Real life winter "stuck in traffic" numbers

Chevy Bolt EV Forum

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New member
Jan 1, 2020
So has anyone done any real life checking on how long you could actually sit in your Bolt in stopped winter traffic before you got to the "Turtle?" My husband's one car site had some EV-haters saying that electric cars will never take off because if you're stuck in winter weather traffic you would lose all your battery power in 3 hours and have to get towed or you'd freeze to death... Oh my! I would love to reply to put that guy in his place but I don't have any real numbers to refute his claim. I am thinking of leaving my Bolt run in my driveway this winter and see how long it lasts with minimal heat on.... Interested in anyone's experiences sitting in traffic for long periods of time and how much charge you actually go through and how fast!

I'm in NEPA.
The Bolt's heater uses at most 7kW to get the car warm, then maybe half that to keep it that way.
So if it uses 4 kW and you have a 50% charge (30kWh) you could keep the heat on for about 7 hours.
I'm not sure a gasoline car would last that long, but in any event you'll be fine.
However, it is a good idea to keep your car plugged in overnight, especially in winter, and set your charge level to 80-90%. Precondition the car through the app about 10 minutes or so before you leave in the morning.