JOHANNESBURG: 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 re-iterated 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.
SOLD OUT IN FOUR DAYS
Just four days after the all-electric Volvo XC40 P8 Recharge went on sale in South Africa in mid-May, the initial allocation for the country was sold out. This unprecedented demand has seen Volvo Car South Africa secure an additional allocation for customers who narrowly missed out on booking a seat in this revolutionary new SUV, from Sweden’s premier motor manufacturer.
Volvo Cars South Africa Managing Director Greg Maruszewski says the company worked hard to offer this luxury all-electric vehicle at a competitive price: “We knew that there was an appetite in South Africa for electric cars and we were determined to give our customers a competitive price.”
The car’s dual electric motors produce 304kW and result in a 0-100km/h sprint time of just 4,9 seconds. The torque is an equally impressive 660 Nm. The maximum range of the mid-sized all-electric SUV on a single charge is a claimed 418km.