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FAQ - Electric Cars

WLTP, NEDC, and CLTC Explained

Understanding Electric Car Range Measurements – Three terms you might encounter are WLTP, NEDC, and CLTC. But what do they mean?  Let’s find out!

When it comes to electric cars, understanding their range can sometimes feel like decoding a secret language. Three terms you might encounter are WLTP, NEDC, and CLTC. But what do they mean, and how do they differ? Let’s break it down in simple terms.

Information in short

WLTP

(Worldwide Harmonised Light Vehicle Test Procedure)
WLTP is a testing procedure used to measure the range of electric vehicles (EVs) in a standardized and realistic manner. It takes into account various factors such as different driving speeds, acceleration rates, and temperatures. The aim is to provide consumers with a more accurate estimate of an EV’s range under typical driving conditions.

One of the key differences between WLTP and its predecessor, NEDC, is that WLTP includes a wider range of driving scenarios, including higher speeds, more aggressive accelerations and the use things like your carradio and airconditioner. This makes WLTP results more reflective of real-world driving experiences.

NEDC

(New European Driving Cycle)
NEDC was the previous standard for measuring the range of EVs. However, it was criticized for being outdated and unrealistic, as it didn’t accurately represent modern driving conditions. NEDC tests were conducted at lower speeds and didn’t factor in things like air conditioning usage or driving uphill.

Many consumers found that the range estimates based on NEDC tests were often higher than what they experienced in real-life driving situations. This led to confusion and dissatisfaction among EV owners.

CLTC

(Combined Charging Load Test Cycle)
CLTC is a newer testing procedure specifically designed to evaluate the range of electric vehicles during fast charging sessions. As electric vehicle charging infrastructure continues to improve, fast charging has become more common, allowing drivers to recharge their vehicles quickly during long trips.

CLTC tests simulate fast charging scenarios to determine how far an EV can travel on a single charge when using fast chargers. This helps consumers understand how practical an EV is for long-distance travel and provides valuable information for planning road trips.

Cars from Chinese brands

The Chinese manufacturers often still use the NEDC or CLTC range.  It will provide the highest number of range, which is good for marketing purposes, but it is very unrealistic towards the customer. That is way HCR Motors we will always give you a ‘real-life’ estimate in their car-folders, based on our personal experience.
If a manufacturer states a NEDC/CLTC range, we inform our customers that the real-life expected range on Curacao will be around 75% of the manufacturer range.

Summary

In summary, WLTP, NEDC, and CLTC are all methods for measuring the range of electric vehicles, but they differ in their approach and accuracy.

WLTP is the most comprehensive and realistic, providing consumers with a better understanding of an EV’s range under typical driving conditions.
NEDC, although outdated, was the predecessor to WLTP and is still referenced in some contexts.
CLTC focuses specifically on fast charging scenarios, helping consumers assess the practicality of EVs for long-distance travel.
As a rule of thumb, HCR Estimates a real-life range of 75% of NEDC/CLTC on Curacao.

As electric vehicles continue to evolve and become more mainstream, having standardized testing procedures like WLTP, NEDC, and CLTC will be crucial for providing consumers with accurate information and fostering confidence in the transition to electric transportation.

More extensive information

CLTC

CLTC stands for “City, Highway, and Combined Testing Cycles,” which are standardized tests used to evaluate the fuel economy and energy consumption of vehicles, including electric vehicles (EVs). The CLTC range of an EV car refers to the estimated driving distance the vehicle can cover on a single charge based on testing under different driving conditions: city, highway, and combined.

City Driving: This cycle simulates stop-and-go urban driving conditions with lower speeds, frequent stops, and starts. It reflects the driving patterns typical in city environments, including traffic congestion and traffic lights.

Highway Driving: This cycle replicates steady-speed driving on highways or freeways with fewer stops and starts compared to city driving. It involves maintaining higher speeds for longer durations, which can impact energy consumption differently than city driving.

Combined Driving: The combined range is an average of city and highway driving ranges, reflecting a mix of both driving conditions. It provides an overall estimate of the EV’s range in mixed driving environments.

Manufacturers typically conduct these tests according to standardized protocols established by regulatory agencies such as the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in the United States or the European Union. However, real-world range may vary based on factors such as driving behavior, weather conditions, terrain, vehicle load, and use of accessories like air conditioning or heating.

Consumers often refer to the combined range when considering the practicality of an EV for their needs. It’s essential to note that while CLTC range provides a standardized benchmark for comparison, actual range can vary significantly depending on individual driving habits and conditions.

NEDC

NEDC stands for the “New European Driving Cycle,” which was a standardized test used to assess the fuel economy and emissions of vehicles, including electric vehicles (EVs). However, it has largely been replaced by the Worldwide Harmonized Light Vehicles Test Procedure (WLTP) in many regions, including Europe. Nevertheless, NEDC range is still sometimes referenced in older documentation or for comparison purposes.

The NEDC range of an EV car refers to the estimated driving distance the vehicle can cover on a single charge based on testing under specific conditions outlined by the NEDC protocol. Similar to the CLTC range, the NEDC range is determined through a controlled laboratory test rather than real-world driving.

The NEDC test cycle consists of four parts:

Urban Driving: This segment simulates driving in urban areas with frequent stops and starts, lower speeds, and limited acceleration.

Extra-Urban Driving: This part represents driving on rural roads and highways at slightly higher speeds compared to urban driving.

Highway Driving: This segment replicates steady-speed driving on highways or freeways with consistent speeds.

Additional High-Speed Driving: This part involves higher speeds and represents driving on highways at sustained speeds.

The NEDC range is typically calculated by averaging the distances covered during each segment of the test cycle. However, critics argued that the NEDC test cycle didn’t accurately reflect real-world driving conditions, leading to overestimation of range compared to actual driving experiences.

Due to these criticisms and the need for more realistic testing, the WLTP has been introduced to provide more accurate estimates of vehicle range and emissions. The WLTP test cycle incorporates a broader range of driving conditions and more dynamic driving patterns compared to the NEDC, resulting in range figures that are generally more reflective of real-world driving.

While NEDC range figures may still be available for older EV models, it’s important for consumers to consider updated WLTP or EPA range figures for more accurate assessments of an EV’s driving range under current testing standards.

WLTP

The “WLTP” stands for the Worldwide Harmonized Light Vehicles Test Procedure. It’s a global standard for measuring the fuel efficiency, CO2 emissions, and electric range of vehicles, including electric cars (EVs), hybrids, and conventional vehicles. The WLTP range of an EV car refers to the estimated driving distance the vehicle can cover on a single charge based on testing under standardized conditions.

Here’s an overview of the WLTP testing procedure and how it differs from previous standards like the New European Driving Cycle (NEDC):

Testing Procedure: The WLTP test cycle is more comprehensive and reflective of real-world driving conditions compared to the NEDC. It includes different driving phases such as low, medium, high speeds, accelerations, decelerations, and stops.

Driving Conditions: WLTP tests are conducted under more realistic conditions, considering factors like higher average speeds, more rapid accelerations, and longer driving distances compared to NEDC. This makes WLTP range figures generally lower than those obtained under NEDC testing.

Test Parameters: The WLTP test cycle uses updated parameters to better reflect modern driving behavior and vehicle technology. It incorporates factors like vehicle mass, aerodynamics, rolling resistance, and auxiliary energy consumption (e.g., air conditioning) more accurately than the NEDC.

Range Calculation: The WLTP range of an EV car is determined based on the energy consumption measured during the test cycles. This consumption is then used to calculate the estimated driving range achievable under similar conditions.

Regulatory Compliance: Many regions around the world, including Europe, have adopted WLTP as the standard for measuring vehicle emissions and fuel efficiency. This shift aims to provide consumers with more accurate and transparent information about the performance of vehicles, including EVs.

Overall, the WLTP range provides a more realistic estimate of an EV’s driving range compared to the NEDC. However, as with any standardized test, actual driving range may vary based on factors such as driving habits, weather conditions, terrain, and vehicle load. Nevertheless, WLTP range figures offer consumers a more reliable basis for comparing the efficiency and range of different EV models.