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  1. #1
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    EV as ski car with room for 4 plus gear

    How practical are lower priced Electric Vehicles as ski cars (AWD/4WD, room for driver, passenger, 2 big dogs, ski gear, and roof box)? I am looking at a Tesla 3 or a Mustang Mach E for when I have to move on from my Subaru. I have about a 50 mile commute to the snow.

  2. #2
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    Dec 2020
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    The biggest issue is the range - it is definitely impacted in the cold. From what I have read it can be a 40% reduction in range when the temps start to dip below freezing, maybe worse in very extreme conditions. The roof box will impact range quite a bit too, Tesla is able to do as well as they do range wise because they've got an incredibly low drag coefficient. 50 miles each way shouldn't be an issue though.

    Otherwise, they're reasonably heavy cars and should do pretty well in terms of snow traction. Opt for the smaller wheels though, the big ones seem very likely to be curbed because the stock tire fit has a lot of stretch on the sidewalls. Plus, bigger sidewalls with snow tires should get you a bit better snow performance too.

  3. #3
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    I suggest going on YouTube and search for Bjorn Nyland from Norway. He tests electric cars for range, performance, cold weather . 1000 km challenge to see how fast you can drive that distance. Will race with another model of ev to see which can do it quicker. One test goes from Oslo to Geilo, about 230km with a 3000+ft elevation gain. When he gets there he often focuses his camera on the ski runs to see skiers on the runs across the valley. Another choice will be the VW ID4 which will have AWD available when the US plant starts up production. I'm considering a used Bolt, the only ev I could afford with over 200 miles of range.
    In drove this drunken madman and stopped on a dime! Unfortunately the dime was in Mr. Rococo's pocket!

  4. #4
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    How should I mount a roof box to the vehicles? I haven't seen any with integrated racks.

  5. #5
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    I live in CA at 2800 feet so I don't think the effect of temperature on the battery should be that import. I am hoping that range won't be a concern when loaded up with roof box, gear, and dogs. The EV's I am looking at have a listed range of more than 250 miles and my commute is 100 miles.

  6. #6
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    There’s a long and informative thread on ev’s in the main forum (Padded Room) that goes deep on these common questions

  7. #7
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    I wouldn't worry about the range as much as the time of the commute, assuming your 50miles in CA is one of those commutes that can easily turn into 3 hours in traffic and/or a storm. I would think (but I don't know) that sitting in traffic for hours on end running the heater would greatly reduce the range.

    EVs should get a lot better in the next year or two if battery breakthroughs announced this year do as well as expected and then get put into new vehicles.

  8. #8
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    Jun 2011
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    Would all this info apply to hybrid cars? I never thought about temp affecting the batteries of hybrid cars.


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  9. #9
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    Nov 2007
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    Quote Originally Posted by harpo-the-skier View Post
    How should I mount a roof box to the vehicles? I haven't seen any with integrated racks.
    I had a body shop install Yakima bases for about $200.

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  10. #10
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    Jun 2004
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    I absolutely love my model 3. It is the 2020 long range/awd version.

    We live in socal and make about 10-12 trips a year to Mammoth, a couple of week long trips and a bunch of weekend trips. We also make about 5-10 day trips to Baldy or Big Bear. I am now remote, so no office commute anymore which makes all of that easier. If I had to drive an hour everyday I don't know that I would want to do that much driving.

    I have done some write ups in the electric car thread about my Mammoth trips. You might want to check out that thread, padded room, as it might have some information you would like.

    I love the Model 3 for our purposes, it really only adds about 10-20 minutes of time to a typical Mammoth trip, which is around six hours.

    I think the issue you may have is space. We keep most of our stuff up at Mammoth, boots go back and forth, so on a given trip it is just me, my wife and our dog. With the seats folded down there is plenty of space for our purposes, but for a family of four with gear that will be tough.

    I believe that issue of range and a roof Thule has been discussed in the electric car thread. The good thing for you is that the distance is only 50 miles. If you start with the battery at 80%, that is roughly 256 miles of range. In cold weather that will be lower, you might get reduced range by around 25%. It is hard for me to know, as the drive to Mammoth is not cold until you go up the Sherwin Grade, so only the last 30 miles of so. In Mammoth we don't drive very much, our ski lease is close to the hill and right by a shuttle stop, so it is not an issue. You should also factor in elevation change, although one of the nice things about the Tesla is the regenerative braking, I typically gain about 3% charge going down the Sherwin Grade. I usually have the same charge in Bishop as I have in Mammoth Lakes when going home, and Bishop is 40 miles or so from Mammoth.

    I would see if you can find the math on a roof box. It will definitely reduce range, I just don't know by how much.

    I would think that if you leave for a 50 mile trip with an 80% charge you should be just fine. It just takes a bit of planning to make sure you have that charge. One thing about electric cars is that most of us have taken the ability to fill up an ICE vehicle for granted. You don't really need to plan much in regards to filling up with gas. With an electric car you need to plan and be strategic. I am still getting the hang of it. One of the things about charging is that the charging rate resembles the graph of the natural log function. It is steep early, you get a very fast charge when the battery is low, then it flattens out as the charge gets higher. You charge faster from 10 to 40 percent than you do from 50 to 80 percent, all other conditions held constant, even though in both cases you are adding 30 percent to the batter life. Unless you have time for a very long charge, you are linking it with a meal or something, it sometimes makes sense to leave for a trip with a big charge, but then do two shorter charges, to maybe 50%, as opposed to one charge to 80%. This is the kind of thing you get the hang of, but simply not putting much thought into refueling is not something you can do with an electric car the way you can with an ICE.

    One thing you might want to do is look for the charging stations in your area and on your commute. Start to try and familiarize yourself with what it will be like to drive electric.

    The website A Better Route Planner is good for this. I don't know that it factors in a roof box though.

    I will reiterate again that I love my model 3. I can easily fit several pairs of 190 fat skis in it with the seats folded down. I can easily fit a 6'4" surfboard, or a couple, with the seats down. I can fit a 7'6" as well, although not quite as easily. With a family of four space might be an issue.
    "Have you ever seen a monk get wildly fucked by a bunch of teenage girls?" "No" "Then forget the monastery."


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  11. #11
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    Model 3 will work. seats fold down for two dogs to go in the back. Trunk has plenty of room for 4 people's ski gear. I have a roof box, the rack is made by Tesla and I installed it myself. You buy it on Tesla.com. Yes, the roof rack, snow tires, and the cold reduces the range. To me it doesn't matter one little bit. There is no math to do based on my ski commute, which is sometimes do twice in one day as my wife and I take turns going up BCC or LCC here in Utah. I have had my car for 2 years and have spent 10 minutes total, on one trip, recharging on the road. I just needed 30-ish more miles and when you are low, it recharges on a Tesla charger REALLY fast. When you are trying to do a top-off, it goes slow. The rest of the charging I do is at home. It's one of the better cars I've driven on snow because any slippage is dealt with in milliseconds electronically.

    Where are you driving, from Reno to Tahoe? You will not lose any miles going down to Reno due to regen braking. or south tahoe to Kirkwood? I don't remember that drive exactly but keep in mind you will lose very few miles or gain a few coming down from the mountains.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by tmokes View Post
    Would all this info apply to hybrid cars? I never thought about temp affecting the batteries of hybrid cars.


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    I don't know for sure but I think it does.

    I've only had it for about a month but I bought a 2012 ford escape hybrid. When it's warm and I start the car the engine doesn't even turn on until you get up to speed or hit the accelerator. When it's cold the engine starts right away.

    I imagine once it's warmed up the battery will perform better but for short city drives (where the hybrid is actually effective) you might not even get there often.

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    Goal: ski in the 2018/19 season

  13. #13
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    Lee Lau - xxx-er is the laziest Asian canuck I know

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by harpo-the-skier View Post
    How practical are lower priced Electric Vehicles as ski cars (AWD/4WD, room for driver, passenger, 2 big dogs, ski gear, and roof box)? I am looking at a Tesla 3 or a Mustang Mach E for when I have to move on from my Subaru. I have about a 50 mile commute to the snow.
    I drive a Tesla S to ski some days. Bought used, about the price of a new Lariat F-150. Skis on the roof, rear seats fold down 60/40 for my Newfie (130#). Can fit a 3rd person in a pinch.

    Car is an absolute beast in the snow with Nokians. Fast as balls. My ski "commute" is 70-80 miles one way. Full charge at home gets me there and back as long as I don't drive like an idiot. If I do, there's a supercharger on the way home.

    I will say I've been out in the boonies with limited charging options and it does kind of suck. Would I do again? Hell yes.

  15. #15
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    Oct 2011
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    Quote Originally Posted by harpo-the-skier View Post
    How should I mount a roof box to the vehicles? I haven't seen any with integrated racks.
    Pretty sure they have an integrated roof rack mounts on the model 3. The bars are $500 (yeah) aero profile with T-slots cut in them. Pretty easy to bolt things to

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Huskydoc View Post
    I drive a Tesla S to ski some days. Bought used, about the price of a new Lariat F-150. Skis on the roof, rear seats fold down 60/40 for my Newfie (130#). Can fit a 3rd person in a pinch.

    Car is an absolute beast in the snow with Nokians. Fast as balls. My ski "commute" is 70-80 miles one way. Full charge at home gets me there and back as long as I don't drive like an idiot. If I do, there's a supercharger on the way home.

    I will say I've been out in the boonies with limited charging options and it does kind of suck. Would I do again? Hell yes.
    do you charge at home ?
    Lee Lau - xxx-er is the laziest Asian canuck I know

  17. #17
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    I drove a 2014 prius in all kinds of winter conditions and it had no problems. Granted, I had studded tires.

  18. #18
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    Oct 2011
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    Quote Originally Posted by XXX-er View Post
    do you charge at home ?
    Yep. I wired up a NEMA 14-50 to my panel on 50A breakers, and use the mobile charging adapter. Full charge in about 8-10 hours. Costs about $4 per 240 mile charge.

  19. #19
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    How much did that cost to get that charger wired in or would it have cost if you had someone do it ?

    I have heard people say they used the 220V dryer out let to charge EV's ?
    Lee Lau - xxx-er is the laziest Asian canuck I know

  20. #20
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    Oct 2011
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    Quote Originally Posted by XXX-er View Post
    How much did that cost to get that charger wired in or would it have cost if you had someone do it ?

    I have heard people say they used the 220V dryer out let to charge EV's ?
    Yep, same outlet as a dryer. Cost me $38 roughly. Plus cost of the permit. It's really not rocket science but if you don't feel comfortable doing it yourself the going rate to install is ~$4-500. Just don't tell them it's for an EV. Install costs for the Tesla wall charger run closer to a grand.

  21. #21
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    Wrong forum jong!?

  22. #22
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    "How much does it cost" depends massively on how far from your panel the outlet needs to be and where the wire needs to run.

    You need a 220V circuit. How much amperage depends on what charger you want to use (which depends on what the car can handle). For most modern EVs that means a 32A-40A charger which means a 50A circuit. Most dryer circuits are 30A circuits which would work fine with a lower amperage charger but not with the chargers you probably want to use.

    MOST EV owners are going to want a 220V 50A circuit. If you're installing the charger in an attached garage, and the main electrical panel is already right there, it's going to be pretty cheap. If you have to trench are run a new circuit to a detached garage or something, it could be very expensive.

  23. #23
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    well yeah home wiring is not rocket science but there is that insurance angle

    Obviously the power coming in is just the house power but what is the difference in HW between the 30 amp and the 50 ?

    is it the same plug but bigger wire, bigger breaker ?
    Lee Lau - xxx-er is the laziest Asian canuck I know

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by XXX-er View Post
    well yeah home wiring is not rocket science but there is that insurance angle

    Obviously the power coming in is just the house power but what is the difference in HW between the 30 amp and the 50 ?

    is it the same plug but bigger wire, bigger breaker ?
    Dude! wtf...rocket science! 30A vs 50A...big difference and not the same plug configuration.

    Remember...its the f'n amps that kills ya....along with volts.

  25. #25
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
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    617
    Quote Originally Posted by XXX-er View Post
    well yeah home wiring is not rocket science but there is that insurance angle

    Obviously the power coming in is just the house power but what is the difference in HW between the 30 amp and the 50 ?

    is it the same plug but bigger wire, bigger breaker ?
    In HW? So, different plug standards have different power ratings. Tesla sells different plug adapters but NEMA 14-50 happens to come with the car. At the risk of getting too technical, circuit amperage is a function of breaker size, which should be the "weak point" in a circuit. 30 and 50A branches would differ in breaker size, wire guage, etc. Also, at the end of the day the mobile charger has the capability to detect the circuit guage and adjust accordingly. If I plug it into a standard outlet, it draws 12A. If I plug into the 14-50 it draws 40A.

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