Official Range Calculator For Opel Ampera-E Shows Impact Of Temperature, HVAC Usage

MAY 3 2017 BY MARK KANE 38

Opel has released an on-line range calculator for its new Ampera-e electric car, and the numbers show the impact of temperature, heating/cooling and wind/aggressive driving on how far you can travel.

Chevrolet Bolt EV

Naturally, the results from the Opel range simulator should be approximately 1:1 with its sister Chevrolet Bolt EV.

Range results are as follows:

  • Temperature (HVAC OFF / ON)
  • -20°C: 432 km / 242 km (268 miles/150 miles)
  • -10°C: 439 km / 256 km (273 miles/159 miles)
  • C:   473 km / 316 km (293 miles/197 miles)
  • 10°C: 512 km / 412 km (318 miles/256 miles)
  • 20°C: 527 km / 472 km (327 miles/293 miles)
  • 30°C: 515 km / 422 km (320 miles/252 miles)
  • 40°C: 502 km / 368 km (312 miles/229 miles)

Between the highest result of 527 km (~327 miles) at 20°C and the lowest at 432 km (~269 miles) at -20°C we see some 18% range drop.

While, the use of heating at -20°C would eat 54% of range to 242 km (~150 miles), and that’s not end as there could be also stronger wind or other factors.

The very worst case scenario is -20°C and into the wind/aggressive driving, which decreases range to 253 km (157 miles) / 210 km (130 miles) depending on heating OFF/ ON. That’s up to around 60% less than normal.

Try the calculator here.

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38 Comments on "Official Range Calculator For Opel Ampera-E Shows Impact Of Temperature, HVAC Usage"

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Where do you see the “into the wind” option?

I believe there is a missunderstanding here, it’s not the wind you change, it’s how agressiv you are driving wish means there is a good question of what they mean with different drive style compere to different speeds like the calculator that Tesla have.

The Ampera-e is actually pretty cheap in Germany. €33k before taxes and Opel has to pay €1000 into the government fund, for each sale.

For comparison, the eGolf is only 4k cheaper.

The Ampera e in Germany costs 34000€ (38k) including already 4000€ subsidy. The high trim level costs 40000€ (44k) including government subsidies. Prices are almost like 1 to 1 converted but we only have 4000€ subsidy instead of 7500$ or more.

Citation needed!
“Der Bundesanteil am Umweltbonus beträgt für reine Batterieelektrofahrzeuge und Brennstoffzellenfahrzeuge 2.000 Euro und für Plug-In Hybride 1.500 Euro.”
-> The German government pays 2000EUR for (FC)EVs and 1500EUR for PHEV! The same amount is payed by the manufacturer.
Renault give 1000EUR extra for the Zoe – instead of their 5000EUR bonus which they offered >1 year before the government incentitive startet…


So this is not real world range? Because they seem to estimate it with the NEDC 527km, which this car will never get except you drive 30km/h. That’s why there is such a huge drop when you turn on the HVAC.

It is WLTP driving cycle, Opel states it on the page.
Note that you may have some extra 10-20% range loss from driving in snow. Headwind or tailwind is another unpredictable extra.
See speeds for Class 3 that Ampera-E should belong to:

I’m getting about 190 miles of range with HVAC at 50 degrees in my Bolt.

Seriously? If you are getting that at spring temperatures then imagine it during a winter.

I was considering the Bolt for a while, not anymore.

Oops, replied below instead.
I’m easily getting 250+ miles per full charge on my Bolt in spring like temperatures. 1000 miles so far.

I doubt you were ever considering Bolt.

For his other point, he gives no reference as to non-HVAC range. He could’ve been driving 90 MPH for all we know. Without additional info, 190 miles range might as well be 300 miles range.

You really changed your mind due to one guy posting that on a board?

I don’t believe you.

I was regularly getting (predicted) 210-220 miles range when the temps were peaking in the mid 50s.

Did that change your mind back? I doubt that equally.

“Seriously? If you are getting that at spring temperatures then imagine it during a winter.”

He didn’t state the speed of which range are measured.

If it is 55mph, then that indeed suck. If it is 75mph, then I would say that is pretty darn good.

Bring on the heat pump GM!!

Wait- The Bolt/Amperea e doesn’t have a heat pump? Isn’t this a problem for the Norwegians?

It would be nice. It’s clear it doesn’t have one, as the impact on range in the cold due to the heater is very significant.

Tesla doesn’t have one either. I wonder if there is some reason that longer range is considered to not be a good match with a heat pump? I can’t imagine what it would be.

For me it doesn’t matter much as it isn’t cold much of the year where I live.

Nooooo.. not the heat pump debate again.

my worst case scenario was 50 Mph head wind and driving rain; starting mileage listed at 180 and driving about 65 mph into the headwind / rain I got to the airport with around 99 miles. But it was enough to my son back home after he dropped us off. We travelled about 45 miles one way to get to the airport.
temp was probably around 50 degrees F.

with the temps here in Calif. heating up in the Sacramento area, it’s time for the A/C … and hey don’t compromise comfort use the A/C life it too short to sweat the small stuff. Forecast 94 degrees today.

Crazy range losses due to cabin heating!!!

Just shows you, that you need a high range EV.

Or fossil fuel based heater. After all, heating is what FF does best.

And cabin pre-heating in your garage!

Need a heat pump heater instead of electrical resistance. ~3 times as efficient.

One thing that Toyota got right on the Prime.

If you drive *conservatively* in the city with an ICE car in -20 degree weather, you’ll see ~30% reduction in mileage. It can get much worse than that if you’re not conservative.

ICE vehicles get heat from the engine, albeit that might not even happen on a short trip, so there is no efficiency hit for heat.

So, cutting your range in half with a BEV with heat in cold temps should not surprise anyone.

Went through my first winter with a 30kwh Leaf which does have a heat pump. My range dropped down to about 125K from an average 175K. This is why if you live in an area with cold winters like Canada and Norway you may want to factor in coldest temps for your worst case scenarios.
With a black interior at anything about 5degC you don’t need the heater if the sun is shining but you must use it when raining/snowing as the windows fog up. The Leaf was awesome in deep snow (with winter tires) so it’s a good winter car with planning.

Forgot to mention the 125K range was at minus 20 Celsius.

All EVs should have battery thermal management systems that operate while plugged into the grid and manage the battery to put it at an optimal temp when the car is being used.

For example an EV plugged in overnight in a cold area should warm up the battery using grid-drawn energy before being used. This could be done with a timing system that knows when the user will use the car so it sets the temperature right before usage.

I could be wrong, but I think all EV do that except for Leaf + eGolf.

In addition, HVAC can be run using wall power before the drive so that cabin is comfortable before the drive begins. At that point, it’s just matter of keeping the temperature constant, which doesn’t require nearly as much energy.

You are wrong!

The only thing Leaf has is a protective heating to keep the battery above -15c, to avoid running at lower temperature that would damage or wear the battery very fast.

There is no way to get the battery at an optimal temperature.

This is a major cause of diminishing range under cold condition, probably more than heating the cabin because internal battery resistance goes to the roof.

I did run the car without any heating at minus -25C° and the range is still badly affected.

Leafspy report it as Hx factor and when it is cold this factor is bad.

You waste a lot of energy in internal resistance and it doesn’t help much to keep the car in a heated garage, because the battery metal casing isn’t isolated and at -25c°, it take about half an hour to lose all accumulated heat.

It’s something that is really easy to fix for Nissan, because some aftermarket shop do put heating pad and add an insulation capping.
It does help a lot.

You are re-enforcing my point that Leaf lacks TMS to be able to put the battery in optimal temperature even when plugged in. How does that make it that I’m wrong? That’s basically what I said: “except Leaf and eGolf”

Putting insulation on the pack is a terrible idea. What happens when you are looking to cool it off? It has no cooling system at all. Insulation would make overheating problems during charging (especially fast charging) much worse.

But yes, Nissan should have better thermal management. The ability to heat the pack to unlock more capacity when appropriate, not just keep it out of the danger zone at -15 you speak of.

Well my house is insulated and cooled!

The point is just to help diminish the lose of energy heating or cooling the pack.
If the cooling air was at least taken from the air conditioned cabin, it would help to insulate the pack.
Nothing like that is done on the Leaf.

But, it would have been easyer to built it right.

Have about 1000 miles on my Bolt and average 4.5 miles/kWh. Range estimator typically shows 320 miles.

Driving 50/50 on LA highways and streets in 65-85F degrees HVAC setting at 73F.

This was better covered – and a good while ago – at, where Pedro took the trouble of explaining what the different choices (such as “medium” speed) actually mean, as well as tabulating the range for all combinations of settings.

The minimum range was at first glance shockingly low, but not really. Turns out that scenario meant driving (though standing still a lot of the time!) for nine hours, in which case heating the cabin from an outside -20 C to a comfy 23 C inside is obviously going to use a lot of energy…

The Bolt range is excellent, and the range calculator has only increased my confidence.

This range calculator sucks… No way temperature is this large of a factor. Maybe at 50km/h/30mph and below, but who really cares about range at those slow speeds?

I checked it myself. The calculator is BS.
Speed is most important factor, especially in Germany where everybody drives very fast on the Autobahn.

The speed input can be chosen between: slow, medium, fast, very fast.

What a joke! How much is very fast?
I suggest they should consider a 5th option: furious!

I made a long trip in my BOlt ev on the coldest day of the winter (10 deg F). The range indeed was horrible with almost no heater usage.

Range improved greatly with more reasonable temperatures. By the way, the battery was always kept ‘busy’ so there were no ‘conditioning losses’.

Well Bill, give us some backgroundspecifics.

Ok Lou, well I bought the BOLT ev, basically a stripped model – only has 2 options: 1). Heated Seats, steering wheel, day/night auto mirror (hate those things but can’t avoid it if u want the heated seats). 2). $395 metalic red paint job (everyone loves it). Got 4 miles / kwh on the way to Syracuse after owning the car for 3 days – to visit Leaf Brian and also Clarkson Cote for them to test drive. Charged up a few hours at an ICE’d ChargePoint paid for by the local electric utility (Nat’l Grid). (6 kw rate). (car charger is 7200 watt capacity, but docking station limitation is 200 volts @30 amps) Going home (West to East – against the wind) I started only getting 3 miles/kwh will only the slightest heater usage (to see out of the windshield) – so I knew I was in trouble (If I continued I’d run out of juice 30-40 miles from home, with no public docking stations available). What to do? Slowed down to 45 mph when traffic permitted. That way, got back to buffalo with 13 miles range remaining. Probably would have had more, but I started driving more normally… Read more »