When going on a trip that exceeds the full potential of the EV range of say 30 miles, it is best to use the ICE for climbing hills and the battery for level and downhill sections. Yesterday I needed to go to Ellington, CT, a 68.5 mile trip that net 56 EV miles out of the battery including ice>battery charge and hill regen netting 101 MPG for the trip.
If the battery was used to climb hills on the country roads then it would have been exhausted a lot quicker. Doing what I did after a full recharge of the battery it showed 40 miles estimated range (due to the previous usage). This strategy works well if the ICE needs to be used and its hot already. You need to determine when to start up the ICE on the trip, ideally somewhere where this is a long stretch of a steady climb and/or no stop signs or lights to warm it up. You don't want to start it and have it idle to warm up as you get caught in a city. Once warmed up, then you just switch to EV later at the bottom of every hill, fire up the ICE and switch back to Auto at the crest of the hill.
Going there net 101 mpg. Coming back at night I had to stop to recharge the car as it was totally empty and a 12 mile trip on the ICE only net 46.7mpg, then the return back home net 113 as it was shorter though it should have been more as it was raining hard at night with headlights plus I made a mistake running the ICE too much (I should have climbed the last 2 hills on battery) and abandoned about 10% HVB charge arriving home.
The interesting part is when I came back to the car after dinner and was waiting for the battery to top off from 87% to 100%. It came up 1% at a time every about 1 minute 12 seconds as expected but when it reached 95% it stayed there for a bit and suddenly jumped to 100% charged. It used to go 96, 97, 98, 99 then 100, maybe this has to do with some capacity loss from new. I wonder if the folks that are down to 4.2kwh or lower if the battery reaches like 80% and then jumps to 100%? My total charge time used to originally be 2 hours 10 minutes on 240v, last night it was 2 hours 2 minutes.
Edited by rbort, 09 October 2016 - 08:51 AM.