The Electricity Cost of Driving 35,000 Miles in a Model 3

I just recently hit 35k miles on the odometer of my Model 3. I do have my second trip meter locked in for the Lifetime power usage of the car, and this is where most other people will pull the number from, multiply it by how cheap their home charging kWh price is, take nothing else into account and give a rough electricity cost. That doesn’t give the entire story though.

According to the Lifetime trip meter, the car has used just over 8,000 kWh. However, this only accounts for when the car is in drive. Electric vehicles also use some power while sitting idle in their various states of idle or deep sleep. Sentry mode also uses some power, which I have enabled no matter what when I’m not parked at home.

Anyway, time for some data.

  • 8000 kWh: the amount the car trip meter says it has used thus far
  • 10,500 kWh: the rough amount I’ve put into the battery
  • 8000 kWh of AC charging, 2500 kWh of supercharging
  • 1146.5 hours: the amount of time AC charging, about 47 days continuous
  • 30 hours: the amount of time supercharging
  • Supercharging accounts for 24% of the power put into the battery pack but at 2.5% of the time spent charging
  • If the battery pack is 75-80 kWh, with a 90% charging efficiency that would put my battery pack at about 120 cycles.

As for out of pocket electricity cost, charging at home has cost me about $480 while supercharging during road trips cost $370. That’s a grand total of $850 to drive 35k miles in 18 months. Compared to my previous car, a 2010 Mazda 3 S, I’ve saved nearly $2500 with current $2.15/gallon gas prices. Obviously electricity is cheaper than gas, even with how low gas prices are, but the fuel savings gap will only widen as the odometer gets higher.

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About bp

Lover of everything technology and data related. People say I have too much patience and they're probably right. Ordering a Tesla? Use my referral code for 1000 free supercharger miles.

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