The all-electric Coda Sedan is coming to fleets and some individual buyers in late 2010, but we're getting a preview of how the car will handle running low on battery power already. Coda's Kara Saltness, writing in Coda's new Clearing The Air blog, explains that the car will work with the driver to prevent getting to E. First, just like in a gasoline-powered car, there will be warnings that the juice is running low. The car will also shift into the first of three "orderly" lower power modes once the battery gets to about 15 percent state of charge.
The first stage limits acceleration, but keeps the top speed at 80 mph. Then, in stage two, the top speed drops to around 60 mph. Lastly, the true limp home mode arrives with a 35 mph top speed. Each of these phases lasts for around five miles, and each time the car moves into the next lowest level, the car will emit a warning. All this won't help if you're more than 15 miles from a charge point when the first warning hits, but at least there will be a lot of time to get out of traffic safely should the planned 100- to 120- mile range not be enough.