Electric vehicles (EVs) are surging in popularity around the world, and their popularity has extended to the rental market. To keep pace with environmentally friendly initiatives and customer demand, Drive Car Rental is proud to offer electric car rentals in Bangkok.
First-time renters of electric vehicles may have some questions regarding battery life and range. We’re confident that with a bit of education, most customers will love their EV rental.
Battery Health and Charge Levels
The battery is the most critical component of any electric vehicle. Its overall health and charging ability are influenced by a range of factors. One factor is maintaining optimal charge levels; most EV batteries have ideal performance when the state of charge is maintained between 20% and 80%.
Charge states above this number place strain on the battery as it approaches 100% and it must work harder to max out the charge. Similarly, charge states below 20% cause the battery to work harder to find the last bits of electricity inside the battery. Keeping a battery at optimum levels can help extend its lifespan.
Parking and Other Factors
Just as a standard smartphone battery will lose charge over time even when turned off, so too do EV batteries. Some of this is due to natural phenomena related to how batteries store energy. Electric vehicle batteries are also always connected to devices, such as interior computers and clocks, that continue to draw small amounts of power even when the vehicle is idle.
Furthermore, all batteries are susceptible to decreased lifespan in extremely hot or cold environments. When parking an EV for an extended period of time in hot climates, drivers should make an effort to keep the car in the shade. If at all possible, covered parking facilities are ideal for optimum battery life–the same holds true for cold environments, and parking in enclosed garages can help to minimise battery issues.
When parked for extended periods, EV drivers may experience up to 2% to 3% loss of charge per month. The more extreme the climate, the bigger the impact will be on the state of charge. Thankfully, electric car manufacturers have made great strides in technology that helps protect inactive EV batteries, and most modern EVs can sit for months and start just fine when it is time to move them.
Considerations for Renters
When renting a car, many of the factors listed above will be irrelevant, as most rentals are short term. For long-term rentals, however, the rental agency may make certain requests regarding the care of the vehicle.
For anyone renting an EV, it is important to check the charge levels before departing the rental office. Because every electric vehicle is slightly different, it is wise to consult with the rental agency about specific do’s and don’ts for each particular model.
The most important thing an EV renter can do is to know the location of charging stations where they are staying and on the way to their next destination. Those who want to drive an electric vehicle in Bangkok won’t have much to worry about, as EV chargers are very common in large cities throughout Thailand.
Thailand also has an extensive network of charging stations along most major highways. Anyone planning a long trip is advised to charge their car battery before departing and plan where they will charge their car along the way. As mentioned above, charging the battery before it drops below 20% will keep the EV at its optimum level of performance.
Renting EVs With Drive Car Rental
Drive Car Rental offers the following selection of electric vehicles for rent:
- BYD Atto Extended: A mid-size SUV, typically seating up to five passengers. Range of up to 480 kilometres
- BYD Dolphin Extended: This compact hatchback with seating for five is a good choice for driving the narrow streets of Bangkok, with a range of up to 490 kilometres
- Tesla Model 3: A compact luxury sedan with seating for five passengers–this is the longest range we offer at up to 680 kilometres
- Tesla Model Y: A compact crossover SUV, offering seating for up to seven passengers with optional folding third-row seats, with a range of up to 533 kilometres
It should be noted that because this is a new initiative, the number of electric vehicles available for rent may be limited. For this reason, we recommend that anyone wishing to rent an EV for their holiday in Thailand book as far in advance as possible to secure their desired car–this is especially true during the tourist high season that runs from November to April.