Get a plug in early

The Advertiser - Motoring - - Cover Story -

THE whole-of-life im­pact of EVs on the com­mu­nity prompted Mit­subishi to in­volve Dr Peter Pud­ney in its in­tro­duc­tion of the i-MiEV.

Dr Pud­ney, se­nior re­search fel­low in ap­plied math­e­mat­ics at the Uni­ver­sity of South Aus­tralia, has re­searched the im­pact of EVs on CO2 emis­sions and the power grid.

He says the range of EVs now is l i mi t e d to about 100-200km, but be­lieves this is more than enough for most ur­ban mo­torists. His re­search shows that in Ade­laide, 98 per cent of daily travel is less than 100km and th­ese trips rep­re­sent 92 per cent of the daily dis­tance cov­ered.

He says a shift to EVs us­ing cur­rent avail­able power would not make a sig­nif­i­cant re­duc­tion in CO2 un­til more use was made of re­new­able en­ergy.

‘‘The mes­sage is don’t aban­don clean cars; aban­don dirty en­ergy,’’ Dr Pud­ney says.

He be­lieves the present na­tional elec­tric­ity grid could cope even if all ur­ban ve­hi­cles b e c a me E V s , s o long as recharg­ing was done at low de­mand t i mes. ‘ ‘ Power d e - mand drops dra­mat­i­cally overnight, so we would need to charge EVs at night,’’ he says.

Mit­subishi Motors Aus­tralia cor­po­rate af­fairs vi­cepres­i­dent Paul Steven­son doesn’t be­lieve recharg­ing in­fra­struc­ture will be a hur­dle to the in­tro­duc­tion of EVs.

‘‘We have grown used to plug­ging in our mo­bile phones at the end of each day,’’ he says. ‘‘EVs will be the same.’’

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