Lowered vs Stock Height! Will Slamming Your EV Increase Range?
Today we are looking into efficiency with some modifications to an electric car. You see, I have two friends that own brand new identical down to the last option: id4s except one of them Colton – has lowered his. So he has put on lowering suspension on his id4. What I want to find out is how big of a difference that makes in efficiency. So let me walk you through the testing procedures and in this video well find out. If lowering your electric car will improve the range by a measurable amount, this is a brand new 2023 Volkswagen id4 from Chattanooga. This is Michaelas. Car weve made plenty of videos with it. Over there is a 2023 Volkswagen id4 from Chattanooga the exact same car. They both pretty much took delivery around the same time. They have roughly the same amount of miles just about 1500 miles on both of them plus or minus so theyre, two, basically fresh id4s, except this ones, at stock, ride, height theyre, both all wheel, drive iv4s by the way and come on over here. Forgive the charger being iced by uh this vehicle here, not sure whats, going on with that. But if you look at Coltons youll see it sits much lower to the ground, and so what he has done is actually changed. The springs on the car, with h, r lowering springs. Now, whenever you, when you lower a car, I always recommend going with a spring end damper that matches that spring rate, because it really will change the way that the car handles.
We might do a deep dive on the handling review of this. Ultimately, today were just looking at the efficiency, but because its minus five degrees Fahrenheit outside right. Now, what do you say we jump in the car? I tell you a little bit more about the h r Springs about the testing procedures because were really trying to do this right and yes, its freezing, but both cars are going through the exact same thing, weve driven them for about the last hour. Together, the battery packs are, at the same temperature, were charging them both to 80 Ill walk you through all this, and so I think, its still a very relevant test, but the efficiency on both of them is going to be a bit lower because its so freaking Cold outside, but thats the nature of testing so Alyssa. You joined me for another efficiency test, yay yeah. Thank you so much for that. So um lets walk through the cars and the testing procedures and then well run the test first of all very cold outside, but that doesnt actually bother me for the test and I dont think it should bother you either. Both cars are going to be at the same temperature driving the same roads at the same time, so the difference between them should just be the lowering thats. The idea at least were going to set the climate controls the drive mode settings and were going to go. The exact same speed even to the point where were not going to draft off of each other for wind resistance, but and well even swap positions on the way back so were really going to try and make this as scientific as possible here in the real world.
So in terms of cars, Michaelas car shes owned this car shes taken it on some trips, and we mentioned to you that when she bought it, it actually had some warning lights on it. She took it to the Volkswagen dealer turns out. It needs some modules. It doesnt affect the cars performance, its just some warning lights that pop up but thats, just seemingly par for the course with Volkswagen stuff a little bit unreliable, Ive heard too many issues with bugs and modules and now theyve even stopped software updates for the 2021 cars And 2022 cars to software 3.1, I dont know whats going on. We love the id4 weve recommended it to a lot of you. Both Colton and Michaela have theirs. They love them, but theres. Definitely some reliability and some software issues that need to be looked into, and weve mentioned that many times. I would say this. Video is more about the difference of lowering a car than it is actually about the id4 itself, but its a nice platform to test on. So to Coltons car h, r lowering springs front and rear. I wish they made a coilover setup for id4, something that would ride a little bit nicer. I find his car to be really bouncy. He actually likes the way it rides so his choice and cars. None of them are very comfortable driving directions right all cult noise, slams his cars and like to me Im like id4, so nice and comfortable.
Why would you lower it, but it does look amazing, and so he has some cool Wheels coming for it and lots of cool stuff coming for that car its going to look incredible. It certainly handles better than this for sure at least on smooth pavement. So there are benefits to lowering a car, but efficiency might be one of them so to walk everyone through exactly what weve done with the cars and then well head out. We had both cars charged at home to 75 percent thats. When we pulled out of the driveway, we then drove up and down the highway until about 50 percent state of charge. We followed each other and drove the same speeds and now were charging them in a DC charger from 50 back to 80 percent to where theyll complete. Basically, what we wanted to do was ensure that the battery packs were at the same temperature that the cabins were both warmed up, for example, were sitting in this car with the cabin heat running same thing in Coltons, car Ive left it running over there. So we really want the temperatures to be exact, because we dont want one car to have more heater than the other. Everything will be identical and thats. The whole goal here so were going to run from here in Wellington, Colorado up to Cheyenne Wyoming and back at 70 miles an hour constant, its about an hour, long Loop or so, and then were basically going to look at the efficiency difference between this car and Coltons car and see how much more efficient or less efficient it is to have your car lowered.
What do you think the difference will be Im? Usually pretty good at this game. Lets say about a 15 mile difference: oh how about percent difference or percent um? Six percent. Okay, so you think a six percent difference where the lowered car is more efficient, okay, so six percent, more efficiency is your guess: whats yours! I have no idea what to expect so. Yeah, no Im not its not enough Im the most educated one in this car. I I think its probably going to be closer to three percent difference. That would be my guess somewhere around there, but uh sometimes thats the difference of making it to a charger or not having an extra three percent of the battery, so yep itll be interesting to see. We have to charge the cars for another 20, 25 minutes or so no matter. The batteries are just cold theyre, both doing like 40 kilowatt charging, so uh as long as theyre at the same temperature cool with me, but yeah theyre, both uh Frozen bricks, very cold. So uh, were you know: id4 doesnt have any battery preconditioning on the way to a charger we wont have anything set in the navs. Literally, everything will be identical between the two cars Ill make sure of it, and the difference will just be the lowering. So lets jump in them when they complete and hit. We did a little charge station Shuffle because we wanted them to complete at the same time.
So we have that set now so in terms of how were going to set up the cars Ill. Do the same. Uh climate control will be pretty simple, were going to go Auto medium. Both cars are starting with a warm cabin so theyre at the same temperature right now, Auto medium uh with one heated steering wheel, one heated seat and uh 87 selected its really cold out there. So were gon na run it nice and warm as long as the cars are the same, we should be good um, so thatll be that and then headlights on normal, no all weather lights to reset the trip all youre going to do. Alyssa is youre going to go over here to vehicle data since start and zero zero and Thats. How well get the data from this drive and Ill do the same on Coltons car of course, and we just go 70 miles an hour. Try not to draft. We might have to drive in the other lane a little bit or something like that, but just no Aero advantage and then, of course, Ill lead on the way out and you lead on the way back. We are getting pretty close to leaving. So I just got Alyssas car all set up Im at 79 state of charge, shes at 79 state of charge, hows the speed, this ones doing 50.7 kilowatts, this ones doing 45. Ah interesting! This one was just doing over 50., so it must have just hit a taper point in there, but Alyssas all set shes got all the climate settings.
This ones just about to be were going to unplug and head out just now momentarily really perfect timing. Here I am so excited to see the results, so we just hit 80 in Michaelas car, the non lowered car Kyle just unplugged there, so we are about to hit this hit on the road here pretty soon and um. So, just as we start to pull out thats when you reset your trip calculation, okay, great cool were so I will get to resetting the trip calculations and then film updates along the way. We are pretty much good to go so foot on the brake into B mode is how Im gon na do it actually wont make much of a difference. I think Alyssa will do it as well Ill call her make sure she does and three two one reset since start lets go huh. Do that and we should be getting on our way just about right. Now there he pulls out – and I will be following right behind as were both Inception totally filming each other um. The little little Snowy out just a little blow, I think is – is happening. A little snow um, but here we go, were running Comfort mode Ill, be in the lead. Both cars completed literally at The Identical time. That was just awesome, and so we are heading out for a little test love it conditions are poor, very poor conditions, its funny. The car thinks its 21 degrees Fahrenheit.
Sometimes, electric cars do that when they sit on Chargers but uh not the case outside. It is well into the negatives below zero fahrenheit very chilly outside, and here we go merging onto the highway. As far as Im aware, we just went up and down the highway a little while ago it was pretty dry. These cars are both on the factory. All season tires and theyll both be getting gnocchi and snow tires here in just a few days. But what will be interesting is, I think, were going to go with the studded ones for Michaela and the non studded for Colton, so thatll be an interesting difference, but gentle acceleration. Well, we just got on the ramp here and getting geared up to 70 miles per hour. Kyle usually likes it to be. As soon as we get off the ramp, you can see, the power meter is looking pretty good. Batteries are warm actually. So this is a really good test, Im so excited to see, but basically were just going to do. The normal Loop cruising up to Cheyenne and back and well get up to 70. well hit. The travel assist button here in just a second and the car can do most of the driving yeah. You can see some snow on the roads, but ultimately the dry bits or where the wheels are but uh. It doesnt really matter well see how both conditions go. Alyssas just back there behind me all is great.
You join me here in the lowered car, and I just want to make a quick comment on ride quality with these h r Springs. It is certainly not as refined as the factory uh ID for, however id4 all wheel drive actually comes with a thicker uh sway bar package, as well as a higher end, stiffer spring package. So the all wheel, drive id4s are not as comfortable as the rear. Wheel, drive id4s, but the h r Springs do decrease ride quality for cruising its fine on a highway like this, where youre not hitting bumps. But when you hit the odd expansion joint or the bridge with an undulation youre, definitely bouncing a lot more in this than Alyssa is in hers. So Im, not a hundred percent, convinced that the I dont know that the ride quality is worth the give up in um or or worth the good looks. It definitely looks a lot better. Lower no question when this thing rolls up its like okay thats, where it should be looks more like a wagon, but I dont know thats just my opinion. Minus four degrees outside Alyssas back there not drafting, were in the same Lane hitting the same road conditions. All is good just a beautiful perfect day for some tests. The snow has stopped and were just cruising along, so we are just about to hit the turnaround point. It is a lovely negative, eight degrees here I figured itd be a lot colder going into Wyoming.
Here were just near. Actually, I think we are in Cheyenne right now and Im averaging now. It would. It just went up to 1.8 and Im at 61 percent at 106 miles predicted range um and were about to get off this next exit. Here we are just coming up to our halfway point, so Im going to take it off a cruise control. Here I just tap the brakes to. Let Alyssa know that thats the point where to do it and uh were gon na go regen in so the drive. So far has been good, its minus eight degrees Fahrenheit outside right now and uh. We are at 59 state of charge as we enter in to make the double left hand turn to birds back on the highway. Super slippery. Actually so were just gon na go nice and easy, thankfully no ones really around, but it is just sheet ice under here pretty wild. So you can see all the trucks lined up on the on ramp Im gon na pull over back here. Let Alyssa go past. Uh 1.8 miles per kilowatt hour so far and so yeah. This will be my little spot to let her go by so Ill just pull over here. Let her go for the pass as we merge onto the highway and Kyles gon na. Let me go in front now, so he can have whatever my dragon. I think I was a little. I was pretty far away, so I didnt have any of that issues, but well climb up here to 70 miles per hour again, not just try to lightly creep up.
Dont want to do anything too, abrupt and um hopefully get around this car, which is always fun and set the cruise control to 70 and get going and there she goes great lets not delay too much. So just gentle accelerations, although shes really getting on it. So well just do whatever shes doing. I guess uh yeah so were just in normal Comfort mode and the roads are pretty slick but uh, not uh too slick. We can still maintain 70 miles an hour just fine, so she is getting up to speed right now. It seems going for that lane change, making moves as shes driving almost off the road. What the heck and uh yeah its pretty snowy here, but lets get past this car, so we dont get rocks all over it and 70 miles an hour locked in. I can see shes locked in as well Im gon na put the cruise control distance to the farthest. We have ourselves a pretty good distance right here. You can see just how far away Volkswagens cruise control system can keep us that is so impressive. Its just locked on shes doing 70 were doing 70 distance all the way at Max, and it is perfect, no Arrow Advantage. She is way the heck up there and uh. Our efficiency is improving as we go down so were just about to cross into Colorado and Ill update you when were ready to exit at the next exit, but all is good, just cruising along and loving it.
We are in the lowered car going over these bumps. This is where the ride quality is severely diminished with the h r Springs. Oh my gosh Melissas, probably having such a luxurious comfortable ride and were just crashing over. All of these, you know Im, typically a recommendation on lowering your car all day long. I love it, but I really think going with a full coilover setup is the way. Unfortunately, no one makes one for the id4 yet, but if a company out there does reach out to us, we need to swap out these springs for real coilovers on Coltons car, because, oh my God about to hit the ceiling here, exiting now Alyssa, just topped off The brakes right there, I will do the same here we go – were both in B mode, doing a little bit of Regen and there we go off the brakes and exiting the highway all right. So whats your efficiency 2.2 as well, and so I did 58 miles same yeah. 53 minutes same take a photo of that, so you so we dont miss it. So there you go 2.2 miles per kilowatt hour, uh, basically identical identical, no difference, or at least you know miles per kilowatt hour. Doesnt give you the granular thing, but its the only way we can show consumption for our Market. Uh mine, says 84 miles of range. At 45 percent, 47 and 89 miles, but BMS differences, I think, will account for that.
So I would say no difference nothing interesting! All right! Well, uh cool lets, wrap up the video. Well, there you have it no difference at all at least its 70 miles an hour, nothing major. I would say, if youre going to lower your id4 to try and eke out every last mile or really any car, I would say, probably not worth it. You know. I have air suspension in by rivien. We have air suspension in our e tron and Ive run sort of my own personal tests on these, and I see very little benefit to dropping the air suspension minuscule. If any, and so I would say, uh yep not uh, not uh, not worth it now in terms of Coltons situation, you know hes a detailer. He really loves cars. To look good, I think, lowering the car really helps him with his business with what he likes about the vehicle. For me, I would probably give up the better looks of it being lower for the better ride quality of it being higher. Also, the id4 is not the canyon Carver that Im taking out on the weekends, its a very competent chassis, a really nice car to drive, but its certainly not going to be by Canyon, carving choice, so the increased handling is not of benefit to me, at least Anyway, there you have it uh long video. I guess to basically tell you theres no difference now. If it was summertime and we were higher speeds, perhaps the higher the speed we go.
The more difference youll see, but I think an average of 70 miles an hour cruising or so yeah, not not worth it thanks. So much for watching another out of spec reviews.