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Freefoam introduced an electric car to its fleet and the company last autumn and has already started to benefit.
George Langley, Area Sales Manager for the Anglian region, has been driving a fully-electric Skoda Enyaq since last year. Freefoam’s Area Sales Managers regularly cover hundreds of miles in a week to meet customers, so their cars need to deliver what they promise when it comes to range performance.
George says: “I wouldn’t go back to a diesel car. Electric cars are the future and it’s something that we should be doing now. In the UK, 27% of CO2 output comes from domestic transport. We need to reduce CO2 and company cars are a great way to do it without much change to infrastructure.”
As a leading manufacturer, Freefoam is incorporating sustainability and circular economy initiatives and principles into every area of its business, and introducing electric vehicles for its sales team is just one strand of that.
Demystifying electric cars
Myth: Batteries die quickly.
Truth: There isn’t a single battery in an EV. The pack contains hundreds of small batteries, so if a few fail over the lifetime of the car, it will have minimal effect on performance.
Myth: There are lots of different types of plugs – you can’t use any charge point.
Truth: Electric cars tend to use the same type of plugs. One for home/office and the other for rapid charging. In Europe, Tesla cars use the same connector as nearly all other electric cars. Tesla cars can use any charge point and non-Tesla cars can use some, but not all, Tesla charging stations.
Myth: The car might be green but it’s charged with non-renewable energy.
Truth: Every charge point uses green electricity, once it’s been built an electric car produces no CO2 emissions.
Alongside the benefits to the environment, there’s a cost advantage to businesses with electric cars. For George’s Skoda Enyaq, the cost per mile currently works out to be just over half when compared to his previous diesel car. Road tax is a lot less and electric vehicles only have to be serviced once every two years, independent of milage, while his previous vehicle had to be serviced every 12,000 miles, which worked out around three times a year.
George adds: “Electric cars are far nicer to drive – it’s quieter, and the acceleration is lovely. Don’t believe the horror stories about waiting for charge stations, the worse situation I have ever found myself in was having to wait 10 minutes. Most of the time you just turn up and tap and go. Charge stations are easy to use, and you can use most of them.
“I normally get around a 220-mile range in the summer. It’s a little less in the winter. On long journeys, you do have to plan stops, but as an Area Sales Manager, you should be doing that anyway. There are handy apps out there, like Zap-Map, that tell you where charging stations are and there are always facilities available for a coffee and a comfort break.
“I normally allow between 20 and 30 minutes for a charge and while I wait, I catch up on a big chunk of my day-to-day emails and queries, which I then don’t have to manage when I get home. It’s a more relaxed journey and I still get home at a similar time to when I had a diesel car – it’s a no-brainer!”
Colin St John, Commercial Director at Freefoam, says: “Sustainability and carbon reduction considerations have become part of our daily thinking across the whole of our business, and introducing electric cars is a logical step for us to take. They will bring a CO2 reduction for the company, benefiting the environment, as well as the company and our teams. Of equal importance was how going electric has changed George’s work pattern for the better.
“Thank you to George for trialling our first electric car; we are looking to move forward with a fully-electric fleet.”
Learn more about Freefoam’s products, service and support by visiting www.freefoam.com or calling 0800 002 9903. Follow @freefoam.
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