Electric vehicles are the future of motoring. Scratch that, electric cars are the PRESENT. Governments across the world are pledging to support the manufacturing of ultra-low-emission vehicles while car brands from Nissan to Maserati have either built electric cars or have plans to do so
But electric cars are also part of the past and their legacy goes as far back as 1837 in Aberdeen, Scotland where the first electric car was built and the technology enjoyed such success that electric battery-powered taxis were even introduced to the streets of London and New York late in the 19th century. Sadly, their popularity didn’t last and with the price of oil decreasing, it was fuel combustion engine cars that dominated the roads.
Until now. Electric cars are once again the necessity. With technology developing rapidly, designs becoming more eye-catching and the world becoming more environmentally conscious, a new era of electric vehicles has been born.
How do they work?
An electric vehicle has an on-board battery that gets charged through an electricity supply storing and using that energy to power an electric motor plus set the wheels in motion. It means the cars have no need for a clutch and gearbox or an exhaust pipe making them much quieter and smoother to drive.
Types of electric cars?
There are three types of cars considered to be ‘electric’.
1. Conventional Hybrids like the Toyota Prius that require a petrol tank but also have an electric motor powered by a battery that charges when the vehicle brakes.
2. Plug-in Hybrids which also have both petrol engines and electric motors but can be plugged-in to charge and can generally run for a short period on electric power before the battery is drained.
3. Battery Electric Vehicles(BEVs) like the Nissan Leaf which run only on electricity. Many major car manufacturers offer one of these, from traditional names like Nissan to specialist manufacturers like Tesla.
How do they charge?
Drivers charge the on-board battery of an electric vehicle using electricity, either from a dedicated charging point or a simple wall socket. Speed of a charge depends on the type of EV you have and the type of power supply you’re connected to. There are three types of charging speeds – slow charging which takes about 5 hours for a full charge, fast charging which takes about an hour, and rapid charging where you can charge your car in just 20 minutes.
Why invest in an electric car?
Owners of an EV have the advantage of much lower running costs. The electricity to charge an EV works out around a third as much per kilometre as buying petrol for the same vehicle.
A battery electric vehicle (BEV) has a lot less moving parts than a conventional petrol/diesel car. There is relatively little servicing and no expensive exhaust systems, starter motors, fuel injection systems, radiators and many other parts that aren’t needed in an EV.
How is NopeaRide playing a part?
NopeaRide is the first ever full electric mobility service in East Africa. Nopea’s electric cars are eco-friendly on the road and also low in life cycle carbon footprint. Nopea pricing model is designed to be low for the passengers and fair and economically sustainable for the drivers. Nopea vehicles are easy to locate and book using NopeaRide mobile app now available for download. Nairobi City can benefit from Nopea electric ride service that helps in solving the increasing emission and urban transportation challenges while creating jobs for the populace.