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Car talk Citizenship

EV Surprise

Featured image by the author.

I received a postcard from Virginia DMV reminding me that it was that time again and that I should renew my motor vehicle registration. When I arrived at the DMV website, I found I had a second task to perform …

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Car talk Greyhounds

VW ID.4 life with dogs

I thought I’d report my experiences taking the greyhounds on outings in the ID.4. Additional room for Rocky was a significant motivation in retiring the Mk 7 GTI DSG. Almost no reviewers show their dogs in the vehicles they review or comment on suitability of a vehicle to haul big dogs so I thought I’d do that with the VW ID.4

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Car talk

Thoughts on Millennium Falcon’s First 3 Months

Featured image by the author. Vehicle display images by the author.

Why Millennium Falcon? Well like the Falcon, the ID.4 is sort of big, sort of fast, and sort of nimble. But only sort of. There is no mistaking it for a 3-Series or S4 Avant. It is still a bit of a sled. With a bit of personality like the Falcon.

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Car talk

VW ID Family Charging

Photo by the author.

The VW ID.4 and its siblings are known to be difficult to charge. In particular, the scheduled charging features don’t behave as owners expect them to. At this point, it is unclear if there are actual software problems or just user interface (UI) and user experience (UX) problems. These problems are sufficiently bad that the Internet is littered with whiny posts about the issue.

VW seems to have done a good job of anticipating how owners would want to charge their vehicles. They have not done such a good job of making it happen. This seems to be partially a UI/UX design problem in that the user interface is a bit muddled.

It also appears to be a result of clinging to the ICE fill up when the nag comes on model rather than adopting a different fill-up model suited to BEV home charging. We’ll explore this after the break and report once we have some experience.

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Car talk

Drive Train Caution

Leaving to run errands the other day, the ID.4 threw its first power train caution light, malfunction in the electrical drive train. This was only a caution. The car completed self-test and appeared to drive normally. The alarm was locked in until the vehicle was shutdown at my destination.

The fine manual is not terribly helpful. It tells you to have the vehicle serviced. And that you can continue to drive the vehicle.

It drove normally in B mode.

The next start

When I arrived at my destination, I shutdown the drive after parking and ran my errand. I came out expecting that a real fault would still be present and that the caution message would reappear. If it was a glitch during power on self-test, the fault would not return.

When I started the vehicle to depart home, I engaged the drive (B mode) while the vehicle was still working its way through self-test. This time, I patiently waited for self-test to complete. No caution message. ID was happy. We call ours Winterkorn.

Hypothesis

Winterkorn does not like to be disturbed while he is performing power on self-test. Engaging the drive may have caused a flicker on the high voltage during self-test that caused the caution. So now I’m careful to let Winterkorn wake fully before attempting to make him move.

Why “Winterkorn”

We named our vehicle after the CEO who set Volkswagon Audi Group on the path to electrification. Without the Diesel emissions scandal to spur action, it is likely that VW would have made a less aggressive transition to battery electric vehicles like Honda, Mazda, and Toyota are. To get well from the extreme embarrassment and harm he caused the company, his replacement announced and the company is executing an aggressive transition to electric vehicles.

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Car talk

Bingo Fuel

Feature image courtesy of Volkswagen Ireland.

Bingo fuel is an aviation term of art for the amount of fuel required for a safe return to base and landing. When an aircraft reaches bingo, the pilot must abandon the mission and return to base (usually the designated bingo destination) to ensure that the crew and aircraft will be available to fly another day.

A similar notion is useful in automobile trip planning and fuel management. In internal combustion vehicles, we never really give bingo fuel any thought. When the little orange light comes on, buy fuel soonest. Unless driving out in the country, we were always within a mile or two of a fill-up. Not so driving a BEV. Continue on to learn how the Dismal Chauffeur manages BEV fuel.

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Car talk

Three Weeks with the ID.4

Dismal Manor Gang has used its VW AWD Pro S ID.4 for about 3 weeks. We’re about to start paying down the loan and we’re making an effort to go out on pleasure drives with the dogs as the weather and other activities permit. During this period, we’ve formed some more detailed impressions of the vehicle.

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Car talk

Das Auto ID.4 Edition Update

Dismal Manor recently took delivery of an AWD Pro Gradient S ID.4 battery electric vehicle. On D + 2 Days, Dave, Rocky, and Missy went for a ride. Missy and Rocky rode in the expanded wayback as neither wanted to board with the back seat up. Once loaded up, we drove the bay and ocean loop from Little Creek to Dam Neck. Once at Dam Neck, we joined the Virginia Beach roads and took the tricky way home.

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Car talk

Hurry Up and Wait but finally, It’s Here

It took the new Das Auto about 10 weeks to cross the ocean. There was a wait for a slip to load up, a two week transit, and a wait for a slip to unload in Baltimore. Then more waiting for an auto transporter and haulage to the local marshaling point and delivery to the dealer.

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Car talk

A “Lead Sled” is on its way to Dismal Manor

ID.4 image courtesy of myvw.com. Dog images by the author.

Dismal Wizard did it. He’s ordered a 2022 VW ID.4 “crossover utility vehicle” to replace the Mk VII GTI. Several things prompted the decision. This the first in a series of articles. Eventually, I’ll write one on financing and another on first impressions.