Is an Electric Car Heavier than a Gas Car?


In general, yes, the average EV weighs more than a similarly sized ICE vehicle. However, in recent years, even gasoline vehicles have slapped on a few extra pounds, closing the gap between the two drivetrains.

When we think about electric motors, we might come to the conclusion that they’re significantly lighter than gasoline motors and contain far fewer moving parts. While this is true, we must consider the battery pack, which more than makes up for the reduced weight of the motor. In many cases, the battery pack can make up as much as 25% of an EV’s overall weight. Additionally, in order to protect the battery from damage, EVs often require additional structural reinforcements, which adds to the overall weight. Some manufacturers have started to integrate the battery into the floor of the vehicle as a way to reduce weight and complexity. 

Let’s take the Tesla Model 3 as an example. The standard RWD model curb weight is listed at 3918 pounds, with AWD coming in at 4056 pounds (4090 pounds for the performance edition). A similarly sized BMW 3-series RWD model is listed at 3560 pounds and the AWD model at 3686 pounds, ~10% below the EV.

In the previous example, we’re a bit biased considering BMW is known to make bloated vehicles. This time, we’ll look at a less premium vehicle, the Chevrolet Trax, which pairs nicely with the Chevrolet Bolt EUV in overall dimensions. The Chevrolet Trax ranges from 3124 to 3292 pounds. The Bolt EUV, on the other hand, weighs 3679 pounds, a 12-18% increase over the similarly-sized gasoline vehicle. 

In some cases, we can directly compare vehicles that offer both gasoline and electric drivetrains, such as the Ford F-150. The gasoline F-150 ranges from 4941 pounds to 5710 pounds, depending on the engine and transmission combination. The similarly sized F-150 Lightning (SuperCrew 5.5-ft. Styleside) starts at 6015 pounds for the standard range battery, and 6361 pounds for the extended range battery, an increase of more than 20%. 

Similarly, the recently updated Hyundai Kona EV comes in both gasoline and electric drivetrains. The EV ranges from 3571 to 3891 pounds, depending on the trim. The gasoline version ranges from 3005 to 3267 pounds for the FWD drivetrain, and 3203 to 3483 pounds for the AWD drivetrain. Once again, the EV comes in 15-20% heavier in each trim pairing. 

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