Electric Car

A Cold-Weather EV From Volvo

It makes sense that this car would come from Sweden. With all the hype surrounding the Nissan Leaf, it's easy to forget that while those who live in warmer climates might be able to live with the inherent shortcomings of the EV, those who have a real winter to contend with have factors other than fashion to worry about when buying a car. Enter the Volvo C30 Electric, the first EV to be even remotely practical for someone living somewhere other than California.

The first problem that EVs and hybrids have in cold weather is that the battery itself suffers a huge loss in efficiency, which the C30 Electric deals with by giving the battery its own climate control system. The other problem is that turning the heater on kills even more of the vehicle's range. For this there is an ethanol-fueled heater, which will keep the cabin warm without using nearly as much electricity as an all-electric heater.

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