5 signs of electric vehicle acceleration in New Zealand

3 May 2016

The time is ripe for action to stimulate the inevitable shift to the electric car in New Zealand. Here are five big recent changes that make that clearer than ever.

1.    Tesla Model 3 speeding into New Zealand

Only a handful of wealthy enthusiasts have had the Tesla owning experience so far in New Zealand. But that looks set to change.

Projected to cost about NZD$60,000 in New Zealand the Tesla 3 is by no means cheap. But Kiwis have already pre-ordered. Production is set to begin at the end of 2017. Even more of us will be aspiring electric vehicle (EV) owners when we get blown away by them at the lights.

2.  Buses going electric 

New Zealand-born Tesla co-founder Ian Wright has made a US$30 million deal to switch Infratil’s NZ Bus fleet to electric. The Wellington-based bus company has just over 1,000 buses. It will start the transition by the end of 2016. We’re sure other councils and bus operators will be watching with interest.

3.  Nissan Leafs for $15,000 on TradeMe

Most of New Zealand’s used cars come from Japan. It’s no surprise that we are starting to see used Leafs turning up here. An estimated 15,000 new Leafs will be sold in Japan this year. We can expect to see this trickle grow to a steady stream. The appeal of not buying fuel and not fuelling climate change could make your next car a used EV.  And in the meantime, look out for them on the road.

4.   Air NZ switches its ground fleet to electric

Air New Zealand has announced it is switching more than 75 light vehicles in its ground fleet to all-electric. The firm reckons this will save about 65,000 litres of fuel per year – and help with their carbon emissions reduction efforts. The fleet market will be a key one for electric vehicles. It will only increase as cost savings increase. Where big players like Air New Zealand lead, others will follow.

5.  Holland and India want to go electric

Both the Dutch and Indian parliaments have taken the first steps to make every car on their roads electric within the next 15 years. There’s a long way to go to make their plans a reality. But the sheer fact they have stated that intention shows where the world is going. What if New Zealand could be that bold?

On May 10th SBN is co-hosting a morning workshop with the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority, at Spark’s HQ in Victoria Street West, Auckland. This will establish a task force and create a road-map to accelerate the adoption of electric vehicles here. 

If you would like find out more, please contact Phil at SBN, phil@sustainable.org.nz