Electric cars in the CityPosted: December 15, 2010
Later in the day I learnt they had been assembled as the backdrop for a UK government announcement about a £5,000 subsidy being offered to buyers.
Perhaps most impressive – apart from the chance to actually see some of the cars close up – was the judicious use of superglue to carry out some swift badge engineering. The nine cars present were actually only six models underneath. There was the Mitsubishi micro car, also available with a Peugeot or Citroen badge on it, depending on your brand choice. And a very confused General Motors Ampera stood, in left hand drive form and sporting a German number plate – but with Opel wheel trims, and a Vauxhall badge stuck on the front. Not far away was its twin, the Chevrolet Volt – apparently exactly the same bar a different badge and grill.
Also there were the Nissan Leaf, Toyota Prius, Smart electric and the big surprise, a Tata electric car. If the Indians crack this one, then all the European and Japanese manufacturers will really have something to worry about.The City of London already provides parking incentives and charging points for electric cars, so expect to see more of these in London; the only issue is not being run over by them, as they are so quiet!