Cold Weather Tips for EV Fleets

Model 1 | February 21, 2023

It’s no secret cold weather impacts driving and vehicle behavior. Similar to traditional vehicles with internal combustion engines (ICE vehicles), electric vehicles are impacted by lower temperatures. Below are tips to maximize performance and battery longevity during the cold months.

Have you ever warmed up your ICE vehicle before beginning the early morning commute? EVs are no different – however, unlike traditional vehicles, most EVs are equipped with telematics and remote “pre-conditioning” features. These features bring cabin and battery temperature to optimal range for comfort, efficiency, and performance. Batteries thrive between 40-80 degrees F—temperatures below 40 degrees begin to impact battery performance. Pre-conditioning is the most significant trick to optimizing battery performance by warming the electrolytes which create energy by moving positively charged ions between the anode and cathode in batteries.

Here are a few more tips to optimize the performance of an EV during cold conditions:

  • Utilize regenerative braking – often called “Eco-mode, or “L” mode. Driving in Eco-mode helps to recover kinetic energy from the battery, extending range.
  • Try to store the vehicle in covered parking to protect the vehicle from cold temperatures.
  • Remote start snow- and ice-covered vehicles or pre-condition to melt ice and remove excess weight from the vehicle.
  • Keep speeds moderate – avoid dramatic acceleration. High speeds and bursts of speed use more energy.
  • Keep the vehicle plugged in when parked – maintaining 80% state of charge (SOC).
  • Use route planning whenever possible – find the shortest route and charging station along the way using onboard telematics.
  • Make sure tires are properly inflated – ensure less rolling resistance and can extend the range.
  • Always make sure headlights and windshield wipers are working properly before venturing out into inclement weather.

With a bit of planning and preparation, you can ensure your fleet is ready to handle operations safely and efficiently.

Interested in an electrified fleet? Check out the exclusive Ford E-Transit package from Model 1. All vehicles come with Ford Pro Telematics, Fleet Management Software, and a 11.4 kWh charger!