Monday,18 December, 2017
Current issue | Issue 1366, (26 October - 1 November 2017)
Monday,18 December, 2017
Issue 1366, (26 October - 1 November 2017)

Ahram Weekly

Are we ready to charge?

Searching for the needed confidence, retailers and consumers are indecisive regarding the shift towards electric vehicles, reports Mohamed Abdel-Razek

BMW Home charging hub
BMW Home charging hub

With the consumption of fuel increasing every year in Egypt according to Britain’s BP report issued in 2016, no efforts are visible by the Egyptian government to try and cut down some of the fuel consumed on the roads. Most plans are focused on gradually cutting subsidies. Globally, many countries like the US, UK and France have started a gradual plan to encourage hybrid and fully electric cars into the market and allow consumers to buy them as part of their strategy to cut fuel consumption and air pollution. So why is Egypt standing still while the economy is starved for plans to lift some of the pressure off its back?

BMW, for example, brought the new fully electric I3 to Automech Formula last month to tease consumers. But for the Egyptian consumer this might not be so convincing. The BMW I3 2016 offers various options for charging the vehicle. One is charging the car from an ordinary 120V standard household outlet, but that will take more than 20 hours to fully charge the vehicle for a 183km journey with speeds of up to 130 km/h. An optional home charging station offered by BMW will cut it to 4h to charge the car, and with the optional DC fast charging package (SAE), a public DC charging station can charge the car for 80 per cent of its capacity in 20-30 minutes, not a practical option in Egypt as there are no DC public stations anywhere in the country.

So getting a car that keeps you going 183km and then needs to be charged for approximately a day is impractical for the consumer. But imagine if such vehicles are encouraged in the country with various public stations that rely on solar energy cells set up. Imagine how the economy in Egypt will benefit from such a move.

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