Electric car owners should check their manuals before they inadvertently ‘brick’ their expensive rides.
The terms 'to brick, 'bricking,' and 'bricked' come from the world of electronics, used when referring to devices such as smartphones that become inoperable. In regards to an EV, this would happen when the battery state of charge is run down to such an extent that the vehicle becomes completely immobile. And if this fate were to befall a $100,000 Tesla Roadster, it would take $40,000 on replacing the battery to bring the EV back to life.
Michael DeGusta on The Understatement has recently written a detailed post in which he claims five Roadsters have already suffered this fate. Whether his statements hold up to scrutiny can be left for others to debate, but in the meantime Teslar is downplaying the charge and released the following response: "All automobiles require some level of owner care. For example, combustion vehicles require regular oil changes or the engine will be destroyed. Electric vehicles should be plugged in and charging when not in use for maximum performance. All batteries are subject to damage if the charge is kept at zero for long periods of time."
"However, Tesla avoids this problem in virtually all instances with numerous counter-measures. Tesla batteries can remain unplugged for weeks (even months), without reaching zero state of charge. "Owners of Roadster 2.0 and all subsequent Tesla products can request that their vehicle alert Tesla if SOC falls to a low level. "All Tesla vehicles emit various visual and audible warnings if the battery pack falls below 5 percent SOC. Tesla provides extensive maintenance recommendations as part of the customer experience."
In the owner's manual of the Tesla Roadster, it states the battery will completely discharge in around eleven weeks from a full 100 percent charge. Reports also suggest the sports EV could become bricked in just one week if left unplugged after travelling its maximum range. Tesla will doubtless be working hard on damage control and to allay the fears of the two thousand or so people that own their Roadster EV, and a further statement should be released in due course.