Driving style is potentially having a greater impact on tyre wear for electric vehicles (EVs) than their petrol and diesel equivalents, FleetCheck is suggesting.
The fleet software specialist says the additional weight and performance of EVs means that employees who drive company cars more aggressively are getting through sets of tyres much more quickly than would be expected.
Peter Golding, managing director, said: “The data behind this is still relatively scarce and much of what we are hearing is anecdotal but it seems as through the range of wear you can expect from different driving styles is wider for EVs than you would see for petrol or diesel, with drivers having an outsized effect.
“The reasons for this are, it appears, the facts that EVs tend to be much heavier, model-for-model than internal combustion engine (ICE) cars and often offer faster acceleration. This means that a driver who accelerates sharply and brakes hard puts a lot of pressure on their tyres and can get through a set very quickly indeed.
“At the other end of the scale, it looks as though EV drivers who are much more circumspect in their approach are achieving much lower tyre wear, perhaps not as good as the average for petrol and diesel vehicles, but much closer to being acceptable for fleets.”
Peter added that the potential rate of wear made it arguably much more important to monitor behaviour of drivers using EVs.
“If EV drivers are, for example, adding an extra set of tyres for an average four year car life cycle, this will have a big impact on fleet service and maintenance costs and fleets should be taking proactive action. Telematics and connected car technology can provide a lot of useful information about individual driving styles and this can be imported into software such as ours for analysis, linking this directly to the rate of tyre replacement.
“Of course, there are other potential considerations. A vehicle used largely on the motorway will get through tyres at a much slower rate than one that is used mainly on country B roads, but it is still very much possible to see the impact of driving style in the data.
“It appears there is a strong incentive to introduce driver training and other measures to ensure that EV drivers adopt a more conservative style on the road, something that is proven to work in the vast majority of cases. Encouraging drivers to slow down and be more careful will also have a positive impact on accident rates.”