The first mass market Volkswagen electric car was always tipped for success, but even Volkswagen might have been surprised at its almost universal appeal which has seen it soar to the top of the charts in Europe. In other news, it's been an exciting few weeks in electric as Skoda gear up their first electric SUV for production, Jaguar and Audi enter an exciting new era and we look at the UK conglomerate leading the line with a zero emission fleet. All of this and more in our electric cars roundup below.
ID.3 celebrates dream launch
While some of us are lamenting our places in the new tier system of Covid-19 measures, there is at least one company that’s happy to be top of the pile. No, it isn’t a tier-one cafe in Cornwall, but German car maker Volkswagen, which saw its new ID.3 electric hatchback become Europe’s best-selling electric car in October. Despite the anti-pandemic measures in place across the continent, figures from data firm Jato Dynamics and published by Fleet News revealed the newcomer had overtaken the Tesla Model 3. In total, almost 10,500 examples were registered across Europe in October alone. And it makes sense - the ID.3 is great value for money and often creeps on to our Top 10 Cheapest Electric Cars list.
Ubitricity powers ahead to become largest UK charging network
Similarly, charging firm Ubitricity has spent the English lockdown celebrating as it lays claim to being the UK’s largest public electric car charging network. According to the company, figures from Zap Map show the network has 2,554 charge points dotted around the country, giving it a market share of 12.5 percent. It’s a rapid change for a company that only had a relatively small network at the beginning of 2019.
Enyaq SUV rolls into production
Speaking of rapid changes, Skoda has begun production of its new Enyaq electric SUV, which is the brand’s second electric car. It follows in the footsteps of the Citigo iV released just last year, and, according to Electrive.com, the first examples are already being built at Skoda’s Mladá Boleslav factory north-east of Prague. The Czech company also builds its Octavia and Karoq models on the same production line, making this the first factory to mix the VW Group’s electric vehicle architecture with that of conventionally powered vehicles.
Jag and Audi join Formula E revolution
You won’t however, find Jaguar and Audi’s latest models on any factory floor. Electrive.com reported the arrival of the companies’ new Formula E cars, which are set to compete in next year’s all-electric racing championship. The 2021 cars both get bespoke powertrains from their respective manufacturers – a revelation assisted by Audi’s withdrawal from the German Touring Car series (DTM) – and fresh suspension, but the futuristic look and now-familiar colour schemes remain in place.
Sky set the pace with 'zero emission' initiative
If you want colour, though, it’s hard to beat Sky’s fleet of vans, which patrol the country with huge graphics to advertise the satellite TV company’s latest and most popular shows. Now, though, the vans will have something interesting under their skin, as well as plastered across it. That’s because the firm has announced the arrival of 151 plug-in hybrid Ford Transit vans, which combine a 1.0-litre engine with an electric motor. The vehicles can do up to 35 miles on electricity alone, with the petrol engine stepping in when the battery runs flat. The vans are part of Sky’s Sky Zero initiative, through which the company aims to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2030.
Mini Electric headed for swish performance upgrade
But while Sky plans for a future with petrol and electric power in (hopefully) perfect harmony, Mini is planning for a future without a petrol engine. The BMW-owned brand has already launched the electric version of its fabled Mini Hatch, and now Electrive.com reports a performance version is on its way. The outlet cites BMW Blog, which claims an “extremely reliable source” has alerted it to plans for a new ‘Mini Electric GP’. Details are unknown, and even the name is just a rumour, but BMW Blog’s imagery purports to show a test mule. Watch this space.
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