Getting the most range out of your EV1 like any
EVs takes some practice. Here are a few tips that may help squeeze
the last few miles from the car when you really need to. If you
don't need to have fun and drive it any way you like.
- Keep the amps low
This seems like an obvious one one characteristic of lead acid
batteries is that the more amps you pull from a battery the fewer
amp hours you get out of it. That mean stomping on the pedal detracts
from the range even if you coast after that. Try to hold the average
amp draw by avoid surges in power even if they are small. Accelerate
very slowly. On hills try to keep the same power going up as going
down (within reason of course). Remember you want to avoid surges
in power if at all possible, which leads to the next hint...
- Plan ahead
The goal while driving is to use every
bit of the battery capacity to move you down the road. You never
want to throw any of that momentum away by using the brakes or
even the regen coast down. So plan for those exits and turns and
let the speed drop due to drag and friction. Don't follow too
close behind other drivers or else you will end up using the brakes.
Try to time the stop light so you can just keep on rolling. Lost
momentum has to be made up so lose a little speed earlier so that
it takes longer to get to the light. If at all possible make the
trip when there are fewer cars on the road so you can drive like
an EV extending its range without getting other drivers angry.
- Drive Slower
This is a tough one to follow but it makes a big difference at
highway speeds. The EV1 has a low drag coefficient but speed still
makes a significant difference. If you have a way of measuring amps drawn try it and see. Power required at 70 is quite a bit more than
at 50 or even 60.
- Keep the windows up
When driving on the highway keep the windows up. Use the vents
to stay cool. If that's not enough then use the AC. The AC draws
less than the loss from putting the windows down.
- Use the coast down
When possible use the coast down feature
instead of the brakes. It would be best not to use either but
sometimes you have to stop or slow down. The coast down puts more
back into the batteries than the brakes since no friction braking
takes place when using the coast down. I usually drive without
the coast down button pushed in and then push it in when I want
to slow down.
Try different techniques and see how
they work. You will need something to give you feedback for small
differences in driving patterns. My EV1Dash program and hardware hookup will do the trick or else you can write
your own data collection software. On the numeric display keep
an eye on the net amp hours used and compare that to the drain.
The closer those number are the better you are driving. If you
keep a constant 25Amps the number should match exactly. Pull lots
of power and they diverge. The more power used the more they diverge.
Strive for a different of less than 15%. A careful driver pushing
for range can get under a 10% difference. Regen should also be
as low as possible.