Do Electric Cars Work in Cold Weather?
Yes, they do!
While they certainly don’t grind to a frosty halt, performance is affected by a drop in the mercury, just like their petrol and diesel counterparts!
Overall, electric vehicles are more efficient in colder weather because stored electricity is much easier to convert into motion than an internal combustion engine trying to convert chemical energy into mechanical, especially in the bleak midwinter.
However, electric vehicles do experience a reduction in range as the electric heating system used to warm up the interior, uses power from the same source that powers the electric drivetrain.
If you want to get super scientific, the chilly temperatures can have an impact on the mobility of the electrons moving through the battery, causing a loss in range. Lots of manufacturers implement a thermal management system that regulates the temperature to maintain performance and reduce accelerated aging of the battery. The rub? This system also takes power from the battery, which reduces range.
So, what can you do?
One way to avoid loss of power is to heat the cabin and battery before unplugging your vehicle. That way, it uses grid power instead of battery power. Because the heating system doesn’t rely on the engine being warm, it doesn’t take very long for the interior to get nice and toasty!
Another way to make sure an electric vehicle is right for you is to do your research! Make sure that any loss of range during the colder months won’t affect your daily routine and that you can charge your vehicle with minimal disruption to your life.
Electric vehicles and the technology that comes with them is changing and evolving all the time so watch this space!