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Tesla Range - Surely there’s something wrong?!?

hcdavis3

HCD3
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Mar 3, 2019
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I have found that by using scheduled departure I’ve been getting much better watt hours per mile. I don’t have a cold soaked battery in the morning and a nice warm car when I leave. Plus almost all of my regen dots. It’s been cold here..morning temperatures around 20 F.
 
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Zakalwe

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Oct 16, 2020
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Is it really?

In my opinion, yes it is. Allied the range drop to having to find a working charger at short notice, the need to carry multiple RFID cards or have multiple apps on your phone and there still is a hell of a difference between BEV and the convenience of ICE.
And I say that as a convert.
 

Yev000

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May 3, 2019
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I'm seeing exactly the same on my 2021 LR. The cold kills the range, especially if you just get into the car without preconditioning it. Things like the seat heating also adds to the toll.

Yes and no.....

It kills the range when you don't need it. If you go on a trip you will only be losing a small amount, same as an ICE car. You will still get ~85% of the advertised range in motorway miles @ -25C in an SR+ if you keep it at the speed limit. Becase after the ~5KWh heating tax the car is in optimal conditions and spending much less.

The first ~ 15 miles is the car heating up. After that efficiency goes up and you get most of the advertised efficiency (~240 Wh/Mile). I can go 500 meters down the road right now and get a 1100 Wh/Mile reading.


Have a look at this video (his channel is very informative in general)


At the 28min mark he shows the table... Note the TM3 Performance in the summer vs winter over 1000 km. 20 minutes difference on a 10 hour drive. Notice SR+ did the same time as performance @ 5C...... Thats what really matters.... Not how many % you use on a school trip.

CarEfficiency.JPG
 
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Glan gluaisne

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In my opinion, yes it is. Allied the range drop to having to find a working charger at short notice, the need to carry multiple RFID cards or have multiple apps on your phone and there still is a hell of a difference between BEV and the convenience of ICE.
And I say that as a convert.

What was the range drop in winter for your last ICE car, though? I'll bet that it was around 25% below the advertised official range.

The disparity between official range, or mpg (exactly the same thing) and actual range has existed for as long as I can remember, with every car I've ever owned. None have ever achieved their official range figure, especially in winter, and EVs (of any make) are no different.
 
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Zakalwe

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Oct 16, 2020
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What was the range drop in winter for your last ICE car, though? I'll bet that it was around 25% below the advertised official range.

The disparity between official range, or mpg (exactly the same thing) and actual range has existed for as long as I can remember, with every car I've ever owned. None have ever achieved their official range figure, especially in winter, and EVs (of any make) are no different.

I never measured it but it was nowhere near the numbers that I am seeing in the Tesla. In addition, I could pull into any fuel station and fill up and pay without having to access a myriad of apps and cards.
 

Adopado

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Aug 19, 2019
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I never measured it but it was nowhere near the numbers that I am seeing in the Tesla. In addition, I could pull into any fuel station and fill up and pay without having to access a myriad of apps and cards.

You're lucky ... my nearest fuel forecourt is 18 miles away! Now I top up at home and always have plenty for my day.
 

OWL75

Member
Sep 10, 2020
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Manchester, UK
I'm seeing exactly the same on my 2021 LR. The cold kills the range, especially if you just get into the car without preconditioning it. Things like the seat heating also adds to the toll.

Personally, I'm glad that I'm WFH at the moment. I can't imagine what my regular 150-200+ daily drives would be like in this thing at the moment!

I'm also seeing similar range on my M3LR 2021, currently my commute of 20 miles each way uses around 20% of the battery for the round trip so extrapolates as around 200 mile range. The journey takes about 30 mins so the car is spending most of that time warming up and I never get full regen unless it has been charging beforehand. My ICE car didn't get anywhere near the theoretical MPG for my commute so am not expecting the M3 to give me 360 miles range on commuting even in the summer, so difficult to conclude at the moment whether the current range is below expectation. I'm using TeslaMate so after a few months at least I will be able to draw some comparisons against the ICE car where I used Fuelly to track the MPG.
 

Glan gluaisne

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I never measured it but it was nowhere near the numbers that I am seeing in the Tesla. In addition, I could pull into any fuel station and fill up and pay without having to access a myriad of apps and cards.

That's conflating two separate issues, though. Certainly it's quicker and easier to refuel a conventional car, no question. The topic of this thread is true range versus official range. My contention is that all cars, of any type, always over-state their official range, especially in winter.

Car reviewers sometimes highlight this, and have done for years, with comments pointing out that owners will see a far lower mpg figure in practice. I don't believe that the cold weather range decrease for EVs is significantly worse than it is for conventional cars. It might be a few percent worse, because of the impact of cabin heating, but overall, the same factors that cause conventional cars to use more fuel per mile in winter apply to EVs in exactly the same way. The issue is that this is far more noticeable in any EV, because of both the way the car presents lots more data to the driver and because the maximum range of most EVs is significantly lower than that of most conventional cars.
 

Yev000

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May 3, 2019
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In my opinion, yes it is. Allied the range drop to having to find a working charger at short notice, the need to carry multiple RFID cards or have multiple apps on your phone and there still is a hell of a difference between BEV and the convenience of ICE.
And I say that as a convert.

Tesla is the only car make where you dont need to worry about that 99% of the time.

My parents once made a mistake of skipping 2 superchargers before boarding the train with 10% and had a little adventure finding a 3rd party charger in Folkestone. It gave them an unscheduled downtime of ~ 1 hour and a fish and chips break.

So yes, you need to be a bit more aware and use the Tesla network and yes it needs to get a lot bigger. But if I were to distill my personal experience - with commute/trips/COVID etc. - I'd say its far more convinient than ICE - even with all the petrol stations and "not having to worry".

- I never have to think about my daily range and driving - in an SR+
- If I want to go to the beach and back I can with zero planning - as long as you dont leave it parked with 10%
- I can go on cheap roadtrip accross Europe with very little extra time added
- Cheap hotels on route already built for said trip, so dont need to hunt for places to stay - added bonus
- Don't miss time at the petrol stations at all.

I'd say if I were to distill the extra time I spent charging - which actually delayed me VS ICE - over the last year it would be around 2 hours max.

Also remember that charging time can be quality time, re-fuel time is not. And if you top up the car AND want to have a break, you spend ~10 min on the fuel and THEN go get something to eat etc. With Tesla you plug it in - 1 min - and go get something to eat. You can normally go after 15-25 min to the next stop.
 
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Zakalwe

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Oct 16, 2020
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Your results may vary, but I have never gotten into any ICE car and had the range vary so much as with my Tesla. Over 4 years of ownership of my last car the range travelled on a tank of fuel didnt vary that much. I was getting about 340 miles to a tankful. Yes there was a variance depending on how heavy my right foot was, but the variance was probably +- 30/40 miles.

The other week I drove from Lancaster to Ravenglass and back (132 miles). My supposedly 360 mile range M3 left with 86% charge and returned with 25%. 132 miles of driving consumed 60% of the battery charge.
 

Yev000

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May 3, 2019
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As an additinal note.....

What kills the range is heating the battery and the occupants for the first ~ 15 miles.

The cost for around 5KWh @ 15p is 75p. That is what we are discussing here....

Every time you drive from cold you that throwing ~ £1 to keep warm.

I'd wager its way more expensive if you use petrol to do the same.


So if we can all agree that winter conditions - while affecting range and efficieny - does not delay you a great deal. And keeping warm is cheaper than in an ICE car. Should we really be worried about a number on the dash?
 
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Dilly

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Feb 24, 2020
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I experienced similar range loss with my Ioniq EV.
Fact is, range loss for my weekly mileage even outside of lockdown, is of no consequence. I knew what to expect.
If I’m planning more than an 80 mile round round trip in winter, then I’ll prewarm properly.
Being fortunate enough to have a fairly big solar array, my fuel costs for the 2000 miles from new hasn’t topped three quid yet.
That’s a far cry from the days when I used to top my Subaru Outback for £20 a fortnight!
 
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Yev000

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May 3, 2019
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Your results may vary, but I have never gotten into any ICE car and had the range vary so much as with my Tesla. Over 4 years of ownership of my last car the range travelled on a tank of fuel didnt vary that much. I was getting about 340 miles to a tankful. Yes there was a variance depending on how heavy my right foot was, but the variance was probably +- 30/40 miles.

The other week I drove from Lancaster to Ravenglass and back (132 miles). My supposedly 360 mile range M3 left with 86% charge and returned with 25%. 132 miles of driving consumed 60% of the battery charge.

Yes, that is true....

Mostly because an ICE is only about 20-35% efficiency. Meaning that at least 65% of your fuel energy is going out as heat. It is trivial to pipe that to the cabin.

With Electric motors efficiency is 90%. So you only have 10% heat to play with and most of that is radiated via cables and hard to capture. So you need an actual device that takes electricity and converts it to heat (i.e. 100% waste). Since it would be beyond daft to pack a separate battery just to heat your car it uses the same battery as it uses to move the car..... There is also the added problem that a cold Li battery also loses effiency, so it needs to be warmed up....

That actually means ICE wastes energy even in the summer.........
 
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Glan gluaisne

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I've posted this before, but this is two years worth of data from a petrol engined car that I collated. Driving pattern was a 40 miles each way commute, almost all on relatively slow single carriageway A and B roads, so about 80 miles per day on weekdays, plus holidays, weekend driving etc. Note the disparity between the official range figure (converted using mpg and full tank capacity) and variation I saw in everyday driving. Also note that the range took a nosedive every winter:

2005 Prius range.jpg


This is all real data, I recorded the amount of fuel used every time I filled the car up, together with the date and the trip mileage since the last fill. At the time I was annoyed, because there were fantastic claims made about the improved economy of this new hybrid technology. It's the reason I chose to record all this data. I subsequently did the same with our other car at this time, a Renault Clio. That was actually worse. My wife's current car, a Toyota Yaris, is far worse, both in terms of not meeting the official range figure and in the variation from summer to winter, and she's far from being a fast driver.
 

Plagued

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Apr 9, 2019
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an ICE car "wastes" a huge amount of its power as heat. So in the summer it's literally pouring heat out of the engine as waste. If you set your cabin temp to max in your tesla through summer and preheated it before each drive you'd see the same "poor" performance as you do in winter (excluding the cold battery tax). So in an ice car there's not that much of a hit in winter as it can just use some of that waste.
Having said that I've had diesels that have been horrific in winter for short runs as the engine never heated up and ran hugely rich the whole time.
I'm fairly sure I'm using more power in my SR+ heating than I am driving, as the repeated lockdowns have made meant the only driving is the short run to work, and I'm pre heating each way. So I'd say my actual range from a full battery would be less than 90 miles.
 

Rooster6655

Active Member
May 3, 2019
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UK
Collected my model 3 LR not long ago and charged fully to 90% last week with range showing as 292miles.

I’m now at 88miles showing on the screen and looked at how many miles I’ve done since the last charge...... 72miles! Surely that cannot be right? I know it’s been freezing cold and most my journeys are 10-15 miles then stopping/restart but l was not expecting this...

Anyone else with similar issues? Have I done something wrong?
I have the fans on low and seat heating on low most times but that’s it.

Seems about what I experience in the winter, even doing a long journey on B roads sticking to the speed limit will end up with about 180-210 miles . This is in my experience based on my journeys real world not driving to game the system or doing a test.
 

Glan gluaisne

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The other issue between winter and summer is simple physics. Most of the fuel/electrical energy used by a car goes in overcoming aerodynamic drag. This is the reason car manufacturers go to such lengths to reduce it, by both external body design and attention to details like cleaning up the unseen underbody area with fairings.

Aerodynamic drag is straightforward to calculate, it's given by D = 1/2 . ρ . Cd . A . V², where ρ = air density, Cd = the drag coefficient for the car, A = the projected frontal area of the car and V = the speed through the air. As drag is linearly proportional to ρ , any change in ρ will have the same proportional change in drag.

Dry air at sea level and at 25°C has a density of about 1.1839 kg/m³. At 0°C the density increases to about 1.2922 kg/m³. That's a ~9% increase in density between those two temperatures, and hence a ~9% increase in drag and energy consumption. Ignoring all the other factors that increase energy/fuel consumption in cold weather, the change in aerodynamic drag alone may account for a fair bit of the difference seen between summer and winter with every type of car.
 

Zakalwe

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Oct 16, 2020
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The other thing to remember is that, in daily use, we don't really "fill" a BEV. I charge mine to 85% and try not to let it drop below 15%. So there's 30% of capacity that's not really used.
 

15Peter20

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Oct 26, 2020
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Your results may vary, but I have never gotten into any ICE car and had the range vary so much as with my Tesla. Over 4 years of ownership of my last car the range travelled on a tank of fuel didnt vary that much. I was getting about 340 miles to a tankful. Yes there was a variance depending on how heavy my right foot was, but the variance was probably +- 30/40 miles.

The other week I drove from Lancaster to Ravenglass and back (132 miles). My supposedly 360 mile range M3 left with 86% charge and returned with 25%. 132 miles of driving consumed 60% of the battery charge.

I had a loaner Fiesta Zetek with a fuel range display that consumed nearly 3 miles per mile over a 30 mile journey. After 10 miles or so, because I didn't want to put fuel in, I drove it as gently as I could, but with no improvement to the gauge's dishonesty.
 
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Peteski

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Oct 2, 2017
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I always say to change the display from miles to % - as the miles is just a guess and only serves to make you worry.

All you need to know is - it uses a LOT more energy in winter. Multiple short journeys use a LOT more energy than one long one. Sentry mode uses a tonne of energy, especially if its somewhere like a car park where people are walking past all the time.

Sums it up pretty well. I long since changed my battery display to % instead of range. Then you soon learn a rule of thumb for your mileage per percent charge. For example my MX gives me roughly 2 miles per percent. If critical then use the energy page to more accurately predict consumption on a journey. It’s usually pretty good and updates in real time.

Only long, dry summer trips give close to advertised range (which is actually an official regulated standard, not some made up marketing number). No different to any other EV or ICE for that matter.
 
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