Can EVs weather the cold?

av Kathryn Krawczyk

In the wake of a nationwide cold snap, we break down some new data showing how electric vehicles perform in below-freezing temperatures — and whether they can keep their drivers warm for hours without a charge.

From icy roads in Virginia to crippling blizzard conditions in Buffalo, 2022 was bookmarked with extreme winter weather that left drivers stuck on the roads.

About a year ago, hundreds of drivers got stuck on a highway outside Washington, D.C., some for more than 24 hours. Everyone safely made it home after a chilly night in their cars, but it prompted a question from electric vehicle skeptics: What if everyone had been stranded in EVs instead of combustion vehicles? 

It is true that electric vehicles perform best around room temperature and lose range when it’s colder. But now, there’s data that shows EVs would’ve probably fared just fine — especially if they have a heat pump onboard. 

Recurrent, a data science company that researches electric vehicles, took a look at 13 EV models and compared their battery range at 70°F to around 20-30°F. The result? Cars that come standard with an efficient electric heat pump used up a far smaller percentage of their range than cars without. 

Read more about the Recurrent study and its results from the Washington Post.

And if you’d like more evidence that EVs can withstand the cold,several journalists delivered it in the wake of the Virginia freeze. InsideHook stayed cozy for 12 hours while only using 25% of a Mustang Mach-E’s range. Car and Driver meanwhile pitted a Tesla Model 3 against a gas-powered Hyundai Sonata, and found both their cabins kept warm for a comparable amount of time.

Källa: Energy News Network (2023-01-11)

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