Electric car driving tips

orange mg4 car on the highway

More of us than ever are making the switch to an electric car. However, there are few differences between driving an electric car and driving a fuel car that you may not be aware of. Here are just a few tips for driving an electric car to make the transition as smooth as possible.

10 tips for driving electric cars: 


1. Understand the range of your electric car

First time you’re driving an electric vehicle? The first thing you need to do is get to grips with its range. Different models have varying driving ranges so be sure to check the specifications before you buy or rent your car. Once you know how far your battery can last its best to find where the charging points are on your journey. This can help you map out when you need to make a stop to ensure you never run out of power.


2. Check the weather

British people are obsessed with the weather, but for electric vehicle owners this actually comes in handy! Electric cars can be affected by extreme weather such as performance decreasing in exceptionally cold climates. The car will still operate as normal, but your battery may drain quicker, so it's best to keep a closer eye on your power in these conditions. Similarly, extreme heat can affect lithium ion batteries, so again, ensure you monitor your charge during heatwaves.


3. Use your electric car app

Every electric car should come with its own app, just like you can use the MG iSmart app to interact with your MG4 EV, MG ZS EV, and MG5 EV Long Range. This allows you to operate key functions using a hands free device. You can also plan out your journey and pay for charging via the app, so you have everything you need in one place.


4. Don’t leave your car plugged in after its charged

You wouldn't leave a petrol pump in your car after your tank is full, so make sure you don't leave your electric car plugged in once it is fully charged. This could lead to you wasting money on electricity you do not need. It is also bad for the environment because you are squandering energy that could be used more efficiently elsewhere.


5. Use regenerative braking

Most electric vehicles come equipped with regenerative braking. It allows you to slow your car down without having to use the brakes, which is particularly useful when you are coasting or going down a hill. This helps to recover energy that is lost during acceleration, which helps to extend your range because you are exhausting less power.


6. Check your battery life regularly

Unlike a fuel car that comes fitted with a fuel gauge, an electric car has a battery low signal which is closer to the warning you see on a laptop or smartphone. Therefore, you need to keep a closer eye on the battery life of your car. This is especially important if you are taking a long trip as you need to ensure you have enough power to get back home.


7. Be gentle with the accelerator

Did you know that electric cars can accelerate quickly? This may be a shock to those who have never driven an electric vehicle before. Instead of putting your foot to the floor, you need to be gentle when accelerating in an electric car. This can also help ensure you have a smooth and safe journey, instead of jagged stops and starts.


8. Turn off the accessories when they are not in use

The key to maximising energy is to be as efficient as possible. This includes turning off accessories when they are not in use. Most new electric vehicles are fitted with all the latest technology, which although useful and stylish, can drain your battery. Therefore, you should always check that things like seat warmers are turned off when they are not in use so that you don’t waste valuable power.


9. Charge your electric car in off peak hours where possible

Off peak hours are overnight because we collectively use less electricity when we go to sleep. Charging your car during these off peak times puts less pressure on the power grid which could actually result in cheaper electricity depending on the energy provider. Therefore, it's not only time and energy efficient, but could help cut costs. Make sure you don’t leave your car charging for the whole night though as this could be counterintuitive, you should only charge for the hours you need.


10. Remember electric cars have a silent engine

Last, but not least, you need to remember that electric cars are silent. This could be unnerving for those new to electric cars. Don’t try and rev the engine to get the motor going as electric cars do not take much to accelerate. It can be tempting putting the pedal to the metal, but you need to trust that the engines are doing their thing, just a bit more quietly than fuel cars.

There we have it! 10 top tips to remember when driving your electric car. For even more advice read our articles: How far can an electric car go and electric car finance explained.

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