Range Mode & Battery Life

Range Mode & Battery Life

I understand how CHARGING the battery in the Range Mode can shorten the life of the battery - the question I have is - What effect if any is there in DRIVING in the Range Mode? For example - I charge in the Standard Mode but switch to the Range Mode when actually driving which, as I understand, simply reduces power output and consequently may/should extend the range of the charge.

Thanks in advance for your response(s).

Georg | October 26, 2010

I believe RM also allows higher ESS temps (while driving); maybe not as high as performance mode, but higher than Std Mode. Reason: to reduce energy consumption and therefore the cooling turns on later (at higher temps). (Try driving in SM until the front compressor/fans come on. Switch to RM.)

AlfredG | October 26, 2010

Range Mode also lets you draw down the battery further than Standard Mode. Driving in Range Mode, whilst keeping charge mid-range, should have no influence on longevity.

Vawlkus | October 26, 2010

A little tidbit for the budget minded: Tucson is putting out charging infastructure, and they're planning on a charge price for the battery in a Nissan Leaf to cost about $1.50.

I don't remember the difference in size between teh batteries, but IF Tucson's numbers are halfway accurate, then you can expect a public 'juice up' for most Tesla cars to be $3, maybe $4. There's a bit of data for those wondering.

Steve | October 26, 2010

The main difference in switching from Standard to Range mode while driving is that you are able to use the bottom 15% of the battery capacity that is treated as below 0% in Standard mode. That is, the battery scale shown as 0% to 100% in Standard mode is really 15% to 90% of the full scale that you see in Range mode. If you charge in Standard mode and then switch to Range mode right away, you should see the battery fill level indication drop. If you are driving in Standard mode near the low end of the range and switch to Range mode, you should see the battery fill level indication rise. [Personally, I wish Tesla had just kept the scale the same and just put markers on the graph at the 15% and 90% points.]

The point of Standard mode is that charging the battery above 90% or below 15% puts more stress on the cells and reduces lifetime. Thus, the answer to your question is that if you switch to Range mode and then drive down to less than 15%, you will be shortening the battery life, but if you drive down to 30%, it makes little or no difference. Driving in Range mode reduces performance, but if you don't push hard on the little pedal, that won't make a difference, either.

BTW, my 15% and 90% numbers may not be exactly right, but you get the idea.

bhp | November 24, 2010

@ Steve, you could be absolutely rite,

but this is what my understanding says......

They will never allow us to play in that area that u are saying.....more than 90% and less than 15%......the SOC limits are fixed.

However they can restrict the driver to use more power by limiting the speed of the vehicle.....lets say for example max speed limited to 90 instead of 125 mph this will reduce the continuous energy consumption....

on top of that, they will also reduce the max acceleration, lets say instead of 3.9 sec now its 4.5 or 5 sec.....this will reduce the pulse power consumption.........:-)

Steve | November 24, 2010

@bhp, I'm afraid your understanding is not correct. You can prove it for yourself. Charge up in standard mode, which will show something like 96%, or maybe 99% on a newer car. Then switch to range mode, and you should see that the SoC drops to a value somewhere between 85% and 90%. Then you can press the Top Off button and the charging will continue to fill in that last 10%.

If all range mode did was to restrict power consumption, you could achieve exactly the same result by restraining your right foot.

bhp | November 25, 2010

well i don't think i can debate more on this answer then,

Because i don't have a roadster. moreover i have never even driven that vehicle.....:-(

BOTBLDR45 | October 26, 2011

Since I just got my Roadster last month the battery symbol on the charging screen and the above blog has me confused. Full standard charge on my car shows 183 ideal miles and a battery picture that is only about 90% full. If there is 15% of the battery that is not represented by the battery pic does that mean the 183 ideal miles represents 75% of what the battery can do????

Confused .... help me with my ignorance

Timo | October 26, 2011

That's how I understand that as well. You get full battery capability using range mode, not in standard mode, but that eats up battery faster (lifetime-wise).

DHrivnak | October 29, 2011

Yes my understanding is in standard mode you only charge to about 88% and it will show 0 when there is actually about 12% left on the battery. By staying in this middle range one will prolong the battery life. As lithium batteries do not like to be fully charged and fully discharged and standard mode keeps you in the sweet spot for long life.

When you switch into range mode 3 things happen. It allows you to fully charge the battery giving an extra 25 miles of range, it allows you to drive to "empty" adding another 25 miles or range and it limits your power to 50%. This is still plenty of power but not sports car performance.

So in standard mode I normally get abotu 150 miles of range. With range mode I can go 220 miles. I have not been fortunate enough to get much more than that with my driving style.

jory | November 5, 2011

this thread on the other tesla forum gives some additional information on care and feeding of roadster batteries (and the various charge modes, etc.):

ronzomckelvey | January 1, 2012

I end up switching to range mode when highway cruising just to limit the power at the 50%. Owning the roadster gives you a heavy foot, and mine is no exception.

I've been lucky in that most of my driving doesn't need to have the car charged on range mode.

Now power mode is another story. I was involved in a test drive comparing the Mercedes eCell and the Tesla. The Germans kept putting the Telsa in power mode because they thought it gave the care more power. Had to explain it basically just lets the car run hotter.


Douglas3 | January 2, 2012

From what I've seen, performance mode *does* reduce the 0-60 time slightly, even without warming the pack up. The effect is something like 0.2 seconds.

data02 | December 14, 2014

Researchers develop accurate range estimates for EVs