Electric cars at risk of breaking down as cold weather impairs batteries

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New research has found that electric vehicles are at risk of breaking down in cold weather.

Analysis of electric cars in freezing temperatures has found that they use nearly 40% more battery power in the first hour when compared to ordinary conditions.

Electric van owner Steve revealed to ITV that his normal range of 82 miles has dropped to 45 miles in this weather, even when starting with a full battery.

“Batteries don’t like extremes of temperature which is why your phone is rubbish if you leave it in the sun,” he told the news outlet.

On average, electric cars will have 18% less mileage in cold temperatures, as the battery power focuses on heating the car up.

RAC technical development manager Chris Millward revealed to the outlet that 6% of callouts to EVs are due to them running out of power, which is much higher than the same issue for diesel or petrol cars.

“The difference is if an EV runs out of power everything stops and wheels lock up so it’s much harder to remove from the road,” he added.

The news comes amid chaos for Tesla drivers over in America.

Drivers of the electric cars were left stranded when charging stations stopped working due to a cold snap, with temperatures going as low as -17C in Chicago.

One of the stuck drivers, Brandon Welbourne, told ABC7: “Our batteries are so cold it’s taking longer to charge now, so it should take 45 minutes, it’s taking two hours for the one charger that we have.

“I have seen at least 10 cars get towed away from here because the cars, they died, they’ve run out of battery. It’s too cold, it uses too much of the energy to try to keep the car somewhat reasonable temperature, so everybody is getting towed away and we have nowhere to charge.”

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