Sunday, August 05, 2018

Odometer Miles vs. Range Miles in a Tesla Model 3.

Bird Island @ Point Lobos State Reserve
Miles are quite tricky to understand when it comes to Tesla cars. (Why only Tesla? Probably all-electric cars). While the battery in each car is specified to have a range — a long-range Model 3, for example, can be charged fully to a range of 310 miles — the actual odometer miles that one may realize during a drive can be substantially less.

We had occasion to drive to Point Lobos State Natural Reserve recently. Google Maps recommended we drive down 101 South, through 156 West, and finally via 1 South, for a total of 81.6 miles, one way.
Terrestrially speaking, by using Googe maps, we estimated that the drive would add about 2*81.6, or about 165 miles, give or take a few.

At the end of the trip, however, I was surprised to see the following:
  • Remaining range miles: 59, after a start range of 279 miles. (279 = 90% charge limit, as recommended by Tesla). In other words, we used up 220 range miles.
  • Odometer mile difference: 170.
Thus, one can define an odometer/range efficiency of 170/220 ≅ 77% for this particular drive.

Although the Tesla console does recommend where to stop for a supercharge during long drives, it is also good to keep in mind a 75% thumb rule, based on the efficiency defined above, as to when a replenishing charge would be required.

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