How much does shipping your Vehicle cost?
Free Instant Online Calculator based on quotes from Trusted Auto Shipping Companies
Customer Images
7790 people shipped using A-1 Auto Transport last week

Joe brought me peace of mind. I can’t thank you enough for being so reliable and trustworthy

Joe brought me peace of mind. I can’t thank you enough for being so reliable and trustworthy

+2 million
of customers
recommend us

Can Electric Cars Be Towed?

What's in this article?
  1. Everything You Need To Know About Towing An Electric Car
  2. Reasons Why You Would Tow An Electric Car
  3. Can You Jumpstart An Electric Car?
  4. Towing An Electric Car
  5. Electric Motors Are Always Engaged
  6. Why Does An Ev Need A Powerful Tow Vehicle For Transportation?
  7. Can You Tow A Broken-Down Electric Car Or Tesla?
  8. Can An Electric Car Be Towed Behind A Motorhome?
  9. Will Towing An Electric Car Charge It?
  10. Nissan Leaf And Other Evs With A Neutral Mode
  11. Why Do Some Evs Have Tow Mode?
  12. What Happens When You Tow Electric Vehicles On Four Wheels?
  13. Leave Electric Car Towing To The Professionals
Can Electric Cars Be Towed?

Electric cars are becoming more efficient, faster, and, most importantly, cheaper in recent years. This is alluring drivers to buy an EV for the first time. However, what happens when your electric car breaks down? Can you tow it?

While towing electric vehicles is technically possible, there are a few factors to remember.

This article will outline the factors you should consider before towing your electric vehicle, the equipment you'll need, and what you should expect from a professional towing service.

Everything You Need to Know About Towing an Electric Car

Pulling an electric automobile differs slightly from towing a conventional gas-powered car. Because batteries power electric vehicles, they don't have the same engine as gasoline-powered vehicles.

When towing an electric vehicle, you need to exercise particular caution.

The first step is to confirm that the tow truck driver is familiar with electric vehicles and is skilled in correctly attaching and securing the tow bar. Before attempting to tow the car, it's crucial to ensure the battery is unplugged.

The manufacturer will have guidelines for speed limitations or other restrictions while towing, so check the manual for specifics.


Reasons Why You Would Tow an Electric Car

Several scenarios may call for towing an electric vehicle:

  • The safest and most effective approach to get your car to the closest repair facility if it develops a flat tire or loses its battery is to tow it
  • Brake problems may also result in the need to be pulled because they might be dangerous
  • The best approach to moving a car without increasing wear and tear is to tow

Electric vehicles are becoming increasingly common, but they are susceptible to problems like flat tires or running out of power from being unable to find a charging station.

In these circumstances, the ideal approach to tow an electric car is with flatbed tow trucks, automobile carriers, or car haulers. These services ensure your vehicle gets to its destination safely and reliably.

Can you jumpstart an electric car?

In contrast to conventional gas-powered vehicles, electric vehicles contain two distinct kinds of batteries: a 200+ volt engine battery and a 12-volt battery akin to those found in other cars.

Like any other automotive battery, the 12-volt battery can be jumpstarted with jumper wires if it is dead. However, ensure an electric vehicle is unplugged and not charging before attempting to jumpstart it. Doing so could cause a short circuit and total the vehicle.

Although some types of cars can be severely damaged from a jump start with cables, it can harm the electronics on board.

As a result, you should check with the car manufacturer's manual on how to proceed with a jumpstart.

Towing an Electric Car

For safety reasons, manufacturers of all-electric vehicles advise that EVs only be transported on flatbed trucks. This eliminates wheel movement and guards against battery or other component damage.

Electric automobiles could be damaged if towed using hook and chain trucks, tow dollies, or wheel lift tow trucks.

Extra care must be used when towing an electric vehicle because numerous components might be harmed with poor towing. The safest method of carrying an electric car is on a flatbed truck since they offer stability and support while preventing wheel movement.

When towing, it's crucial to adhere to any recommendations given by the maker of your electric car.

Electric motors are always engaged

Electric cars and trucks do not need a gearbox to control the power going to the wheels because electric motors are always engaged in them.

As a result, they are more effective than conventional gasoline-powered cars and can engage in regenerative braking.

By transforming the wheels' kinetic energy into electricity and returning it to the battery, regenerative braking extends the range of the vehicle.

However, if its battery runs out or develops a flat tire, it must be hauled to a charging station or auto repair shop.

Another reason a towing vehicle might be required is if the car has any brake problems or needs to transport it any significant distance.


Why does an EV need a powerful tow vehicle for transportation?

  • Due to their massive batteries and engines, electric automobiles are heavier than their gasoline-powered equivalents.
  • Unlike a traditional vehicle, they are challenging for one person to maneuver independently due to the increased weight.

Can You Tow a Broken-Down Electric Car or Tesla?

Extra caution must be taken when towing an electric vehicle to prevent damage to the car. Electric vehicles may need to be pulled for several reasons, such as a dead battery, flat tire (and no spare tire), or running out of power.

When towing a Tesla, it's crucial to use a flatbed truck to minimize potential hazards for the vehicle. Dragging an electric car along the road could result in harm because not all of them have a neutral mode.

A Tesla's transport mode is only intended to be used for a maximum distance of ten meters and to win it onto a flatbed truck.

Tesla advises towing its vehicles with all four wheels off the ground, adding that Model 3 wheels shouldn't spin until they are traveling at less than three mph and for 30 feet.

It is not advised to tow an electric automobile because it could sustain additional harm. If your electric vehicle needs to be towed, utilize a flatbed truck. Before starting any movement, see if your model has a neutral or transport mode.

Can an Electric car be towed behind a motorhome?

It is possible to tow an electric vehicle behind a motorhome. But it's crucial to use extra caution when doing so. A towing package appropriate for the weight and dimensions of the electric car must be installed in the motorhome.

The tow truck must also have enough power to pull the electric car securely.

Use a tow dolly or trailer intended for the weight and dimensions of the electric car while towing it behind a motorhome.

The towing vehicle must also have enough power to pull the electric car securely. Before starting the tow, it's crucial to confirm that all appropriate safety equipment is in place.

Will towing an electric car charge it?

The simple answer is "No"; an electric automobile cannot be charged while towing. Therefore, pulling is only an option when the car runs out of fuel or has a flat tire and no spare.

While towing can assist in moving the vehicle, it does not offer any charging possibilities.

Furthermore, not all electric vehicles have a neutral mode, so dragging one along the road could be harmful.

Nissan LEAF and other EVs with a neutral mode

In a neutral mode, the Nissan LEAF and other electric cars can be towed without the motor being linked to the drivetrain. This contrasts with conventional gas-powered vehicles, which need to be neutral when pulled.

Electric cars like the Nissan LEAF and Chevy Volt's neutral mode detaches the motor from the drivetrain, allowing them to be securely towed.

Due to its distinctive design, towing an electric vehicle demands extra care and attention. However, thanks to their neutral mode, these vehicles can be safely moved without damage.

Moving an electric vehicle helps to use a flatbed since this will prevent any damage from occurring while in transit.

Why do some EVs have Tow Mode?

  1. A dedicated tow or service mode setting guarantees safety when pushing or towing an electric car
  2. This setting disables regenerative braking, which could cause the vehicle to accelerate suddenly if it is being pushed or towed dangerously.
  3. Drivers can safely tow or push their electric vehicles with this setting without worrying about sudden acceleration.

What Happens When You Tow Electric Vehicles on Four Wheels?

An electric car can be dangerous to tow on four wheels because;

  • The drive motor might turn, which could cause it to overheat and harm the vehicle. While the Tesla Model S gearbox includes a mechanical oil pump that will circulate oil even while the vehicle is being towed, some electric cars feature an electronic oil pump that can be damaged if it is turned off during towing.
  • Electric vehicles without a neutral or transit mode must be pulled rather than pushed because doing so could harm the motor.

In general, it is not advised to tow an electric vehicle because it could result in additional harm to the car. Instead, electric vehicles should be pushed into neutral or a comparable mode to prevent towing-related damage.

Before attempting this mode of transportation, drivers of electric vehicles must be aware of the dangers involved and take the necessary measures.


Leave Electric Car Towing to the Professionals

A professional service is, of course, the best option when transporting your Electric vehicle.

Whether you just need it to be taken a short distance or across the country, we can offer many ways to move your vehicle.

It would be best if you came to A1 Auto Transport for all your vehicle shipping and transporting needs. We offer everything from international air freight to towing services for your electronic vehicles.

Please get in touch with A-1 Auto Transporttoday for s service that fits all your vehicle and cargo transportation needs.

Share this content on social media
for a chance to get up to 15% off your next shipment.
Copy link

Joe Webster always knew the auto transport industry would be a great career option. And with decades of experience, Joe is now an established consultant for A1 Auto Transport.

Joe was born in Santa Cruz, California. During high school, Joe worked as a mechanic; a job continued to work part-time during his bachelor's degree.

Email Me

Mylene Rutllant
It’s my number one pick in auto shipping to this day.
★★★★★ choice in terms of auto transport has to be A1 Auto Transport. It’s in the name, but also in the quality with which they do their jobs. I’ve never had a problem with this company.

Luis Rodriguez
You have my full support and recommendation!

A1 Auto Transport... From the get go, they were very different from my past options. Their website was very professional and up to date, full of useful information. I requested a quote using their online form, and I got an email response within an hour. Surprisingly fast!

Testimonial by Cristine Benoit
Cristine Benoit
I can safely say this is a legit company that will get the job done.

There are a lot of options for auto transport these days, which surprisingly makes it harder to find a good company. I received more than 10 offers to ship my car, but I couldn’t decide on any of them... Fortunately, I made the right choice with A1 Auto Transport.

David Osallo
We give A1 Auto Transport a big 10 out of 10!

We give A1 Auto Transport a big 10 out of 10! We chose them to move our car from California to Vermont, since we needed professionals.

Visit our social, and see what our clients are saying about us

Ship Your Vehicle With A-1 Auto Today
Get an instant free Quote Now

Or Call Us Today and Speak Directly to Our Sales Team:

Our Partners:

Better Business Bureau Accredited
FMCSA Member
INC. 500 Member
VeriSign Secured
AMSA Member

A-1 Auto Transport is a disclosed agent for the following shipping companies:

Trans Global Auto Logistics, Inc.
3401 E Randol Mill Rd
Arlington, TX 76011
NO. 018191NF
CFR Rinkens
15501 Texaco Avenue
Paramount, CA 90723
NO. 013055NF
ABC Worldwide LLC
2840 NW 2nd Ave #105
Boca Raton, FL 33431
NO. 025472F
CSI Logistics
435 Division Street
Elizabeth, NJ 07201
FMC 22206
Intl Cargo
45 Campus Drive
Edison, NJ 08837
NO. 17858N
ShipYourCarNow LLC
1160 South Rogers Circle Suite 1
Boca Raton, FL 33487
NO. 025646
Merco Air & Ocean Cargo, Inc.
6 Fir Way
Cooper City, FL 33026
NO. 021869F
Copyright © 1988-2023, A-1 Auto Transport - All Rights Reserved.