SUBARU CARE APP & EV FAQS
Subaru Care App
Stay connected on the go, wherever you go – and discover a whole new level of connectivity and convenience. Connected to both the vehicle itself and the in-car multimedia system, the Subaru Care app runs on your smartphone and/or tablet. It enables you to remotely access and control a whole range of information and functions, keeping you connected with your Solterra – even when you’re not in it.
Download our brand new Subaru Care App for your electric vehicle here:
How it works
You can find out more about how to use the Subaru connected services by watching our 'how to' videos below.
REMOTE CLIMATE CONTROL
FIND MY CAR
CAR STATUS & REMOTE CAR LOCK
SEND TO CAR
Follow Subaru on YouTube: Visit our channel to watch more
ELECTRIC VEHICLE FAQS
What is an electric vehicle?
An electric vehicle (EV) runs entirely on electricity 100% of the time which means they have an electric motor instead of an internal combustion engine and a battery instead of a fuel tank. As such an EV doesn’t require petrol or diesel to drive but instead is plugged into a public charging station or a home charger and electricity is taken directly from the national grid.
What different types of EVs are available?
There are several types of electric vehicles (EVs) on the market. Some run solely on electricity, these are known as pure electric vehicles. And some can also be run on petrol or diesel, which are called hybrid electric vehicles.
- Battery Electric Vehicle (BEV or EV) – A BEV is a car that drives entirely on electricity and needs to be plugged into a charging point to get its power directly from the national grid. This type of EV doesn't require petrol or diesel to run and therefore doesn't produce any exhaust emissions like traditional cars with an internal combustion engine (ICE). As such a BEV or EV is deemed more environmentally friendly.
- Plug-In Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV) - These cars run on electricity but also have a traditional fuel engine so you can switch to petrol or diesel if they run out of charge. PHEVs produce exhaust emissions when running on fuel but won’t when they are running on electricity. Like a BEV, plug-in hybrids can also be plugged into an electricity source to recharge the battery.
- Hybrid Electric Vehicle (HEV) - These are similar to PHEVs as they run on petrol or diesel and have an electric battery too. However, they mainly run using fuel and the battery is recharged through regenerative braking rather than being plugged into a charging station. HEVs allow you to switch between using your fuel engine and using 'EV' mode at the touch of a button. They are also often referred to as ‘self-charging hybrids’.
- Mild Hybrid Vehicle (MHEV) – A MHEV is similar to a hybrid vehicle (HEV), but unlike a hybrid it can’t run on battery power alone. Instead, the smaller battery is there to support the petrol or diesel engine and make driving more economical. A MHEV offers the same driving experience people are used to with traditional combustion engines, just with the added power of a battery but without having to plug-in. It’s a great steppingstone if you’re not quite ready to switch to a plug-in vehicle and eliminates any range anxiety associated with owning a full EV.
How do EVs drive differently to conventional vehicles?
How do I know an electric vehicle is right for me?
What are the benefits of electric cars?
As we approach 2030 EVs will simply become the norm and whether you’re an early adopter or reluctant to make the switch there is no denying that there are several benefits to owning an EV compared to a car with a traditional internal combustion engine (ICE). Some of these include:
- They are better, cleaner and kinder to the environment. With no exhaust fumes produced you are helping reduce the level of CO2 emissions released into the atmosphere.
- Electric cars are faster and can outperform many petrol or diesel-powered cars in terms of the acceleration and torque.
- EVs are also cheaper to run and typically costs less than filling an ICE vehicle with petrol or diesel – particularly if you charge at home overnight when tariffs are typically cheaper. EVs also cost less to tax compared to ICE models, with company car drivers who pay Benefit In Kind (BIK) tax seeing an even greater saving. EVs are also exempt from congestion charges in clean air zones.
- Servicing is cheaper as EV cars have fewer moving parts than a petrol or diesel engine, so there is less to maintain and repair in the long run.
- Owning an EV can be more convenient too as you can just charge your battery when you’re not using your vehicle overnight at home which means less trips to the petrol station. The distance an EV can travel in one trip is improving all the time with most EVs now offering a range of 150-300 miles which will also reduce the number of stops you need to make at public charging stations.
Are EVs more environmentally friendly?
Yes, EVs are kinder to the environment compared to petrol or diesel cars with internal combustion engines (ICE) because they produce zero exhaust fumes which means they emit fewer greenhouse gases and air pollutants. That helps improve air quality in towns and cities. They can even be zero emission if they’re powered by 100% renewable energy.
However, manufacturing electric cars does use a lot of energy and tends to be higher than ICE cars. This is due to producing the lithium-ion batteries which are a crucial element of an electric car. But EVs are still a greener option because of the reduction in emissions created over the car’s lifetime.
Are EVs as safe as other cars?
The short answer is yes. All EVs have to go through the same rigorous Euro NCAP safety tests as conventional vehicles and have to adhere to the same strict design and manufacturing regulations. A main safety concern for potential EV owners is what would happen to the lithium-ion battery in an accident and fears of it catching fire. However, the latest generation of EVs are engineered to avoid this very situation.
In the case of Subaru, the all-new Solterra is constructed on the e-Subaru Global Platform which has a low centre of gravity due to the flat battery unit being placed directly beneath the vehicle. The battery itself has been reinforced inside and out to protect it from collisions and uneven road surfaces. High-resistance LLC with low leakage has also been adopted as a precaution against battery coolant leaks along with an innovative heat management system, with heat pump fitted as standard in the Subaru Solterra, to help keep the battery at an ideal temperature for added peace of mind.
Can you tow with an electric car?
The towing capacity of a car is the maximum weight that it can legally and safely tow. Due to the size and weight of the battery EVs are already substantially heavier than traditional cars with an internal combustion engine (ICE). This means that max towing capacity will be reduced. This is why there are not a lot of EVs on the market which can tow trailers and caravans. The towing capacity on the Subaru Solterra is 750kg (braked).
What can affect the range in an EV?
Range can be affected by a number of factors including the outside temperature and weather conditions, using air conditioning and/or heating, driving style and the speed at which you travel.
How can I get more range out of my EV?
Most new EVs can travel between 150-300 miles on a single charge and with battery technology improving all the time this will only get better. There are also ways you can help improve your range to make it last longer including:
- Buying an EV with a bigger battery. The bigger the battery the further it will go. For example, the Solterra has a 71.4kWh battery delivering a range of up to 289 miles compared to the Nissan Leaf with a 39kWh battery delivering a range of up to 168 miles.
- Make better use of regenerative braking which is a way of taking the wasted energy from the process of slowing down a car and using it to recharge the car’s batteries. On a normal ICE car, braking simply wastes energy - but with regenerative braking, some of the energy is able to be reused. In the Subaru Solterra you can also drive in one pedal mode (S-Pedal) which allows you to adjust the level of regenerative braking using paddle shifters so you can come to an almost complete stop without ever touching the traditional brakes.
- Running the air-conditioning will zap energy fairly quickly, especially when it’s trying to heat or cool the cabin in extreme temperatures. So, it’s best to pre-cool or pre-heat your car before your journey from the comfort of your own home via a smartphone app and while the car is plugged in and charging. This way it only has to maintain the set temperature during your journey, which uses less energy. It’s also worth remembering that batteries prefer warm weather rather than colder conditions. The Subaru Solterra features a heat pump fitted as standard to maximise the driving range in all conditions – even when you have the heating running in colder months. This allows our all-electric SUV to be used daily with a competitive cruising range compared to other manufacturers.
- Watch your speed. The faster you drive, the more energy you will use, which in turn will reduce the range. In an EV, the motor works harder the faster you go, so increased speeds, particularly on motorway journeys, will take a toll on the predicted battery range as will harsh acceleration and braking. Planning your journey to take the most efficient route can also be a huge help to get more miles for your kilowatt.
- Check if your EV comes with an ‘Eco’ mode which will regulate acceleration more gently to preserve power and range. Likewise, avoid ‘Sport’ or ‘Power’ mode which will use more energy.
- Be mindful of how much extra weight you add to the car, whether that be additional passengers or loading your car with extra luggage. The heavier the car the more energy it will use to move. Therefore, before a journey and to help with fuel efficiency, empty the boot of anything you don’t need, remove any roof racks, roof boxes or bike racks and be sure to close any windows/sunroof when travelling at higher speeds to reduce drag and make the vehicle more aero dynamic.
- Get into the habit of checking your tyre pressures. Driving an electric vehicle on under-inflated tyres will significantly increase energy consumption and impact predicted range, as well as cause damage to the tyres themselves. It’s also really dangerous and can lead to accidents.
If the battery in an EV runs out, will the car just stop?
Yes. If the battery is completely depleted it will come to a stop, just as it would in a conventional petrol or diesel car if you ran out of fuel. Battery levels are displayed in the instrument panel so you can easily keep track of your energy information and most in-car satellite navigation systems will prompt you to find your nearest charging point.
With plug in-hybrid (PHEV) and hybrid (HEV) vehicles, if the battery completely runs out of charge, the combustion engine will take over.
Does temperature affect the range in an EV?
There are a variety of factors that can affect range in an EV including weather conditions and temperature; your driving style and the type of journey and road/traffic conditions; the vehicle’s condition and whether any accessories are fitted; the weight and using air conditioning/heating.
One of the biggest factors which can affect range is outside temperatures. The optimal temperature for an EV battery when it comes to driving range is 21.5°C, which can be difficult to achieve in winter. If it drops below this, it will affect not only the range but also charging times. This is because in colder weather the battery needs more energy to reach its optimum temperature. In the colder months you are also more likely to switch on the heating, air conditioning and windscreen defroster to make the cabin more comfortable. All of these features use energy directly from the battery unlike combustion engines that use heat energy lost from the engine to warm the car.
The same is also true in hot weather conditions as switching on the air conditioning to cool the cabin down can also reduce your range.
If your EV is fitted with a heat pump this will help maximise the driving range in all conditions – even when you have the heating running in colder months. This is fitted as standard in the Subaru Solterra which means you are more likely to achieve the advertised range unlike many other EV models which either don’t have this fitted or will charge you extra to have one installed.
Will driving with my lights on reduce my range?
Most modern cars are now fitted with LED headlights as standard which are incredibly energy efficient. This means that driving with your lights on in your EV will not have a noticeable effect on the range.
How long does it take to charge the Subaru Solterra?
Recharging is simple and convenient, with a variety of options, both at home and on the go. When you’re out and about, use rapid public charging points to reach 80% charge† in around 30 minutes with a 150kW fast-charging system. Back at home, you can opt to charge at a cost-effective time through a wall-box to reach 80% charge† in 7-8 hours or simply plug into an available mains socket. Similar to when you plug in your mobile phone, the battery will charge fastest up to 20% and then slow down after 80% to protect its longevity.
†30-minute charging time based on using public charging points with a 150kW DC fast-charging system. Home charging time based on using a 7kW AC charger. Both based on charging from 20-80%. Times will depend on various factors, including temperature, state of the battery, level of charge, state of and capabilities of the charging unit and power supply. Charging times will also be affected once charging passes 80% – charging will slow to protect the battery’s longevity. To preserve the usable capacity of the battery, it is recommended to set a charging target of 80% for everyday use (charge to 100% for longer journeys). Caution! We would advise, prior to using a mains socket that you have the socket checked by an approved electrician to confirm that the socket and associated components can carry the required load. Alternatively, we would recommend you have a dedicated 240V/16 Amp socket installed.
Where can I charge my Subaru Solterra?
Charging points can be located at most Subaru approved dealerships. In addition, there are now more than 42,000ǂ charge point connectors across the UK in over 15,500 locations – including supermarkets, shopping centres, public car parks, hotels and motorway service stations. Some of these will also include rapid charging points, where your electric vehicle can be charged up to 80% in approximately 30 minutes whilst you are out and about.
You can also install a 7.0kW EV charger unit at your own home, which will charge the Subaru Solterra up to 80% in approximately 7-8 hours. This allows you to take advantage of cheaper energy tariffs by charging overnight when it is off-peak (depending on your supplier).
You can also register to join the Subaru Charging Network (https://www.subaruchargingnetwork.eu/web/en/subaru-gb) - one of the largest public charging networks in Europe giving you access 368,098 charge points across 25 countries!
ǂFigure correct as of August 2022.
How far can I drive in a single full charge in the Solterra?
With a fully charged battery, all-new Subaru Solterra Limited can achieve a range of up to 289^ miles and the Subaru Solterra Touring can achieve a range of up to 257^ miles.
^Range figures shown are combined WLTP and may not reflect real-life driving results, range achieved will depend on factors such as selected grade, accessories fitted, driving style, weather conditions, speed or vehicle load. Figures shown are based on a fully charged battery.
How fast can the Solterra go?
The Subaru Solterra can reach a top speed of 100 mph and can reach 0-62 mph in 6.9 seconds.
What is the total capacity and rated capacity in the Subaru Solterra?
A Lithium-ion battery capacity is measured in Kilowatt hours (kWh). The Solterra has a battery capacity of 71.4 kWh and it provides a maximum range of up to 289 miles.
The rated capacity of any battery expresses the average amount of current it releases over a period of time under normal use. The rated capacity in the Solterra is 201 Ah which means that it can deliver 20 amps of power at a constant rate for 10 hours.
What is the voltage in the Subaru Solterra?
What types of charger cable will Solterra accept?
Charging cables have connectors you plug directly into the EV and/or the charging unit. The type of connector you use depends on the electric vehicle, the battery capacity and the charging port. The Subaru Solterra charging port is positioned on the front left wing of the car and uses two types of charging plugs:
- Type 2 Charging Port – 7kW AC (supports charging at home through a wall-box or can be plugged into a standard three-pin plug that you can connect to any 13-amp socket)
- Combined Charging System (CCS) – 150kW DC (Supports fast charging using a public charger) When you buy a Solterra it will come with a Type 2- to Type 2 cable and a Type 2- to UK Domestic plug cable.
- Caution! We would advise, prior to using a mains socket that you have the socket checked by an approved electrician to confirm that the socket and associated components can carry the required load. Alternatively, we would recommend you have a dedicated 240V/16 Amp socket installed.
What equipment do I need to charge my Solterra?
Charging your Subaru Solterra is really easy, and you may find that if you only travel short distances, having a wall-box installed at home, provided you have access to off-street parking, will be the most convenient and cheapest option rather than using a public charger. There are various companies who sell and install smart home chargers.
If you don’t have access to off-street parking or a dedicated parking space or you live in a flat, utilising the public charging infrastructure will be your easiest option. This would include supermarkets, shopping centres, public car parks, hotels and motorway service stations. Many companies are now installing charging ports so employees can charge EVs at work.
When you buy a Solterra it will come with a Type 2- to Type 2 cable and a Type 2- to UK Domestic plug cable which will enable you to charge at home and at public charging stations.
What are the service intervals on the Solterra?
The service intervals for the Subaru Solterra are every 12 months / 9,000 miles, whichever comes sooner.
What warranty does the Subaru Solterra come with?
Solterra is covered by a 3 Year / 60,000 miles (whichever is sooner) Manufacturer’s Warranty (bumper to bumper). In addition, the EV Battery is covered by an 8 Year / 100,000 miles (whichever is sooner) Warranty. Bodywork is also covered by a 12 Year Anti-Corrosion Warranty and paintwork is covered by a 3 Year / 60,000 miles (whichever is sooner) Warranty. Added reassurance is provided by a comprehensive 3 Year Recovery and Assistance package valid in the UK and Europe.
Is there an app that comes with the Subaru Solterra?
Yes, with the Subaru Care App you can stay connected on the go, wherever you go – and discover a whole new level of connectivity and convenience. Connected to both the vehicle itself and the in-car multimedia system, the Subaru Care app runs on your smartphone and / or tablet. It enables you to remotely access and control a whole range of information and functions, keeping you connected with your Solterra – even when you’re not in it. Some of the functions include:
• Remote charging • Pre-heat and pre-cool the cabin • Remotely locate your car • Check the status of the car and remotely lock the doors • Access driving analytics
How long do electric batteries last?
Like all batteries they will start to degrade over their lifetime and the battery life of an EV will vary depending on the make and model of the vehicle. The battery capacity retention ratio may decrease depending on the customer's usage environment (such as weather and traffic conditions) and driving method (for example, sudden acceleration or use of air conditioning). Subaru offer an eight year or 100,000 mile warranty for their EV batteries.
The Subaru Solterra boasts a newly developed high-capacity battery and a heat pump fitted as standard – to maximise the driving range in all conditions. To further improve longevity, the battery structure and charge control have been developed with the aim of achieving a 90% range retention rate after 10 years for added peace of mind.
How do I charge my EV?
Can I overcharge my EV?
Manufacturers have very sophisticated built-in battery management systems to prevent your EV overcharging. These systems can detect when the battery is nearly at full capacity and will slow down the charging process. Most EV manufacturers recommend that you stick to between 20-80% battery charge to avoid degradation.
Can I charge my EV when it’s raining?
Yes, it is completely safe to charge your electric vehicle in the rain. All the equipment used to charge the EV is 100% weather-proof, so you can install a socket or Wall-box on an exterior wall without worrying about it getting wet. It is also completely safe to take your EV through a car wash (needless to say).
How long does it take to charge an EV?
Charging time will vary depending on the size of your battery, the type of charger you use and how fast the charging point is.
• Slow chargers (up to 3kW) – these should only be used for emergency only and are best used for charging overnight or at work as they are a lot slower and take 8-10 hours to charge.
• Fast chargers (7 kW to 22 kW) – you will typically find these in car parks, supermarkets and houses with off-road parking. Charing time usually takes between 3-4 hours.
• Rapid Chargers (43 kW to 350 kW) – as the name suggests these can very quickly charge an EV up to 80% in approximately 30 minutes.
How much does it cost to charge an EV?
When you charge an electric car at home or at a public charging station, the cost can vary depending on the time of day, the tariff or charging network used, battery size and how much energy you need.
At the time of writing this (August 2022) the average UK electricity price is approximately 28.0p per kWh* and an EV will typically travel about 4 miles per kWh, so to travel 100 miles would cost around £7.00 or 7p per mile.
You can calculate the cost to fully charge your EV by using the following calculation: Tariff (e.g. 28p/kWh) * Battery size (e.g. 100kWh) / 100 = Cost to fully charge (e.g. £28.00).
Using the Subaru Solterra as an example it would cost you circa £20 for a full charge (28p/kWh * 71.4kWh / 100 = £19.99). But, charging at home overnight when your energy tariff is off-peak will be cheaper. You could also investigate switching to an electricity tariff designed specifically for EV drivers for even more cost savings.
Some public charging points at supermarkets or car parks for example are often free to use for the duration of your stay. However, most public chargers and rapid chargers will come with a tariff (typically more expensive) and will vary depending on where you charge and the supplier they use.
Do I have to pay Vehicle Excise Duty (VED) on an electric vehicle?
Tax bands for Vehicle Excise Duty (VED) are based on CO2 emissions. As long as you have a fully electric vehicle or BEV you will currently not pay any road tax because EVs don’t give off any exhaust emissions and are therefore exempt (correct at time of writing in September 2022). However, you do still need to register your EV for road tax, but you will not be charged anything.
What company car tax would I pay on electric cars?
For the 2020/21 financial year, the company car tax on electric cars was eliminated (0%). The government cut the rate from 16% to 0% which meant there were huge savings when you switched to electric especially when company car tax can normally cost a lot of money.
For 2021/22 financial year, the electric vehicle Benefit in Kind (BIK) tax increased to 1% of the EV’s P11D value and in and 2022/23 this will rise again to 2%. Despite the increase in BIK, EVs still offer huge savings on company car tax compared to petrol and diesel models.
Is there still a government grant available to buy an electric car?
New zero-emission cars bought in the UK were initially eligible for a plug-in car grant (PiCG). This meant that the Government contributed a maximum of £1,500 towards the purchase of an electric car or plug-in hybrid (as long as the vehicle cost less than £32,000). The purpose of this grant was to encourage more people to make the switch from petrol and diesel cars in an effort to help the UK achieve its targets for cutting CO2 emissions.
The grant for private EVs was pulled in June 2022, a year earlier than expected. Instead, government funding for the public chargepoint network will be increased. Despite the grant being cancelled, electric car drivers will still benefit from generous incentives including zero road tax and favourable company car tax rates (Benefit in Kind or BIK).
Does it cost more money to service or repair an EV?
Generally speaking, EVs are cheaper to service than a car with a traditional internal combustion engine (ICE). This is because there are fewer moving parts, so there is less to maintain and repair. For example, EVs don't use any oil or filters and have no conventional clutch. Regenerative braking means brake discs and pads last longer too.
However, EVs do still need regular servicing according to the manufacturer’s schedule. And any technical issues that arise are more likely to be software related which can even be fixed remotely by Subaru so you wouldn’t have to physically take the car to the garage.
The battery would be the dearest thing to replace in an EV. But with Subaru offering an eight year or up to 100,000 mile – (whichever comes sooner), this isn’t anything to be too concerned about, which would make replacing tyres likely to be your biggest outlay.
Why are EVs cheaper to maintain?
Electric cars are cheaper to maintain due to fewer moving parts, for example there is no oil to change or gaskets to replace as they don’t have a traditional combustion engine.
How much does it cost to service an EV?
You can take your EV to another dealership for servicing and repairs, however you will need to adhere to the manufacturer service schedule to avoid your warranty being voided. Having said this, we would always recommend that take your EV to an authorised main dealer as they will be best placed to service your car. The qualified technicians will also be fully factory trained and have the latest diagnostic equipment to perform software upgrades in order to maintain your electric vehicle. Costs will vary depending on the dealership carrying out the maintenance and whether it is going in for a minor or major service. Typically, dealerships will offer a service plan to pay a set amount each month to help spread the cost or you can pay upfront in one lump sum. It’s important to follow service schedules to not only keep your warranty valid but also to get a better price when you come to sell in the future.