Hi all, this is my 2nd long road trip and 9th Ride Blog.
This is a long planned trip from Kochi to Trivandrum. Depending on Grid 2.0 chargers on the way. Ride done on 19th February 2023.
Actual distance from home to Trivandrum is around 220km. I expect this to take 10-11 hours to complete because of charging in between.
Note: Since the AtherStack 5.0 update, Average efficiency is removed from the scooter dashboard, and hence can’t calculate the efficiency and battery usage accurately like I did for previous blogs. This depreciation of a very useful feature is a move to buy connect subscription when it becomes paid, only ride stats will show the efficiency and I feel it isn’t as accurate as dashboard efficiency.
Started from Home at 5:53 AM with the scooter charged to 100%. I had taken the portable charger with me, for using at the destination.
Next Stop : Ather Space Kochi, 30.3km away.
Dashboard at Home
Morning traffic was very light so the ride was smooth and fast. Used only sport mode the entire ride.
Reached Ather Space Kochi at 6:44 AM with 71% remaining.
Dashboard at Kochi EC
Ride Stat 1:
Distance Traveled : 30.3km
Avg Efficiency : 25 Wh/km
Battery Used : 29%
Battery Remaining : 71%
When I reached there, 1 of the 2 Grid 2.0 chargers was occupied with an Ather Gen 3.1 , I plugged in the available charger. Sunday Morning very cool and no one around the EC.
Waited to charge till atleast 95% so that I can reach the next available charger at Electric Vehicle Charging Station, Karuvatta 80km away.
Charged my Ather till 95% on 7:30 AM and resumed the journey to next Grid.
From Kochi to Alappuzha it’s a 4-lane highway and traffic was getting more , nearing 8AM. Sports Mode gave enough power to stay with the traffic and ahead when the light turns green. Maintaining a speed of 45-50 km/h to gain maximum efficiency.
Once I reached near Alappuzha, took the Alappuzha Bypass route which is scenic as well, running parallel to the sea. I had some confidence that I’ll reach the Electric Vehicle Charging Station, Karuvatta with just enough juice in the battery.
Once I crossed the bypass road, I stopped on the side of the road to see distance and charge remaining at 9:01 AM.
I had travelled 58.9 km since Kochi and 89.1 km total till now and remaining charge was 23%, 20km more to reach Electric Vehicle Charging Station, Karuvatta.
Dashboard after Alappuzha Bypass :
Ride Stat 2 :
Distance Traveled : 58.9 km
Avg Efficiency: 26 Wh/km
Battery used : 72%
Battery remaining : 23%
I didn’t want to take any risks of reaching 0% battery since mine is Gen 2 450X and moreover, last 20% gives the least range.
So called up @narayanankks82 who stays at Alappuzha to help with charging. I had already informed him that I’d be making this trip. From there, faced few navigation snags to reach his home. The new map didn’t start the trip,.just showed the map, which was difficult for me to ride. At 9:41AM managed to reach his home with 11% battery remaining.
Ride stats from Alappuzha Bypass to @narayanankks82 Home
Distance traveled : 6.7 km
Avg Efficiency : 23.5 Wh/km
Battery Used : 12%
Battery remaining: 11%
Started charging with his portable charger, enough for me to reach Karuvatta grid. Rested for sometime at his home where he gave breakfast as well. Without him, this trip wouldn’t be successful. Alappuzha EC hasn’t opened officially and hence Grid at the EC wasn’t active. This would have made my trip much easier, only 56km from Kochi EC.
Charged till 39% using portable charger. Enough to reach Electric Vehicle Charging Station, Karuvatta which was 24km from @narayanankks82 Home. I bid adieu to him and resumed journey at 10:32 AM. (11% to 40% in 50 mins).
Thankfully, navigation started working well from here, so used the maps to continue the journey. Only issue is, the perspective changes automatically without any touch input, that becomes annoying. So I follow the distance and turn navigation at the top right of the screen.
This ride, the road was essentially a 2 lane with no dividers in between. The widening works of the road was underway. Many bad patches of tarmac really tested the suspension and my control on this zone.
Reached Electric Vehicle Charging Station, Karuvatta at 11:15 AM with 8% battery remaining.
Dashboard at Karuvatta :
Ride Stat 5 :
Distance traveled : 23.6 km
Avg Efficiency : 23 Wh/km
Battery Used : 32%
Battery remaining: 8%
Plugged in the Grid 2.0 charger, made sure it got locked properly and relaxed.
This is a solarized charging station with ports to charge all types of EVs with a 3-point plug available as well. It’s a very comfortable place to wait while the vehicle is charging. Users have fan, drinking water facilities and a restaurant nearby for food as well. A green revolution indeed, to make charging easier and the waiting worthwhile.
In 36 mins, Ather charged from 8% to 75%, which is pretty fast. Completed half distance, 119km, half more to go.
At 11:51 AM, resumed to the next charging stop at INFOFIX SYSTEMS, Oachira which is 28 km away.
Road works and potholes made sure I drive slow and carefully. Sun has been beating down closer to noon, though winds were cooling me and the Ather fan active almost always.
Reached INFOFIX SYSTEMS, Oachira at 12:42 PM with 49% remaining.
Dashboard at Oachira :
Ride Stat 6 :
Distance traveled : 28.2 km
Avg Efficiency : 27 Wh/km
Battery Used : 26%
Battery remaining: 49%
There was another fellow Ather owner who was also travelling to Trivandrum but with Gen 3 Ather 450X. I informed him to plug my scooter in after his charging is done, while I went to have lunch nearby.
He plugged in my scooter at 1:14 PM charging from 49%. Very thankful for his help as well, maintaining a charging etiquette by staying near the scooter while charging and plugging in the next scooter. People like this make the charging experience better. As opposed to city chargers being misused by plugging in and leaving somewhere else.
After having lunch, came back to see my Ather charged till 75%, decided to make it to 80%.
At 1:37 PM, scooter charged to 81% (49% to 81% in 23 mins).
Next Stop : Ather Space, Kollam which is 33 km away, started by 1:37 PM.
Oachira to Kollam route had moderate traffic and 2 lane roads in most places. Expected to take an hour to reach Kollam with the speed I was going in, 40-45 km/h.
Reached Ather Space, Kollam at 2:35 PM with 51% remaining.
Dashboard at Ather Space, Kollam :
Ride Stat 7 :
Distance traveled : 33.4 km
Avg Efficiency : 25 Wh/km
Battery Used : 30%
Battery remaining: 51%
To my surprise, The Ather Space was open on Sunday, when enquired about the same, they told it’s an exception to deliver to some customers and would soon shut down.
Started charging with Grid 2.0 from 51%.
I planned this to be my last charging stop before reaching destination which is only 56km away, if I charge to 80%, can reach easily even with slightly aggressive riding.
Charged for 30 mins, till 80% at 3:06 PM.
Next Stop : Trivandrum, 58 km away.
This final ride leg was on a highway, nearing the evening traffic was so high, stop and go at each junction with roadworks slowing down the pace as well.
Stopped for a minute at 4:00 PM having covered 27.2 km, remaining 31.3 km with 56% of battery:
The roads were almost straight on, some moments where I had to apply the full brakes. It was scary as well. Stiff suspension as lauded before really helpful in keeping control with slight bargain with comfort.
It took another 58 mins to complete the trip at 4:58 PM , reached Trivandrum destination with 10% battery remaining.
Dashboard after reaching Trivandrum :
Ride Stat 8 :
Final leg :
Distance traveled : 58 km
Avg Efficiency : 28 Wh/km
Battery Used : 70%
Battery remaining: 10%
Distance traveled : 239.1 km
Avg Efficiency : 25.125 Wh/km
Battery Used : 271% of 2610 Wh
Time Taken : 11 hours 5 mins
Grid 2.0 Chargers used :
Electric Vehicle Charging Station, Karuvatta
Special Mention : @narayanankks82 Portable Charger help.
This ride again proves Ather expanding charging grids really helps city to city commutes as well. Yes it is tedious and time consuming but definitely possible to do if patient enough. The entire ride was done on Sports Mode alone which proves again it’s more efficient to ride.
One drawback with the navigation is, it doesn’t work as well as it did before, auto perspective change, map not loading, trip not starting issues were really annoying especially with unfamiliar cities.
Improving charging infrastructure like QukCharge at Karuvatta also helps in wide adoption of EVs and no tensions to charge in between.
Previous ride blogs :
RoadTrip With Ather 450X Gen 2 : 238 km in 15 Hours
Ather Kochi Independence Day Ride
Saturday Ride meeting Atherites