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Thread: The 500e survives Minnesota winter

  1. #1
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    The 500e survives Minnesota winter

    My 2014 500e thrived in a real Minnesota winter in every way except for a marked decrease in range when temps dipped below zero degrees Fahrenheit. I never experienced any conditions where the car couldn't get through the snow on plowed and unplowed streets. With snow tires it seemed to be one of the best handling cars on the road. Defrost and windshield washer devices were effective and loved the heated seat function and rear window wiper.

    The spray from the rear tire wells really coats the rear hatch area with crud so I used the rear wiper/washer a lot. I'm considering getting mud flaps which might avoid getting the rear hatch so dirty.

    Yes, using the cabin heater did decrease range. I can't provide scientific stats for you but the worst range I saw on a 10 below zero Fahrenheit day at 100% charge level was 48 miles on the "guess-o-meter." Other winter days with temps rising into the 20's would see range climb into the 60 mile range with 100% charge level. I forgot to plug in one night and the next morning had only a 45% charge level with 22 mile range left and I had to drive 12 miles in 0 degree temps....traffic was heavy....I only turned the heat on to defrost.....used the seat heaters which don't reduce range....and thanks to traffic mainly stayed below 50 mph...and got to my destination with 12 mile range left! Luckily there was a level 2 charger waiting for me to use at the destination.

    Oh, for range comparison, today the temperature in the morning was 69 degree F and the range with 100% charge level was 116 miles on the "guess-o-meter."

    The tire pressure monitoring system (TPMS) had a tendency to fail below zero, but as soon as the temps rose above zero to about 5 degrees it started working again every time.

    I recommend using snow tires to enhance the cars snow/ice driving capabilities but a friend of mine also has a 500e here and he claims he used his OEM tires that came with the car from California and never had any problems. I do know I had a blast driving the car this winter thanks in part to the super low center of gravity and the spirited handling that is typical of this car.

    My family had to work out a compromise in that my wife has a basic 24 mile total commute daily with mine totaling 12 miles. We decided during the winter I'd use the 500e and my wife uses it during the warmer months when the range climbs back to the awesome range. That worked well for us though I'm now having 500e withdrawal symptoms which can only be remedied by running errands in "her" car after she gets home from work.

    I hope this info helps anyone who is considering using a 500e in a cold climate. Have fun out there.

    P.S.
    Here is the car. Fiat wheels.JPG



    "

  2. The Following 4 Users Say Thank You to Outbackbill For This Useful Post:

    Ando (05-09-2018), Fiat500USA (05-09-2018), KY NEMO (06-24-2018), rkw (05-09-2018)

  3. #2
    Enthusiastically Slow Lifetime Member Ando's Avatar
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    Thanks for the data dump neighbor. My wife has her eyes set on the 2020 Cooper Hardtop EV. I'd be interested in picking your brain on EV ownership a bit more if you are game. I'll buy you a beer/coffee/artisanal water.

    FWIW as a hatchback veteran the dirty backside has more to do with aerodynamics than the roostertail coming off of your rear wheels, but if you dig the mudflap look, more power to ya!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ando View Post
    Thanks for the data dump neighbor. My wife has her eyes set on the 2020 Cooper Hardtop EV. I'd be interested in picking your brain on EV ownership a bit more if you are game. I'll buy you a beer/coffee/artisanal water.

    FWIW as a hatchback veteran the dirty backside has more to do with aerodynamics than the roostertail coming off of your rear wheels, but if you dig the mudflap look, more power to ya!
    Thanks for the info about the aerodynamics. I had mudflaps on a 91' Honda Accord I just sold and they did seem to protect paint and possibly delay rust the way they were installed. I haven't seen any Fiat mudflaps that look so great that I must have them if they don't have a real benefit. If you'd like to meet to discuss cars I'd be glad to share what my wife and I have learned about the car. I will say the best thing about it compared to so many other e-cars is the affordable price. I live in Robbinsdale. Is that anywhere near where you are? Also, on YouTube there is a chap who posts under the name "Ovalbore" who also is in the Twin Cities. He is seriously informed about his Fiat 500e and is seriously into all things cars. Check out his videos....sometimes the video/audio isn't great but the knowledge he shares is well worth the effort. Take care and hope to hear from you soon.

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    Senior Member Dirty Blond's Avatar
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    Ive had mine now going on 4 months. First couple months spent hypermiling everywhere. Last month ive just driven like any other car, without care or consideration what the numbers say. My stress level is lowered since realizing "Darby" will get me where I need to go and back, no matter the temp, no matter the speed, and no matter the creature comforts I may use.

    I would routinely see 114-116 miles the first few months. On the rare occasion i actually catch a glimpse now, its in the 105-110 area at 100%, though not giving a damn because I know shes got me covered.

    The switch to an EV is a scary prospect for many, and I suspect the anxiety for most is higher and then fades away, sometimes to my level of none.

    I dont have the burden of a northern climate to deal with like the OP, so that would be a consideration for some, but for this Texas girl, everything about Darby is unicorns and rainbows.
    -Dirty Blond
    (Filthy really)

  6. The Following User Says Thank You to Dirty Blond For This Useful Post:

    KY NEMO (06-24-2018)

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