Wednesday, March 29, 2023

Why Teslas Are Bad At Towing (Today)

Main Why Teslas Are Bad At Towing (Today)

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    Can Tesla’s Cybertruck Actually Tow Long Distances? Physics can explain why today’s electric cars are bad at towing. Subscribe for new videos every …

    Engineering Explained

    The “explained” part of the channel name is important, hope you all enjoy this one! EVs still have a way to go but the conclusions are fascinating. To those of you that watch all the way through, I can’t thank you enough! 🙂 And some clarifications below…
    *Technically* “work” is defined as force x distance, rather than energy. Work is a measurement of how much energy is required forcing an object to move. The calculation is the same. *Assumptions* With better tires with lower rolling resistance, or better aerodynamic shapes, or lower frontal area trailers (sometimes unavoidable – people like standing in trailers, that makes them tall), it is possible to reduce the energy necessary for towing, but the challenge of energy density persists.


    i wouldve done a lot better in math and maybe even majored in it if this dude taught me in high school


    Hey, you’re pretty good at math.

    Google User

    I'm not an engineer but comparing an electric vehicle against one of the most fuel and aerodynamic inefficient pickup trucks tends to suggest bias. Do yourself justice and compare it against a Japanese or European truck capable of 40mpg. Granted, European gallons are larger, but it'll show just how terrible electric vehicles are at present. Bet you don't.

    mr fool

    Does electric car even work well in -20c weather

    Gerald Mota

    We need that concentrated dark matter to improve batteries. Next US invasion won't be Bolivia, it will be space.

    axentra gaming

    Bing bong your math is wrong

    dbl. yo.

    very nicely explained thanks

    James Bell

    Hey guys … I think that most people are looking at this towing conundrum all wrong. The fact that we are dealing with electric drive trains opens us up to a whole new opportunity for innovation.
    The whole Battery Electric Skateboard 'platform' is already practically a trailer. We all know that 'pulling' extreme weight has nothing to do with towing. So if we throw a couple of those model 3 motors(or however many are required) and a suitable battery pack under the floor (most trailers are basically … a floor), would that not exponentially improve braking capabilities? If we were to sync the computer from the trailer to truck and let them share the batteries, could we potentially 10X the range depending on the size of the trailer? If we were to engineer it properly could we safely 'PILOT' a trailer and load on par with Class A Semi long haulers? I say "PILOT" because it would seem that the trailer essentially becomes its own powered vehicle. The CYBERTRUCK would just 'clip in', supporting a fraction of the overall weight. And of course this works for any type of trailer from low-bed haulers, 5th wheel Class A RV's or Utility style Construction Tool lock up trailers. This only just touches on how much the 'OFF GRID' potential for construction and or recreation just increases again exponentially. There are some trailers that will require some further thought. Boat trailers are going to require some design modifications for instance. LOL Anyway this could all be for a different conversation one day. I might be out to lunch here but when I start hearing people say that it can't be done my mind starts racing on possibilities instead. I'd really love a comprehensive look at this as a solution.


    They'll probably start producing their own trailers that have onboard batteries and good aerodynamics.

    Greg Homestead

    We go from Michigan to Florida 2400 miles round trip. With our Cummins turbo diesel pulling our 8000 lbs rv we make it in 1.5 days. ( one way ) We get 13 mpg pulling. At $3 a gal cost $550 round trip.
    Lets see, with the electric truck I can drive 100 miles ( 1.5 hours ) stop recharge for a few hours and continue.
    Could I make it in 2 weeks? ( need sleep, food, bathroom breaks)
    If so I can take 4 weeks vacation get to Florida, turn around and come home well rested to go back to work.
    Pund intended
    If they make batteries 2 or 3 times better the electric wins you say.
    Thats assuming the diesel doesn't improve during that same time also.
    I'm not saying electric will never win this race but I don't see it happening any to soon. And as far as being cheaper, if everyone uses electric vehicles wait till you see what the electric company charges with the huge demand if everyone goes electric.
    Supply and demand, consumer won't save a dime.

    Aaron Shegrud

    why can't trailers also have their own battery packs to supplement the vehicle's batteries?

    Kevin Douglas

    If you're going to do this kind of video I dare you to do the actual math on cities banning natural gas appliances. You know burning fuel for heat at the point of use versus all the losses at the powerplant and in transmission. I don't believe you have the courage to truthfully call into question the evil brain dead PC bastards. I encourage other people to ask the same and similar questions until the political class is sent packing. I really don't believe you' have the courage to do it honestly. I hope you prove me wrong.


    How many KWH does a gallon of diesel have by comparison? Can you do the math on that for us?

    Ray Drouillard

    And again, energy density is the issue. Energy density is why we initially went with IC engines, and why we designed hybrids in an attempt to get the best of both worlds. Ever since we started making diesel-electric locomotives, we have known that electric motors are really good at putting torque to the ground.

    If I was tooling around in a Model X, I would enjoy all of the advantages of electric motors, including the efficiency. Then, on the rare occasions when I want to drag a trailer to the mountains, I would consider putting a diesel generator in the trailer and wiring it to the vehicle.

    I would lose some of the efficiency, but I would retain the rest of the advantages. It would be worth the extra money on the one or two or even twelve times a year that I want to take a road trip with a trailer. After all, it would still be more efficient than the F150.


    so yor saying the Tesla 18 wheeler idea is presently a total failure?


    The biggest takeaway for me is that your vehicle won't roll downhill if the grade is lower than your Crr.

    Joshua Collins

    So, Tesla will build campers with the requisite battery in it? Crazier things have happened with Elon Musk. .

    Ohm Attakorn Saiyasombat

    Interesting..but are you forgetting the fuel energy to kinetic energy conversion efficiency?! The energies you calculated are the kinetic energy required to overcome the resistive forces but you have to first convert the fuel’s energy into the kinetic energy before it can be used to overcome the resistive forces. If you factor this in, F150 will throw a lot of the fuel’s energy away before even getting the KE you need so it’s definitely not using just 14% of the fuel’s energy. Yes the Tesla will be throwing some energy away too but it will be doing it much less.

    Maybe a better calculation would be how much the trailer and hill climb affects the MPG and range eg Tesla without trailer = x1 MPG y1 range, Tesla with trailer = x2 MPG y2 range. F150 without trailer = a1 MPG b1 range, F150 with trailer = a2 MPG b2 range. I’m guessing the detrimental effect should be similar if you are using the same trailer with same weight, same drag coefficient and same friction coefficient.

    Austin Post

    LMFAO. This guy knows everything about math and the science of towing. However doesn’t look like he could back in a triple axel horse trailer between his house and a fence lol


    An electric vehicle being far better than most people give them credit is still setting the bar really low.


    Math was interesting. I would really like to see an apples to apples comparison by doing this calculation with all 3 cars pulling the same trailer load.

    MyOther Soul

    oh crap… is this going to be on the test?

    David Reeves

    I don't understand why the area went up from 40 to 60 square feet for the cybertruck. The area is going to be dominated by the towed load.

    john stubbe

    30% overall efficiency at the engine not at the wheels


    Can some one please explain how a semi will work ??? clearly it is towing a massive trailer all the time … The math should also applied to a semi truck….???? I am confused. so why is Tesla is building a electric semi truck if the math do not look bad???

    john stubbe

    That is misleading to give the gross energy in gas as the net is then then 10kwh/gallon

    Mr. Fairplay


    Hannah Hunt

    Jason: "I want to go camping with my cybertruck"

    Brings 14,000lb trailer just to go camping

    j k


    marcel guwang

    Why not use S.I.?

    Khalid Tahir

    I normally like your videos, but this video is coming off as biased
    Usually, you present a fair argument, but here, you didn't compare apples to apples. You chose the model x towing 5,000lbs and the cybertruck 14,000.
    What gives?

    James Holmes

    Excellent explanation Jason. It’s the clearest explanation I’ve seen so far. Although it seems like we’ll need to wait for solid state batteries for that kind of energy density improvement (doubling or tripling). My impression is that the most we can expect in the next year or two is 20-30%. Of course it’s possible we’ll be pleasantly surprised, but I don’t think so.

    Nick rbhrt

    TSLA Battery in the trailer?


    Am I correct in assuming that something like the Bollinger B1 would have a less jarring loss in range when towing, being that it is already aerodynamically terrible, and therefore less efficient in routine driving?

    Sorry for the run on sentence, I had a tough time formulating my question. But you probably won’t see this anyhow.

    Bharat Dharma

    Good job. Simple and clear explanations require deep understanding & mental clarity.

    Fid Fyodor

    I think Elon is wagering all his money on high density batteries becoming available within 3 years. Otherwise he has stepped into mucky water with the Cybertruck and the Semi, because they are simply incapable of doing what he promises. They are dubious claims, proven by mathematics.

    Shane Lee

    Go to rich rebuilds Chanel before buying a Tesla. You will want to hear this

    NYC LP Player

    14:13 Fine! We're not going camping!!

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