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Can Electric Cars Handle The Cold?

December 11, 2021


2020 Tesla 3 Long Range

ESR LT11 Front: 19x9.5 +22 Rear: 19x11 +22 

Falken Azenis Fk510 Front: 255/40 Rear: 285/35 

Air Lift Performance Air Suspension

You don't need gas to be cool. Electric cars are becoming big in the car community. People are starting to build them and drop them on their bellies. 


More importantly, you're here to find out just how great an electric vehicle is during the cold months.


All research below is on a Tesla Model 3 but will apply to any electric car. This info is based upon a 2500 mile trip between winter and summer trips which will apply to your daily driving.


2018 Tesla 3 Long Range

HRE Ff01 Front: 20x9.5 +35 Rear: 20x10.5 +35

Hankook Ventus V12 Evo Front: 255/30 Rear: 275/30

Airtekk Air Suspension

How is the battery in the cold?

As it gets colder and temperatures get down to the teens at night, your battery will need to perform harder. This will drain the battery quicker while it tries to warm up in the morning. 

This will mean you have fewer miles to drive with, and you will have to adjust your morning or night routine to charge the car when it's needed most.

This is based upon a 2500 mile trip as well to see data between winter and summer trips which will apply to your daily driving.

2021 Tesla 3 Performance

Weds Kranze Lxz Front: 20x9 +21 Rear: 20x10 +30 

Hankook Ventus V12 Evo 255/35 

Air Lift Performance Air Suspension

How far will it drive?

The average range on a full battery is 250 miles in summer, while the average range was found to be 212 miles in winter.


Some studies have even shown that it could be as low as a 41% drop in performance.


This is based on the outside temperature, and as we can see, it may have an increase in watt usage. 

2020 Tesla 3 Performance

Volk Te37sl 19x9.5 +22

Federal Evoluzion F60 265/35

KW Suspension Coilovers

Estimated range at speed

75 mph 262 miles (+8.7%)

80 mph 241 miles


20% extra energy in winter than summer, this is to be expected.


Driving slower will give you more miles. This is for both winter and summer driving. 


Estimated Fuel Efficiency Use

Summer 16.6 Gallons

Winter 20 Gallons 

Total Stops / Avg Charge Time

Summer 12 Stops / 39 minutes 

Winter 18 Stops / 27 Minutes

Charge time will stay the same over the course of your cold winters. 

How much will it cost?

Total distance - 2500 Miles

Total Charging 810 KWH

Total Cost $177.65

2020 Tesla 3 Performance

Weds Kranze Bazreia Front: 19x10 +23 Rear: 19x11.5 +29

Falken Azenis Fk510 Front: 235/35 Rear: 265/35

Air Lift Performance Air Suspension

Many other factors come into place. Do you keep it in a heated garage? Is it kept outside during the winter? Questions like these will affect how much battery usage you use in the morning.


If you keep it in a heated garage, you won't lose as much.


If you keep it outside, this is where your car will lose a bit of battery charge. You will notice upon start up and when you need to warm the battery up before driving. 

2020 Tesla 3 Performance

BC FORGED Hca218 19x10 +25

Falken Azenis Fk510 275/35

KW Suspension Coilovers

Now that we have gone through the facts, we have an idea of what it's like during the winter. We 

can understand just how far this will drive and if it's good during the winter. 


The short answer is yes. Although you do lose some battery life during a few months, you do not spend more than it seems during the winter. 

How does it handle the snowy weather?


How does it handle in the winter?


As the question sits, do electric cars handle well in winter? Some models do come with AWD and work quite amazing in the snow. 


Some sit quite low to the ground and have a great center of gravity. In most models the batteries will sit low toward the ground, this will also distribute the power evenly to all four wheels.

2021 Tesla 3 Performance

Rohana Rfx11 19x9.5 +35

Michelin Pilot Super Sport 255/35

Airtekk Air Suspension

Electric cars will weigh a lot more than most gasoline cars, this means it will take less to keep traction but it will take longer to stop. This isn't the end of the world but is great to keep informed on.


Some models will come with Regen Braking, this will make it very slippery for your car while you drive. Regen braking will happen once you let off the gas, it will immediately start to slow down and have the possibility to make you slide. 


Awd models with put power to each wheel and control the car where it is needed most, if your wheel at the front passenger side starts to slip. The computer will stop the tire from slipping and slowly engage it until it stops slipping.

2018 Tesla 3 Long Range

HRE 540 Front: 20x9.5 +20 Rear: 20x10.5 +30

Falken Azenis Fk510 Front: 235/35 Rear: 275/30

Universal Air Suspension Air Suspension

Winter Tires Are Key


As this goes onto any car, winter tires will help you a lot. While there are a lot of different brands, types of winter tires, and price. 


The blog listed below will tell you everything you need to know.

Top 10 Winter Tires

Final Thoughts


So are electric cars good for winter? While you are the judge of that, this information shows that they will be a very great daily driver throughout the harsh winter months. Yes you will have slight drawbacks such as losing power slightly quicker.


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