2017 e-Golf: Maximizing electric car range in winter
Since we first announced the arrival of e-Golf in Canada, we’ve been busy putting the final touches in place to welcome this exciting new model to our popular VW Golf family.
The best electric car for Golf fans
If you love Golf, you’ll love the e-Golf, too. It looks like a Golf and drives like a Golf. All you need to do is plug it in and charge it up. And, if you’re thinking the e-Golf won’t get you very far in winter, we’ve got good news for you.
Electric car batteries in winter
There is no doubt that Canadian winters can be harsh and unpredictable. And since cold weather is a major factor when it comes to EV range, it’s no wonder some Canadians are downright nervous about how far an e-Golf might take them.
In winter, tasks such as heating the cabin can put additional demand on your battery. Internal combustion engines generate heat as a byproduct of normal operation. Because battery electric vehicles are so efficient, they don’t generate enough thermal energy to adequately heat the interior alone. Heat has to be generated from the high voltage battery, with the result being a reduction in range. Knowing this, we’ve worked hard to make sure the e-Golf is ready and able to tackle Canadian winters with energy-saving technology that’ll keep you warm while getting you to where to need to go.
The 2017 e-Golf is equipped with a “heat pump” as standard equipment. The heat pump is similar to what is used to control the climate in many buildings and residences. It takes what heat is available from the drivetrain and combines it with a refrigerant circuit to heat the cabin. The result is about a 30% savings in range compared to an e-Golf without a heat pump.
Every e-Golf is also equipped with an automatic, humidity-controlled heated windshield that can defog and thaw without the aid of the AC compressor and fan, giving you a clear view that uses less battery power.
In addition, standard heated seats allow you to heat your core quickly and directly, making it possible to minimize cabin heat as much as individual comfort allows.
In conventional braking systems, the kinetic energy that propels the car forward is transformed to heat as the friction of the brake pad contacts the brake disc to bring the car to a stop. The e-Golf uses a regenerative braking system that captures this energy—that would otherwise dissipate into the atmosphere—and uses it to charge the battery. It’s simple enough to use: just press the brake pedal as you normally would, and the car does all the rest.
For those wanting to eke out maximum efficiency—and fun—drivers can cycle through four stages of energy recuperation with the simple flick of the shifter. Each stage increases the rate of deceleration, putting more back into the battery. This simulates “engine braking” in a conventional car. So your driving style can effectively “add fuel” to your e-Golf. Want to see how it works? Check out this great YouTube video by Danny Maynor, Product Specialist at McKenna Volkswagen in Huntington Beach California. He shows us how using the stages to decelerate in lieu of braking sends a charge to the battery.
Heat your e-Golf while it charges
The best way to maximize winter range in the e-Golf is to pre-heat the cabin while you’re still connected to the grid. This lets you use a full charge to get you where you need to go without also having to bring the cabin up to a comfortable temperature. It takes much less energy to maintain a +20°C temperature than to ask the car to go from -20° to +20°C, and then maintain it.
Simply set your desired cabin temperature and your regular planned departure time, and the e-Manager will heat the cabin while the car is charging. When you’re ready to leave, your e-Golf is fully-charged and toasty warm.
Dual-Zone Climate Control with Driver-Only Eco Mode
The e-Golf is equipped with Climatronic® dual-zone electronic climate control including driver-only eco mode. That means that not only can you control the temperature on both sides of the cabin but, when the passenger unbuckles the seat belt, their temperature zone is automatically disabled. Just like that. Not only do you enjoy a cabin temperature that’s just right, but energy isn’t being wasted on the now empty passenger side.
Find an EV charging station
Looking to take your e-Golf on a road trip? Find out where you can charge the battery along the way with our interactive map.
Reserve your e-Golf now
If you’re ready to make the move to an electric car, you can reserve your e-Golf now. Put down a fully-refundable $1,000 deposit and we’ll secure your spot in line so you can among the first to own one.