The green revolution is coming but don't panic, drivers told

The future of motoring is green, but new government plans for electric vehicles are still a long way off, says leading Fylde Coast motor dealer.

Tuesday, 1st August 2017, 2:59 pm
Updated Monday, 11th September 2017, 12:47 pm
New Leaf: the number of electric cars on the market is set to double
New Leaf: the number of electric cars on the market is set to double

There is no need for a ‘knee-jerk reaction’ to government plans banning petrol and diesel vehicles, according to car dealers.

The government recently published its clean air strategy, favouring electric cars.

As part of the strategy the government said it would ban new diesel and petrol cars and vans in the UK from 2040 in a bid to cut down on air pollution.

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However, industry experts have said the timeline is too ambitious and moved to reassure traditional fuel drivers that there was no need to panic.

Phil Barski, assistant sales manager for The Chorley Group Blackpool, urged drivers not to panic.

“I don’t think these changes will be as soon as 2040,” he said. “The change will be very gradual, over a longer period of time. There's no need for a knee jerk reaction.”

He welcomed the news, saying it will spur innovation within the electric engine market as manufacturers race to develop a premium driving experience. He has already noticed the electric vehicles market take off.

“Within a very short period of time the modern, electric vehicles that have been available have doubled and will again double in range and choice within the next 12 to 18 months,” said Mr Barski.

One of the car manufacturers leading the way is Nissan, whose Nissan Leaf, a family hatchback with zero emissions, has pioneered electric motoring in the UK.

“Nissan is well ahead of any other car manufacturer with the world’s best-selling electric vehicle which is The Nissan Leaf,” he added.

Electric cars are proving popular with some consumers, not only for their lower impact on the environment, but also as they offer a quieter, cost effective, easy to maintain driving experience.

Nevertheless, some motorists remain unconvinced.

Mr Barski said there were “questions over the range of choice,” currently on the market when it came to electric and hybrid cars, with considerably fewer options available to buyers than petrol or diesel cards.

There is also concern over ‘range anxiety’ – the worry that as electric cars usually travel 100-200 miles on each charge, drivers may get caught short, miles from a recharge point.

The issue is likely to be resolved as more charging points become available, charge times shorten and new models emerge.

“Nissan are looking to launch a new Nissan Leaf with 250 miles per charge by the start of 2018,” he said. “This should cover any driver’s needs.”

In the “very far future” Mr Barski said he could imagine a carbon and emission free car industry, by which stage the electric car market should have evolved considerably.

This week’s announcement also includes more than £250m from the government to help councils tackle emissions from diesel vehicles.

However, the announcement stopped short of meeting the demands for a diesel scrappage scheme. The government will hold a consultation over a possible scrappage scheme in the autumn.

Mr Barski said recent debate about the future of diesel engines had not affected the way people were purchasing cars “at all in any way”.

The Chorley Group Blackpool is embracing the electric car market as one of Nissan’s chosen Innovation Specialists for the UK.

The family business has fully trained Innovation Specialists who are on hand to talk to customers and advise on which electric and hybrid vehicle is right for them. Call 01253 400510 or visit the showroom on Amy Johnson Way, South Shore, Blackpool.