Hello, I'm new to the fourms! I've browsed through the forums a bit (great resource!) but I was hoping for a bit of feedback and possibly suggestions regarding my current battery capacity situation.
First a bit of background. I purchased my 2016 Soul EV+ in 2019 as a daily commuter. It was originally a lease vehicle with about 37,000 miles. COVID happened and my work role shifted to 100% remote, so in the 1.5 years I've owned the car I've only put about 2,500 miles on it. I live in Colorado where it gets quite cold, so I keep the Soul parked in the garage (heated to about 60F) during the winter months and when 4x4 is required (we get a lot of snow up here as well).
When I purchased the Soul it had an estimated range of 83 miles. Since owning it, the estimated range has dropped by over 10 miles, to around 68-72 miles at full charge. This is with all climate features off in >60F weather - the range is even shorter when using the heat/AC or driving in cold weather, which is to be expected. I average about 3.6 mi/kWh, and primarily drive at lower speeds (30-45mph) on back roads.
Disappointed with the range, I took the vehicle to the nearest dealership (about 40 miles one way). They reviewed the estimated range and initially agreed with me - it's likely your battery needs to be replaced. They're quite familiar with the Soul EV platform, based on reviews and feedback I've received from another friend with a 2016 Soul EV. The dealership applied two recalls (SA427 and SC191) which took several weeks. After completing these recalls, the dealership called me back and explained the vehicle battery showed 93% SOH and that everything was functioning as intended, despite my experience to the contrary. They seemed very confused about this. I tried contacting Kia, who would not release any sort of quantifiable data, just "SOH is 93%". There were also a number of condescending comments regarding my driving habits, inability to read a thermometer/odometer, and general lack of understanding regarding how batteries work, which was disappointing. I should also note the dealer won't even make me an offer on the vehicle - they clearly recognize there's a problem, although they won't acknowledge that directly.
When I returned to pick up the vehicle, it was charged to 80% and the range estimate was a whopping (and impossible) 105 miles. On a full charge, it shows 122 miles of available range! After driving 22.7 miles at an average speed of 43mph on a flat road, the range estimate was down to about 65 miles and battery capacity was at 45%. This behaviour is reproducible on shorter drives as well - for every mile on the odometer, I lose about 1.6 miles of estimated range.
I've also run a few tests to try measuring actual power consumption. I'm a bit limited here, but I do have access to an ANSI C12.20 energy meter. So far the weather has been less than cooperative (we're still in our cold season) but I've tried two charge cycles on days with temperatures above 60F, one on a CHAdeMO station (since I don't know the efficiency rate of the AC/DC charging) and one on my 240Vac 26A outlet at home. I'll try to attach my findings as a separate PDF. Both tests show a remaining battery capacity of about 21.5kWh remaining. I do have a KONNWEI KW902 OBDII dongle on order so I can hopefully view SOH myself.
If you're still with me after all that, here's what I think is going on:
1. The dealership applied recall SA427 (a firmware update to the BMS) before testing battery SOH
2. On testing SOH, the value returned was incorrect, because the BMS was updated and wasn't recalibrated
3. Kia is using this as justification to deny my warranty claim
4. The BMS update also skewed the estimated range readings (unintentionally, of course)
I'd appreciate any suggestions here. My plan over the next few weeks (if the weather cooperates) is to run the vehicle down below 20% and charge up above 90% at least five times (as recommended elsewhere in the forums) in an attempt to recalibrate the SOH reading. I'm also going to try the Soul EV Lite app with the KW902 dongle to see if I can read SOH myself. I'd welcome feedback regarding my testing methodology, which is admittedly a bit crude (I'm working with percentages reported through the Soul dashboard and an assumed linear AC/DC conversion efficiency of 90%, which is very generous). If I'm missing something obvious I'd love to know.
Thanks in advance!