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Shipping Hybrid and Electric Vehicles (Podcast)

Shipping Hybrid and Electric Vehicles (Podcast)

Jeremy Louisos from Preowned Auto Logistics talks with John Maher about shipping hybrid and electric vehicles. He explains the process of shipping these vehicles and provides owners with advice on how much battery charge they should have when shipping their hybrid or electric vehicles.

John Maher: Hi, I’m John Maher and I’m here today with Jeremy Louisos, Senior Vice President at Preowned Auto Logistics, a car shipping and auto transport and logistics company in Massachusetts. And today our topic is shipping hybrid and electric vehicles. Welcome, Jeremy.

Jeremy Louisos: Hey John, thanks for having me.

Increase in Shipping Hybrid and Electric Vehicles

John: Sure. So Jeremy, have you been seeing more hybrid and electric vehicles being shipped recently? I’m certainly seeing more and more of them on the road.

Jeremy: For sure. So I think as the market just produces more of these vehicles, there’s more of these vehicles out there. We’ve definitely seen more. I was thinking back here the first time I ever jumped into a fully electric… it was a Tesla. First time I jumped in a Tesla was over 10 years. And it was kind of a rare one to see, but man, those kinds of vehicles and hybrids in general they’re just all over the place now. So as the market has expanded, we have certainly seen more of those vehicles being transported.

Considerations for Shipping Hybrid and Electric Vehicles

John: Right. Yeah, I’m certainly seeing those Teslas on the road more and more now. Almost every time I go out on the highway, I pass one at some point. Yeah. So are there any special considerations that need to be addressed before shipping a hybrid or an electric vehicle?

Jeremy: I mean, not really. So from our standpoint, what we’re doing is we’re inspecting the vehicle as we normally would with any other vehicle. The vehicle needs to be driven onto the truck like any other vehicle. It gets strapped down like any other vehicle, unloaded and passed off just like any other vehicle. So for us, there really isn’t that much difference to the driver. There’s not a whole ton different to that process. Obviously, the gas versus electricity consideration might be the only factor.

Ideal Battery Charge When Shipping Electric Vehicles

John: Yeah. So that brings up what I wanted to ask about, which was the sort of gas versus electric batteries. Normally when you go to pick up a car, you recommend that that car have a quarter to a half of a tank of gas, I think, in it so that it’s not too heavy.

But at the same time, there’s enough gas so that it can be driven on and off the truck a few times during the move as needed. What do you recommend in terms of having to charge up the batteries? Is it just, “Okay, we prefer that you have 100% battery charge before we pick up your car.” That kind of thing?

Jeremy: Yeah, that’d be the safest bet. So like you outlined, with the gas vehicles we need at least a quarter of a tank. As close to a quarter half tank maybe a max, ideal max of a weight consideration. We need to be able to drive the vehicle onto the truck and drive it off of the truck. So it’s not going to be using much of that gas. We want to make sure it’s available to not get in any situation where we’re having to go get gas.

And the same thing applies with the electric vehicles, except for the fact that the additional electricity doesn’t weigh down the vehicle anymore.

John: Right.

Jeremy: So why not throw a 100% charge onto that thing? It’ll make it easier for us to drive it on, drive it off. We’ve had some situations where the driver gets on scene and they go to load the vehicle and there’s no charge. And we’ll figure it out, right? We’ll get some extension cords, do what we got to do. But it just makes everything a lot smoother if that vehicle can easily be operated enough to be driven on and off the truck. So I think a 100% charge, if you can get that done, that would be great. But at least enough to drive it on and off the truck.

Is There a Risk of Battery Depletion While Shipping Electric/Hybrid Vehicles?

John: Not having an electric vehicle myself, I don’t even know the answer to the question. But are there any issues in terms of the depletion of a battery by just sitting there over the course of a few days if you’re traveling across the country with a car? Do you have to worry about the battery draining just while it’s sitting on the back of the truck or anything like that?

Jeremy: So I always recommend you look at your manufacturer’s recommendations on something like that, but we have not seen that be a challenge at all.

John: That’s good. Yeah. And you should probably check it out too, depending on the season. Maybe in the winter time, your battery might drain in the cold weather more than it would in the warmer weather or something like that. So like you said, “Always best to sort of check on the specs.”

Jeremy: Yep, exactly.

Driver Experience With Electric/Hybrid Vehicles

John: Do all the truck drivers understand how to deal with hybrid and electric vehicles? And I know a lot of newer cars have these sort of keyless ignitions where you just have to have the key fob somewhere near the car and then it will unlock. And you can just hit the start button and it will start right up. And do all the truck drivers understand how to deal with those types of cars?

Jeremy: Yeah, no, that’s such an interesting question. So I think back to when I had started with seeing my first electric vehicle or being in my first electric vehicle over 10 years ago, now my first Tesla. I think to the public and especially folks that have not jumped into EV or anything like that yet. This technology seems pretty new. It’s funny how the industry that we’re in and especially the drivers, they’re probably some of the first people to see the new wave of vehicles when they come out.

John: Right.

Jeremy: So for them, I mean, this is something that they’ve been doing for over a decade. They’ve been working with these cars. I think it was probably a driver who taught me how to start my first Tesla. So these guys are pros. They see it first. They’ve been doing it for a while. No concerns there whatsoever.

Contact PAL to Ship Hybrid/Electric or Gas Vehicles

John: Right. Any final thoughts on shipping hybrid and electric vehicles?

Jeremy:  Yeah, I guess the final takeaway would be for us, it really ends up being another vehicle that we’d be pleased to help you ship. It’s the same deal. We’re pros. We know how to gas, electric hybrid and send it our way. We’d be happy to ship it for you.

John: All right. Well, that’s really great information, Jeremy. Thanks again for speaking with me.

Jeremy: It was a pleasure. Thank you, John.

John: And for more information, or to request a quote for your auto shipping needs, visit the website at or call 8-7-7-5-4-2-1-9-5-5.