Can Aero Wheels, New Suspension Improve Tesla Model 3 Range By 10%?

Nextmove tries to test aero wheel covers and a new lowered suspension, but there are some problems.

When we say aerodynamics plays a very important roll in energy efficiency, especially for EVs, we mean it. We have even written a very good article about that a while ago. Air resistance can really decrease the range. In highway speeds even more than in urban traffic, where the electric motor just has to deal with weight, mostly. Nextmove, an electric car rental company from Germany, tried to show that with two very interesting tests. But there were problems…

The first one involved the Aero Wheel covers, which some rumors stated could increase range in about 10 percent. The team of Nextmove chose a 94 km (58.4 miles) route at A9, A14, and A38 around Leipzig, in Germany.

Some parameters have been established, such as a constant speed of 150 km/h (93.2 mi), 18-inch wheels with summer tires, chill mode and the most efficient driving possible.

Three Tesla Model 3 units were used to do three laps each. And here is where problems start: all of them were Long Range derivatives, but one of them was an AWD. Hence, heavier than the other two. But it gets worse: one of the RWD units had a lower suspension. 

Two of the vehicles had two laps with the Aero Wheel caps and the last one without it. We don’t know which. One of them kept the Aero Wheel covers all the time as a reference. We also do not know which one. And that makes things very complicated.