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Real Driving Range

Greengolfer

Member
Aug 12, 2016
252
95
Highland,CA
There has been a lot of posts about actual driving range of a Tesla(any model). I recently had to take a 134 mile round trip on the spur of the moment. I hadn't charged overnight so I only had 144 miles of range. I took off knowing I would probably have to stop somewhere to get a quick bit of electrons to get home. I drove with the flow of traffic both ways. There was some traffic on the way home so I was only going about 55mph for the final 50 miles of the trip. That being said, I did not have to stop, and I had 14 miles of range left when I got home. Granted, had traffic been flowing at 70mph(like my trip out) on the way home, I probably would not have made it without charging(maybe). Final thoughts, if you don't drive with much of a lead foot, you can get the mileage shown on your trip gauge.
Happy motoring:)
 

beatle

Active Member
Aug 31, 2019
1,098
555
Springfield, VA
I've done better than the gauge and worse than the gauge. Wheels/tires make a difference and the weather definitely makes a difference. Here are 3 identical trips with different efficiency ratings:

This past summer on 19" MXM4s in 93 degree heat, from 100% charge I drove 198 miles (avg 56 mph) and arrived with 22% remaining (101% efficiency)

Christmas eve 2020 on 20" A/S 3+s in 43 degree cold, from 100% charge I had to stop at a supercharger at 18% after only driving 157 (avg 72 mph) miles (79% efficiency).

Christmas eve 2019 on 19" MXM4s in 37 degree cold, from 100% charge I still had to stop at a supercharger after 157 miles (avg 72 mph) but at 23% (85% efficiency). Wheels/tires made for a ~5% penalty, maybe 6% since it was colder on this trip.

In all cases, the car's battery was at least up to room temperature (70+ degrees), and average speed was In my experience, to make rated range the weather really needs to be warm (hot) and you should be using low rolling resistance tires, preferably on 19" wheels and
 

riles246

Member
Aug 30, 2019
55
36
NY State
I live in NY state and recently had to make a 170 mile road trip (85 miles, then sit for 7 hours, then 85 miles), so I charged my 70D up to 100% the night before. Didn't make it home, even though my range indicator was showing 230 right before I left.

Of course, only needed to supercharge for 5 minutes to get the extra little bit that I needed, so no big deal, but just goes to show how much power is drawn by heating. The outdoor temp was around 35f on the way out and about 29f on the way back. The biggest penalty was likely from heating the car back up after letting it cool down on the first leg.

I actually supercharged for 10 minutes and made it home with 14% battery; I added 15% battery on the supercharger so realistically I only needed to supercharge for about 30 seconds if I wanted to coast the last few hundred feet :)
 

beatle

Active Member
Aug 31, 2019
1,098
555
Springfield, VA
Heating does use up juice, but I think there are some other factors, such as battery temperature and air density at lower temperatures. Even if the battery is warm enough to not trigger the battery heater, its internal resistance is higher, and more energy will be wasted as heat. Colder air is denser air, and offers higher wind resistance. I noticed this on my 125cc motorcycle. I have a slightly lower top speed at cold temperatures, even if the bike makes a bit more power due to the added oxygen in the mixture.
 
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kg7jo-

Member
Dec 9, 2016
98
85
Salt Lake City
My longest non-stop trip in my S 75D was from Sandy, UT to Twin Falls Supercharger. Google map shows the trip was 235 miles. I left my house at 100% (247 miles), and arrived at the supercharger with 6% (14 miles) 90F and averaging 70 mph thru the trip. I noticed that most time when I do long trips, I can beat the trip computer by 1~3%. It is the supercharging time always take longer than it says it would take.
 
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LN1_Casey

Draco dormiens nunquam titillandus
Mar 6, 2019
2,018
10,026
Oahu, Hawaii
My 2021 performance 100% says 390, which is 3 more than the 387 that is estimated on the website. I live on a small island so can’t really go long distance trips to see real world driving range.
 

nicedrum

Member
Apr 29, 2021
20
2
Boston suburbs - metrowest
I live in NY state and recently had to make a 170 mile road trip (85 miles, then sit for 7 hours, then 85 miles), so I charged my 70D up to 100% the night before. Didn't make it home, even though my range indicator was showing 230 right before I left.

Of course, only needed to supercharge for 5 minutes to get the extra little bit that I needed, so no big deal, but just goes to show how much power is drawn by heating. The outdoor temp was around 35f on the way out and about 29f on the way back. The biggest penalty was likely from heating the car back up after letting it cool down on the first leg.

I actually supercharged for 10 minutes and made it home with 14% battery; I added 15% battery on the supercharger so realistically I only needed to supercharge for about 30 seconds if I wanted to coast the last few hundred feet :)

How fast do you drive? Just curious as a future Tesla owner in the Northeast (MA / upstate NY). I'm happy to drive 60-65 if it saves me the scare of running out of juice during the trip.
 

minderbinder

Member
Oct 19, 2015
136
193
Concord, MA
Speed matters, but temperature (and foul weather) matters even more. Here's some data I accumulated on my Model S 100D. The horizontal axis is temperature, and the vertical axis is "how many more range miles it took than the actual distance", i.e. 0% means range miles equaled actual trip miles.

Screen Shot 2021-05-16 at 8.38.23 PM.png


I live in MA, so we see 'reasonable' winters. As you can see, there's decent variation at a given temperature due to things like speed and inclement weather, but the general trend is obvious. In short, I can generally get rated range (within 5% or so) in the summer, but have to count on extra charging in the winter, especially when it's below freezing.

Notes on this data:

- All data points are for round-trips (home and back) of at least 100 miles each way
- Almost all the miles are highway miles at standard highway speeds where possible (roughly 70 MPH in these parts)
- Some cold-weather trips had preconditioning, but it doesn't make a great deal of difference on really long journeys.
 
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minderbinder

Member
Oct 19, 2015
136
193
Concord, MA
How fast do you drive? Just curious as a future Tesla owner in the Northeast (MA / upstate NY). I'm happy to drive 60-65 if it saves me the scare of running out of juice during the trip.

I do most of my driving in MA / upstate NY. The supercharger coverage is excellent, and getting better every year. You should never have to worry about running out. That said, if you're considering a 3 or Y you'll really want to get the long-range, assuming you'll be driving in the winter sometimes!
 

beatle

Active Member
Aug 31, 2019
1,098
555
Springfield, VA
I did an experiment to see how much the heat really mattered. Not scientific, but it was interesting. Back in January the temperature was around 35F. I drove about 95 miles up I-95 without the heat on. I only used the seat heater. Energy consumption was 352wh/mi.

In April the temperature was about 50F. I used the heat and took a similar route. My consumption was lower at 331wh/mi despite using the heat. The weather was clear in both cases with little wind. Using the heat is just a small part of the equation. This also explains why I've gotten some of my highest efficiency at temperatures in the 90s.

On two other identical trips, I managed 291wh/mi at 93F, but 9 months later it took 313wh/mi with the temperature at 67F. I think I'd be using the AC a heck of a lot more at 93F than the heat at 67F. In addition, my average speed was actually 2 mph higher on the trip with the best efficiency.
 

nicedrum

Member
Apr 29, 2021
20
2
Boston suburbs - metrowest
I did an experiment to see how much the heat really mattered. Not scientific, but it was interesting. Back in January the temperature was around 35F. I drove about 95 miles up I-95 without the heat on. I only used the seat heater. Energy consumption was 352wh/mi.

In April the temperature was about 50F. I used the heat and took a similar route. My consumption was lower at 331wh/mi despite using the heat. The weather was clear in both cases with little wind. Using the heat is just a small part of the equation. This also explains why I've gotten some of my highest efficiency at temperatures in the 90s.

On two other identical trips, I managed 291wh/mi at 93F, but 9 months later it took 313wh/mi with the temperature at 67F. I think I'd be using the AC a heck of a lot more at 93F than the heat at 67F. In addition, my average speed was actually 2 mph higher on the trip with the best efficiency.

What's your normal highway speed? I think that may be just as big as a factor as heat strategy. 65mph vs 70/75mph. I used to do 57-58mph in my 2001 Prius because it was more efficient at that speed (the new Prius's are more aerodynamic so it doesn't matter quite as much); my wife hated that btw.
 

beatle

Active Member
Aug 31, 2019
1,098
555
Springfield, VA
It depends on where I am and the level of traffic, but for the latter example, my average speeds were 56mph for the high temp/high efficiency trip, and the low temp/low efficiency the average was 54.mph, so my consumption was still lower at the higher speed. That's an overall aggregate based on TeslaFi polling.

That said, I had another trip to the same destination and I had to stop at a supercharger because consumption was so high at 374wh/mi! That was with relatively new tires and temperature in the low 50s. Average speed there was 71mph which I know contributed to the higher consumption as well.
 

riles246

Member
Aug 30, 2019
55
36
NY State
How fast do you drive? Just curious as a future Tesla owner in the Northeast (MA / upstate NY). I'm happy to drive 60-65 if it saves me the scare of running out of juice during the trip.
I do about half the trip at 74mph (in a 65mph zone) and 69mph (in a 55 mph zone). Those are the speeds that I feel comfortable that I won't be pulled over for, and usually I'm getting passed :)

I should point out- you'll never be afraid of running out of juice. The computer does all the work for you- even when I left for that second leg in which I only need a minute of supercharging, the computer is more conservative and it told me from the moment that I put the address in that I would need to charge and even selected the charger for me and planned the route with it. These cars are just great!
 

nicedrum

Member
Apr 29, 2021
20
2
Boston suburbs - metrowest
Thanks Riles! That's great to hear about the trip / juice planning! If my wife doesn't kill me first, I think she will fall in love with the Tesla I'm aiming for (or maybe she'll kill me and then fall harder for it, haha (I'm planning on buying used, ~80-120k miles, but my last car cost $8k used..).
 

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