Tech YouTuber Marques Brownlee conducted an experiment to see if a standard gas-propelled car or an electric car is preferable for a road trip. The 1,000-mile test revealed how much time it takes to charge an electric vehicle on a long drive. It did, however, illustrate a significant advantage Tesla has over other businesses developing battery-powered vehicles. Brownlee and his team rented three vehicles for a 2-day road trip across New York State: a gas-powered Audi Q5, Tesla Model S Plaid, Mustang Mach-E, Ford’s electric SUV. They all started with a full tank of gas or a fully charged battery. The purpose was to see how long each vehicle took to complete the journey.
The Audi came in first, as expected, with a time of 18 hours 39 minutes. It can go far further on the full tank than any of the EVs, and it only takes a few minutes to fill up. The Tesla took only around an hour and a half more, whereas the Mach-E took six and a half hours longer.
Why is there such a huge difference between the Ford Company and the Tesla Company? It wasn’t at all what you expected. Tesla’s advantage in terms of charging infrastructure is well known. The business has spent years constructing a vast, proprietary charging network in the United States, which includes over 1,100 super-fast Supercharger stations and thousands of slower plugs.
The Mach-E drivers were not swayed by the sheer number of public chargers available. It was because of their caliber. They had no trouble locating plugs. They couldn’t seem to discover any that worked.
On the first day, Brownlee said, Ford’s navigation system two times routed Mach-E to the charging plugs, which were broken or even offline for maintenance, forcing the team to detour and spend more time on the road. Ford encourages owners to schedule journeys around the FordPass charging network, which is a mishmash of other firms’ chargers that can be accessed and paid for via Ford’s smartphone.
Even though the FordPass app and network promise to make locating chargers and plugging in easier — and they do, in my experience — there are clearly drawbacks to relying on third-party providers for critical charging. Brownlee believes there is a lag between when the charger goes offline and then when the information is communicated to the navigation system and Ford’s mobile app.