Wind power is supporting 10 new electric vehicles for hire in the Outer Hebrides as part of the E-Car Club car sharing scheme.
Much of the electricity will be generated by the Pentland Road wind farm near Stornoway. The nine Zoe hatchbacks and a Kangoo Van Z.E. have been introduced into the remote region through the partnership between E-Car Club and the wind farm operators.
The joint venture brings affordable, zero carbon transport to the area and underlines the suitability of electric vehicles in rural as well as urban environments, with the public being able to hire the innovative models on an hourly or daily basis from a number of locations across the town of Stornoway on the Isle of Lewis.
Pay per use scheme E-Car Club chose the Zoe and Kangoo Van Z.E. for the Outer Hebrides following the success it has experienced with the models at its other nationwide locations.
The six turbines will supply sufficient electricity to meet the entire domestic load of the Outer Hebrides.
Nearly 700 households in the Newvalley, Guershader and Laxdale Lane, Sheshader, Knock and Swordale, and Stornoway General communities will also receive 50 per cent of the biannual lease payments made by Pentland Road Windfarm to the Stornoway Trust as landlord, while there will also be agreed annual payments to the Western Isles Development Trust.
Ben Fletcher, Renault UK’s electric vehicle product manager, said: “This deal underlines that Renault is a leader in the fast-growing EV sector and the rapidly-increasing popularity that our vehicles have with car sharing clubs and the general public alike. As well as offering residents and tourists a great way to save money and help improve air quality, the car sharing scheme perfectly illustrates that our electric offering has the range and ease of use – not to mention driving pleasure – that makes it ideal for all kinds of drivers in all types of areas.”
Those living in or visiting the Outer Hebrides will be able hire one of the Renault Zoes from E-Car Club for £5.50 per hour or £45 per day (24 hours). Power and insurance are both included in the price. The Kangoo panel van is available for £7.50 per hour or £60 per day.
In its drive to help combat congestion, reduce parking and enhance local mobility in an environmentally-friendly and affordable way, E-Car Club has over 20 locations across the UK with several more in the pipeline.
Chris Morris, managing director of E-Car Club said: “I’m delighted to be able to officially announce the launch of E-Car Club in the Outer Hebrides. This is an exceptionally exciting project combining shared e-mobility with renewable power generation in what is undoubtedly a landmark sustainable transport project both in Scotland and around the world.”
“The Islands are a perfect fit for electric car sharing with a community who are already committed to a sustainable lifestyle and current car use limited to relatively short journeys and a frequency which does not always justify private ownership.”
“The intention of E-Car is to provide everyone living in, working in or visiting the region with access to flexible, low cost transport whilst at the same time minimising their environmental impact in what is a truly stunning part of the world.”