One of the biggest questions I get about electric cars is their range. With the best cars on the market now capable of up to 610km (Model S Long range) that opens the door to plenty of road trip opportunities.
What many people are deciding between is which Model 3 they should buy. The entry-level Standard Range Plus is rated for 460km using the ambitious NEDC standard of estimations. In reality, that number is likely to be 30-40km less with average driving, then take away a little more if you need the heater or air con, as well as steep inclines, line mountainous routes and you could be down to as little as 400km on a charge.
The financial jump up to the the Model 3 Performance model is a decent leap at A$85k instead of A$66k, but that gets you a NEDC rated range of 560km instead of 460km. Having that extra 100km is achieved thanks to a larger battery, but what that means you should be realistically be achieving 520km.
When I reviewed the Jaguar I-PACE I have seen a similar drop in range from the rated WLTP rating, down from 470km, to around 400km in reality.
Whatever the range of the EV you buy, you should take a second to plan out a few trips you’d like to take in the car. This Tesla Trip Planner will help you understand the range required and may help you make the final buying decision.
As of today, there’s still only the Model S and Model X vehicles to choose from, but we’re hoping the Model 3 variants are added shortly.
In this example I chose a road trip from Melbourne to Sydney. This journey is 883km in distance and would take 10 hours 25 minutes start to finish. That includes very sensible stops at Wodonga, Gundagai and Goulburn superchargers for between 25 and 30 minutes.
This planner also offers a nice quick calculation of the potential fuel savings, in this case around A$80 for the trip. If you decide you need to take an overnight stay, there’s also an option to show Destination chargers on the map, available at lots of hotels along the journey.
The Tesla Trip Planner is a great tool and not one that’s well publicised through their website. To get to it, just head to https://www.tesla.com/en_AU/trips