Range anxiety

Reader's Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV isn't living up to its claimed electric-only range...

Range anxiety

Last September I bought a Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV.

The adverts claim a range of 32 miles on battery power but in the recent cold weather I haven’t been able to get anywhere near that. In fact, I can’t go farther than 18 miles.

Is this normal?

What Car? says

This is completely normal. We have experienced exactly the same thing in our long-term Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV.

Where we could once cover 31 miles on battery power before the engine kicked in, we have only been able to do about half that in bad weather.

The problem is down to the battery rather than the car. In cold weather, the chemical reactions that take place in the battery occur much more slowly, which means that it is worse at discharging and recuperating energy.

Add to this the fact that most drivers use the heating and heated seats to stay warm in the cabin, and the range will be significantly reduced. 

If possible, charge the car in a garage overnight and use the preheating function to get the cabin to a reasonable temperature. Then turn the heating down as much as possible while driving and the range should increase.

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