If you seek some clarification on flat-towing your electric car, you’re not alone. Many drivers are unsure if they can flat-town their EVs.
There are plenty of articles that give conflicting information about this subject.
Are you wondering if you can flat-two your car? You’ve come to the right place. This article compares some of the affordable EVs that you can flat tow.
We’ve looked at electric cars that tow well, and now we’ll look at EVs that can be towed.
But first, let’s kickstart this top by answering the following question:
Does flat tow in an EV matter?
Absolutely! If you’re unsure what flat towing is, here is a simple definition. Flat towing refers to pulling a car with four wheels down. When another driver offers to flat-tow your vehicle, all four wheels of your car will be on the ground.
Your EV must have flat towing capability in order for you to flat-tow it.
If it doesn’t, it would be nearly impossible for another car to flat-tow your EV without damaging it. We don’t recommend flat towing an EV behind an RV as this can cause considerable damage.
There are a couple of things you will require to tow an EV.
- an excellent tow-bar,
- tow hooks,
- and – of course – a tow vehicle with the appropriate towing capacity.
Here are some of the affordable electric cars that you can flat tow:
1) Rivian R1S
The R1S SUV is one of the EVs you can flat tow without causing any major damage. Rivian revealed a while back that their all-electric Rivian R1T and the Rivian R1S can be flat towed behind an RV.
The R1S comes with a 128.9-kWh battery pack with an EPA estimate of 316 miles of driving per charge.
A quad motor of the R1S produces 835 horsepower and gives the R1S a considerable amount of power.
Did we mention that the handling of the Rivian R1S is super agile? So navigating those slippery weather conditions will be easy.
Off-road capability is another feature worth mentioning. Thanks to its adjustable air suspension that raises the R1S to unlock a maximum of 15.0 inches.
Rivian R1S offers superior towing capabilities than other SUVs in its segment. It has a 7,700 lb towing capacity, which is more than some EVs in its segment.
Is it safe to flat-tow a Rivian R1S?
Fortunately, yes. Flat-towing a Rivian R1S would not damage anything on your car. Rivian confirms this statement in the user manual. However, there are certain things that you should be careful about.
First, make sure that you put it in the Drive mode during flat-towing. Otherwise, like any other gas-powered car, you can also flat-tow it with the gear lever in the Neutral position. Secondly, tie the rope on the hooks of your car tightly.
And not just any rope, but a tight rope that won’t break easily. Otherwise, you won’t have any issues.
The base trim of the Rivian R1S starts at $91,000, which is affordable if you consider all the features.
2. Hyundai Tucson Hybrid
Hyundai Tucson Hybrid is one of the first EVs you can flat tow.
According to Hyundai, any Hyundai car with a manual transmission and two-wheel drive can be flat towed as long as all the wheels are on the ground.
The only Hyundai car you cannot flat-tow is a Hyundai with automatic and CVT transmissions. The Tucson Hybrid has a Remote Smart Parking Assist that allows you to park your car in tight or parallel parking.
It comes with a 1.6-liter engine that delivers 29 MPG for front-wheel-drive models or 26 MPG for all-wheel-drive versions.
The Tucson Hybrid can tow up to 2,000 pounds, which means you will easily pull a trailer, a boat, or another Tucson with ease.
Is it safe to flat-tow a Tucson?
When you choose to flat-tow you need to be extra careful not to damage the motor.
The Tucson Hybrid is affordable, it starts at $29 050.
The SEL Convenience trim costs $31,650. At the same time, the Limited Tucson Hybrid Limited trim is R37,350.
3. Hyundai Kona EV
While most car dealers recommend that you don’t flat-tow their cars, Hyundai says it is mechanically possible to flat-tow a Kona.
When you use the available all-wheel drive to set up a Kona to be flat towed, be careful that you don’t damage it.
The Kona is one of the few affordable and efficient EVs. It also offers agile performance and rare versatility.
Outside, the Kona EV looks stunning. The designers have expertly crafted it and added projector headlights, rear privacy glass, and LED taillights. The Ultimate midrange trim offers rain-sensing windshield wipers.
The Kona comes with a 64 kWh Lithium-ion Polymer battery that powers the electric motor. The electric motor is powerful; it can make 201 horsepower and 291 lb-ft of torque.
Inside, the Hyundai Kona looks cozy.
The cabin has quality materials for your comfort and many driver-assist features. Leather upholstery, ventilated front seats, and an eight-way power-adjustable driver’s seat is available.
The Hyundai Kona EV has a towing capacity of 1000 pounds.
Is it safe to flat-tow a Kona EV?
Yes and no. When you choose to flat-tow a Kona EV, you need to be extra careful not to damage the motor.
The Kona EV SEL base trim starts at $38,575, the Limited mid-range trim costs $43,185, and the top-of-the-range Ultimate costs $46,785.
4. Rivian R1T
The Rivian R1T is another EV that you can flat tow.
What makes this EV outstanding is its ability to disengage each of its four motors, enabling it to pull or minimize its power consumption.
Rivian plans to have a mode that effectively disengages all four R1T motors to allow safe flat towing. Hence, the new R1T normally recharges its batteries while being flat-towed.
Notably, the Rivian R1T offers an excellent All-Wheel Drive with four motors and a generous cargo capacity of about 1 800 lbs.
Let’s look at the towing capacity:
The Riven R1T has a towing capability of about 11 000 lbs. When you haul up to 11,000 lbs, the Rivian will reduce your range by 50 percent.
When flat towing a Rivian, we recommend using an appropriate tow-bar just like in other cases. Remember, avoid towing a Rivian behind an RV even if you have shifted its gear lever to the neutral mode.
Flat towing a Rivian behind an RV will only cause permanent damage to your electric motor. Or worse, produce back current, which harms the entire system of your car.
Always use its reliable tow hooks if you want to tow a Rivian.
Is it safe to flat-tow a Rivian R1T?
Fortunately, yes. Flat-towing a Rivian R1T is safe. Rivian confirms this in the user manual. However, there are certain things that you have to do.
First, put it in the Drive during towing. Otherwise, like in most other cars, you can also pull it with the gear lever in the Neutral position.
Secondly, tie the rope on the hooks. Otherwise, you won’t have any issues.
The Rivian R1T super-luxe pickup starts at $67,500. This is relatively low if you consider all the features that it comes with.
When you flat tow an EV, it is always advisable to put it in drive mode. It would help if you considered setting the regenerative braking level or anything less than its maximum level.
The only automaker that seems to have given flat towing more thought is the Rivian. Other brands are still oscillating between warning drivers against flat towing and experimenting with innovative ways of making this possible.
That said when you must do the following when you decide to flat tow:
- Make sure your EV is in Drive mode;
- Find out if your car offers bidirectional charging,
- Fasten the rope only on towing hooks.
- If you haven’t flat-towed a vehicle before, call a flat towing company to help you.
- Check your car manual before you flat tow an electric car.
Last but not least, always make sure that you maintain regular service on your EV.
Failure to book your EV for service will cause you to incur the costs of replacing expensive parts later.