The recent cold spell provided difficult driving conditions for all drivers, but those in electric cars probably had their first experience of driving on snow and ice recently. This feature looks at the challenges and offers advice on how to cope with the worst of winter.
With electric cars being relatively new to the scene, it is important to know how the car reacts to all weather conditions. A weather condition that is particularly one to watch out for is the possibility of snow. When purchasing electric insurance for your car, it is vital to learn the ins and outs of these vehicles in snowy conditions. This will help you to become the safest of drivers in this type of weather, and therefore help you to lower your insurance costs.
This article will give you a few pros and cons of how effective electric cars are in snowy conditions, in order to utilise these cars to the best of their ability.
To begin with the positives, many electric vehicles have the ability to warm themselves up before you begin driving. This greatly benefits your visibility when driving, to remove any snow from your windows in good time. Many also have the ability to do so while plugged in, so no battery life is wasted. For the most technologically advanced electric cars, you can control the heat using your phone, so you don’t even have to brave the cold until your car is fully prepared to go.
Removing the need for gears gives electric cars the power to pull away with no effort, even in snowy conditions. Their large batteries also help for winter traction, to provide for a safer way to drive along the snow. Gas-powered cars find it harder to build up that traction, but with this electric way to drive, it will ensure a less dangerous start to your journey.
These reasons may give electric vehicles a great starting point for driving in winter conditions, but there are also some limitations to take into consideration.
While the heavy battery helps for winter traction, these snowy conditions could also reduce electric vehicles’ range greatly. Along with features utilised in the winter, like heated seats, these additionally add to the loss of range. The lithium-ion batteries within electric vehicles are extremely temperature sensitive, so as the temperature drops the electrolyte fluid within the cells works at a slower rate, meaning the battery has to work harder to enable the car to move.
Additionally, in these weather conditions, charging the battery will be limited to protect the battery and its performance.
In order to put electrons into the battery, snowy weather conditions may damage this ability, to prevent it from working to its best ability. It could limit regenerative braking, so the car will regain less power.
An experienced driver will know these limitations to electric cars, but for a newer driver, it may be useful to learn how to prepare for the snow. Then, you can fully make the most of your vehicle whatever the weather.
Overall, electric vehicles do work in the snow, but there are some limitations to their abilities. However, you can still be the safest driver in these conditions with an electric car – just prepare for the wintery conditions.