April 14, 2010

Electric Cars in Ireland

Selection of electric cars available from Renault
In an announcement by Minister Eamon Ryan yesterday, Ireland has set a goal to have 10% of all vehicles in the country running on electricity by 2020. The country is to become a test bed for the roll-out of electric vehicles and in an effort to get people to make the switch to electric, the public will receive a €5,000 grant towards the purchase of a new electric car. On top of this, electric cars will not have to pay vehicle registration tax. The grant will make the electric cars comparable in price to their combustion counterparts, but the real plus is tat they will run at 20% of the cost of a conventional car.
1,500 charging points are currently being put in place by ESB throughout the country and will be up and running before the end of next year. It is envisioned that most of the charging will be done at home, running off night-saver electricity. Given the fact a huge amount of electricity is generated by wind at night-time, electric cars offer a use for this electricity that would be otherwise dissipated. Even more saving can be made by coupling electric cars with renewable energy in the home. Small scale energy production through photovoltaics and wind turbines can now not only provide enough for the home itself, but also the transport for the home.

Below is a video from incworld.com of Jay Leno test driving the Focus EV.