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To cover my needs in a State (Florida) where the only outlet is at home.
I'm in Georgia, and I only charge at home. I plug-in at home every night and only exceed the electric range a couple of days per week. So far I'm only buying gas every 6-8 weeks, as opposed to filling up weekly as I did in my prior minivan. In addition, I've taken 4 long trips (1000+ miles round trip) and I can get about 400 miles per tank instead of barely 300. So even when I don't/can't plug-in to charge, the hybrid engine will recover energy and boost my gas mileage. After 6 months and 9000 miles, I drove about 41% electric overall.

I ordered a 2017 before last spring's recall, so I didn't get a deal on my car and GA doesn't have any EV incentives any more... just the Federal Tax Credit. But that was enough to make the Pacifica cost-competitive with the ICE version. I admit that I had some concerns getting the first model year, but my old van was on its last legs and no-one else was offering a hybrid minivan (plug-in or otherwise) and the hybrid SUVs that I test-drove didn't meet my needs.

As far as the electronics issues, those seem to mainly be reported in the new UConnect release that came out last summer... and I expect all FCA vehicles with the new UConnect are having similar issues, not just the Pacifica Hybrid. Although I sometimes wish I had the Apple/Android connectivity in the newer version, I am relieved that the older version has been extremely stable, even when updates were released last September. It also leads me to believe that they get the issues fixed in the new version eventually.
 

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I wish I knew as well. My father and brother both went to work on me for "just wanting toys" when I ordered my PacHy. "You just have to have the newest thing". <sigh>

I'm saving money every month on less gas vs increased electric. Plus, since I plug in at work, I only pay for half of my electric.

Beyond that, this is a step in a better direction for the environment. These vehicles are a stepping stone to leaving gasoline behind. I felt an obligation when buying a new van to purchase one that was better for the world than my last one. If a person is income restricted to a gasser, that's fine. If a person doesn't want a PHEV, that's fine too. I don't have either of those limitations, so I felt a duty to buy the PHEV. My wife and I are planning our next home, and are looking at putting a solar roof on it alongside a small residential windmill, so our electric car will be sun/wind powered if possible. If that costs me a little more, and I can still afford it, it will happen.
Its paying it forward.. in all senses. ?

I was looking at LG Chem RESU series HV storage units for solar. With a good inverter and some software you could stay off the grid as much as the solar allows in your hood which would be pretty cool.
 

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Discussion Starter · #23 ·
Good article.

The main reason that I see why these vans don't make it over here is simply the price of gas. Gas in Japan is a little more than in Canada. The extra cost of the battery system exceeds any savings for the average American driver. As soon as the price of the van goes up, it gets into the luxury ICE SUV market and there is far more competition at that end for fewer customers.

As much as everyone dislikes Ontario's government, the only reason that I can see that the PacHy was built at all (here) is the generous $100 million they loaned/gifted? the plant. They then put their money where their mouth was and give $14,000 per vehicle to anyone buying one here. This puts the price BELOW the ICE model it compares to. They also pay up to $1000 to install the L2 charger here. The only risk to the consumer I can see is the long term resale value (unknown) vs. an ICE and the replacement cost of a battery.

For me, it's worth the risk (although I won't sell my Sienna right away and leave it parked as back up for a while).
 

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The PacHy is the best of all worlds, compared to a pure EV. Chrysler was smart in designing a van that was a hybrid first, plug in second, with the computer making ALL the power decisions.

Here's why a Tesla makes little practical sense, and is simply a toy like a Lambo.

The hybrid aspect of the van is its best feature - simply because in the real world, there are few plug-in spots available. Until you can plug in at every light post, pure electric cars will never catch on. Also, gas will have to double in the US before people will even begin to question it.

Finally, the fact the a van is the most versatile vehicle on the road, for passengers and cargo, makes me confident in my decision to purchase a PacHy. Hopefully get mine this week!
There's so much wrong with this it's hard to know where to start. First congrats on your purchase, you won't be disappointed!

That seeking alpha article you linked to though is nonsense put out by a short selling tool trying to get the stock to drop so he can make money. I won't go through every point that is wrong with that article because it would be a lot to cover and I doubt anyone would want to read it on here, also Ben Sullins covers it very well in this video if you're interested:

The hybrid aspect of the van is the feature I like the least and here's why; I wish it were pure electric. If you don't already own a pure EV I can understand how that would be a hard thing to understand but the gas motor kicking in ruins the driving experience. With a proper long-range (400+km) EV you think about cars and refuelling very differently than you do with an oil car. Charging infrastructure - while it could always improve - isn't what's holding EV's back, I'll explain that in a minute. What's holding EV's back is cost and availability - two things that are aggressively being solved as we speak.

You don't need a plug "at every light post". That's old and silly oil-car thinking where you have a gas station on every corner because you need to buy gas a lot. With an EV, you start each and every day with a "full" tank. What would you do if your current oil car started each day/everyday with a full tank of gas? How would that change your need for gas stations? How often would you stop at a gas station if you started each day with a full tank?

My current EV (other than the PacHy) is an old Leaf, whose range is similar to about a quarter tank of gas in a conventional car - maybe a third of a tank. It's not ideal but it gets the job done. I treat it like I would any car that starts the day with a quarter tank of gas. In an old oil car, that would usually mean you decide if you can do your errands today and buy gas tomorrow or if you need to do a bunch of driving and have to pick up gas later today. Most of the time with a quarter tank I bet you wait to tomorrow to buy gas. In the Leaf it's almost the same thing but I ALWAYS start the day with a 'quarter tank' so the 'buying gas tomorrow' thing almost never comes. Mostly I don't need to charge while I'm out because the stats don't lie - most people drive less than 100km in a given day. I'm betting you, and most people on here, are very comfortable riding a quarter tank gas for a few days before you decide to fill it. Now imagine if that tank magically filled back up to a quarter every day. That's an old Leaf.

Now imagine the new batch of EV's coming out. They are game changers. They basically have the equivalent of FULL tank of gas (400+km) but they also can charge (ie refill) over night. Every night. At your house. That means road trips aren't just possible but they're almost like any other car so long as there's a couple of fast chargers around - at least one, ideally another as a backup. And you know what? Fast chargers ARE around and there are more of them every week.

This is where Teslas really do prove they aren't "toys like a lambo". In their segments (luxury sedan & luxury SUV) they are outselling all of their competitors, even a bunch of them combined. The Model S and X are eating the lunch of the incumbents. The main problem with Tesla up to now is that they're luxury cars that most people can't afford. Now with the Model 3; and the new Leaf; and the Hyundai Kona EV; and the Chevy Bolt; there are a crop of EV's that compete on price with their oil equivalents without subsidies (although subsidies do sweeten the deal of course!). Only a fool would discount the importance of what is about to happen to the auto industry.

Oil car days are numbered and while the Pacifica Hybrid is a great van it is merely a stop-gap until a pure EV van eats its market. Maybe someday soon they'll make a long-range EV Pacifica but more than likely someone else will beat FCA to it (I'm thinking it'll be VW with the new ID Buzz). EV's are cleaner, quieter, more fun to drive, perform better, have lower (almost no!) maintenance and are cheaper to own and run. Everything being equal, gas could go to free and EV's would still win because they are better in every measurable way. Don't kid yourself, the EV takeover will happen soon - it's ramping up right now, and when I say soon I mean in the next few years - probably by 2023-2025 when the used market has a bunch of low-cost long-range EV's available.
 

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As much as everyone dislikes Ontario's government, the only reason that I can see that the PacHy was built at all (here) is the generous $100 million they loaned/gifted? the plant. They then put their money where their mouth was and give $14,000 per vehicle to anyone buying one here.
I have seen a video with the head hybrid designer saying that the PacHy was a forced project by government regulations but they had a choice what vehicle they wanted to build with.

The PacHy is a conformance vehicle and I wouldnt be surprised if your right about the incentives. Either way doesnt affect my choice.

Edit: cant find the video yet but heres another interview
https://www.autoblog.com/2016/01/12/chrysler-pacifica-hybrid-details-exclusive/
 

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Discussion Starter · #26 ·
Thanks Mike that was a thoughtful reply. It does take a new way of thinking. I take many long trips, especially on the weekend, so perhaps that is why range anxiety is top of mind to me.
 

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Thanks Mike that was a thoughtful reply. It does take a new way of thinking. I take many long trips, especially on the weekend, so perhaps that is why range anxiety is top of mind to me.
FYI, our other car is a 6-yr-old Model S. Mike makes a lot of good points. My husband charges his Tesla every night, and rarely exceeds the ~250 mile range running around town. We've taken a number of long trips in it as well, and have no problems finding fast chargers along our route... this includes trips from GA throughout the mid-west... we are not traveling in the EV-dense corridors on either coast. Most of the time we stop for 30-45 minutes every 200 miles, which gives us time to stretch our legs and get a snack. Not as quick as just stopping to fill the tank, but it isn't as much of an issue to take a road-trip as most people anticipate.

I seriously considered a Model X but really wanted the capacity of a minivan. The PacHy is a stepping stone, and I firmly believe that by the time I get my next car, there will be a lot of PHEV and EV options available to me. Battery technology is improving and the charging infrastructure is growing. With the longer ranges on newer EVs, they really are more practical than most people realize.
 

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Thanks Mike that was a thoughtful reply. It does take a new way of thinking. I take many long trips, especially on the weekend, so perhaps that is why range anxiety is top of mind to me.
No problem. The longest range EV on the market at the moment is the Model S 100D which has a 100kWh battery. Someone please correct me if I'm wrong but I think that gives something like 700km of range. The new Roadster doubles that to 200kWh in almost the same amount of underfloor space so we know 200kWh can fit into a reasonably-sized car. I would predict that in the next few years we'll start to see ultra long-range EV's with 150-200kWh show up. The new Kona EV has a 65kWh battery and I think that was more due to price point than a size limitation. With the improvements we've been seeing in the technology that could mean over 1000km range on a single charge for many new cars in the next few years. I think that would be enough range for pretty much anyone. It's not a technological impossibility, it's just a matter of price/performance at this point which means it'll happen eventually as the battery prices continue to fall.

Your next car will probably be an EV.
 

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Every time we go on a road trip I'm always trying to imaging doing it in an EV. Every time I'm happy to have the ICE. I want to stop where and when I want to, and EVs aren't there yet. We did about 800 miles in 2.5 days to weeks ago, and charging options were few and far between. A year ago we went 1100 miles in a single day. No EV can do it.
EVs are perfect for commuting and driving around town. Only enthusiasts and people who happen to have convenient chargers along the way go to longer trips.
 

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The PacHy is the best of all worlds, compared to a pure EV. Chrysler was smart in designing a van that was a hybrid first, plug in second, with the computer making ALL the power decisions.

Here's why a Tesla makes little practical sense, and is simply a toy like a Lambo.

The hybrid aspect of the van is its best feature - simply because in the real world, there are few plug-in spots available. Until you can plug in at every light post, pure electric cars will never catch on. Also, gas will have to double in the US before people will even begin to question it.

Finally, the fact the a van is the most versatile vehicle on the road, for passengers and cargo, makes me confident in my decision to purchase a PacHy. Hopefully get mine this week!
I would buy a Tesla any day over a Chrysler but they don't sell a minivan and I'm not about to drop $100K+ on an SUV.

My real world doesn't need a lot of plug in spots... I just need one - the one in my garage. While there are people that need 300++ mile range for their use, I would assume the vast majority of the people that buy commuter vehicles would be just fine with a 200-250 mile range. Charging networks are expanding quickly; those that need to take road trips will find that charging options are improving every year.

Quite frankly, all hybrids are dumb. It's all the technology and equipment needed to propel a gasoline powered vehicle... and all the technology and equipment needed to propel an electricity powered vehicle all mashed between four wheels. That's a lot of parts to tote around every day and a lot of parts to potentially break down as the vehicle ages. And all of this technology and equipment has to work perfectly otherwise it's off to the dealer. If one of the two propulsion technologies fail, the vehicle will NOT operate. BEVs (battery electric ONLY) vehicles are far superior to hybrids and plug-in hybrids. There is a fraction of the parts required to build the vehicle and they are far more reliable by a function of common sense. Simplicity also means lower manufacturing cost and lower liability for the manufacturer (i.e. less cars coming back in for costly warranty claims)... and once the current battery manufacturing capability ramps up, the dreaded high cost of a massive BEV battery will settle; they will soon be less expensive to build than gas powered vehicles. I'd say within 2 years BEVs with >200 mile range will be (all else being equal) cheaper to build than comparable gas powered cars. This is a pivotal moment I'm very eager to witness.

Despite my concerns about Chrysler's reliability and their less-than-stellar customer service (compared to Lexus which I've been driving for 12+ years before I got my PacHy), I'm happy with my purchase. ~$50K before credits is a more than fair price for a vehicle ladened with this much equipment and technology. I wouldn't be surprised if Chrysler was losing money on each sale.

And yes, I do pay more to drive it in electric-only mode than hybrid-only mode because of the high electricity rate in my area. But driving a vehicle propelled by electricity is a superior experience over driving a vehicle propelled by gasoline. There is just no comparison. And the best part is the gas stations just (mostly) lost a customer. I've driven over 2,000 miles so far and only 65 miles were on gas. At this rate, my first tank of gas will last me 8 months. Not even two visits to the gas station in a year... THIS is why I love my PacHy.
 

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runswithscissors, you make an excellent case for a BEV as a commuter vehicle, and I couldn't agree more. A lot of people buy minivans with longer trips in mind, and I don't see BEV delivering a comparable to ICE experience in the near future.
With ICE you can add 400 miles of range in 3 minutes. A similar technology for charging batteries doesn't exist. All the ideas about swapping batteries at the charging stations never got off the ground.
Yes, the fast charge station network is slowly expanding, however the current fast charge standards- DCFC and CHADEMO deliver 50kW of power. PacHy can go 2.5miles/kWh, which means that sitting at the charger for 30 minutes will add only 63 miles of range- less than 1 hour of driving. IIRC, Tesla Supercharger can do 110kW. Even at this rate the long distance travel is painful. And driving outside of the major highways will remain completely impractical for a while.
 

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I wish the industry would adopt the technology as rapidly as most of you suggest.

Most articles I've seen show a longer timeline and one prompted by a clean energy movement by the government.

I worry that with reduced heat under the manufacturers the expected progress will slow since most makers are interested in profits and like any computer tech, they would want to release a scaled down model of the final product that they already have and mildly update the product yearly for maximum profit.

This forbes article has several growth models on one chart.

https://www.forbes.com/sites/energy...ight-duty-vehicle-sales-by-2050/#35e221b4e289
 

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I like a lot of what Tesla/Musk are doing except their proprietary equipment. If you can more readily repair things on your own (like getting brake rotors at the local parts store) - or even your shop of choice, I'd be more willing to get a Tesla. I hope that the higher volume "3" will bring parts to the aftermarket world. I agree that a fully electric Pacifica (BEV) would be pretty amazing - quiet, simple architecture and I'm confident the next time I'm in the market for a people-hauler (10 years from now) there will be a great solution available in terms of battery/recharge/etc.

I just ordered a TL+ gasser, but was tempted by the hybrid, especially b/c you can plug-in, however, I just wasn't ready to forego the practical tradeoffs (stowngo, towing & 8th seat).
 

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Tesla will probably never need replacement rotors. Chrysler is just as bad in terms of being propitiatory. A lot of work cannot be done without the factory scanner.
 

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I beg to differ - do a simple check on rockauto for a visual of differences. There's almost nothing to buy for a 2017 tesla S (I used one model year prior). Whereas the 2017 pacifica has pretty much anything you would need to replace.

I agree the brake wear would be minimal on a tesla due to regen, however, that was just an example (however, I've seen rotors warp b/c shops over torque lug nuts). Other examples include shocks, hoses, strut mounts, other bushings, etc.

Needing an expensive scanner seems more common with more electronics on cars. You can read normal codes on the pacifica ODBII, right? I realize there are typically special components like ABS that use specialized readers. I've done fine with a $30 ODBII reader so far, but the newest car I have is a 2004...my TL+ is being built this week.

Do you have examples of what you've seen the need for a special reader on your pacifica already?
 

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I actually think the hybrid is an excellent solution for a long distance capable vehicle.

Obviously there is the drawback of needing an electrical system along with the gas engine, but the hybrid integrates the two motors very well right into the transmission (and they are quite a bit smaller than a pure electric vehicle motor would need to be in a vehicle of this size). Also, the battery is 1/5 the size of one needed for a pure EV.

For an around-town vehicle, an EV is an excellent choice. And I agree that in a vehicle of this type the EV driving characteristics are preferable to a gasser's (the smooth and quiet acceleration is great), but I love having the ability to stop at any gas station and "recharge" in 10 minutes or less and gain 400+ miles of range.

I would not want a pure EV at this time. In the meantime I can do 1/2 my commute on electric power, and get fuel economy equal to my VW GTI when in hybrid mode, while using relatively small battery packs and motors. In this case, it feels like the best of both worlds.

-T
 

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I beg to differ - do a simple check on rockauto for a visual of differences. There's almost nothing to buy for a 2017 tesla S (I used one model year prior). Whereas the 2017 pacifica has pretty much anything you would need to replace.
This is because Pacifica is mostly a parts bin car. All manufacturers reuse some parts across the line-ups, but Chrysler has no shame. You wouldn't find the same shifter or window switches in Civic and Accord, but take a look at other Chrysler, Dodge/RAM and Jeep vehicles in the past few years- you'll see a lot of familiar bits. I'm sure they share even more under the hood. And most of them are high volume cars that attract a lot of aftermarket attention. Can you find any PacHy specific parts on RockAuto? I doubt it.
I agree the brake wear would be minimal on a tesla due to regen, however, that was just an example (however, I've seen rotors warp b/c shops over torque lug nuts). Other examples include shocks, hoses, strut mounts, other bushings, etc.
They will show up in time. Aftermarket parts development is done independent from the OEMs, it is market driven.
Needing an expensive scanner seems more common with more electronics on cars. You can read normal codes on the pacifica ODBII, right? I realize there are typically special components like ABS that use specialized readers. I've done fine with a $30 ODBII reader so far, but the newest car I have is a 2004...my TL+ is being built this week.
The normal coeds don't cover much. Especially on a hybrid.
A also have a TL, which throws an aribag warning once a month or so. Can't diagnose it without a Honda scanner.
Do you have examples of what you've seen the need for a special reader on your pacifica already?
Doing any work that involves flushing the coolant requires the scanner to manually run the electric water pump to help to refill the system.
 

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I beg to differ - do a simple check on rockauto for a visual of differences. There's almost nothing to buy for a 2017 tesla S (I used one model year prior). Whereas the 2017 pacifica has pretty much anything you would need to replace.

I agree the brake wear would be minimal on a tesla due to regen, however, that was just an example (however, I've seen rotors warp b/c shops over torque lug nuts). Other examples include shocks, hoses, strut mounts, other bushings, etc.

Needing an expensive scanner seems more common with more electronics on cars. You can read normal codes on the pacifica ODBII, right? I realize there are typically special components like ABS that use specialized readers. I've done fine with a $30 ODBII reader so far, but the newest car I have is a 2004...my TL+ is being built this week.

Do you have examples of what you've seen the need for a special reader on your pacifica already?
While Ford has apparently both developed and distributed the special PIDs for its hybrid systems, and some higher-end BT ODBII readers can access the extended Ford protocols to read them (e.g. my ScanTool MX), so far as I know Chrysler has not yet done so, so it's likely almost any standard OBDII *reader* can read whatever your PacHy puts out. The more specialized system testing and controls may require a more expensive setup. {Jonathan}
 
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