Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Road Trip - Kiev-Odessa-Zatoka in the Ukraine (1/2)

It is no secret that i have a special interest on the EV Scene in the Ukraine (Fourth highest market share in the world, with around 5%), that transcends the usual sales, market shares and other measurable key performance indicators, everytime i meet the people behind this grass roots movement, i become impressed by the passion and original ideas they have, not only regarding EV's, but by what transport electrification can do to improve the situation of their homeland.

What is even more inspiring is to see this happening in a country battered by geopolitical and economical problems, as it is current Ukraine.

Hats off, people!

In this spirit, i will leave you with a transcription of the road trip across Ukraine made by the good people of Electrocars on board of the Hyundai Ioniq Electric:

The Hyundai Ioniq Electric officially appeared on the Ukrainian market on June 16. Few days earlier we’d caught this fresh EV plugged to our fast-charger at auto center ElectroCars (Kiev, Ukraine). So we decided to make a long-test drive and check the declared range of the Hyundai Ioniq Electric. Thats how our manager Andryi Maslyak and journalist Nelli Verner became pioneers driving this hatchback in the direction of Kiev-Odessa-Zatoka (1.064km total).
First impression: Tt’s comfortable. As we got the leather interior in our kit, and it’s +27ºC behind the window, it is easy to sweat,  so I’ve turned on the ventilation of the front seats. There are three modes of ventilation of the perforated seats. I’ve set the minimum, and now I feel much better, and we are  not spending the charge - unlike while using the air conditioner.
By the way, climate control is two-zones, so it can be switched on separately for the driver or for all passengers - of course, these are different levels of economy. In general, it consumes 15-20% of the charge.
Sunscreens have mirrors that can be closed with shutters. Above them are hidden individual lights. But, unfortunately, these visors do not turn back to the side windows.

Buttons instead of a selector gearbox seemed to us an interesting solution. This invention works intuitively, very convenient, notes Andriy:
 Putting your hand on such a mini-"pallet"- is enough to use three fingers to control the gears.
Ioniq is equipped with  Adaptive cruise control. It’s a system similar to autopilot.
  • It allows you to set the minimum / maximum distance to the car in front, and to drive in such an aerodynamic tunnel. While clinging to the trucks, when I’m driving up the hill, I can save the stock of electricity.
The European CCS connector that the IONIQ has is quite rare in Ukraine. On the Kyiv-Odesa route, there are only a few gas stations that are compatible with this connector. In a distant way, it's best to have the right cables to connect to electricity - because sometimes these "trivia" at the stations are absent.
- A month ago, before the season’s start, three CHADEMO chargers (Japanese connector format) were installed here, that greatly simplified the trip for Nissan Leaf drivers. But these roads obviously were not prepared for the Ioniq.
For now, only 3 routs  in Ukraine are equipped with fast-charges: from Kiev to Lviv, Kharkiv and Odessa.
Stop #1

We got to Ladyzynka (Near Uman, Ukraine), and we still had 44 km in stock! With such energy consumption, we could really drive more than 250 km on one charge of the battery. Of course, without using air conditioning, with turned on cruise control and with 81-87 km/h  speed. Another indicator: We spent 10.8 kWh of battery capacity per 100 km of range. That means we’ve passed more than 9 km in every kilowatt/hour.

Stop #2

Next stop was public  KEBA P20 (32 A) at the gas-network OKKO. We were charging using the Type 2 cable.

We had been waiting at the cafe for about 50 minutes. Accordingly, only 30 km of the charge has been added since then. Too slow. It seemed like there was a lack of voltage.
1 hour 15 minutes connection to the station gave us 23% more charge . As a result, we had 41% - This was enough for 97 km, with the preservation of the average speed. Enough to get to the next station.

During the “standby mode” at the charging point, we had time to examine  the navigation.

- From now on we will ride with the navigation not in the phone, but on the instrument panel. The first half of the day was very hot - it was difficult for us to understand something, and now we’ve become smarter and more progressive =)

At the same moment we entered “Zatoka” as our destination, the navigator showed that it would take us 297 km, then it reported that we hadn’t enough charge to get the final point.(Yep, we know that, chap!)

So we turned on the radio and took a course to the Kryve Ozero - the only fast-charger on the road placed there. (Exactly  the same fast-charger  we had installed at the Electrocars auto center in Kyiv - European Efacec).


After a small investigation on the territory of the complex, we found the charger. An employee in an orange vest ran out of the fields immediately to us. He looked surprised of  the CCS socket - He said, we were the first, for about a half of a year that he’d been working there, who charged with the European connector. Mostly, people used CHADEMO.
The cost of recharging is 5 UAH per kilowatt / hour( 1EUR=30 UAH) plus we gave 5UAH more for the service.

In 45 minutes the battery charge reached 97% - That was enough for 242 km of range. We spent 140 UAH for all "fuel". Yes, it took  a lot of time spent on the road, but what a relief when you realize that the trip is almost for free! The owner of a car with an ICE spends 1.5-2 thousand UAH (60-80 EUR)  on fuel to reach the same distance.

At night, when it's cool, time on the road passes quickly and with much more fun.

- This electric car has powerful lights -  road is well illuminated. The driving beam also is not bad,but I like “passing beam” more, because it gives dense light.

Check point - Zatoka (Odessa region, Sea resort)

Resting for another half an hour for supper, we arrived at Zatoka about 1:00 am. We should say, that this check-point Zatoka was chosen because our boss - Oleksandr Kravtsov - was there & he was supposed to make an expert opinion about the new EV (See next chapter). The road took us 10 hours with all parking lots. By the way, there is no charge on the P70 route at all.

Next morning we found out that the battery was fully charged (After 8 hours). We connected the EV to the usual outlet, which was taken to the yard, with the European portable 16-amp station ChargeU, which charged our electric car 1/3 faster than the regular charge. The fact is that the maximum power of the inverter Hundai IONIQ is  7kWh/hour. This electric car may be fully charged in 4 hours from the public station with the Type 2 conector.


  1. Don't forget to inform that the 5% are not sales, most of it are used imports.
    Still impressive, but very different.

    Do you know what the new sale percentage of EVs is? Is it above 1%?

    1. I believe so, but do not have proper data to confirm that.

  2. AnonymousJuly 04, 2017

    I wonder with electricity so cheap it probably makes less sense for a private business to build the chargers in Ukraine... The government should step in with some Kind of a plan there...

  3. AnonymousJuly 05, 2017

    Thanks for the post, it is a great way to see the rest of the EV world.