How does driving style affect range?

As with a petrol or diesel car, the way you drive will affect the range you get from your EV.

Minimising the use of heaters and AC, keeping within speed limits, and maintaining your
tyre pressure all contribute to improved range.


What factors most contribute to reduced range?

  • Temperature control - in-car electrics such as heating, and air conditioning will draw upon your battery’s charge. Cold EVs draw more power when in operation, and driving in extreme heat can also reduce range.  While you can’t always avoid driving under such conditions, you may need to schedule a recharge if you’re driving long distance.
  • Accessories - there’s a common misconception that windscreen wipers and headlights draw significant power. In fact, wipers are usually powered by a separate 12V battery, just as in petrol or diesel vehicles. If your range reduces at night or in the rain this may be due to cold temperatures or the drag caused by wet tyres (this can reduce range by 5-10% according to the BBC’s Top Gear).
  • Speed - driving too fast and stopping abruptly can also reduce range. You should accelerate and decelerate smoothly.


How can I optimise the range of my EV?

  • Maintain tyre pressure - just like a petrol or diesel car, your EV’s range will be improved by maintaining the right tyre pressure. (EV tyres tend to have higher air pressure than petrol or diesel vehicles so you should familiarise yourself with the recommended pressure.) This helps reduce road resistance, meaning that the car requires less energy to maintain its speed.
  • Reduce weight - removing any unnecessary weight from your vehicle will also extend its range, so do take any unnecessary luggage out of your EV’s boot.
  • Opt for regenerative braking - if your EV is fitted with regenerative braking, you may find your range improves when driving in the city, since you’ll be using your brakes more often. Regenerative braking transforms the friction of braking into an electrical charge which tops up the battery.


Find out if EVs are exempt from congestion charges