Range: This is how far current electric cars can go

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We checked how far you can get with electric cars that are currently on sale. At the top it looks very reassuring with over 600 kilometers (Tesla Model S 90D according to NEDC). But this also includes a purchase price of around 100,000 euros - every kilometer is expensive. In the meantime, not only Teslas have come a long way, as can be seen in our table.

Real consumption thanks to ams test round

Our table ranks according to the range determined in ams test rounds for electric cars . These values ​​are very realistic because they arose in practice on public roads. However, their comparability is limited, especially for cars from different segments. Why? auto motor und sport measures different vehicle classes in different laps - based on the assessment that e-cars with a range of up to 200 kilometers are mainly used in the city, those with a range of up to 300 kilometers are sometimes on the road and Electric cars with a range of at least 400 kilometers are likely to make long journeys on the motorway more often. The route profiles differ accordingly:

  1. Small E-circuit for ranges up to 200 km:
    Length: 33.4 km, difference in altitude: 288 m, -288 m, max. Incline: 14.3%, -9.4%,
    duration: 51 minutes, top speed: 80 km /h
  2. Medium E-lap for ranges from 201 km to 300 km:
    Length: 61.5 km, altitude difference: 497 m, - 499 m, max. Incline: 13%, -9.8%,
    Duration: 71 minutes, top speed: 80 km /h
  3. Large e-lap for a range of over 300 km:
    Length: 93.9 km, max. Altitude difference: 700 m, -702 m, max. Incline: 8.9%, -7.7%,
    Duration: 90 minutes, top speed: 120 km /h, including approx. 32 km of motorway

What is a Realistic consumption value?

The big question that not only those interested in electric cars, but all motorists have been asking themselves since there have been standardized test cycles and consumption data, is that of real consumption (and thusafter a realistic range). If the eleven-kilometer-long NEDC (New European Driving Cycle) has been providing a rough direction since 1992, the 23.25-kilometer-long WLTP (Worldwide Harmonized Light (-Duty) Vehicles Test Procedure) cycle, which has been gradually introduced since September 1, should be more realistic his. But: The actual range can vary depending on the traffic situation, driving style and weather conditions. In addition, the specification of the WLTP value is not yet mandatory and sometimes not allowed. Currently, NEDC values ​​are still predominantly in circulation, even if testing was carried out in the WLTP cycle. In other words, the WLTP data value obtained is calculated back to the NEDC value using a formula. Until all vehicle manufacturers communicate the WLTP data, customers will have to be content with the rather unrealistic NEDC values. According to the European Commission, this can still be done until 2021. Only then does the NEDC end.

Battery capacity: consumption=range?

Decisive for the range of an electric car are - as with the combustion engine - the amount of energy carried and the consumption. However, there are significant differences in both sizes compared to gasoline or diesel models. First of all, electric cars can only carry comparatively little “fuel” because the energy density of even modern lithium-ion batteries is manageable. The energy content of the 90 kWh battery in the Tesla Model S mentioned above is only a good ten liters of premium petrol. The battery itself weighs around 700 kilograms. On the other hand, the electric car drives with significantly better efficiency. It can be 90 percent for an electric car, and just 25 percent for a gasoline-powered car. Taking this into account, the Model S drives with a 36-liter tank - rather scarce for a saloon with high horsepower. Hence the range fear of many motorists who are socialized with internal combustion engines and tanks of 40 to 100 liters.

The second difference is the consumption: As described above, it is considerably lower than with the combustion engine. However, it is also measured differently: All information relates to the kilowatt hours that have been charged into the battery because you have to pay for it. When charging, however, there are sometimes considerable losses because the battery has to be cooled or heated or the charging system also consumes energy. In other words, unlike with a combustion engine, the range of an electric car cannot simply be calculated by dividing the battery capacity ('tank volume') by the average consumption value. Only on the on-board computer in the electric car can you see how much power is drawn from the battery while driving. In terms of a combustion engine, this would mean that the driver would have to pay a liter or two more when refueling with a porous hose. Because they were sucked out of the pump, but not ended up in the tank.

About the difference betweenA look at the auto motor und sport database is enough to clarify the manufacturer's information and the realistic values ​​to be expected. Here the Opel Ampera-e has a range of 300 kilometers. According to the manufacturer, the Stromer should come almost twice as far with 520 kilometers. In the VW e-Golf (300 km) it was 271 kilometers in the test. Amazing: The Hyundai Kona Elektro has a measured range of 536 kilometers at auto motor und sport and thus even exceeds its own specification of 449 kilometers.


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