One of the biggest concerns of any potential electric vehicle (EV) owner is range. In reality, this is becoming less of an issue as EV technology evolves. However, in order to alleviate any potential concerns, Volvo Car South Africa has announced that it will provide each and every buyer of a Volvo XC40 P8 Recharge with a petrol-engined car for two weeks per year for three years – free of charge.
Pricing for the Volvo XC40 P8 Recharge is R1,2 million and orders are currently being taken. The car is being sold exclusively online via the company’s new website, My Volvo.
The free use of a petrol-engined car is an offer that is unique to Volvo Car South Africa. It is part of a Volvo CARE package that is provided to every Volvo XC40 P8 Recharge purchaser. Other elements of this package include a five-year maintenance plan and warranty (of which the battery is covered for 8 years or 160 000km, whichever occurs first), three years of full comprehensive insurance and a home charger that includes charge cables.
The two-week loan is ideal for an EV driver wishing to go on holiday. The reality is that a long-distance trip in any EV means stopping to recharge from time to time. South Africa has an outstanding network of charging stations, meaning that this is relatively effortless. However, it may not suit someone who wants to reach their holiday destination as fast as possible – hence the loan car.
In time to come, this sort of initiative won’t be required. This is because all EVs are constantly evolving. Batteries are becoming more efficient while their prices are dropping at the same time. However, for the time being, all EVs are designed for urban travel – which normally involves short distances. And, just like a mobile phone, they’re normally charged while the driver is at home or at the office. This will obviously involve a behavioural change; instead of driving the car until the “tank” is almost empty (as per typical behaviour with most cars with internal combustion engines), EV drivers will become accustomed to recharging their car habitually.
However, with the free petrol-engined car on offer, this is something that Recharge customers won’t need to think about on holiday.