What you need to know about an electric truck’s range

| 3 min
How far you can drive in an electric truck? Find out the answer to this question and others about batteries, range and driver impact here.
Charging station
Battery range in an electric truck is affecting by many of the same factors that affect fuel consumption in a diesel engine.

How far can I drive an electric truck on a full battery?

For a 4x2 tractor with an average weight of 30 tonnes the range is approximately 300 km. However, depending on specification and application the range can be considerably longer as it is influenced by many factors. 

How does the weather affect an electric truck’s range?

Poor weather such as rain, cold temperatures, and strong headwinds, will increase the energy consumption and therefore shorten the vehicle’s range – just in the same way these conditions would increase fuel consumption in a conventional diesel-powered vehicle.

How does driver behaviour affect the truck’s range?

In urban and regional environments, a well-trained driver can consume around 20 percent less energy than a poorly trained driver. The optimal driving technique is good anticipation with minimal braking and accelerating – much the same as a conventional diesel-powered vehicle. The most significant difference is that with an electric truck, smooth braking is even more important since the energy is being recuperated and stored in the vehicle’s battery, which extends the range.

How is the battery affected by braking?

The kinetic energy from the vehicle’s motion is recuperated and used to recharge the battery. This will help extend the range.

Are there any other factors that have an impact on the battery range?

The vehicle’s bodywork could have a significant impact if it uses energy from the truck batteries. For example, a concrete mixer will consume far more energy than a dry box. The vehicle’s weight will also have a significant impact, as well as the road topography – much the same way it does with a conventional diesel truck.

What happens to the battery when the vehicle is at a standstill?

The energy consumption while not driving is limited – unless the driveline is also powering high energy consuming functions, such as concrete mixers.

Can using electrical appliances or charging cell phones affect the battery range?

No, the vast majority of the energy stored in the battery is used for propulsion. The energy consumption from auxiliary systems such as heating, cooling, pumps, or any other consumer appliance is minor in relation to what is consumed for propulsion. For example, a smartphone contains far less than 0.01 kilowatt hours of energy, while over 500 kWh can be stored onboard.

What happens if a truck battery runs out of energy?

The energy status of the battery can be tracked on the dashboard and remotely at all times, but if it does approach zero, the driver is notified and the available power will be reduced which will influence drivability.

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