Advice on Winter Driving and Range in Toronto area

Advice on Winter Driving and Range in Toronto area

Hi to all of the Canadian and/or cold weather Tesla S owners. I am right on the fence - and could use some help deciding if now is the right time for me to buy the S.

I am hoping to get some advice on winter range, driving in snow and ice and general experiences from people living in my area.

Also, does anyone know if there is an owners group for Ontario and Quebec?



d_kaufman | 2014年4月13日

There is a sub-area for Canada on the Tesla Motors Club site
as well as a long thread here at

Bighorn | 2014年4月13日

I've driven mine every day in Wyoming for this unusually long snow season. What questions or concerns do you have specifically?

davev | 2014年4月13日

Thanks to you both. Bighorn - What type of range are you getting in the coldest days. It makes sense that it will be diminished?

Bighorn | 2014年4月13日

Typically, I'm just driving to work which is about 10 miles each way, so range is never a concern. If it's cold, and we saw temps to -15F or so, the battery warming and climate chew up a lot of kWs, most pronouncedly at the outset. I've seen 600Wh/m for an inbound trip that takes less than 200 on a warm day. Once the battery is warm though, I think consensus is that range is probably degraded on the order of 20%. The only time I could see this mattering is if I had to take a long winter trip with big supercharger gaps or if my commute were much longer. Hope that helps--happy to share more if you've got other questions.

mcfadyena | 2014年4月13日

I drove throughout the winter and live near Toronto. My range, on a full charge is rated at 432 km. If I get close to 300 km from that charge on a cold day, highway and a bit of city driving, I'm happy.

Round trip commute is 270 km. I only had to stop to charge on the way on home once.

Hope that helps!

hanstremblay | 2014年4月13日

Dave there is an owners group in Quebec. Web site is french but I am pretty sure almost all of the guys can speak in english (better than me :-) ). You may find some interesting informations about winter driving.

notice | 2014年4月13日

At around 10F (-10C) with "range mode" on, cabin at 65F, gusty wind and keeping speed around 65mph the worse I got was about 2/3 rated range or about 175 miles on a max charge. Much improved in warmer weather.

sule | 2014年4月13日

I am near Toronto and am doing regular commutes of some 280km roundtrip(weekly), with no ability to charge at my destination (didn't have the right adapter). I did get my car kind of after the winter (March 24th) but still got some winter weather (I believe I got a -10C). Here's what I found out:

I originally charged it to 100% due to some anxiety. Was able to get back with little left, but I did to a lot of unplanned "spirited" driving - a friend of mine came for the ride and wanted to have some fun.

Being more experienced now, and in better weather I am able to easily beat the rated range. For example, last Thursday I did an 86.7 km (53.9 mi) trip from Waterloo to Mississauga using up 13.2 kWh only, for an average of 152 Wh/km (244 Wh/mi)... and I did drive some km/h faster than speed limit on 401 (100 km/h = 62 mph).

The trick is to use shore power to preheat the cabin and the battery. Preheating the cabin helps not using the battery power for the same, only to maintain the heat. It proves to be a big consumer. Cold battery has lower range, so heating it up in cold weather also helps.

The rest is just sheer joy :)

wolfpet | 2014年4月13日

Dave, there is an Ontario owners club. You can say hello here

My daily commute from Mississauga to Kitchener with no charging at work and occasional detours has never been a problem. I have never had to reduce the heat in the cabin or slowdown to save the energy, including those weeks when there was -26C outside. Model S is a great winter car.

church70 | 2014年4月13日

You will have no problems just put winter tires on you know as well as I do we just went through the worst winner in a very long time in this area the car handled it with no problems

I was more white knuckle last night in that heavy downpour of rain I was driving my friend home last night that rain was intense on the highway GTA

davev | 2014年4月15日

wolfpet - I think I see you sometimes. Do you take Ira Needles on your commute? I drive every morning from Cambridge to Waterloo and back to Cambridge. Then either my wife or myself drives to Waterloo in the afternoon to pick her up. My daughter goes to school there and is planning to go to high school there as well.