Steve Cropley: Life with an electric car keeps changing Car News


Back in London in the Fiat, indulging in my long-standing concern with the fact that aerodynamic drag increases as the square of speed. I’m no theorist but as I understand it if a car encounters an aero load of A at 50mph it will be close to 2A at 70mph and a third A at 30mph. Such considerations are really important as fuel costs skyrocket (and new EV drivers become more energy-conscious).

I believe there is a trade-off in the minds of many drivers between how much energy they aim to save and how much dawdling they can tolerate. For this experimental trip, I decided that the right speed was 58 mph – and I was rewarded with a trip that took about seven minutes longer than usual, and an apparent range of 166 miles, which (for once) is a bit better than what you’re offered to start at this time of year.


Very sorry to learn of the untimely passing of Mark Vinnels, a brilliant and much admired British engineer, whose name always seemed to pop up when interesting and challenging projects were in the news. I met him as team boss on various Lotus projects (the Vauxhall VX220 was one) and he then did a lot to propel McLaren’s bold advance from 2010. More recently he brought his renowned “leader and manufacturer” skills at Rivian, the electric pick-up company. Vinnels gave this project a high rating, so he came to our offices in person to make sure we understood it as well, which was typical. He will be sadly missed by his many friends and admirers.

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This notice was published: 2022-03-16 06:01:24

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