How Does An Electric Car Handle Snow?

1w ago


It's no secret that a good set of snow tires is the key to safe snow driving. It doesn't matter if your car is powered by gasoline, Diesel, electricity or steam if you don't have the grip you're not moving. So when you have the right tires on an electric car can it car survive winter driving?

Well in the case of the Model 3 yes it can but there's a catch. As Model 3 owner Jason Fenske discovered Tesla's winter wheel and tire packages are overpriced. The solution actually comes from the Porsche Cayman GT4 a limited edition car that happened to have a special winter tire package for Canadian customers. By sheer luck, the Cayman GT4's winter tires perfectly fit on a Tesla Model 3 Performance.

Now that the Tesla Model 3 Performance has the correct tires courtesy of Porsche, how does the electric car's AWD system fair? Even though the Model 3 has an open differential, the car's electronic torque vectoring system uses the Model 3's brakes to assist with grip. This means power can be shifted to the wheels with grip to keep the car moving.

Tesla's AWD system uses sensors to determine the Model 3's torque split very similar to a 4WD truck. Based on the amount of grip, power is sent to each axle independently to take advantage of the wheels with the most traction.

Tesla's advantages lie in its ability to completely stop applying torque to an axle without the grip. In a traditional 4WD setup if then rear end of your truck steps out torque is still applied to make you slid more. Tesla can completely stop sending torque, therefore, preventing a slide.