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Electric cars outperform their EPA range ratings

It is something that electric car owners in the States have long suspected; EPA ratings for EV model ranges are too conservative.

In a test of electric cars by the publication Edmunds.com, it was proved that in city driving conditions, modern electric cars are easily capable of exceeding their official driving range, as given to them by the country’s Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

Toyota RAV4 2013

We’re all aware that at higher speeds, an electric car’s range can very quickly start to vanish, but these batch of electric models proved that they are perfect for city conditions. Drivers might not be expecting this boost in performance, because for combustion cars it typically works the other way round; in city driving their fuel economy can fall below EPA ratings while on the highway, economy improves.

Some electric cars showed particularly impressive improvements on their EPA ratings, during their Edmunds.com test which involved undertaking a 105.5-mile route around Orange County, avoiding the freeway, and encountering traffic lights, .

The Toyota RAV4 EV for example was able to go an extra 40 miles over its EPA rating of 103 miles. Other vehicles showed a result closer to their rating. For example, the Tesla Model S (85kWh battery pack), which boasts the longest range, beat its rating by only four miles, achieving 269 mile range. But all of them beat their official rating, with models tested including the Mitsubishi i-MiEV, BMW ActiveE, Coda EV Sedan, Honda Fit EV, Ford Focus BEV, Nissan LEAF and prototype VW Golf EV (full results here).

The car publication also tested the electric cars for their acceleration, braking, handling and noise abilities, with pleasing results here too, with the cars proving their strong acceleration qualities and sharp handling.

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Faye Sunderland

Filed under: Electric cars

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