required? Assuming that’s optimal for this batteries chemistry of course.
- MemberJanuary 22, 2022 at 4:46 am
There’s NO way there wouldn’t be an automatic charge cutoff. I don’t
know, however, if there will be the ability to somehow set it to a
different level. I’m betting there will be but hopefully you’ll get a
better answer from another forum member.
- MemberJanuary 22, 2022 at 7:20 am
Every EV has a mechanism to set the maximum charging level, the chances that this car won’t have that ability is vanishingly small. What I’d like to see them do is have two max levels, one for wall charging and one for solar. For maximum battery life you want to be able to set an absolute level but because the car has solar charging as well as wall charging you would like to leave room for solar energy. For example you might want to set the wall charge level to 50-60% and set the absolute max to 80%, that would guarantee a minimum range which is satisfactory for local driving but still leave you with 20-30% of your battery to capture that free clean solar energy.
Final thought, hopefully their app will allow you to set the levels as well as the screen in the car, that’s what Tesla does. Controlling from the app is very helpful. I normally have my level set to 75%, that’s where is sits for most of the week. But if I’m going on a road trip I’ll bump it up to 90% a few hours, or perhaps the night before, I leave. You can also turn on climate control from Tesla’s app, this is very important in winter. You want to preheat the car while it’s plugged in. In the case of a Tesla it’s also required if you want to get the doors open. This probably won’t apply to Aptera because the top of the windows are fixed, but a Tesla has frameless windows they have to lower in order to open or shut the doors. In winter the windows can freeze shut, it’s happened to me twice this year even though I’ve sprayed all the seals with Teflon+Silicone. If you can’t roll down the window you can’t shut the door. By setting the car to defrost from the app I’m able to work around this California engineer induced bug. Hopefully the Aptera won’t have a quirk like that but at the very least it’s nice to have the windows defrosted before you get into car and nice to do it while the car is plugged in so you don’t drain the battery.
- MemberJanuary 22, 2022 at 8:25 am
REALLY Useful to Have the benefit of Your Knowledge/Experience on this issue, @Joshua Rosen!
Thanks for That !
- MemberFebruary 17, 2022 at 1:36 pm
Pretty much speculation/conjecture (As stated by Scott’s post) on the capability that Aptere will have. Alain Chuzel is a knowledgeable expert in this area. I would assign high credibility to his observations overs others regarding this topic.
I believe Aptera engineers are knowledgeable and also good at researching technology and functionality to incorporate into the Aptera. We will not be disappointed with what the final result will be. We should probably resist second guessing based our limited experience and wait to the mature functionality is announced by Aptera
- MemberJanuary 22, 2022 at 6:36 pm
Seth, Crank Software (the UI developer that Aptera has partnered / outsourced with) indirectly revealed some early UI and functionality in this short video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=57PCLnTm9a8. At 0:05 in the video, there is an “85%” on-screen element shown that likely is a slider control for a user selectable upper charging cut-off level. That is conjecture plus this particular UI video is 10 months old, so there may likely be updates in the interim. Nonetheless, it may point to where and how the functionality you are talking about will be accessed in the Aptera UI.
- MemberFebruary 14, 2022 at 9:32 pm
I just noticed a usability detail that I suspect most haven’t; it appears Aptera effectively doesn’t have any level 2 charging (it has level 1 or 3)
How quickly does Aptera charge?
From the sun, you get up to about 40 miles per day. From a 110 V cord (like what you’d charge your cell phone on) you get 13 miles an hour or about 150 miles of charge overnight. At roadside charging stations you’d likely get about 100 miles in 10 minutes
Google Sheet FAQ:
What is the on-board AC charging rate?
We haven’t chosen a supplier yet but likely 1.5kW or less.
Level 1 charging: best of any EV by a Longshot (efficiency)
Level 2 charging : exactly the same as level 1. Could be less than half the miles per hour as a tesla
Level 3 charging : Theoretically half the rate as an ideal tesla supercharger but likely more like 80% as good in the real world.
Based on these the on-board inverter for AC essentially can’t handle any more than 120v/12 amps (a standard level 1 wall plug) – 1.5 kw max. For comparison Tesla models range from 7.7 to 11.5 kw max with AC charging (level 2). The aptera seems like it won’t get much (or any?) benefit from Nema 14-50 or other home AC based chargers; as far as I know no DC options exist for home install. Even with the Aptera’s amazing efficiency (about 2.5-3x that of a model 3) this means that anyone planning to charge at home will get about half the range overnight as a Tesla model 3 long range (assuming a 60 amp / 48 amp sustained capacity level 2 charger is installed). This also means “destination” and home charging may be a lot slower than some are expecting. Personally it’s more than enough anyway and not needing an electrician is a great advantage.
I’d love to be proven wrong of I’m misinterpreting this. Essentially Aptera will have less overnight range than other Evs overnight at home (assuming electrical upgrades) and gets less range per hour from destination chargers. I still think it’s probably fine and solar will help but it’s something I could see most people missing.
Level 3 (dc) charging is 50kw. This effectively charges “miles” into an Aptera at a slightly lower speed than a Tesla supercharger aswell but basically any DC charger achieves this speed. It would seem to reason with its large battery (for upper models) and comparatively underpowered 50 kw speed that the dropoff over 80% could be far less (this is why a 250 kw supercharger is only 2 minutes faster than a 200 kw).
Source for tesla inverter capacity : https://www.tesla.com/support/home-charging-installation/onboard-charger
Ps: My phone is at 2% and I didn’t want to lose this. Sorry if the order is a mess.
- MemberFebruary 15, 2022 at 12:24 am
Hopefully the 1.5 kW is just for 110 V. On row 267 the google FAQ sheet still quotes 30 miles/hour from a 220 V line, so perhaps it’s just the current that is limited to 16 A, which would probably get you between 1.5 kW and 1.6 kW after conversion and heat losses on 110 V and 3+ kW on 220 V.
They may also have confused it with the optional 110 V utility inverter, since it has been stated for a long time as “Yes, likely not more than 1.5kW though.”
I really hope they don’t make the vehicle too much of a bottle neck when it comes to AC charging. It’s a lot easier to find a L2 destination charger than a DCFC. If they think 1.5 kW AC charging is enough, more of them need to drive (non-Tesla) EV’s so they learn to appreciate diversity when it comes to viable charging options.
I hope they even go for at least 16 A 3-phase AC (11 kW) in markets like Europe where 3-phase is common.