How to travel by electric car: advice and planning

How to travel by electric car: advice and planning

How to travel by electric car

Traveling with an electric car during the winter requires some small precautions. For journeys of a few tens of kilometers, using an electric car or an internal combustion engine does not involve particular differences. Things change when you need to tackle a medium-long distance journey, perhaps with several stages and with a total distance equal to or greater than the range of your zero-emission car.

Also worth noting , that even traveling by electric car in the summer, in particular to reach the holiday destination, may require some precautions. Even in this case, everything revolves around autonomy which still represents the determining factor for zero-emission journeys, in particular when journeys involve hundreds of kilometers to be covered in a particularly limited period of time.

In these cases, the best choice is to carefully plan your travels. Traveling by electric car in winter, perhaps for a weekend away, is certainly not a mission impossible. In fact, a minimum of preparation is enough to be able to face your journey in complete tranquility, focusing on the key aspects of using an electric car, such as the real range of the car and the need to be able to recharge the batteries without having to make detours. and, more generally, without wasting time.

Even a summer trip with an electric car is not a mission impossible. With a few tricks you can reach your destination and use the zero-emission vehicle without any stress. Planning, however, is a key element. So let's see how to plan a trip with an electric car in winter and also a trip with an electric car in the summer in complete tranquility by putting into practice a few simple tricks to plan the trips in the right way.

Before setting off: look at the charging points along the route

To prepare a trip by electric car, especially during the winter, it is necessary to evaluate the spread of recharging columns along the route also in relation to the services offered by the various operators. Among the most widespread on the national territory we find Enel X which has a package tariff system and charging columns generally characterized by a power between 22 kW and 50 kW.

Ionity columns are rapidly spreading. joint venture born from the initiative of some of the main manufacturers in the automotive sector (BMW, Daimler, Ford, Volkswagen and with the later addition of Hyundai). Also worth keeping an eye on are the BeCharge recharging points, a constantly growing network that also provides motorists with a flat rate system to access recharging with maximum convenience.

Widespread in Italy are also the Duferco Energia columns with solutions characterized by consumption, package or subscription tariffs. In Northern Italy there is also a2a Energia's network of E-MOVING recharging points. Among the protagonists of the electric mobility sector there is, of course, also Tesla, present in Italy and in Europe with its Superchargers for the fast charging of its electric cars.

How does a journey in electric car

Everything revolves around the autonomy of the electric car and the points and times for recharging the batteries. Learning to evaluate the real range of your electric car, considering the actual kilometers traveled in the city, on the motorway or in the "mixed", allows you to know in advance how the car will behave during a journey over medium / long distances.

In this way, in fact, it will be possible to avoid nasty surprises and to estimate, with a good approximation, how many kilometers you can travel with your electric car in relation to the route of your journey. Furthermore, before traveling, it is advisable to evaluate the recharging points, to plan when it will be necessary to refuel and avoid wasting time.

Planning it is a fundamental aspect of traveling with an electric car. The need to stop for a moment to evaluate the route, consult the maps to choose the route and identify the places to stop for recharging, should not be seen as a limitation but as a different way to face the travel experience. br>
The approach to an electric car trip is different but this does not mean that the resulting experience will have to be frustrating or negative. With planning, which over time will become easier and easier thanks to personal experience and the strengthening of the charging networks, traveling by electric car, in winter as in summer, can be an experience of great interest, to be lived in a similar to that of a more traditional journey with a petrol or diesel car.

Traveling by electric car in winter: additional measures

Traveling by electric car in winter, especially when you plan to cross areas where the climate is particularly harsh, it requires a series of precautions. The planning of the route and the normal precautions to follow for a car trip in winter (check the climatic conditions, make sure you can tackle snowy or icy road sections, etc.) may not be enough.

The battery of a ' electric car works best when the temperature is around 20 ° C. At a lower temperature, as occurs during the winter months, there is a decrease in its yield which translates into a decrease in autonomy. With a temperature below zero, for example, it is possible to record a drop of up to 10% in autonomy.

Before setting off, it is therefore convenient to preheat the battery. It may be useful to park the car indoors and / or schedule recharging in such a way that it ends concurrently with the departure of the trip. In addition to the battery, it is useful to preheat the passenger compartment of the car before leaving. Just turn on the car heating a few tens of minutes before setting off, and with the car still charging, to be able to leave with optimal conditions as regards the internal temperature.

The heating can impact in significant measure on energy consumption and, therefore, on the range of your electric car. In general, resistive heating consumes much more than a heat pump heating system which, however, will experience a net loss of efficiency below 5 ° C. By playing in advance and preheating the passenger compartment, the impact of this element on the range of the electric car during a winter trip can be limited, or even eliminated.

It should also be noted that, if you are traveling alone, you can focus on heating the steering wheel and seat to reduce the use of energy needed to fight the cold. There is another aspect to consider carefully before traveling. This is the total weight of the car. Generally speaking, the greater the mass of the car (considering passengers and luggage), the greater the energy consumption will be when traveling.

When traveling with an electric car in winter, also in consideration of the autonomy problems linked to the cold climate, it is necessary to evaluate the possibility of "lightening" the transported load. Of course, every trip and every traveler has its own needs but some precautions can always be put into practice. This is the case, for example, of the roof rack which, when possible, it is better to avoid mounting on your car. The need for planning that characterizes an electric car trip in winter must, therefore, also take these details into consideration.

To optimize electricity consumption and extend the range, it is also important to pay attention to other elements. The driving style, which must be as fluid and relaxed as possible, and the choice of the route, avoiding climbs and preferring low energy-intensive itineraries, are aspects that can play an important role in the use of an electric car during a trip with a medium / long distance.

Traveling by electric car in winter: pay attention to tires

Planning an electric car trip in winter must also take into account the tire issue. Choosing the right tires, in relation to the type of trip, is essential to find the right balance between safety, driving comfort and fuel consumption. Focusing on winter tires will lead to an increase in energy consumption but will guarantee greater grip in adverse weather conditions.

The alternative for winter travel is represented by all season tires which are a good intermediate solution between winter tires and summer. In this case, consumption will be lower and it will still be possible to take advantage of a compound capable of offering good performance in "winter" conditions. Much will depend on the route and the climatic conditions. A trip by electric car in mountain areas, where the risk of encountering colder climatic conditions is real, will make the switch to winter tires mandatory.

To maximize safety and driveability, in this case, it will be necessary to make you have a slight increase in consumption. If winter tires are necessary, for the type of trip to be undertaken, it is advisable to choose them carefully. Focusing on the quality of the single tire (this applies not only to electric cars) will entail, on the one hand, greater expense and, on the other hand, more safety and efficiency.

Michelin Pilot Sport EV

Traveling by electric car in summer: a few tricks to eliminate recharge stress

There are many elements to evaluate for traveling by electric car in the summer without too many thoughts and maximizing the comfort and efficiency of your own voyage. With higher temperatures, in fact, the need arises to pay attention to other details, less relevant in winter but which become of primary importance during the summer season. Even when you go on vacation (summer) by electric car it is necessary to pay attention to some fundamental details.

During the summer, of course, all the "general" precautions for traveling by electric car apply. extended throughout the year. On medium-long distances, for example, it is necessary and essential to optimize the route as much as possible, in order to avoid problems with autonomy. Today, in fact, electric cars are not yet capable (in most cases) of guaranteeing journeys of hundreds of kilometers without stopping and the charging network, both in the city and on the motorway, is still limited.

In addition, in summer vacation places, there may be a very limited number of charging stations. Here, therefore, arises a new element to consider. If you plan to travel by electric car for the summer holidays it is very important both to check the charging stations during the trip (let's assume you are starting from a northern region and arrive in a southern seaside location) and to check the distribution of the columns in the place. of vacation.

During the trip by electric car in summer it is also important to optimize the autonomy with a series of useful (and in some cases fundamental) precautions). Let's take, for example, the case of air conditioning. The passenger compartment cooling system is powered directly by the battery which also powers the engine. Increasing the power of the air conditioning too much to reach a very low temperature will result in a drastic drop in autonomy.

A right choice, in this case, involves the use of air conditioning during the vehicle charging. In this way, upon departure, the vehicle will already be characterized by a lower and more comfortable temperature. In general, it is also important not to overdo the air conditioning. Setting an internal temperature of 20-22 ° C is sufficient. Going below this level risks entailing a considerable expenditure of energy.

Even the way of driving an electric car becomes fundamental during the hottest period of the year. For trips by electric car in the summer, in fact, it is always advisable to focus on the vehicle's eco mode, which is essential for increasing autonomy (also in consideration of the possible difficulties in finding recharging points along the way). Better to plan intermediate stages and experience a relaxed journey, increasing autonomy and avoiding the stress of recharging.

Also pay attention to the weight to be carried. This is a determining factor for maximizing autonomy during an electric car trip. Often with a petrol or diesel car this detail is almost taken for granted and not much attention is paid to the weights they carry. With the electric car, again as a matter of autonomy, it is necessary to put into practice some precautions. Avoiding carrying everything you don't need allows you to significantly increase your autonomy, especially during the holiday period.

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