Tesla Model S Energy Consumption – Low Versus Normal Suspension Setting – Video

3 years ago by Mark Kane 9

Tesla Model S Energy Consumption - Low Versus Normal Suspension Setting - Video

Tesla Model S Energy Consumption – Low Versus Normal Suspension Setting

Tesla Model S air suspension

Tesla Model S air suspension

Bjørn Nyland recenty tested energy consumption in low and normal suspension settings to learn how much energy you can save in a Tesla Model S.

As it turns out, not so much at speeds of 100 km/h (62 mph). The difference in energy use is just 0.5%.

Increasing speed always makes energy consumption higher. At 130 km/h (81 mph) usage went from 195 Wh/km to 248 Wh/km, which is 27% more.

However, the difference between low and normal suspension setting stayed at a low level of just 1.6%.  So, it seems speeds greatly impact energy consumption, suspension height not so much.

The next step will be tests at even higher speeds up to 200 km/h.

“This test shows how much energy you save by using low suspension at different speeds. Because this is a real life test, there are variables that could have affected the results.”

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9 responses to "Tesla Model S Energy Consumption – Low Versus Normal Suspension Setting – Video"

  1. Bonaire says:

    How much does it cost to occasionally get 0.5% benefit? Sounds like the Fisker Solar roof which basically could run the cabin air circulation fan. Someone in Hong Kong made a similar video and posted on TMC. Can’t find it right now. Had similar, minimal, results. Geek feature, sure, necessary, not so much.

    1. regguest says:

      extra $6,000.00 for the active air suspension (3,750 for the required tech package, 2,250 for the air suspension itself)

  2. JakeY says:

    I think the main benefit of the air suspension is the better ride quality and the ability to raise the car’s height for driveways and bumps in the road. The slightly better highway efficiency is just a bonus.

    1. Richard Gozinya says:

      Yeah, not everything about a vehicle, electric or otherwise, is about efficiency. Performance, and comfort are very important too.

    2. Mikael says:

      *lol*… having the car lowered is for 18 year old ghetto wannabies 😛

      To spend up to 6k extra to have the feature just turns you into the chump of the day.

      1. Steven says:

        I don’t know, in my area, I see kids jacking their cars up, on “wagon wheel-like tires and rims, high enough that they could crawl under to do an oil change.

        It’s funny to see an old Buick on chrome rims, sitting as high as a Jeep.

  3. McKemie says:

    I bought my Tesla with zero experience; I had not even seen one much less driven one. I figured the air suspension wast just an expensive and trouble prone geegaw and did not order it. I failed to realize that the choice was between “too low” and “maybe not too low”. I regularly scrape bottom, maybe once a week, on normal looking obstructions. Driveways and such. On one such scrape recently, I damaged the radiator resulting in a stranding, tow in, and $600 repair not covered by the warranty. Service centers seem to know nothing about permanently raising the car.

  4. MDEV says:

    I did not buy the air suspension for the lower setting I got my because the high setting which is very nice to avoid hot the bottom of the car and possible battery damage. It was$ 2250 not $6000. Also is way more confortable that the regular suspension

  5. James says:

    Good job of testing given, of course, non-scientific method. From this, there’s a lot we can conclude, first off – that Model S already is very aero-efficient and lowering adds only slight enhancement. Notable is that there is measurable enhancement.

    I found in my 2nd gen Prius, there was a substantial benefit to lowering the car one inch at over 45 mph. By substantial, I mean a 20 mile trip with moderate/low traffic at optimum 65F temps regularly resulted in 45mpg, and 58mpg when lowered one inch!

    I haven’t done this with my 2013 Volt, but
    imagined the benefit would be slightly more than the large rubber air dam that presently
    keeps more air from tumbling under the car. Lowering the entire car reduces under-car turbulence AND reduces frontal area to the wind. Toyota advertised a significant efficiency increase in aero efficiency just by increasing the angle of 3rd gen Prius’ windshield by a scant amount vs. gen 2.

    Small increments of improvement are welcome if combined with other small increments that will result in a noticeable difference. I’ve been a big fan of Ecomodder.com for some time. Perhaps someone with a whole lot of money can put a teardrop tail on a Model S and cover up all the gaps in the wheel wells, perhaps rear fender skirts and Mooneye discs too?

    Model S is not an inexpensive car purchased by hacks like me who use duct tape and redneck mods to add 1 mpg. Nobody has to add aero panels under a Model S, nor grille shutters and skinny tires… But these things fascinate me. I wouldn’t spend $3,000 to add 1% efficiency, but if it’s baked into the whole package – why not? All future, less-expensive models of Teslas will benefit given patience. OLED TVs are beyond most of our budgets today – but that will not be the case four years from today.