I’ve written many times about how electric vehicles “don’t ruin the long weekend.” (The now infamous concoction created by our previous Prime Minister as a generic disregard for Labor’s EV policy for 2019).
I’ve certainly taken many long drives NOT ruined by being in an EV – be it my first in 2019 (in response to Scott Morrison’s whopper) or my last drive to Perth and back from Melbourne.
I’ve also written about the upcoming crop of off-road 4WD EVs with heavy-duty pull ratings. Since the writing of that article, shipments of even more 4WD/off-road EV models have begun in the US. (These are the GMC Hummer, Ford F150 Lightning and the Chevrolet Silverado).
Unfortunately for 4WD and off road camp enthusiasts in Australia – this is still a while away from arriving here.
Meanwhile, Hyundai has done its best to show how its Ioniq 5 EV can improve both weekend getaway and towing experiences. Shown with an example of a 6 berth, 7.5m caravan that fits within the 1600kg towing capacity of the Ioniq 5, Hyundai recently talked about the benefits of towing an EV over an ICE (Internal Combustion Engine) vehicle. ).
Example of the Ioniq 5’s low center of gravity and weight positioned centrally between the extended wheelbase (enabled by using electric motors instead of a combustion engine in the front), Hyundai praises how these ‘low, wide stance and ideal center of gravity for superior stability when towing’.
Add the extra passenger and cargo space in the interior available in the Ioniq 5 to a similarly sized ICE vehicle (as the electric-only platform takes space from the now redundant engine bay and adds it to the interior space) – and EV wins again over ICE.
Hyundai has also tweaked the range meter to give better estimates of towing range – so unexpected depletion is about as likely as running out of fuel in an ICE vehicle.
To quote Hyundai: “Using the telematics system, customers can set the weight category of their trailer and the expected driving range is adjusted accordingly, even before the road trip starts. This means that Ioniq 5 owners can plan their next charging stop in advance.
In addition to these benefits, Vehicle to Load (V2L) is an extremely useful feature for camping trips. For those who haven’t heard, V2L supplies 230V AC power using the EV’s main battery.
This means that EVs with this feature become ‘power banks on wheels’ that can easily supply 230V AC. (In the Ioniq 5, that’s limited to 15A, but that’s more than enough to run everything down to a small induction hob).
Besides, you don’t have to worry about the battery running out and never coming back: V2L can run for weeks before flattening out under a normal camping load – and for peace of mind, it can be turned off at a chosen battery level.
For those wanting to know all about an EV-tuned caravan, Hyundai in Sweden also launched ‘Camp Zero’ – an all-electric combination of the Ioniq 5 and a minimally designed EV-focused caravan.
Featuring the aerodynamic, lightweight MINK Camper, Camp Zero has a streamlined design and a net weight of just 520kg to maximize towing range – plus it features an all-electric, V2L-powered system that includes an induction hob, espresso machine, kettle, electric fridge/ freezer, 230V sockets, speaker system and indoor/outdoor lighting.
To top it off, the Ioniq 5 also recently won the ‘2022 Tow Car of the Year’ from the Royal Dutch Touring Club, the first EV ever.
So it’s now officially confirmed: EVs do BETTER long weekends.
Bryce Gaton is an electric vehicle expert and contributor to The Driven and Renew economy. He has worked in the EV sector since 2008 and currently works as an EV electrical safety trainer/supervisor for the University of Melbourne. He also provides EV Transition support to business, government and the public through his EV Transition consulting firm EV choice.