Tesla Model 3 Real World WINTER Driving Experience and Battery Range Test – PART 1


Today {November 26th, 2018} I put the Model 3 up against our 1st Snow Storm of the year to see how it fared and tested the battery/range of the model 3 in cold wet weather. Take the drive with me and experience the The Model 3 in the real world.

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38 replies
  1. William Guttenplan
    William Guttenplan says:

    Nice video… Have a few questions.. I am on the fence thinking of getting a model 3… live in new york.. no driveway or garage… do i need to charge it every night? it is 25 miles round trip to work each day.. if i go away on trip for more then a week… will my battery still have the juice or will it be dead???

  2. Taraquin83
    Taraquin83 says:

    Good test! Few questions: 80 on climate? That`s lik 26-27C, I don`t know anyone who likes that high a temp while driving, saw you turned it off occationally though 😉 With 20-22C and seat heater on low consumption  probably would have been quite a bit lower? What tires did you use? Maybe you said it and I missed it, sorry if I did. After over 5 years in my Model S I have learned a few thing that greatly improves range: The obvious ones which all EV-owners are aware off: Preheat cabin and battery, use the lowest comfortable temp and seat heaters. The not so obvious ones: Tires and tires pressure matters a lot. Going from my all-seasons to the Nokian R2-winter-tires consumption in high temps (10C or more) drops with 5-10%, in low temps at low speeds consumption is actually up to 20% worse. The allseasons gets really hard and rolling resistance is terrible when outside temp is 0-5C og lower. Also, adding 10% more tirepressure (recommended by Nokian) gives a few percent lower RR. When you fill the tires in your garage or at the tireshop, temp is often higher, lower temp equals lower pressure. Also driving to the gas-station to fill gives you an error as driving increases pressure, but recommended pressure by manufacturer is when tires are cold. The worst I have seen was when Tesla service-center that had 15-20C inside temp deflated tires to 3.0bar, I then drove a few km in -15C and pressure dropped to 2.5bar, way below what is recommended. Refilled to 3.5 bars at a gas station and consumption dropped about 5-10%. When car had stayed parked over night pressure is 3.2 the next day, if I had not refilled it would have been about 2.2 bar, that increases consumption a lot and reduced handling as well. You probably know all this, but I write it anyway since others might not know all of it 🙂

  3. Anders Lindh
    Anders Lindh says:

    Interesting. 20 miles lost in 8 hours equals 2,5 miles per hour. Assuming your car calculates with estimate of 240 wh/mile that gives you 0,6 kW in an hour or in other words 600 watts of continuous drain during your work hours. However, as someone else stated the available kWh of the battery will be less as the battery gets colder and the computer therefor show less miles. As you start to drive again the temp should rise and some miles should come back.

  4. Filip Bjurling
    Filip Bjurling says:

    AWD doesn't do squat when it's winter if you dont have winter tires on. In Sweden if you were driving with that you would get fined if the police stopped you. Snow tires "high friction tires" would benifit ou greatly. I could pass you in a Volvo 240 from the 80s in studdless winter tires, and I would be much safer than you in that Tesla.

  5. Wenkan Zhu
    Wenkan Zhu says:

    One thing Tesla forget is, mounting the radar in the front of the car usually works fine on gas cars, however not in winter on Tesla. That’s because gas cars has engine heat to melt the snow deposited on the front surface, while Tesla don’t have that heat. As a result the snow just pile up on her front surface then block the radar signal.

  6. Jakub Janovský
    Jakub Janovský says:

    You really should have winter tires – it is both safer in these conditions and if you have an accident many insurance companies will significantly reduce your compensation if you didn't have winter tires.

  7. matter45
    matter45 says:

    the range is based on the temperature of the battery. The colder the battery, the lower the potential difference (voltage). if the battery warms up that potential difference increases, which means you can drain the battery even more before the lowest potential occurs. Also im not too sure but i think some of the energy is lost in trying to keep the battery above minimal temperatures.

  8. Schöne Zukunft
    Schöne Zukunft says:

    It helps to schedule charging in winter. I should just finish right before you leave. This way the battery already got some temperature. And I agree with the contributions below. In winter you can regularly charge up to higher percentages, e.g. 90%. The battery does not like sitting there with a high charge rate especially if it is warm. But to charge it up and directly use it, especially in cold conditions, does not harm your battery noticeable.

  9. HenryLoenwind
    HenryLoenwind says:

    Much of the extra energy needed was used to push around the snow mush in front of your tires. Ever driven an ICE car with manual gear shift in those conditions? When you take it out of gear it feels like you're braking from that drag.

    Also, as others have said, regen couldn't do much when on a slippery surface. Regen doesn't yield that much energy at low speeds anyway.

    And every little sideways movement from slipping cost a bit of energy, too. It all just adds up.

  10. Curdin Gees
    Curdin Gees says:

    Updates sometimes need Wifi connection, so try that.. to connect your car to your Wifi of your home.. or use your mobile to do a hotspot thethering if you got enough data plan. Unless you got allready version 9, the update could be over 6 GByte..

  11. Greg Fritchen
    Greg Fritchen says:

    That range loss isn't as bad as I thought. Horrible for you because your commute sucks but I live near work and 35 minutes from school. Thanks for this video. It answered a few questions I had.

  12. Mark Fitzpatrick
    Mark Fitzpatrick says:

    I have a Nissan Leaf and I don't lose range while sitting like tesla' do but in winter or summer your range in miles charged and actual driven milers will never be the same mile per mile. The Hyundai ionic is the most efficient electric car. Watch tesla bjorn videos on YouTube he is the best and he test all Ev's bjorn Nyland

  13. Nobody
    Nobody says:

    All range loss does not come from battery being cold (thus not being able to discharge as much as when warmer) or energy 'wasted' on heating. Lack of traction also contributes to lost range as tires slip when you accelerate or when you try to regen. Also, when you leave from a warm garage to the cold winter outside, the air in the tires get colder making it more dense == lower pressure.

  14. Arthur Chester III
    Arthur Chester III says:

    Your range under these conditions is really not bad at all. It was night, it was cold, so you were having to use the lights, the heater (and you had it like grandma keeps her house, all the way up to 80 degrees setting for much of the trip). When discussing range, you should integrate the Wh/mi readings into your discussion. You briefly showed them during discussions of regen slipping of wheels and etc, but not as a point in your discussion which was vital. 348 Wh/mi and 351 Wh/mi is not unexpected considering you're using almost every additional accessory to the maximum except maybe the heated seats (I didn't see you have any of them on). You had the temp at 80 which is getting hot actually, you were driving at night when it was very cold outside, with the wipers going. The car also has to use most of it's motor and systems waste heat to send back to the battery keeping it warm (therefore more of the cabin heat has to come from the electric element heating requiring even more energy). End of the day (night), your 351 Wh/mi ends up being approx 213 miles extreme cold weather range – but even in those worst consumption scenarios it costs you only 4 to 5 cents a mile based on the national average cost of electricity per KWh, which is only about a third or half of the expense as many gas cars would require.

  15. Dogphlap
    Dogphlap says:

    +The Buzz That range loss is fine. You are driving slow sure but that means the heater is on for longer and pushing a car through slush takes more energy than perhaps you realise. Windy, well was that a head wind ? Just pushing a car through falling snow takes more energy than without the snow (that snow has mass and the car has to push it aside) and the car will be heating the battery pack to keep it functioning optimally (25C, just a wild guess). Time to feel sorry for the Leaf and i-MiEV drivers who will be suffering range loss worth worrying about.
    I have not done any cold weather driving since I left London 45 years ago and I don't miss it one bit, the temperature never falls to freezing here (it was 36C (97F) yesterday, the first day of summer, and I love it). Thank you for the video, I'm sure it will be useful info for other North American Model 3 owners.


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