Irish drivers positive about EVs, but worry about range

2 Aug 2011

A survey of 600 car owners over the age of 21 in Ireland has shown that nearly two thirds answered positively about a future purchase of an electric vehicle (EV).

The main motivations for the 60pc of respondents to reply in this way were to save on fuel and running costs and the desire to purchase a vehicle that is more environmentally friendly.

Renault Ireland carried out the survey, which revealed that the main things putting people off about buying an EV were connected to the charging infrastructure and range anxiety.

Sandra Rea, Renault ZE project manager, said the range of Renault EVs is higher than most customers expect. “We believe the range will be suitable for most daily journeys. Over 70pc of Irish drivers travel less than 60km a day.”

Tools to manage range

She noted that Renault electric vehicles feature a number of tools to manage the range of the vehicle, such as vehicle pre-conditioning. This allows the heating/cooling of the vehicle while it’s charging.

There is also the ‘eco mode’, which saves up to 10pc range by reducing engine performance; the ‘econometer’, which shows instantaneous battery consumption and a battery gauge, which indicates forecasted range.

“These services all help to manage the range of the vehicle while also helping to plan your daily journeys, whether on a PC/laptop or smartphone,” said Rea.

“The lithium-ion batteries provide superior performance to any other type of battery considered for automotive use. Lighter and more compact, these batteries offer two to three times more energy per kilogram than previous generations.”

Renault is to start rolling out its range of EVs in November.

Photo: Renault Kangoo ZE