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The man proving electric vehicles are more than ready for Australia

Date: 05-Feb-19
Author: Liam Taylor

Australia has one of the slowest uptakes of electric vehicles in the developed world. Image: John Cameron/Unsplash © John Cameron/Unsplash

Australia has one of the slowest uptakes of electric vehicles in the developed world. Image: John Cameron/Unsplash

A Dutch man has driven from Amsterdam to Adelaide in an effort to prove he viability of electric vehicles.

The 89,000 km journey took adventurer Wiebe Wakker across 33 countries and 4 continents in a converted 2009 Vokswagen Golf. The hope was that by driving such extreme distances, Wakker would quell anxieties over the viability for electric cars to replace traditional vehicles and encourage uptake of the cleaner options. 

According to a report released in June 2017 by the Electric Vehicle Council, Australia has one of the slowest uptake of electric vehicles in the developed world. Only 0.1% of all new car sales were electric in 2016, compared to 29% in Norway, 6% in Wakker’s native Netherlands and 1.5% in China and the UK. 

Wakker told Guardian Australia that his journey proved concerns among Australians over lack of charging stations and travel distance of electric cars were unfounded.

“In Australia the infrastructure for electric cars is still getting off the ground, but it’s already possible to drive all around Australia using charging stations,” Wakker said.

“A lot of people say they are just waiting for the price to come down. Others say the electric car is just not viable for Australia because the distances are so big, which is a bit weird I think. The average daily commute is just 20km or so.”

The 2009 Vokswagen Golf Wakker used on his journey, nicknamed the ‘Blue Bandit’, had a maximum range of 200km. Newer electric cars on the market can now travel up to 500km per trip, making light work of Australia’s long roads.

 

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Liam                                              Taylor
Author: Liam Taylor

Liam is Planet Ark's Communications Coordinator. Prior to joining Planet Ark Liam spent his time studying global environmental issues, travelling Southeast Asia on the cheap and working for a sustainable property management company in Bali, Indonesia.



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