The discovery of an electric car
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Last February, I’ve posted I’ll switch to an electric car. And now it’s done, the vehicle took a long time to be delivered but now I can enjoy it.
I’ve ordered it on February, and it has been constructed during June. I’ve received it last week after a long wait. Fun fact : the car has been delivered to the retailer during July, but it took a month to have the immatriculation certificate.
Like I said in my previous post, my previous car was the Honda Civic, 2017 version. I freaking loved this car : the design is awesome (the 2022 one is less agressive), its automatic gearbox was great despite being a CVT, the engine was a little demon which was very silent at low rate and singed during the accelerations, and the driving was nice. The saddest part is because of the COVID-19 pandemic, I couldn’t enjoy it during the year 2020, and I’ve took possession of this car during late 2019. Basically, I’ve lost one year of its usage. For a moment, I’ve hesitated to use the buying option of my leasing contract to keep it two more years.
But, as some neighbors asked for charging wallbox for electric cars, I’ve checked the offer to see if I could find something in my tastes. I hate SUVs, and most of the hatchback compact models were not in my taste. I’ve discovered Cupra randomly, during a discussion with a colleague. I’ve tested the Born and adopted it.
I clearly enjoy the one-pedal driving mode. As the Civic was a powerful car using a CVT gearbox, I already adopted a similar kind of driving with it : accelerate to attain the road speed, remove the foot from the accelerator, let the car going, and so on. An electric car is driven like that, because the goal is to use the less possible power to avoid draining too fast the battery. The Cupra Born is based on the Volkswagen ID.3, and both of them has a two mode driving : the “Drive” mode, which has no automatic brake when you release the accelerator, and the “Brake” mode which will trigger the regenerative brake when you release the pedal. Unlike other models, the “Brake” mode will not stop the car, only slowing down to a pedestrian speed (5km/h). It’s a nice mode when you are in trafic congestions when you have to start and stop often at slow speed. The “Drive” mode is more useful when the road is clear and you know you won’t have to brake because of the road trafic.
Because the car is taller than the Civic (because of a tons of batteries under my bottom), the driving sensation is a little different but not that much. The Born is shorter than the Civic (which is one of the longest hatchback, more than 4,6 meters long versus 4.3 for the Born) and taller, but I could test its agility and it’s still nice. I can’t tell yet if the direction is as precise as the Civic, but my current experience is very positive. And of course, the most enjoyable thing with electric cars is the accelerations. It’s one of the factor that make the car very agile in my opinion.
But sadly, nothing’s perfect. The Born is a young model and it looks like I have to endure some issues. During the first setup with the commercial, the connected services could not start (and that’s still the case). Like a lot of modern cars, it possesses its own Internet connection with an integrated SIM card but the connection could not start, so I can’t use the application to monitor the car status (charging status, preheating, etc). That’s the joy of having more and more software-ized cars, its quality is in the standard of the IT market … Average, not awesome, not bad, but some annoying bugs or sometimes unresponsiveness. And because it’s designed like a smartphone app, you can’t see what’s happening under the hood to understand the issue unless buying a self-diagnose tool. I’ve also had a warning popping during the first setup with the commercial. He offered me to check today with a technician and there is a problem with the heating system, but it will be took in charge by the warranty, with the connectivity issues too. That’s the surprises of new cars, especially when the models are recent (the Born has been released last year). It’s not a good start.
But in this story, the most terrible thing was the charging wallbox installation in my parking.
The operator announced 4 to 8 weeks for a delivery, so I’ve ordered it quickly. At the end of August, I had a good surprise : my wallbox has been installed in the same time as a neighbor’s who requested it a couple of week before me. As I didn’t had the car yet, I asked him to test my box with his car, to ensure there is no issue. He plugged it, the Tesla app was showing 7.7kWH power and I’ve asked a 3.7, and the box got cut off. I notify the operator that I’ve refused the installation validation and he confirmed me they made a mistake and installed the wrong wallbox (which requested 32A for my 16A line.. so … ✀ the power). And there was another issue, the support of the box wasn’t installed as specified by the coproperty manager… The next day, the electrician came back and announced me he will remove the box. Last week, the operator told me they received the right box, and it has been installed today. And until now, it’s the right one, and it’s charging my car. I’ll have to double check, because another neighbor told his box wasn’t delivering the expected power… Less than a domestic wall plug…
Oh, and I forgot, because it was expected to be this kind of days… I’ve took possession of my new car, I’m happy, I’m returning home, and the parking door is broken and could not open.
One of our two doors is broken, and the other one, which is supposed to be an exit only, is very difficult to open from the outside because of its short antenna range. Fortunately, I could follow a neighbor who had just came out.
In conclusion. Will I regret the Civic ? Absolutely, it was a great car. Will I enjoy the Born ? Despite its minor starting issues, I like it too and I’m just beginning to discover it.
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