Electric Car Driving: Top Five Ways To Maximise Battery And Increase Range

A Common Sense Approach Always Pays, And EV Driving Is No Exception!


Though, the tips below, are relevant to both plug-in hybrids and pure battery electric vehicles (BEV), those driving a BEV will benefit the most. Range anxiety has been a predominant theme in the EV market, however, automotive manufacturers have been demonstrating a strong commitment to increasing electric car battery range. The 2019 lineup of EVs, including, the likes of Tesla Model 3 (348 miles) and Renault Zoe (186 miles) are cases in point. 

As an example, the first Nissan Leaf (2011) had a range of 74 miles (24 kWh battery).  In comparison, the latest Nissan Leaf e+ has a range of 239 miles.  This is an increase in range of over 220%.  e-zoomed believes that automotive manufacturers will continue to demonstrate significant improvements in range, as newer 100% pure electric models are introduced. The electric car has evolved from being just a vehicle for short urban commutes, to capable of longer journeys, just like a petrol or diesel car.    Despite all the positive progress with range, we recommend that EV drivers should instil a ‘common sense’ approach to driving, such that the maximum can be gained from a fully charged battery.  This is certainly no different from a petrol or diesel car.  For decades, ICE drivers have been told the same.  By following a common sense approach, not only is the driver benefiting from maximising the range from an electric car, but also benefiting in other important ways.  These include reduced wear and tear, better maintenance, lower insurance premiums and finally, a more enjoyable drive.  


Five Helpful Tips To Achieve A Better And Longer Drive

Credit: MikesPhotos

1). Check tyre pressure

Yes, you know! All those years of driving petrol cars have taught us one thing.  To increase fuel efficiency, make certain that the tyres are inflated to recommended levels.  Lower pressure tyres decrease fuel efficiency.  Not surprisingly, the same principle applies to EVs.  So, always make a habit of checking the tyre pressure on a regular basis.  Keyword is ‘regular’!  

2). Acceleration 

Many are surprised that EVs accelerate fast, and in fact, in most cases would accelerate fast than a petrol or diesel car.  For example, the Jaguar I-PACE all-electric SUV, is capable of an awe-inspiring acceleration of 0-60 mph in 4.5 seconds.  To put this in context, the F-PACE Prestige 2.0 litre, 4 cylinder internal-combustion engine accelerates 0-60 mph in 9.6 seconds.  The all-electric I-PACE is twice as quick on acceleration!  The reason for the impressive EV performance, is because electric vehicles deliver more torque and more power directly to the wheels, compared to petrol or diesel cars.

Now, don’t get me wrong.  It is great to have the power to accelerate when required.  But that does not mean that every minute of driving needs to be a Formula-E race.  It is always best to drive when possible, with slower acceleration.  Higher acceleration, always reduces range efficiency and consumes more battery power.  An EV driver can increase range performance by adoption an acceleration profile that is optimum.       

3). Deceleration

We are all guilty of this.  Accelerating a car with all the gusto, only to brake hard, shortly afterwards at a traffic light.  It does not matter what you are driving, it is simply bad driving.  The more we brake, the more the energy wasted, fuel or electric. Therefore, drive in a manner that requires lower frequency of braking.  Best ways to achieve this is by driving at slower speeds and assessing better, when to accelerate.

4). Do not make your boot your offsite storage dump

Yes, we seem to be very adept at leaving items for long durations in the car.  It is tempting to take advantage of the larger boot space of most EVs, only to forget to take the items out.  The principle is simple.  The heavier the electric car, the more the energy consumed to move it forward.  One of the reasons, EVs have achieved higher acceleration, is because these vehicles are lighter than ICE vehicles.  Don’t forget EVs don’t have the handicap of a traditional petrol engine, with all those thousands of components that make the car heavier.  Make it a regular habit to clear the boot of items not required!

5). Take advantage of the ‘eco mode’ 

Most electric cars come with an eco mode, that helps increase efficiency.  This is perfect for drives that do not require heating or air-conditioning blasting in full force.  By using the eco mode, you will achieve higher distances on a single charge.


None of the above recommendations suggest a compromise or  dilution of your enjoyment of driving an electric car.  In fact, the above helpful tips, reduce range anxiety and time spent on recharging.  We have not covered all possible tips and would love to hear your views on how to further maximise range.


We at e-zoomed are more than happy to assist you with all your EV needs to include:

And more!  Do sign up to our e-newsletter to learn more about electric cars. Also follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter. 



Author

Ashvin Suri

Ashvin has been involved with the renewables, energy efficiency and infrastructure sectors since 2006. He is passionate about the transition to a low-carbon economy and electric transportation. Ashvin commenced his career in 1994, working with US investment banks in New York. Post his MBA from the London Business School (1996-1998), he continued to work in investment banking at Flemings (London) and JPMorgan (London). His roles included corporate finance advisory, M&A and capital raising. He has been involved across diverse industry sectors, to include engineering, aerospace, oil & gas, airports and automotive across Asia and Europe. In 2010, he co-founded a solar development platform, for large scale ground and roof solar projects to include the UK, Italy, Germany and France. He has also advised on various renewable energy (wind and solar) utility scale projects working with global institutional investors and independent power producers (IPP’s) in the renewable energy sector. He has also advised in key international markets like India, to include advising the TVS Group, a multi-billion dollar industrial and automotive group in India. Ashvin has also advised Indian Energy, an IPP backed by Guggenheim (a US$ 165 billion fund). He has also advised AMIH, a US$ 2 billion, Singapore based group. Ashvin has also worked in the real estate and infrastructure sector, to including working with the Matrix Group (a US$ 4 billion property group in the UK) to launch one of the first few institutional real estate funds for the Indian real estate market. The fund was successfully launched with significant institutional support from the UK/ European markets. He has also advised on water infrastructure, to include advising a Swedish clean technology company in the water sector. He is also a member of the Forbury Investment Network advisory committee. He has also been involved with a number of early stage ventures.

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