Vike
Posts: 400
Joined: Sun Jun 10, 2012 8:25 pm
Location: Albuquerque, New Mexico

Re: Consumer Reports Got It So Wrong!

Thu Jan 31, 2013 2:22 pm

JoeS wrote:To anyone contemplating a purchase of the iMiEV all I can say is go drive it and investigate it thoroughly for the purpose you intend to use it for and do the math for all the cost elements as well as real-life driving distances and then be your own judge.
I think that's the real bottom line. I've had to face the fact that my EV enthusiasm is something of an anomaly, regardless of how much sense I think it makes. If you share this personal quirk, you just have to understand that general outlets like CR, newspapers, etc., aren't going to properly evaluate EVs. I think this is one reason that the Focus Electric gets so many favorable reviews - it's an impressive package for the "spend the afternoon with it" reviewer, who doesn't care that much about its compromised trunk or excessive price. It seems our poor little i-MiEV keeps getting dinged for exactly the same reason - its virtues are best perceived day-to-day by those who value what it does, while its shortcomings relative to more conventional cars are superficially obvious. Given that, you really need to trust your own judgment, and filter reviews to separate fact from opinion.
What comes across strongly in this CR review is that the reviewer's "gut" response to the car was so negative that it clouded the rest of his observations. What's surprising is that editors didn't insist on cleaning up the article to maintain a more evidence-based and professional tone.
2012 Silver ES w/QuickCharge+DRL/foglights, Eaton Level 2 EVSE, since 9/9/2012

JoeS
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Re: Consumer Reports Got It So Wrong!

Fri Feb 01, 2013 12:25 am

Finally got around to reading the more-detailed iMiEV report on ConsumerReports.org. That is a far better organized and cohesive presentation - I should have read this first before wasting my time on responding to the print version. All of my comments still apply, but this online version of the review does indeed address a number of items I thought they had missed. The condensing of this writeup into the print version was simply atrociously done.

I did note some redeeming differences between the print and online versions. For example, regarding noise, the online version says, reasonably -

With no engine, the i-MiEV is mostly quiet but you do hear some electric motor whine. Wind noise over the blunt front end and larger windshield prevails at highway speeds.

That is certainly far more civilized than the print version -

At low speeds the electric motor whines loudly. As speed builds, tire and wind noise become louder.

Like I said, atrocious condensing.

I'll now slowly re-read the online version to see if anything significant pops up that would be of interest.

I did find some interesting (and disturbing as it further makes me question CR credibility) quantitative information on ConsumerReports.org in their car comparison tables, which I plan on addressing next.

I've been a really long-time subscriber to Consumer Reports. I also subscribe to ConsumerReports.org so I can view their reviews online as well. I just found out that in order to see the iMiEV Test Track Report, I have to subscribe to something called "Consumer Reports Cars Best Deals Plus". Sorry, but I'm already so distressed at CR's review of the iMiEV that I'd rather not shell out the extra $$ to get that. If anyone on this forum has access to "Consumer Reports Cars Best Deals Plus", I'd appreciate your checking out the iMiEV Test Track Report and commenting for us. Thank you.
EVs: 2 Wht/Blu SE Prem., '13 Tesla MS85, 3 156v CorbinSparrows (2 Li-ion), 24v EcoScoot(LiFePO4)
EV Conv: 156v '86 Ram PU, 144v '65 Saab 96
Hybrids: 48v1kW bike
ICE: '88 Isuzu Trooper. Mothballed: '67 Saab (orig.owner), '76 MBZ L206D RHD RV

NeilBlanchard
Posts: 353
Joined: Tue Jun 19, 2012 11:26 am
Location: Maynard, MA Eaarth
Contact: Website

Re: Consumer Reports Got It So Wrong!

Fri Feb 01, 2013 7:11 am

The CR article is a hack job, clearly - if the author didn't have ulterior motives, then they are betraying their ignorance.

Write them paper letters, telling them how well the i MiEV meets your needs and how little you are paying.
Sincerely, Neil

http://neilblanchard.blogspot.com/

JoeS
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Re: Consumer Reports Got It So Wrong!

Fri Feb 01, 2013 12:45 pm

Going through Consumer Reports' summaries comparing vehicles, here's something that truly makes one wonder about their technical competence:

Under Fuel Economy for the iMiEV, they list:

CR overall mileage 111mpg
CR city mileage 104mpg
CR highway mileage 116mpg

The CR description shown for their overall mileage is CR's overall mileage is a composite of measured fuel usage on a prescribed city simulation and highway cruising
The CR description for their city/highway mpg is Measured fuel usage on a prescribed city simulation and highway cruising

Let's compare this to the EPA numbers:

EPA Overall 112mpge
EPA City 126mpge
EPA Highway 99mpge

What's wrong with this picture?
(ignoring for a moment that CR doesn't identify the mpg as being mpge)?

Both we and the EPA recognize that the iMiEV's city driving energy consumption is significantly LOWER than it's highway energy consumption.

That is not what Consumer Reports is saying.

We're in good company, as they did the same thing with the Leaf.

This just adds to the absence of their credibility in testing Electric Vehicles, as it appears no one even did a sanity check on the information they are presenting.
EVs: 2 Wht/Blu SE Prem., '13 Tesla MS85, 3 156v CorbinSparrows (2 Li-ion), 24v EcoScoot(LiFePO4)
EV Conv: 156v '86 Ram PU, 144v '65 Saab 96
Hybrids: 48v1kW bike
ICE: '88 Isuzu Trooper. Mothballed: '67 Saab (orig.owner), '76 MBZ L206D RHD RV

JoeS
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Re: Consumer Reports Got It So Wrong!

Sat Feb 09, 2013 9:35 am

I moved the comments regarding Consumer Reports and the Fiat 500e over to this thread:

http://myimiev.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=12&t=1303

Hope you don't mind :?
EVs: 2 Wht/Blu SE Prem., '13 Tesla MS85, 3 156v CorbinSparrows (2 Li-ion), 24v EcoScoot(LiFePO4)
EV Conv: 156v '86 Ram PU, 144v '65 Saab 96
Hybrids: 48v1kW bike
ICE: '88 Isuzu Trooper. Mothballed: '67 Saab (orig.owner), '76 MBZ L206D RHD RV

Vike
Posts: 400
Joined: Sun Jun 10, 2012 8:25 pm
Location: Albuquerque, New Mexico

Re: Consumer Reports Got It So Wrong!

Sun Feb 10, 2013 2:33 am

JoeS wrote:I moved the comments regarding Consumer Reports and the Fiat 500e over to this thread:

http://myimiev.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=12&t=1303

Hope you don't mind :?
I do a bit - that post was intended as part of this discussion of CR's i-MiEV review, not to start a new thread to chat about the electric Fiat, a car about which few readers here would care (and for good reason - like the Fit EV, it's a compliance-only custom job barely more credible than the RAV4-EV, and most Americans will never be able to buy one). Since just about every sentence of that post referenced CR's i-MiEV review, I figured it was pretty well on-topic, so banishing it seems a tad heavy-handed given the drift that I see (and accept) in many of these discussions.

The point, for those that are now not seeing it because they aren't clicking on a topic they don't care about, was that CR treated Fiat's cynical CA-compliance dodge with more respect than they gave Mitsubishi's effort to make a practical EV available to all comers nationwide. The point was that CR felt it was okay to publish some petulant, ignorant, childish whining about a mini-car being small, an EV not going very far after charging for a long time, and the least expensive EV in America coming up a bit short in the luxury amenities department. The point was NOT to dignify some semi-fake EV that Fiat's pretending to sell with its very own thread.
2012 Silver ES w/QuickCharge+DRL/foglights, Eaton Level 2 EVSE, since 9/9/2012

JoeS
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Re: Consumer Reports Got It So Wrong!

Sun Feb 10, 2013 7:39 am

Vike- apologies and my bad :oops: Sent you a PM to see if we can somehow undo the mess I've created. :cry:

Update: Vike and I agreed to simply leave the two threads alone as they stand. His choice of words (above) and in the Fiat 500e thread is excellent, and I encourage everyone to read it!
EVs: 2 Wht/Blu SE Prem., '13 Tesla MS85, 3 156v CorbinSparrows (2 Li-ion), 24v EcoScoot(LiFePO4)
EV Conv: 156v '86 Ram PU, 144v '65 Saab 96
Hybrids: 48v1kW bike
ICE: '88 Isuzu Trooper. Mothballed: '67 Saab (orig.owner), '76 MBZ L206D RHD RV

JoeS
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Re: Consumer Reports Got It So Wrong!

Sun Mar 03, 2013 10:55 pm

After holding off for a month, the latest issue of Consumer Reports (which continues denigrating our iMiEV) spurred me to bite the bullet and spend a few bucks in order to satisfy my curiosity about what I thought were the technical details of their iMiEV testing. Specifically, if I wanted to obtain what they called the Full Track Report I would have to pay extra to join something to get it ... so I did.

Now, a Full Track Report I expected to be loaded with technical data specific to their performance testing of the iMiEV. Things like test conditions, number of runs for each test and recorded times and speeds, the different drivers participating, and details of how they conducted their mileage and charging tests ... that sort of thing. I wanted to know mundane things like exactly what tire pressures they were running, what load weights were being carried, whether ASC was disabled for their emergency maneuvers (I would hope they would run tests with and without ASC), and I wanted to know how many different drivers did the tests and what was the performance of each driver. I was also looking for quantitative data such as what were the measured heeling angles and lateral accelerations as they performed various maneuvers, not to mention simple measured noise levels to corroborate what they said. I also wanted to know EV-related things like exactly what the SOC of the battery pack was and which drive mode were they using for each test.

What a joke! This shows how naive I am. Their (expletive deleted) Full Track Report is nothing more than simply more of the same type of subjective nonsense that they already published, slightly expanded to telling us that the headliner "is like fuzz-sprayed cardboard" and the climate control knobs "feel like toys" and "there is a tall and tippy sensation in corners and the car requires a lot of steering input to round corners". No data. What utterly-shallow subjective tripe, totally unworthy of a "testing" organization!

What especially grates me is phrases such "tall and tippy sensation" - this is not a test "report". If nothing else, they should perform a measurable static stability test or at least calculate its SSF (Static Stability Factor) - I bet our little iMiEV outperforms many if not most of the cars out there, and especially SUVs! - for those who don't know, the iMiEV's battery pack is underneath the seats and contributes to a very low center of gravity for the vehicle.

To top it off, I had naively assumed that they fully charged the battery pack before each test run, but now I'm not sure -- if I wanted to make the iMiEV look bad in terms of acceleration or even an obstacle course speed test I'd deplete the battery first. This isn't mentioned anywhere.

Do NOT bother signing up for this Full Track Report - it adds no value in terms of telling us what their actual testing procedures were nor provides us with any data that wasn't already available.
EVs: 2 Wht/Blu SE Prem., '13 Tesla MS85, 3 156v CorbinSparrows (2 Li-ion), 24v EcoScoot(LiFePO4)
EV Conv: 156v '86 Ram PU, 144v '65 Saab 96
Hybrids: 48v1kW bike
ICE: '88 Isuzu Trooper. Mothballed: '67 Saab (orig.owner), '76 MBZ L206D RHD RV

MLucas
Posts: 833
Joined: Thu Jun 07, 2012 8:52 am
Location: Niagara on the Lake, Ontario, Canada

Re: Consumer Reports Got It So Wrong!

Mon Mar 04, 2013 8:12 am

JoeS wrote:Do NOT bother signing up for this Full Track Report - it adds no value in terms of telling us what their actual testing procedures were nor provides us with any data that wasn't already available.


I guess you'll be asking for your money back, huh?

Like Dylan...I went electric.

  • Purchased: June 29th, 2012
  • Mileage on June 29th, 2013 - 25,431 km / 15,802 miles
  • Mileage on June 29th, 2014 - 51,286 km / 32,616 miles

List of Oil Spills: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_oil_spills

JoeS
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Re: Consumer Reports Got It So Wrong!

Mon Mar 04, 2013 8:52 am

MLucas wrote:
JoeS wrote:Do NOT bother signing up for this Full Track Report - it adds no value in terms of telling us what their actual testing procedures were nor provides us with any data that wasn't already available.

I guess you'll be asking for your money back, huh?
Sure did, first thing this morning. :x The customer service person was quite courteous about it. :)
EVs: 2 Wht/Blu SE Prem., '13 Tesla MS85, 3 156v CorbinSparrows (2 Li-ion), 24v EcoScoot(LiFePO4)
EV Conv: 156v '86 Ram PU, 144v '65 Saab 96
Hybrids: 48v1kW bike
ICE: '88 Isuzu Trooper. Mothballed: '67 Saab (orig.owner), '76 MBZ L206D RHD RV

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