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Going the RIGHT way

Anyone with an EV quickly learns when going on a long-ish journey it makes sense to cut down on needless ascents if there’s a route you can take that may be slightly longer, but does not gave the overheads of climbing up one side of a hill. Sure, you can regen down the other, but this will never replace what you lost getting up there in the first place.

SatNav’s will calculate which is the shortest route between A and B, but do not look at the energy you will consume going up and over rather than skirting round the side or via an alternative lower altitude route. As a cyclist, I used to have a range of Bartholomew Maps, which were great as at a glance you could see whether your planned route was going to be hard work or not. If it was green, great - but if the colours changed to cream, brown or orange it was going to be a slog.

These maps are now available to all - UK EV drivers too - via the excellent National Library of Scotland Map Department. Bookmark the link below and used it next time you wonder what will be the optimum route for your journey.


We have instrumented our experimental buggy Bruce so that he records every few seconds his latitude, longitude, elevation, and power drain in watts. Maybe one day, all EV’s will do this and periodically upload their results to a mahoosive Big Data bank from which an army of software bots will create the definitive energy map of our roads. Future EV (and other) satnavs could use this to plot optimum energy routing for a given driving style and vehicle weight.

My twizy in mind i am happy that i recently moved to germany’s flattest area. In Mecklenburg-Vorpommern the highest “mountain” is 179 m “high”. You get beautiful ranges here. I did 70 km at -4 °C today.

that is already here but only in top of the line cars - i believe the Rolls Royce Wraith, BMW 7 series and MErcedes S class come with a gps conected gearbox that selects gears according to type of incline, corner and a whole other criteria. Hopping its just a question of time before it comes down to more common cars and with mounting pressure on emissions i’ll bet it will be sooner than later - hoppefully to the electric car also.

And -4ºC in a Twizy?! Respect…