• Image Credit: Fleetcarma
  • Image Credit: Fleetcarma
  • Image Credit: Fleetcarma
  • Image Credit: Fleetcarma
The Polar Vortex has created a bit of a mathematical optical illusion when comparing the effect of cold weather on gas-powered cars and electric vehicles. Cold weather reduces EV range by a greater percentage than it reduces gasoline fuel economy, but because EVs cost so much less to "fuel," the savings for EV drivers actually increase as the temperature drops. Got all that? Here's the math.

According to FleetCarma, an EV's single-charge range at freezing (32 degrees Fahrenheit) drops 20 percent compared to what it is at 73 degrees, while the fuel economy of a gas engine declines just 12 percent. Drop the temperature to 0 degrees Fahrenheit, and the difference is more pronounced, as EV range falls 29 percent while fuel economy decreases 19 percent. Heat up that cabin, and single-charge range drops further, by as much as 43 percent.

So that means some frost makes EV savings disappear, correct? No. Because of the disparity in fueling costs to begin with, EV payback rate speeds up as the temperature drops. Specifically, EV drivers save on average 12 cents a mile in fueling costs compared to conventional vehicles at 73 degrees, and 15 cents a mile when the temperature falls to 0 degrees Fahrenheit. So plug in, bundle up and check out FleetCarma's graphics on the subject below.

Cold Weather Fuel Efficiency Infographic: Electric Versus Gasoline Showdown

via fleetcarma.com

I'm reporting this comment as:

Reported comments and users are reviewed by Autoblog staff 24 hours a day, seven days a week to determine whether they violate Community Guideline. Accounts are penalized for Community Guidelines violations and serious or repeated violations can lead to account termination.

    • 1 Second Ago
  • 2015 Toyota Highlander
    MSRP: $29,765 - $44,140
    2015 Jeep Grand Cherokee
    MSRP: $29,995 - $64,895
    2015 Honda Accord
    MSRP: $22,105 - $33,630
    2015 Honda Civic
    MSRP: $18,290 - $26,740
    2015 Mazda Mazda3
    MSRP: $16,945 - $25,545
    Share This Photo X