Winter

  • Winter

     Don Daniels updated 5 days, 6 hours ago 28 Members · 79 Posts
  • Peter Robbinson

    Member
    October 2, 2021 at 5:49 am

    While I realise the initial market is going to be in the south, particularly California, I’m in the north ( cottage country Ontario) and we get lots of winter.

    I’ll itemise some of my concerns.

    1. How is the car going to be heated? As well, that’s a big front window, is there adequate heated air available to keep it clear?

    2. Is the rim for the tires a standard size? Will I be able to put a proper winter tire on? How do I change the rear tire and are the wheel covers easy to remove? How do I lift the rear of the car to get that tire off? Of the pictures I’ve seen so far of the Aptera the tires that are on the vehicle would not be adequate for my area.

    3. Up here in the winter we get lots of slush and ice, sand and salt, on the roads. What happens is that this mixture accumulates in the wheel wells, so much so that blocks of dirty ice form to such an extent that it will rub against the tires and we have to kick it off. This dirty ice when really frozen is like concrete. With the current design of the Aptera that slushy ice is going to accumulate inside the wheel coverings and once frozen lock of the wheels. This isn’t about the motors freezing but an accumulation of ice between the wheel covers and the tires. I would much prefer to see a motorcycle type fender with an optional panel that can be easily removed or added on the outside when the weather is good.

    As an aside, aesthetically I don’t like the current design of the front wheel covers. They don’t reflect the shape of the car.

    It needs to be understood that the great aerodynamics of the vehicle that has been focused on is going to be compromised here in the winter with snow and ice accumulation on the body and suspension.

    I’m certainly hoping to purchase an Aptera. It makes a great deal of sense to me, even up here in the great white north.

  • Ray Holan

    Member
    October 2, 2021 at 6:15 am

    Hello, Peter. I appreciate your concerns. I am in Cleveland, Ohio and we get our fair share of snow and slush in the winter. I have seen a reference to the current size of the wheels and tires being the same as a Fiat 500. That would put them in the category of “standard” size wheel and tire although on our side of the Canadian border we see many more 19″-20″ wheels and tires. Of course, I assume nothing is finalized yet including what tire and wheel size will be used.

    • Peter Robbinson

      Member
      October 2, 2021 at 7:58 am

      Yup, mostly bigger tires up here as well. There are lots of smaller vehicles like the Fiat that seem to do fine as well.

      • Ray Holan

        Member
        October 3, 2021 at 6:10 am

        I should mention that paradoxically, narrow tires tend to do better in icy conditions than wider tires all other things being equal. Ignoring the different rubber compound formulation of winter tires to keep them more pliable and grippy in low temperatures, a narrower tires puts more pressure per square inch on the contact patch than a wider tire. I have had a number of different brands of winter tires on compact cars over the years and invariably the width of the winter tire that is recommended is narrower than the all-season or summer-only tire. One more example of common sense (i.e. wider tire is better and gives MORE traction) not being true in the real world.

  • John Malcom

    Member
    October 2, 2021 at 7:31 am

    Peter, you are welcome to Snow Bird with us in Florida (Many Canadians do) where you can enjoy your Aptera year round

    • Peter Robbinson

      Member
      October 2, 2021 at 7:57 am

      Haha! not a chance, I need the change of seasons. I spent time in Singapore, which I loved, but the weather was uniformly boring and drove me nuts 🙂

  • kerbe2705

    Member
    October 2, 2021 at 8:45 am

    To your concerns:

    1. The current design uses resistance heating: The hope is to use a heat pump. The vehicle has AC so air used for defrosting will also be dehumidified, as in most modern vehicles.

    2. The rims are “standard” – Aptera currently rolls on 195/45 R16 rubber. The design of the front wheel pants and rear wheel skirt are still in development but we’ve been assured that wheel access will be quick and easy. We have not yet been told anything about jacking the vehicle although I’m sure they’ve not forgotten to consider it.

    3. Electric motors generate heat – I wonder if the in-wheel motors won’t generate enough heat to keep slush in the wheel-wells from hardening…

    4. Whether we find the shape “pleasing” or not, it will be determined by aerodynamics.

    5. I’m pretty certain that everyone understands that Aptera will benefit from its aerodynamic shape only when it is traveling forward and only at speeds over 45 mph (73 kph). Most people also understand that any form of precipitation will compromise the vehicle’s aerodynamic gains.

    6. I, too, can hardly wait for Aptera to reach the point where serious testing can begin and we have actual answers to all of our speculations and questions!

    • Peter Robbinson

      Member
      October 2, 2021 at 8:53 am

      Great reply, thanks. As to the motors generating enough heat, no not likely up here. Plus, while the slush may be soft while driving, consider leaving the car with the wheel wells full of slush over night to come out in the morning to solid blocks of ice 🙂

      • GLENN ZAJIC

        Member
        October 2, 2021 at 10:46 am

        I am not an engineer, but I believe that the snow, ice and slush will not stick to the plastic wheel pants the same way they would stick to metal fenders. Remember that movie where the kid licks a flag pole and has his tongue stuck to it? Now think, if that was PVC would the same thing happen? I think not.

        • Peter Robbinson

          Member
          October 2, 2021 at 11:37 am

          The inside wheel well covers are generally plastic. Even with smooth surfaces the shape of the area will trap ice and snow.

          • Randy J

            Member
            October 3, 2021 at 5:05 am

            That’s my experience as well – plastic wells. I’m in Brampton ON and as I’ve stated in another discussion I may end up keeping my current car as my winter beater and using the Aptera 8 or 9 months of the year. Looking forward to the drive up Airport road to enjoy the Wasaga beach area.

    • Don Daniels

      Member
      December 13, 2021 at 11:43 am

      If they have A/C why can’t they just reverse the flow for heating? If that is not easy, hopefully they can design the early models like mine so when they get the heat pump working we can buy a retrofit kit and just drop the heat pump into the space where we remove the resistance heater.

      • Tyson Honeyfield

        Member
        December 13, 2021 at 3:42 pm

        While heat pump style HVACs have come a long way over the years they still suffer from pretty steep efficiency losses as the temperature drops. House sized systems can now be used in negative temperatures and also can rival traditional heating systems in terms of efficiency but that’s house sized. (see https://rmi.org/heat-pumps-a-practical-solution-for-cold-climates/ ) Depending on the system and temperature, resistance heaters can be more electrically efficient. While I love heat pumps, I’m dubious if the engineers will be able to find/make one that will work in a vehicle the size of the Aptera by itself and not need a secondary heat system. By all means I would love to be wrong???? and for those living in warmer climates I’m sure you could just “accidently” remove the fuse or connector on the resistance heater and be just fine!

      • Don Daniels

        Member
        December 21, 2021 at 12:57 pm

        If you are using cold air for the heat pump it does get inefficient, but perhaps we can extract heat from the motors and battery cooling in the winter instead of going to skin cooling.

  • ELISABETH SMART

    Member
    October 2, 2021 at 2:06 pm

    Funny you mention snow. Fairbanks in my area just received 8 inches of snow today and it’s our second storm. My vehicle will be a 3 season. But snowbirding sounds tempting!

  • Philip Raymond

    Member
    October 2, 2021 at 11:50 pm

    I’m in Chicago here, at times in January colder than some parts of Alaska. I am concerned about the “wheel pants” ability to repel snow. I haven’t yet, but I probably will go with the off road option, just for the higher ground clearance and tougher wheel pants.

    • Peter Robbinson

      Member
      October 3, 2021 at 5:04 am

      I didn’t know about the off road option, I’ll need to look into that, thanks.

      • Bob Minor

        Member
        October 5, 2021 at 3:39 pm

        FWIW, Im In Chicago as well and have opted for the “Off Road” option. Like you all up north, Chicago is a brutal place for a automobile. I get the feeling that most EV’s are essentially designed for heat concerns rather than cold. There is video out there of the Elaphe motor being bench tested in just about every condition possible including sub freezing conditions with high moisture content. At least we know the motor will be fine.

        The “wheel pants” will be sketchy in winter weather. In a Chicago winter, its quite common to have this 20lb block of frozen gray crud stuck to your wheel well after your drive into work. For a regular vehicle, you just kick it a couple of times and it falls off. There is reason for concern about the street slush freezing in the wheel skirting on the Aptera after your morning commute. I have no doubt that the wheel motor will break that bond, but I’m concerned about what else might give way when the wheel initially turns to break that ice bond. Im also concerned about frozen material rubbing on the tire causing wear.

        <font face=”inherit”>We will just have to see. If its easy enough to remove, </font><font face=”inherit”> I’ll try to clean out the wheel pants after the road soils them???? . </font>

      • Curtis Cibinel

        Member
        October 5, 2021 at 4:03 pm

        They also mentioned in some meetings from may that you can also just take the wheel covers off. Probably lose quite a bit of aerodynamics but at off-road speed (generally under 40 mph) that isnt a big deal

        • Bob Minor

          Member
          October 5, 2021 at 4:31 pm

          I do vaguely recall that but I don’t recall the mechanism to remove it. Id really like to keep them on all the time and just remove them to clean out the frozen slush when necessary. Or perhaps, Ill just have to take them off on the really bad days and take the efficiency hit until the roads are dry again. That makes we wonder what kind of a mess that would make with a “free” wheel kicking up stuff while driving down the road with now ” mud flap “

          • Curtis Cibinel

            Member
            October 5, 2021 at 4:46 pm

            Looking at the tent design (trust me you don’t want to see it rain on that thing) I do have some concerns with offroad and winter conditions. clearly things are engineered in California. Personally I deal with fairly mild winters here in BC so not a huge concern. A tiny electric heater in the top of the covers could probably prevent things from sticking anyway.

          • Peter Robbinson

            Member
            October 5, 2021 at 8:08 pm

            What I think I’d like to see is the wheel cover being two pieces essentially. A motorcycle type fender with a nice fitting outside panel that can be secured with two or three flush mounted latches and can easily be removed for access to the wheel assembly.

  • John Malcom

    Member
    October 5, 2021 at 8:01 pm

    The electric motors in the wheels generate a considerable amount of heat to the point they have to be actively cooled. This heat should be more than sufficiant to melt and dissapate the accumulation. Aptera employs an innovative liquid cooling system to keep the wheels at the temperature for optimum performance. Aptera will go through cold, snowy conditions testing. That would be the time to ask this kind of question.

    I can see this as a possible problem for two wheel drive Apteras in such conditions as they would not have a hot motor to melt the accumulation.

    • Peter Robbinson

      Member
      October 6, 2021 at 4:33 am

      The time to ask a question is, as early as possible, to draw attention to potential issues as well as making Aptera aware of concerns that customers may have. Tires in general generate heat from friction and in city conditions from frequent braking, perhaps not as intense as the motors but still well above freezing. The inverse square law for in heat works just as well in a wheel well as anywhere else. Keep in mind that up here in Ontario we use salt on our roads and ice accumulation is still a problem.

    • Bernard Dubuc

      Member
      January 15, 2022 at 1:01 pm

      Hi John, Obviously you don’t live in snow country, Winter tires have large grooves made to eject any snow that may accumulate in them, this snow will end up in the wheel wells, If the motor generate heat, it will melt some of this snow, BUT when you stop, the motors will cool and so the residual snow in the wheel wells will now be full of melted snow and that will turn to ice during this cooling period, even with the excessive amount of calcium they put on the roads, it still turns to ice. It definitely is a problem that the engineer have to look into, because when kicking it to release it, as we do on ICE cars, may also break the covers… my 2 cents

      • John Malcom

        Member
        January 15, 2022 at 3:20 pm

        Nope! Florida. And, based on your description and picture, glad to be here not there!!

        Until the near production Aptera is actually tested in those conditions I will reserve judgement.

        By the way, 72F and sunny today. Took a walk on the beach. 😜 Feel free to join us as a snowbird and bring your Aptera. No Problem with it here.

        • Bernard Dubuc

          Member
          January 15, 2022 at 3:24 pm

          sorry John I prefer Arizona it is much dryer, my old bones enjoy that a lot better btw 69 and a little cloudy today

          • John Malcom

            Member
            January 15, 2022 at 3:30 pm

            OK 😞

  • Philip Raymond

    Member
    October 5, 2021 at 8:31 pm

    Another fact about the wheel pants I found out recently, is unlike any other car or truck where the wheels bounce up and down with each road bump within the wheel well, the front wheel pants move up and down with the wheel over every road bump. I think this would help to minimize the snow/ice crud build up that Bob mentioned. I also think taking the pants off when the snow is a foot or more would probably work out better than forking over $1000 for the off road package that will only raise ground clearance by about 4 inches.

    • John Malcom

      Member
      October 5, 2021 at 10:08 pm

      Good, practical, recommendation

    • Bob Minor

      Member
      October 6, 2021 at 4:42 pm

      For me, I see every additional inch in height equals another day the Aptera may be useful in severe winter conditions. 5 inches is great for snowless climates. Another 4″ is totally worth the extra cash in my opinion. It seems an average “snowy” day will give you a snow rut of 2 to 4 inches. Main roads are always cleared first. Secondary roads during a major snow event may not be cleared for up to 10 days. This is key. A residential street may have ruts over 5 inches for over a week, but the main road is bone dry. Heck, we had ruts up to 9″ for a week last winter. It just is what it is. Even a freak downpour can put 5″ of water on I290 for over an hour. I plan on driving the heck out of my Aptera. Im pretty confident it will do fine and with a little extra height, even better. I have backup plans as well.

      As for crud in the skirt? I doubt the heat in the wheel motor will have much impact on the slushy mess we get, but who knows. Lets imagine a January day in chitown after an 8′ snow fall. Its zero degrees F outside and the windchill is – 8. The city has poured a bunch of thawing agents aka salt turning most of the slush to hard ice ruts. This is where the extra height comes in. Now lets say its 10 degrees F and the windchill is 0F. Now we have 2″ of liquid slush. On the secondary streets you drive slow and begin to pack slush in the wheel skirt. Then you pull into an unplowed lot and pack fresh show pack into the wheel skirt. You park and head into work. Perhaps that fresh snow pack begins to melt some with the motor heat but that -8 windchill is quickly cooling the Aptera down. So now, whatever heat you had melted some snow into a liquid that is now rapidly freezing again. This happens quite often on my car. Doors get frozen shut due to vehicle warmed snow thawing and refreezing when you stop.

      My plan? See how it goes. Maybe worst case get something brush out the wheel pants as best I can before heading in. From photos, it looks like there will be some access on the inside of the skirt/pant. Like I said, It is what it is and I don’t plan on letting some cruddy weather stopping me from using the Aptera. If more people do, maybe the weather will go back to being less radicle.

      • Peter Robbinson

        Member
        October 6, 2021 at 5:50 pm

        Yup, pretty much the scenario I can see in the winter.

  • Joshua Rosen

    Member
    October 6, 2021 at 7:48 am

    Is the off road package variable height or is it just a fixed extra four inches? Raising the car will make it less efficient on the highway so it’s not something you would want to do most of the time but being able to do it selectively could be helpful. Several years ago, i.e. before covid, we went to PEI in my Volt. As soon as we crossed over from Maine to New Brunswick the car started to scrape bottom. The roads in New Brunswick are terrible, they don’t look bad to the eye but my Volt certainly didn’t enjoy them. When encountering roads like that it would be nice to increase the ground clearance a few inches.

    • Peter Robbinson

      Member
      October 6, 2021 at 9:06 am

      I would think on the Aptera the height difference would just be the wheel covers not the whole vehicle, it has plenty of clearance.

    • John Trotter

      Member
      October 6, 2021 at 2:01 pm

      Not obvious why the off-road version would change aerodynamic drag significantly. In any event, I assume they will model it. I am reserving an off-road version, not for rock climbing but for getting over the crest in my driveway. Tapping the bottom is something to avoid.

  • Nicholas Maskell

    Member
    November 12, 2021 at 7:13 am

    I agree, I think the wheels should be freer, apart from ground clearance there’s so much opportunity for mud or ice to get stuck in the wheel arches. I’d like to see less cover on front and rear wheels personally.

    • Peter Jorgensen

      Member
      November 12, 2021 at 7:22 am

      I think there might be a good market for an aftermarket minimalist cover.

      • Lou Verner

        Member
        November 12, 2021 at 7:27 am

        Or maybe just remove when dealing with heavy snow/slush? Surely loss of efficiency wouldn’t be that great, especially since most likely driving at less than highway speeds under such conditions

        • Oz Man

          Member
          November 12, 2021 at 8:31 am

          Lou, I would think that you would probably need some sort of minimalist as Peter mentioned, I would expect that most states have a requirement for such to mitigate debris being thrown up.

        • Tyson Honeyfield

          Member
          November 12, 2021 at 8:47 am

          That was what I was thinking. I figured for the 2-3x a year when the weather catches me by surprise I’d just pop the fairings off and putz home.

          Since it’s technically a motorcycle I don’t think there is a wheel covering requirement…. I may be wrong though.

    • John Marona

      Member
      December 23, 2021 at 8:56 am

      Two piece wheel covers either standard or as an option would solve many winter and off road issues. My biggest concern with functionality of the Aptera is the slush/snow/ice buildup in the winter. And as mentioned, when you park that slush turns to a solid block of ice. Around here that slush will build up and fill the wheelwell of an F-150. I live in the Adirondack mountains of upstate Ney York less than 50 miles from the Canadian border. It is 10 degrees F. right now with 4-5 inches of snow in my driveway and the snow plow went by and left a bank of snow at the crest of that driveway. I don’t want to have to go shovel the front of the driveway everytime I want to get out all winter long. The off road option with 2 piece wheel covers would make this vehicle practicle year round. I plan to drive this vehicle a Lot in all year and in all weather and conditions. Our first snow was Nov 2’nd this year and we typically still have some snow mid May. I have an MR-2 Spyder that I only have on the road 7 months a year, I don’t need another vehicle I store all winter. I believe those that don’t live in real winter weather don’t underastand the issues faced in this climate.

      And on another note, those rear facing cameras to replace rear view mirrors, though more aerodynamic, will have issues if they work like typical back up cameras, my fellow winter drivers know what I’m talking about. I wipe that camera lens off every time I approach my vehicle this time of year and 15 minutes down the road if you need to back up you can’t see a thing.That said, if they are mounted high and forward that should help, and if you could roll down the window just a bit to clear the camera off that would help too. Heck, send me a test vehicle next winter and I’ll test the heck out of it.

      I hope, when my Aptera is finaly available, to fly out to the factory and drive it back home. I’m 71 years old, driving cross country was a right of passage when I was young, would like to do it again and the Aptera would be the perfect platform.

      • Lou Verner

        Member
        December 23, 2021 at 9:33 am

        John, I too grew up in the North and like yourself and many others, the concern about snow/ice buildup inside the wheel covers is genuine. As elsewhere noted in this thread, the problem with removing the covers altogether or going to half-fenders is that it will probably render the Aptera illegal either because of the tires spewing snow/ice or because you’ll lack the turn signals currently on the covers. My hope is that the Aptera management will test Beta thoroughly under all conditions and climates, including the likes of which you’re experiencing in upstate NY and address such an issue accordingly. That’s what all other EV manufacturers do, especially in terms of battery performance. Otherwise, they may have to include a warning on the sun-visor, “Hazardous to drive in winter weather conditions!”

  • G Johns

    Member
    November 12, 2021 at 9:00 am

    Just remove the full wheel cover before terrible snowstorms and install a customized 1/2 cover over the wheel to catch the slush from flying around. I won’t have to do that because I just sit at home sipping coffee during inclement weather. Ah, retired life is the cat’s butt.

  • V Pilot

    Member
    November 13, 2021 at 4:35 pm

    Let’s not forget, without the fenders there is no forward running lights or turn signals, not a terribly safe condition.

    • Lou Verner

      Member
      November 13, 2021 at 7:34 pm

      Well blimey, there’s that!

    • V Pilot

      Member
      November 13, 2021 at 7:42 pm

      Probably not to worry…surely a minimal, lighted, winter fender can be fashioned. Plenty of engineering/tech guys here. I’m in the Northeast and will be thinking about it, just not high on the priority list right now.

      • Lou Verner

        Member
        November 13, 2021 at 7:45 pm

        Will look forward to it!

    • G Johns

      Member
      November 14, 2021 at 5:44 am

      Handsignals, remember them? still legal. But most important, rear signals still work.

    • kerbe2705

      Member
      January 10, 2022 at 11:49 am

      I missed this post, sorry: These stills from an Aptera video show that the wheel pants lighting is more decorative than functional. We never see the directional signals functioning but, one would assume, that the tail lights provide that function from the rear… Perhaps the front directional signals will be in the wheel pants and the lightbar across the nose might be the DRL?

  • my_discord_number_is_0328 bloody stupid

    Member
    November 13, 2021 at 8:53 pm

    under the wheel cover, wheel can be covered with small hole grille to prevent rocks etc from making noises grinding against wheel movement, while very small rocks get in and out with gravity like water.

  • Ray Holan

    Member
    November 14, 2021 at 7:39 am

    Hello, Peter. Just in case you haven’t already done this, I looked for a winter tire in the 195/45 R16 size that is current best guess of the Aptera tire size. I found a Pirelli winter tire in that size that would cost about $360 US for 3 tires. I have used winter tires on several of my cars in the past and they do seem to give better adhesion in snow and ice in comparison to all-season tires. Here in Ohio our winter problem tends to more often be a case of compacted snow and ice on the roads rather than a deep snow condition.

    • Peter Robbinson

      Member
      November 14, 2021 at 8:22 am

      Thanks Ray, I haven’t looked at tires just yet, but you do bring up an interesting problem. Mostly up here we get deals on tires at certain times of year, but for 4 tires. I’m doubting I’ll convince someone to do that for 3; what do they do with the extra tire? 🙂

      • Curtis Cibinel

        Member
        November 14, 2021 at 8:29 am

        Ya thought of that but its really not a huge problem. Some tire deals are “buy 3 get 4” or the like but not all. Worst case scenario keep a spare in your garage but most likely just get it from a company with a per tire deal.

        • Ray Holan

          Member
          November 14, 2021 at 2:30 pm

          Maybe we can start an “orphan tire” co-op for those of us who get a screaming deal on 4 tires and only want 3. This would be reminiscent of all the single dining room chairs I see for sale at my local 2nd hand store. LOL.

      • kerbe2705

        Member
        November 14, 2021 at 2:51 pm

        It’s simple: Four Aptera owners band together to buy three sets of four tires…

        • Ray Holan

          Member
          November 14, 2021 at 3:45 pm

          Nice. And it doesn’t even require fuzzy math.

        • my_discord_number_is_0328 bloody stupid

          Member
          November 14, 2021 at 8:36 pm

          aptera can get discount for buying in bulk per orders, probably less extra tires being payed for per customer too.

      • Peter Jorgensen

        Member
        November 15, 2021 at 7:38 am

        I want to get a full size spare/rim from Aptera and also a set of 3 snow tires – That’s 4 extra rims and 3 snows and 1 extra summer tire…

  • Vernon Michael Gardner

    Member
    December 12, 2021 at 5:07 pm

    The wheel covers are separate from the fenders in the pictures. That should take care of most average clearance issues. I am going for the all wheel drive so I could have better snow or rough road control. PS. Airless tires are nearly road ready and we will most likely see them before the Aptera.

  • Don Daniels

    Member
    December 13, 2021 at 11:38 am

    This is a topic near and dear to me living in the Rocky Mountains west of Denver. We not only have snow, but steep grades and constantly turning roads, so winter handling is a prime safety concern. Rule 1, stay on the road. I’m hoping we can fine tune the motor controllers for a Snow & Ice driving mode for safe solid handling on slick roads.

    • Vernon Michael Gardner

      Member
      December 21, 2021 at 5:13 pm

      Torque vectoring has been announced for the Aptera 2wd and Awd.

  • Owen Harding

    Member
    December 21, 2021 at 12:33 pm

    Show stopper for me would be cold feet. I have a car that the baffles freeze in the winter and won’t deflect any heat to my feet until 30minutes into the drive in -20C. I don’t mind losing some range, just keep my toes warm, My seat heater does not do that.

    I have to look into the Off-Road , I did not see that as an option.

    • Curtis Cibinel

      Member
      December 21, 2021 at 1:41 pm

      Perhaps some heated insoles or socks would be a relatively simple fix. Heating dozen of cubic feat of air to provide heat to 10 little toes is definitely inefficient.

      Offroad has no real details but id displayed on the final step of the reservation page.

      • Owen Harding

        Member
        December 22, 2021 at 6:09 am

        I think the driver/customer should have the option to turn the heater off if they prefer efficiency over comfort. The same applies for A/C.

  • Peter Robbinson

    Member
    December 23, 2021 at 9:54 am

    Hey! John Marona, I get first dibs on the winter aptera testing: I asked first and I’m further north 🙂

    Perhaps we can share the ride from the left coast and I’ll drop you off at home on the way back 🙂

    • Don Daniels

      Member
      January 17, 2022 at 11:56 am

      Peter, there are several of us wanting to do winter testing. Perhaps we can work out some handoffs. I work a 2 week on, 2 week off rotation. I could pick up the test vehicle at the factory, finding the worst road conditions on my way back to Denver. Ice racing club in Georgetown, CO where we could really push the ice cornering. I’m an hour from the continental divide, Loveland pass (11,990’) would be a good test. As I’m coming to the end of my days off we could pass the vehicle off somewhere, thus getting several opinions and areas of testing.

  • Randy J

    Member
    January 8, 2022 at 2:31 pm

    Recent news. (Personally I don’t like heated seats, they make me sweat).

    Update kills heating in some Tesla vehicles during cold Canadian winter

    A new software update has reportedly wreaked havoc on several Tesla owners’ vehicles in the Canadian prairies as temperatures drop and some of the EVs’ heat pumps have failed.

    Update kills heating in some Tesla vehicles during cold Canadian winter© Provided by MobileSyrup Update kills heating in some Tesla vehicles during cold Canadian winter
    The update rolled out in the middle of December for both the Model Y and the Model 3, Tesla’s more popular vehicles. However, since then, CTV News has received multiple reports of drivers with no in-cabin heating in the vehicles.

    Diving deeper, it appears this may be a wider Tesla issue as many users have shared stories of a wide variety of components related to heating failing far further back than mid-December.

    Tesla North states that last year, Tesla replaced sensors related to heating on all vehicles after encountering bugs. It’s difficult to tell if the users in the prairies are driving outdated cars or if a new software update has added additional heating system issues.

    One driver was even caught out on a drive in -40 degree weather with young children in the car when the heat cut out.

    According to CTV News, a representative of a Tesla Owners Club in Alberta says that they’ve been told Tesla is aware of the issue and it’s been “sent up the chain.”

    Hopefully, a software update will solve this problem, or perhaps Tesla will need to update its hardware to perform better in low temperatures.

    Overall, this isn’t reassuring Canadians considering buying an electric vehicle (EV). The only EV I’ve been able to test under winter conditions has been a few Porsche Taycans models. In both instances, I didn’t encounter issues related to in-car heating, but I did find that took onger to top up the vehicle and that the battery doesn’t last as long when the temperatures are colder.

  • Bernard Dubuc

    Member
    January 15, 2022 at 4:04 pm

    Different topic related to winter, well in Canada it will freeze at night for 6 to 8 months a year, I was wondering if there could be an app that would heat the car’s interior and clear the frosted windows before i get into it, This would work only if the car is plugged in, so you do not deplete your batteries to much with ressistive heating, this property could be extended to the solar panels to help melt a dusting of snow or residual frost. Also looking at the efficiency of the batteries, they will require heating if they are to be charged and operated in below freezing conditions, possibly the app could defer some shore power to these functions instead of using battery power. as an example; my brother own a VW ID4 this morning it was -4F outside he did a 15 kilometer run and it used 50 KM of range, “batteries are useless in very cold weather” Please comment I want to read your thoughts on this heating issue

    • This reply was modified 1 week ago by  Bernard Dubuc. Reason: not completed
    • kerbe2705

      Member
      January 15, 2022 at 10:02 pm

      Most EVs and PHEVs have the ability to precondition (heat or cool) the vehicle while plugged in using grid (instead of battery) power to do so. From what has been said in the past, we believe Aptera plans to offer this function, as well.

      Once the interior has been brought to a comfortable temperature, using heated seats and heated steering wheel can keep the occupants comfortable without blowing additional hot air around the cabin, using far less stored power.

      As to range in sub-freezing weather – yes, EV range is reduced, but so is ICE range: We just don’t notice it as much anymore. Snow on the road also reduces range, as do headwinds. Most EVs have the ability to warm their batteries to an optimal temperature for charging, but it helps if they are kept out of cold, blowing wind while being charged.

      I read that the recent spate of Tesla heat pump “failures” across Canada might not be problems with the heat pumps: It’s now thought that the ventilation louvers on the front of the vehicles are becoming frozen in the ‘open’ position, dissipating the system heat that the heat pump is trying to harvest before it can do so.

    • Bernard Dubuc

      Member
      January 16, 2022 at 4:40 pm

      seeing that a full solar version can do some miles daily in the winter, I presume the solar will produce more power than required to keep the batteries warm enough to be charged, I am wondering how much power will be required to maintain the batteries.

  • Paul Schultz

    Member
    January 15, 2022 at 5:59 pm

    To help improve heating efficiency in winter a transparent barrier (like plexiglass) behind the seats that isolates the storage area from the cabin would be an idea. No need to heat the storage compartment for most folks on most days in the winter. Make the heated cabin space smaller. The barrier could be stored under the storage/trunk floor when not needed.

    • kerbe2705

      Member
      January 15, 2022 at 10:04 pm

      Such a barrier wouldn’t need to be transparent as the rear-view “mirror” is actually a video screen: An insulating fabric curtain could be used to isolate the storage area!

      • Philip Raymond

        Member
        January 15, 2022 at 11:47 pm

        Something some who live in colder climates (like me) should consider and perhaps change their order for. If you get the full solar option, the solar panels that cover the glass hatch help hold heat inside the cabin that would otherwise be lost through a glass hatch. I ordered the full solar before I learned this, but now I’m even happier I ordered the full solar.

      • Paul Schultz

        Member
        January 16, 2022 at 7:37 am

        It wouldn’t need to be transparent but I chose transparency in my example as I figured some folks would want to see things in the back storage area. Plus, not all will have the solar on the back window and may prefer to look over their shoulder when backing up. But, whatever is used as a barrier would need to fit snug with no air gaps. Velcro mounting perhaps. What headliner material is used in the alpha builds? That could be a limiting factor if soft foam as it might not allow enough purchase for attachment of a DIY or aftermarket solution.

        • This reply was modified 6 days, 11 hours ago by  Paul Schultz.
        • This reply was modified 6 days, 11 hours ago by  Paul Schultz.
  • Barry Mawson

    Member
    January 17, 2022 at 11:23 am

    Temperatures in the lower mainland of B.C. are not so much of a problem as are the mountains/hills. Certified winter tires are mandatory between Oct, 1-March 31. Wheel accessibility is an important factor. Barry Mawson.

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