Affordable electric car? - teabelly
Just seen this article on the bbc:
news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/west_yorkshire/2997426...m

I had a look on the company's website and these little motors can be leased for £4500 + VAT for 3 years. As they are electric there seems to be no road tax and exemption from congestion charging.

www.goingreen.co.uk./?pg=brochure_govt gives a list of the taxes (or lack of them) incurred.

I know electric vehicles aren't strictly zero emissions but a greater adoption of these cars could reduce local pollution levels as well as allow people the freedom to use their cars without so much guilt.
teabelly
Affordable electric car? - daveyjp
There are loads of these in Leeds. Saw one this morning on the way to work and it looked a bit cramped with two in. Great idea though, I think you can rent them for about £5 per day.
Affordable electric car? - J Bonington Jagworth
Looks like Smart are missing a trick here. I should have thought that their car was the ideal base for electric power (and a lot better looking than the G-Wiz, IMHO).

Funnily enough, we had an electric car manufacturer (Enfield) here on the Isle of Wight 30 years ago. I remember because I had to X-ray a chap from the factory who had run himself over!
Affordable electric car? - daveyjp
smart are working on an electric version, but they need a profitable business before developing this area more fully. 50 miles range at 40 mph max isn't quite smart performance!
Affordable electric car? - Galaxy
Some interesting vehicles seem to have appeared from IOW over the years.

There used to be a British moped made there, think it was called the "Scamp", or something very similar. Had the engine in the rear wheel. Must be going back about 35 years for that one. My Dad used to sell them in his shop, but Scamps didn't last for very long. Think they went bankrupt.
Affordable electric car? - J Bonington Jagworth
You've got a good memory, Galaxy. The Scamp was, IIRC, made by Clark Masts on the Island. Clark still exists (they make radio masts, rather than yacht masts, despite the location) but, as you say, the Scamps didn't last - in both senses, I think! Shame really, as the idea of motorising what was effectively a slightly beefed-up push-bike has a lot of merit. Simplex have done it for decades in France, and there are similar vehicles everywhere there are relaxed licensing laws for them. Sadly our government is, and always has been, too interested in regulating everything to do with road use...
Affordable electric car? - J Bonington Jagworth
Other vehicles from the IOW include: the Princess Flying Boat, the Black Knight Rocket, the Hovercraft, the Islander aircraft and the original Thrust! Not bad for a holiday spot...
Affordable electric car? - andymc {P}
Hi teabelly,
Just been reading your comment that ev's "aren't strictly zero emissions". This is very true. Have a look at this link for the reasons why I opted for a diesel-engined car in order to run biodiesel, rather than looking at electric or LPG.
www.dewinne.freeserve.co.uk/electric.htm
and
www.biofuels.fsnet.co.uk/sustain.htm

andymc
Affordable electric car? - teabelly
Hi Andy

I thought about a diesel engined car too but the problem I have with them is that they are just too noisy. I would much rather have a car that had a nice engine sound or one that didn't make any noise at all. Having said that the new fiat 1.3 multijet is supposed to sound about the same noise wise as the old fire petrol engine so I may be able to put up with it. There is a biodiesel place in Doncaster that will deliver so I could get fuel from them. Are there any filling stations around the country that offer 100% biodiesel rather than the 5-10% biodiesel/95-90%DERV mix?
The G-whiz people got back to me a few hours after I emailed them saying that their cars were only available in Leeds and London so no good to me at the moment. Probably my question about how one would get them serviced if the service centre was more than the range of the car away that put them off selling one to me!
The only other option would be the mdi air car which has prices on it's website. That at least has a 100 mile range rather than the hopeless 50 and a better top speed of 60 which means you could use it on nsl roads without causing road rage. Rather too cutting edge (assuming it is not an elaborate hoax) though.



teabelly
Affordable electric car? - andymc {P}
Yes, I looked into the air car. Apart from the fact that they're so incredibly ugly, the main reason I wasn't keen was the fact that the energy it takes to compress the air is greater than the energy stored for the purposes of moving the vehicle. Same problem as with hydrogen. Basically, unless the "source" energy for all hydrogen cars, all electric cars and all air cars comes from renewable sources such as wind turbines, solar, etc, then they are (at current and foreseeable levels of technology) ultimately more polluting than the mainstream cars we currently use.
I wonder how long it is since you've driven a diesel car - many modern engines are quite refined, to the point that the most recent examples are described as being virtually indistinguishable from petrol engines. The HDi engine as used in the Citroen C3, Ford Fiesta and Mazda 2 is supposed to be one of the best small diesel engines on the market in terms of refinement and fuel economy without compromising in terms of power. Then there's the D-4D used in the Yaris and the MINI. Other examples from higher up the market include Ford's TDCi range, which are reputed to be very refined (albeit not as economical, or reliable), while BMW probably have the ultimate in refinement and power with their latest 3-litre diesel for the 3 and 5 Series. Too be honest, there are too many examples to list here. Speaking from personal experience, I currently drive a Seat Leon with the 110 bhp TDi engine, which isn't the quietest I've driven but is by no means intrusive (using biodiesel seems to make it smoother as well). I also have a VW Passat with the same engine. Interestingly, the Passat is quieter even though the engine has to do more work to pull a heavier car - it may be to do with soundproofing. A recent passenger in the Passat, who drives a petrol car himself (my dad!), commented that he hadn't realised how noisy his own car was until he was driven in mine. Even in the Leon, there's more noise just from the road than from the engine. I've also owned a common-rail Clio, which was very quiet (especially for such a small engine), and the diesel Rover 75's that I've test-driven have all been super-refined as well. Can't wait to hear about the new diesel Accord coming out in September.
Why not have a go in a few test-drives - you might be pleasantly surprised. Also, have a look at the "First fill of biodiesel" thread in the Technical forum, where there's been a fair amount of discussion and where I've posted a few more links to suppliers. Where roughly are you based?
andymc
Affordable electric car? - teabelly
The looks of the air car put me off too!

My dad is looking for a new diesel so I have had the vicarious pleasure of test drives in a stilo jtd, a c5 hdi and a kia (eek) something quite recently. The C5 was very quiet and you could almost mistake it for a petrol but as soon as you get going it sounds loud without being a good sort of loud you would get with a petrol engine. I suspect my best option is something used in an alfa romeo as the 156 I heard with a diesel did sound pretty quiet even from the outside of the car which is why I was thinking of the much cheaper punto. I hope the 1.3 jtd is better than the 1.7 in the stilo as the whole car vibrated at idle (they sound very loud from outside when cold) so it is a mystery why the alfa version is so much quieter.

The psa engines are probably the best but I have a great aversion to French cars because of their anti tamper rules which make doing the simplest job a nightmare so I have struck them off the list entirely.

I'm based in North Staffordshire so I'm relatively out in the sticks.


teabelly
Affordable electric car? - J Bonington Jagworth
Interesting links, Andymc. One of them says: " Bio-fuels do not produce carcinogenic particulates". I know this applies to methanol but is it true of bio-diesel? I'm not too clear whether he means that they don't produce particulates or whether the particulates produced are harmless...
Affordable electric car? - andymc {P}
Means that although biodiesel produces particulates (albeit far fewer than derv), they are not carcinogenic. EPA researched this. It also produces no sulphur dioxide, far less carbon monoxide (more oxygen in the fuel leads to more complete combustion), less CO2 at the tailpipe and far less net CO2 in the air - as it's a vegetable-derived fuel, it only releases CO2 that the plants had already absorbed, so the reduced tailpipe emissions are consequently of secondary importance in any case. Most research points to a reduction in NOx as well, while the one dissenting piece has been called into question for failing to apply appropriate combustion conditions.

If the agricultural structure was put in place for farmers to grow rape for fuel and cattle feed on just one third of available land, then the UK could reduce its dependency on imported oil by 630 billion litres of fossil fuel per annum - which is nice. This does not take into consideration the kind of fuel I use, which is made from recycled waste cooking oil. How many restaurants, canteens, chippies up and down the land are disposing of a waste product every week which (due to BSE) can no longer be recycled as cattle feed?

It seems to me that growing our own fuel for use in engines without the need for massive technological alteration, and without having to install a new distribution network/equipment (as with LPG) is a reasonable logical step. Tell your MP, MEP, council, etc!
andymc
Affordable electric car? - John S
teabelly

Electric vehicles were exempt from road tax until a few years ago. However, I believe the Government couldn't see an opportunity slip and I believe they have to pay a small road tax these days - £25 or £40 I believe.

Regards

John S
Affordable electric car? - puntoo
Stylish it aint.

Why cant they get a descent designer to come up with descent body shape.
 

Value my car