Warren Brown and Lou Ann Hammond chat about cars on www.washingtonpost.com July 11, 2014

LOU ANN HAMMOND :
Good morning Warren and Friends

How was your 4th of July? I had my cousin/namesake, Lou Ann, and her two children, 10-year old Abby and “I’m 8 years old” Frankie visit me from Canada.

Children are a handful and the questions are non-stop but I was pretty impressed with Frankie’s questions about batteries and hybrid cars. We had a Porsche Panamera S e-hybrid. Beautiful car, beautiful ride. The 2014 Panamera S E-Hybrid, starts at $99,975, our paper said the car we were driving totaled $128,000.

At 8 years old Frankie knew that there was a difference between the “normal battery” in a regular car and the car we were driving.

I explained to him that The Panamera S E-Hybrid switches to a lithium-ion battery rated at 9.4 kilowatt-hours. I told Frankie that the old Porsche hybrid used a nickel metal-hydride battery pack. Porsche says the new hybrid has a range of more than 20 miles but when we charged it the instrument cluster said we had 16 miles of electric. The battery pack can be fully recharged in about 2.5 hours on a 240-volt power source.

Porsche says the new Panamera S e-hybrid will run from 0-60 mph in 5.2 seconds, have a top speed of 84 mph on electric power and a top speed of 167 mph off electric. The electric provides boost under hard acceleration or climbing mountains like we did going up to Lake Tahoe, and powers the car during coasting when the V-6 shuts down. We stayed at the Resort at Squaw Creek and they had a charge right by the front door for us so we got to use electric around town as well and the first 16 miles on the way home.

A smartphone application lets the owner remotely monitor the Panamera hybrid’s state of charge range, along with pre-heating or cooling of the car. We didn’t use the app but we did use the charger and it was the one complaint about the car I have.

The charger for the plug-in is ridiculous. you have to plug it in and wait for it to cycle and then plug in the charger to the car, but if you open a door it stops charging and if you don’t wait for it to cycle it doesn’t charge. and unplugging it is challenging as well – you have to lock/unlock the car unplug first then discharge from the car. The Prius, Volt and Leaf chargers are so much simpler.

Let’s chat about cars

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louann Warren Brown and Lou Ann Hammond chat about cars on www.washingtonpost.com July 11, 2014 Automobiles and Energy car buying tips Driving tips Warren Brown Washingtonpost.com

About the Author:

Lou Ann Hammond is the CEO of Carlist and Driving the Nation. She is the co-host of Real Wheels Washington Post carchat every Friday morning and is the Automotive, energy correspondent for The John Batchelor Show and a Contributor to Automotive Electronics magazine headquartered in Korea. Hammond is a member of the North American Car and Truck of the Year (NACTOY), Women's World Car of the Year (WWCOTY), and the Concept Car of the Year.