In a major sustainability and innovation joint venture, Europcar and Volkswagen New Zealand have banded with Christchurch, Wellington and Auckland Airports, to launch the Electric Day Pass (EDP) programme.
The programme allows regular business travellers who fly into any of the three cities between Monday and Friday and out on the same day, the opportunity to book an e-Golf for their day of travel, free of charge. The keys are collected the Europcar desk and the cars are picked up from, and dropped back to, prime parking spots at all three airports.
Corporates such as Icebreaker and AMP have already signed up. Stephen Jones, General Manager Europcar New Zealand says the venture is part of Europcar’s long-term strategy which recognises the future of motoring lies in sustainable outcomes for the planet and consumers.
“People are increasingly aware of their carbon footprint and are taking a proactive approach to reducing it. This is a natural next step for us as we evolve with the market and develop green friendly motoring solutions,”he says.
The e-Golf was built alongside its petrol and diesel siblings and operates like any other Golf with “real driving range” of 150km (which will increase to 230km later in 2017).
Scott Kelsey, Head of Passenger at Volkswagen, says it’s exciting to realise just how many corporates want to understand electric vehicles.
“We have been lucky enough to work with partners who believe this is the way of the future and are pleased to be able to provide a vehicle which encourages that movement,” he says “We know how great it is to drive an EV, and now we’re able to offer a really convenient way for others to have that experience. The cool thing about our e-Golf is that it is, by all accounts, just like a normal Golf to operate – it just has a power socket instead of a fuel flap.”
Rhys Boswell, General Manager Strategy and Sustainability at Christchurch Airport, says the initiative reinforces the airport’s target to reduce carbon emissions by at least 20% by 2025.
“We are passionate about championing sustainability through protecting the environment, minimising the use of natural resources and improving the quality of life for our community. We are focusing on energy (electricity and fuel) and waste reduction by implementing new technologies. The Electric Day Pass is one way we are creating this change and also promoting the uptake of EVs in the South Island.”
About the e-Golf: Breaking with the tradition of electric cars being too expensive for the average consumer, the e-Golf zaps its way through a growing field of affordable electric vehicles. It utilises a 134-hp 100-kWh electric motor powered by a 35.8-kWh lithium-ion battery.
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