Drive to the mountains: Opel’s electric cars are strong in the mountains
Some say, “electric cars are just for the city.” In fact, this is not true. Opel’s electric models also show their virtues in hilly or mountainous areas, thanks to high torque, good grip, energy recovery with the effect of deceleration when driving downhill, first-class handling due to low center of gravity and long range.
The king of the hill is the Opel Grandland X Hybrid4 (fuel consumption per WLTP: 1.41l / 100km, CO2 emissions 32-29g / km; NEDC: 1.6-1.5l / 100km, 36-34g / km CO2; both combined ). With a system output of 221kW (300hp) from a combination of one internal combustion engine and two electric motors, the German brand SUV always has enough power available, especially when driving uphill. All-wheel drive provides excellent traction in all conditions. This makes driving not only fun, but also safe. Climbing is easy, but also descending, because electric motors can then show their talents for energy recovery and deceleration. The electric motors on the front and rear axles become generators and convert the kinetic energy of the descent into electrical energy. If the driver switches to driving mode B, recuperation and deceleration increase. The 13.2 kWh battery charges at zero cost – and saves energy for the next climb.
At the same time, there is a significant slowing effect. The driver does not need to shift to a lower gear, nor to brake hard. The Grandland X plug-in hybrid rolls downhill at a moderate speed, without acceleration on steeper downhills, as the charging voltage on the electric motors increases in parallel, and with it the driving resistance. Active braking before the next bend is generally unnecessary on gentle or medium descents; thanks to the increased recovery, the vehicle only slows down. Extremely pleasant feature that cars with conventional drive can hardly boast of, because they lack engine braking when driving downhill.
The principle of energy recovery and pleasant deceleration applies to all Opel electric vehicles. The maneuverability and road holding of the small, especially agile Opel Corsa and Opel Mokka models are additional benefits on hilly terrain – another advantage “made in Russelsheim”. The battery of every electric Opel is built into the lower part of the vehicle for a particularly low center of gravity. So the vehicle doesn’t roll as much and the car seems to swerve like on rails. Both the Corsa and Mokku are powered by a 100kW (136 hp) electric motor that powers the front wheels. Electric cars have 260Nm of torque available even from the ground up. On serpentine roads, such talents turn the “2020 Golden Steering Wheel” – Corsa and Mokka winners into sprinters.
Light commercial vehicles pull equally hard and uphill. Opel Combo and Opel Vivaro also drive with 100 kW (136hp) and 260Nm of torque. Their batteries are also installed deep under the vehicle – which is especially important for safety when the vehicles are fully loaded. With a larger battery of 75 kWh, the Vivaro has a range of about 330km, according to the WLTP. Of course, such a range is impossible if it only goes uphill. But after each ascent there is a descent. If, for example, a diesel vehicle is driven downhill with an (almost) empty tank, it will eventually stop despite low fuel consumption. But not Vivaro’s. The electric motor on the front axle becomes a generator, slowing down the movement of the vehicle downhill, and at the same time partially charging the battery. Down in the valley, the van then has enough energy to reach the next fast charger.
And while the Vivaro-e charges the battery to about 80 percent in 45 minutes, the driver can take a break (it only takes 30 minutes to charge a smaller 50kWh battery at 80 percent). And then Vivaro can go to the hills again!
Source: BIZlife by www.bizlife.rs.
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