How Electric Car Fleets Could 'Spark' the Market

In in every 1000 cars sold in Britain since the launch of the government's incentive program has been electric, while the French have bought three times as many EVs.

Published: 18-Jan-2014

The announcement came at New Year that David Cameron’s cabinet members might be about to trade in their limousines for electric vehicles. Such a move would make the UK government the world’s first to run a fleet of all-electric ministerial cars. This push adds to announcements from the end of last year that set a £10m prize for innovators who could produce a more efficient battery, and a dedicated £5m pot for testing the use of electric cars in the public sector.

This fresh approach builds on existing commitments of £400m put aside to encourage consumers to buy electric vehicles, the centre-piece of which was the plug-in car grant introduced in 2011 that allowed buyers to claim back 25% of the value of a new electric car, up to a limit of £5,000. However, less than a third of that pot has been spent as consumers were reluctant to buy. It’s made the government’s supposed “year of the electric car” a bit of a damp squib.

Little spark in the electric market


Lord Drayson at the wheel of an electric car 'mule'.

Drayson believes 2013 will be a pivotal year for electric cars in the UK, with the launches of the Tesla S and BMW i-series.

Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell

Governor McDonnell is proposing $100 per year fee on electric-drive vehicles, plus a $15 new car registration fee that ICE-age car owners don't have to pay.

Ohio State University's Motion Control Electric Vehicle

The 1,750 lbs. (800 kg.) utility vehicle, known as an FIWA, is powered by four independent 7.5kW electic motors and a 15kW lithium-ion battery pack.


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