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North Coast 500 Trip
 
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I'm planning on doing the North Coast 500 next week in my ZS EV.

It's a 500 mile tour round the north of Scotland, very scenic. very picturesque, that we're doing over 3 days..

I've planned all the stops and factored in 2 overnight stops at Gairloch and Thurso. For most of the route, there seems to be adequate coverage of chargers, but it'll be a bit of a challenge.

My main concern is the first leg (I'm doing it clockwise) is that the Rapid Charger in Torridon seems to be on the blink according to ZapMap. If it's not working, I may be struggling for range to get to Gairloch!! Nail-biter!! It would mean a 138 mile journey with approx 160 mile range(?), but seriously up hill and down dale for a lot of it!! Not sure how much that will diminish the range expectation, and can see me using heavy KERS coming down the steep descents!!

The south west section already has quite a poor distribution of charging points, but I repeatedly see from ZapMap and PlugShare that the one at Torridon which we would need to ensure we can cover one of the most picturesque sections, has been out of order for some time.

So, a couple of weeks ago, I brought this to ChargePlace Scotland's attention by emailing them, and I received a reply stating simply "Thanks for getting in touch. I can see that unit 51122 is operational. "

NO, IT'S NOT!! They surely can open a couple of apps and see that bang up-to-date posts state that the unit is most definitely not working, the most recent (19th August) even finishing off his post with " Suggest not planning a journey that relies on this charger. "

Darn it, that's me he's referring to!! Doh!

So, this week I have emailed Michael Matheson, the Scottish Government's Minister for Transport. The Scottish Government does have an ambitious and forward thinking approach to EVs (and that comes from a non-SNP supporter) but if they depend on lacklustre agency support similar to what I have experienced, heaven help us all!!

Anyone done it? Any advice, (other than don't do it!! )
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Done it in a Leaf 30, camping anti-clockwise on the way. Applecross was a challenge for us if not stopping, and we had to ask The Torridon to come out and reset their charger. Torridon is showing the AC available, so lunch maybe? (May need reset as it certainly used to trip when some Zoes used it) With the MG you might be lucky and find the Tesla chargers set to open access. Staff were happy to be helpful though and are also frustrated with the support from the manufacturers. Similar story at Key Shiel. Both are privately owned. Alternatively, plan a short detour to Broadford?

It'll be easier for you than us, (we took a detour to Orkney as well, so the whole trip was more relaxed, starting out from Fife. ) If you are stopping for a meal anywhere, have a decent 13A extension ( fully unwound to charge!) and never be afraid to ask if charging is possible. Always offer to pay. If you are having a meal many are happy to help you out.

As for efficiency, don't rush and don't overdo the regen. Personally I found balancing the regen with the accelerator let me manage the whole thing, but it required a little extra concentration.

CPS contract is overdue for replacement, with COVID adding to the delay. We have put a great deal into the tender process in terms of user expectations, with the tender assessment split being biased about 70:30 quality:cost. The next operator will have to work a LOT harder. BPChargemaster(as CYC) is a legacy operator here with no apparent (vested) interest in the network or its performance... The issue of private chargepoint support is one we have and continue to discuss with TS.

Durness would have been a blockade for us if we weren't camping, we were able to charge on our hi-power mode 2 at the campsite. Of we hadn't then the was the end of the line. Durness belongs to Highland, but there are supply issues in that location preventing connection.



David Stewart - 21 August 2020 07:31 PM
I'm planning on doing the North Coast 500 next week in my ZS EV.

It's a 500 mile tour round the north of Scotland, very scenic. very picturesque, that we're doing over 3 days..

I've planned all the stops and factored in 2 overnight stops at Gairloch and Thurso. For most of the route, there seems to be adequate coverage of chargers, but it'll be a bit of a challenge.

My main concern is the first leg (I'm doing it clockwise) is that the Rapid Charger in Torridon seems to be on the blink according to ZapMap. If it's not working, I may be struggling for range to get to Gairloch!! Nail-biter!! It would mean a 138 mile journey with approx 160 mile range(?), but seriously up hill and down dale for a lot of it!! Not sure how much that will diminish the range expectation, and can see me using heavy KERS coming down the steep descents!!

The south west section already has quite a poor distribution of charging points, but I repeatedly see from ZapMap and PlugShare that the one at Torridon which we would need to ensure we can cover one of the most picturesque sections, has been out of order for some time.

So, a couple of weeks ago, I brought this to ChargePlace Scotland's attention by emailing them, and I received a reply stating simply "Thanks for getting in touch. I can see that unit 51122 is operational. "

NO, IT'S NOT!! They surely can open a couple of apps and see that bang up-to-date posts state that the unit is most definitely not working, the most recent (19th August) even finishing off his post with " Suggest not planning a journey that relies on this charger. "

Darn it, that's me he's referring to!! Doh!

So, this week I have emailed Michael Matheson, the Scottish Government's Minister for Transport. The Scottish Government does have an ambitious and forward thinking approach to EVs (and that comes from a non-SNP supporter) but if they depend on lacklustre agency support similar to what I have experienced, heaven help us all!!

Anyone done it? Any advice, (other than don't do it!! )

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