Guillaume Séguin


New on the market – Renault Captur E-Tech 160   Recently updated !

Did you know that Renault was the first manufacturer to sell a plug-in electric vehicle? The Kangoo Elect’road was actually a range extender BEV (Like the BMW i3 Rex), launched in… 2003. Around 500 were sold but since this model, Renault has denied any sort hybrid options preferring to focus on BEVs for the last 10 years. In 2020 Renault launches an E-Tech series of products, available with a plug (Captur, Mégane Estate) or without (Clio). The Captur is the first to arrive in Ireland.

The powertrain is interesting: 160hp out of 2 electric motors and a 1.6-liter petrol engine, that can work in parallel or series, with a very innovative clutch-less gearbox (similar to what Renault uses in their formula 1 vehicles), with 4 gears for the engine and 2 gears for the electric motor.

The battery pack has a capacity of 9.8kWh, for WLTP range of 50km, and can charge at up to 3.7kW on a type 2 connector (in 3 hours). It will take a bit over 4 hours on a 3-pin household socket. The boot is slightly affected by the hybrid equipment, with a floor that’s not as low as int he ICE version (but that can still conceal charging cables underneath)

Renault Captur E-tech boot
The 10” fully digital display is standard

In terms of technology, this Captur has the best of what Renault currently offers: A 10” digital driver’s display, seen in the Zoé, a 9.3” portrait central screen and flying console (also seen in the Zoé), all standard, and optional adaptive cruise control with lane centring and stop and go function.

Flying console

As for the rest of the equipment, the Captur comes as a unique S-Edition trim, that is at the top of the Captur ICE range, with added flying console and fully digital driver’s display. Despite these extra features, the Captur E-Tech remains just under €30,000, at a similar price as the less powerful petrol automatic engines, and even €1,500 below the 1.5 dCi 115 automatic version! There is also an E-Tech launch edition, with a specific presentation, for €1,000.
At this price point, there are very few PHEVs available, the closest competitor being the Kia e-Niro, slightly larger but €3,000 more expensive and less powerful. The Hyundai Ioniq is €5,000 more expensive with better equipment, but without offering more interior space. This makes the Captur, already appreciated for its looks, a very good proposition for anyone looking for a family PHEV.

Renault Captur E-Tech 160 S-Edition – €29,995
Renault Captur E-Tech 160 launch edition – €30,995

Prices include VAT, VRT, VRT rebate and excludes delivery charges


IEVOA Press Release – ESB Ecars AC Pay Charging   Recently updated !

IEVOA Press Release  – 10th July 2020

Paid charging on the ESB ecars standard AC network

On Wednesday (8th July 2020), ESB ecars announced details of the arrangements to be put in place for paid charging on their standard AC public charging infrastructure for electric vehicles.

New ESB Ecars 22kW AC charge point

The full ESB ecars press release can be found here: 

https://esb.ie/ecars/news/2020/2020/07/08/esb-ecars-introduce-pricing-on-the-standard-chargers-to-support-continued-ev-network-expansion

In summary:

  • Paid charging on standard AC chargers will commence on 10th August 2020
  • Charging will be priced per kWh used with two price plan options:
    • ‘Pay As You Go’ at 26.8c per kWh
    • ‘Membership’ with a €4.60 monthly subscription fee at 23c per kWh
  • No overstay fees will apply at this time but usage will be monitored and these may be introduced at some later stage if needed
  • Fees will not apply to the network in Northern Ireland at this time.

The IEVOA is broadly supportive of the measures announced having long held the view that paid charging across all ESB ecars public infrastructure is positive for current EV owners and will also support on-going EV adoption in line with the objective of the Climate Action Plan.  However, on this occasion we are somewhat disappointed with the pricing.

We consulted with ESB ecars on these measures earlier in the year following a survey of our members to whom we posed the following question: ‘Assuming charging is costed per kWh on the standard AC charging network, how much would you be prepared to pay?

The results were as follows from a total of 195 responses to this question:

  • < 10c per kWh – 26% (51 responses)
  • 10-20c per kWh – 41%  (81 responses)
  • 20-30c per kWh – 12% (23 responses)
  • It should remain free – 17% (34 responses)
  • Unsure – 3% (6 responses).

With the majority of owners expressing a desire to see pricing below 20c kWh we are therefore disappointed to see pricing pitched above this. With this in mind we spoke with ESB ecars following their announcement in order to understand the rationale behind their pricing decision.  These are primarily to:

  • Set the pricing between what customers pay to charge at home and what they pay at an ESB ecars rapid charge point (currently 26.8c on the ‘Membership’ plan or 30.5c on the ‘Pay As You Go’ plan)
  • To fund on-going maintenance, support and further investment in the public charging network.  

Whilst not delighted with the pricing we understand the need and trust the methodology applied.  Furthermore, paid charging opens the way for competition allowing other charging network operators to bring their plans to fruition.  This can only be positive for EV owners with more chargers, more choice and competition on pricing.  Meanwhile, the price point selected will still ensure that EVs are cheaper to run than their ICE equivalents, whilst encouraging those able to avail of home charging to do so as a preference.

Legacy ESB Ecars 22kW AC charge point

We are conscious that one group of EV owners (and potential owners) particularly impacted by this change will be those who cannot currently charge at their home.  As part of our objectives for this coming year we will be intensifying our lobbying efforts to have legislation put in place to ensure that all potential EV owners can avail of home charging wherever they may live, with the owners put on landlords, management companies and local councils to provide or at least allow for these facilities which is not always the case currently.  This is essential in driving widespread EV adoption in Ireland. 

IEVOA will be monitoring this roll-out closely from 10 August and will keep in close contact with ESB ecars over the coming months, passing on feedback from our members and ensuring their voices are heard.

Contact : pr@irishevowners.ie


Irish PHEV Sales – June 2020   Recently updated !

The PHEV market is still outperforming not only the ICE market but also BEV market, whether it is for new registrations or for used imports.

BMW X5 45e

New registrations are up 8% but volumes are low like any month of June. However the more surprising fact is that used imports are up 87% (Diesel are down 53% and petrol down 38%). In June, for every 5 petrol import, 1 PHEV was imported, and the ratio is at 13 to 1 if you compare PHEV to Diesel. If 13 to 1 sounds still high for you, just think that in June 2019 that ratio was at 49 to 1 ! PHEVs are no longer a niche market.

This month, the BMW X5 is leading the new sales, and the Mercedes C350e is on top of the used import list.

Mercedes C350e

Irish BEV Sales – June 2020

Like any month of June, sales are very slow before the July registration plate change. As for previous months, sales are down due to Covid, and just like in the previous months, EVs are less affected than ICEs. BEVs market share is still up to 4.15% in June, and 3.58% in 2020 to date (vs 2.42% in H1 2019).

The Tesla Model 3 is still on top, with more surprisingly the VW E-Golf. Note that the flavor of the month is the luxurious Porsche Taycan, with a first unit registered.

Porsche Taycan

As for used imports, just 15 units have been registered, with is still much less that last year, however the end of the lockdown shows progress over April (1 registration) and May (4) of this year.


Guest post – Leaf Battery Upgrade – Quadruple the Range (part 1)   Recently updated !

By Eamon Stack – June 21st, 2020

When Emile of Muxsan turned on his Gen 1 Leaf to display a range of 440km, I was truly amazed. I only need half that range in Ireland to make my Leaf more than a city car. Was this YouTuber for real? I discovered that Emile and his colleague Sjaak had developed a range of upgrade options for all Nissan Leafs and are working on upgrade options for other EVs.

Eamon’s Leaf at Carnsore Point

The problem is that Nissan, while offering rather expensive replacement battery packs, have not offered an upgrade. The EV community needed someone to develop a solution. In Europe, Emile Nijssen and Sjaak Bloemberg formed a cooperative, Muxsan, and have developed a range of options for community members. There is a Canadian option also (used by Robert Llewellyn) and others projects in development.

A small group of Irish EV friends have Vectrix VX-1 electric motorcycles and have had to upgrade their battery packs over the past 5 years. We are also Leaf owners. We decided to explore Muxsan options. We were not disappointed! Muxsan developed the software to tell a Leaf that its pack had increased in kWh capacity, for charging and discharge, and the hardware (CAM-bridge) to communicate with the Leaf. They had delivered a reliable solution. What’s more, their battery extension packs protect and extend the life of the more vulnerable Leaf packs.

Muxsan gives two options to increase range: 1. Add an extension pack in the boot; or 2. replace (swap) the modules in the battery pack with higher capacity modules. Or you can do both and get 440km range they call Leaf+. The extension packs come in two sizes: 9kWh or 18kWh.

Barry and I have opted for option 1. (18kWh) and Sean went for option 2. Sean has already completed his upgrade and boasts a range of 250km. I have booked in my blue 2012 Leaf for the extension pack in September. Barry and I will bring the car over on a trailer via Holyhead and Channel Tunnel. And we will bring back a kit to upgrade Barry’s 2011 Leaf in Ireland.

The cost of my upgrade is €5990, the same cost for Barry’s kit. No discount for first kit (more later). Sean had sourced his own 40kWh Leaf pack (from a breakers yard in Mayo) and went to Muxsan for training (Sean is an electronic engineer). His kit cost €1500.

Muxsan also offer an upgrade to the the AC charger, to three phase electricity, increasing the charging rate to 22kW. In addition, Muxsan supply a towing hitch for a Leaf. See www.muxsan.com

We will post an update to our experience in September. Look out for our next article on the Vectrix upgrade adventure and the latest upgrades using Leaf 40kWh pack modules.

Vectrix VX-1

If you are interested in getting an upgrade in Ireland, we could bring back more kits from The Netherlands and upgrade your Leaf after we complete Barry’s. If there is a bigger demand, we will work with IEVOA to develop a scalable model for Irish EV battery upgrades.

EVs can last three times longer than ICE cars. This reduces the annualised carbon footprint of the vehicle manufacture threefold. To date the limiting factor for EV lifespan has been the battery. While the million mile battery is the current hot topic for future EVs, Muxsan really offer a solution for many EV drivers in Ireland today.

Stay tuned for part 2, after the summer!
You want to contact the author for more information about this upgrade ? Email Eamon Stack : eamon@eamonstack.com

Eamon’s Leaf at Carnsore Point

About Eamon Stack
Eamon Stack is a computer engineer, award-winning social entrepreneur, co-founder and leader of diverse organisations and campaigns including technology charity Enclude, MakePovertyHistory Dublin Rally, Slí Eile and Garvaghy Road Residents’ Coalition. He has been driving EVs for over 12 years. 


2020 IEVOA AGM

Thanks to all participants of this first virtual AGM.

If you missed it, please watch the video recording :

Here is the slide-deck of the AGM.

The new list of committee members is available here.

The chairman’s report is also available to read.

We would like to make this -short- year 2020 a success and we thank all members for their support. If you haven’t renewed your membership yet, please do so visiting the page below :

The 2020 IEVOA Committee


New on the market – Opel Corsa-e

9-June-2020 – By Guillaume Séguin

Now that the showrooms are reopening, newly launched EVs are landing and the awaited Opel Corsa-e is finally available in Ireland.

This car is built on the same plateform as the Peugeot e-208 and DS 3 Crossback E-tense. It is identical in terms of technical specifications : A 100kW motor (136hp) powered by a 50kWh (around 45kwh useable) battery pack. Compared to the ICE version, the practicality isn’t affected, same boot size and interior space. The only difference is that you will not be able to order the optional spare wheel.

Corsa-e Elite in Power Orange (exclusive to the Corsa-e)

Two trim levels are offered and they are pretty well equipped, with no options.

The “base” Corsa-e SC includes a 7-inch colour touchscreen with multimedia Navi infotainment system, rain-sensitive windscreen wipers, automatic headlight control, automatic anti-dazzle rear-view mirror, climate control, alectric parking brake, rear parking distance sensors, keyless start, Alarm, front and rear electric windows and 16-inch bi-colour alloy wheels. Nothing essential is missing.

Opel Corsa-e SC in Voltaic Blue (exclusive to the Corsa-e)

If you want more luxury, for an extra €3,462, you can get the Corsa-e Elite. It includes a multimedia Navi Pro infotainment system on a bigger 10-inch colour touchscreen, a 7-inch digital instrument cluster, heated front seats 
and steering wheel, driver’s and front passenger’s seat height adjuster, centre armrest with storage, a fabric/premium leather effect seat trim, keyless open and start, larger 17-inch bi-colour alloy wheels, IntelliLux LED® Matrix headlights, panoramic rear-view camera, front parking distance sensors, electrically folding door mirrors, black roof and A-pillars, high gloss black B-pillars and roof spoiler, dark-tinted rear windows, side blind spot alert and flank guard and chrome-effect lower side window trim.

Compared to the competition, Peugeot e-208 and Renault Zoé, it is pretty well positioned : The Zoé starts at €26,990 with a bigger battery, but doesn’t have as much kit. The Peugeot e-208 prices are similar but the Opel offers a bit more. The smaller Mini Hatch Cooper SE can compare in terms of price but its battery pack is much smaller returning just 232km WLTP range.

Opel Corsa-e SC – €27,338
Opel Corsa-e Elite – €30,800

Prices includes VRT relief, SEAI grant and exclude metallic paint and delivery charges.


Irish PHEV Sales – May 2020

In a car market collapsing, PHEV sales are surprisingly up, by 8% to a 5.43% market share for May. So far this year, PHEVs are representing 2.19% of total car sales. The new BMW 330e is still going strong and the BMW X5 45e is at the second spot in May (4th year to date). The Kia e-Niro still leads the 2020 year. See table for more details.

BMW X5 45e

Used imports have dipped a lot of course (-74% in May) but that is still another 50 PHEVs on the Irish roads. See the table below for more details.

BMW 330e

Irish BEV Sales – May 2020

Since dealers reopened their doors mid-May, car sales are now picking up again, compared to April, but are still very weak at -72% compared to May 2019. BEVs are in a better place, with sales decreasing by only 13% to 148 units. This resulted in a very good market share, 8.45% of the total car market.

Tesla Model 3, leader again in May

Tesla has delivered 50 Model 3, not only the best selling BEV this month again but also 4th best selling car overall. Since the beginning of this year the Leaf is still ahead, but the Model3 is just 20 units behind and might get the crown very soon… The Renault Zoé ZE 50 have now started being delivered and sales should increase next month.

See below the used import table

The Nissan Leaf is still the most popular used imported BEV


IEVOA AGM – Voting for the 2020 Committee

Dear IEVOA Members,

As part of our AGM on Saturday 6th June we are required to elect our committee for the coming year. The IEVOA constitution allows for a maximum of eleven committee members.  As in previous years we have a number of existing committee members who wish to continue on along with some recently co-opted members and expressions of interest which we have already considered.  These form the current committee’s recommended candidates as follows:

Simon Acton – Chair
Guillaume Séguin – PR
Michael Sherlock – Treasurer
Thomas McGuire – Secretary
Paul Kelly – IT
Kevin Dowling – Membership Administrator
Bart Connolly – Without Portfolio
Jan-Bart Spang – Without Portfolio


We will seek support for election of these candidates, unless there are any direct challenges.

This leaves three open positions, we don’t have to fill these, but we are seeking nominations for these positions which will initially be ‘without portfolio’ but will be allocated assigned tasks in due course. We need help with activities such as (but not limited to) event planning & organisation, lobbying, establishing membership partners & incentives and representing IEVOA at industry events, conferences and in the media. This coming year we plan to move to a monthly cadence for committee meetings, which will typically be held online, while retaining a quarterly or bi-annual routine for physical get togethers.

In particular, we are keen this year to seek some female nominations, we’ve had zero gender balance on the committee this last year and we feel this is important moving forwards with so many female EV drivers out there.  But that doesn’t mean you men folk are off the hook, please do nominate yourselves if you’d like to be involved.  If you’d like to know more about what is involved in being a committee member then please email chair@irishevowners.ie

Note that the election will be via an on-line vote as part of the AGM, this vote is open only to paid IEVOA members, so do renew your membership ASAP is you’d like to vote.

So, please email pr@irishevowners.ie if you would like to put yourself forward as a candidate, nominations must be received by email no later than Wednesday 3rd June.  You can of course nominate yourself for any of the committee positions if you so choose.  We will contact any nominated candidates ahead of the AGM on 6th June to discuss further.  Note that you are required to be a paid IEVOA member in order to hold a position on the committee.


———————————————

Simon Acton
IEVOA Chairman
Chair@irishevowners.ie


2020 IEVOA AGM – Registration

Dear members,
This year the IEVOA AGM will be held online, on June 6th 2020, 2pm.
Before RSVPing to this event, please make sure you are registered as a member of the IEVOA (free or paid). You can register as a IEVOA member here

AGM registrations will be closed on Wednesday June 3rd.

And if you have items for the Q & A section, or motions, please send us an email at pr@irishevowners.ie before June 1st.
Thank you.


Irish PHEV Sales – April 2020

Just like for BEVs, the PHEV segment is also less suffering than the rest of the market, but still it is sinking by 88.8% in April to 3.2% market share (vs 1.1% in 2019). Along with the Opel Corsa-e (BEV), the German brand introduces this month the Grandland X PHEV. And Ford starts selling a direct competitor for the Grandland : The Kuga PHEV.

Opel Grandland X PHEV

See used imports table below.

Ford Kuga PHEV

Irish BEV Sales – April 2020

As expected, car sales in April collapsed in Ireland, like in many other countries, by 96%. BEVs are doing a bit better at -83% and a unexpected 14.5% of the market, thanks once again to the Tesla Model 3. And it is even the 6th most popular car all energies considered…. Of course this month everything is to be taken with a pinch of salt, when you know that this month best selling car is the Toyota Land Cruiser, all of which are actually for Irish Defense Forces!

But despite this gloomy situation, we have a newcomer ! The first Opel Corsa-e has been registered last month. See the table below for full details.

Opel Corsa-e

And just 1 used import this month !

Tesla Model S

Irish PHEV Sales – March 2020

Just like for BEVs, the PHEV market is doing much better than the ICE one (-62% year on year) in these difficult times. New sales have rose 69% to 244 units, bringing the market share to 3.96% ! Added to the BEVs, this brings a combined market share of just over 10% for BEV/PHEV. 1 out of 10 new cars has a socket !

Volvo XC40 T5

In terms of models, Kia Niro and Mitsubishi Outlander are sharing the top spot with 55 registrations each. There are 2 new PHEVs entering the market this month : The Volvo XC40 and the Peugeot 3008, which powertrain will be introduced this year in a number of vehicles from the PSA group ( DS 7 Crossback and DS 9, Peugeot 508, Citroen C5 Aircross or Opel Grandland X)

Peugeot 3008 Hybrid4

See below the table for used imports.


Irish BEV Sales – March 2020

Due to Covid-19 and closure of many dealers, it’s not a surprise to see the new car market sinking in March (-62% compared to March 2019). However on the BEV side, things are much more positive with sales up 21.8% to 379 units.

The first Renault Zoé ZE.50 have been delivered…

This difference is mostly due to the Tesla Model 3 (146 registrations) as we’re at the last month of the quarter and sales have accelerated (at least at the beginning of the month…). The “older” BEVs (Nissan Leaf, Hyundai Kona, BMW i3…) are suffering but new models are coming with this month the first Renault Zoé ZE 50 and the Mini Hatch Cooper SE. All in all, the market share for new BEVs is at a very impressive 6.14% for March and 3.27% to date this year. See table below for details.

… and so have the Mini Hatch Cooper SE

The used import market is not as healthy unfortunately with registrations collapsing by 52% to just 25 vehicles. Note the that one MG ZS has been imported, a first.


IEVOA-ESB Ecars meeting

The IEVOA met with ESB Ecars on Thursday 19th March 2020 to discuss about its contingency plan during the COVID19 pandemic, but also the current and future infrastructure.

Contingency planning

o    Maintenance and operation of the network is continuing as normal, the situation will remain under review

o    Customer Call Centre is business as usual and have the ability to work remotely also

o    ESB will stay in communication with IEVOA as the situation develops

o    IEVOA will assist with messaging their members to ensure compliance with HSE guidance in relation to Covid 19 when using chargers. ESB to share planned posts or communications.(Done)

Climate Action Fund Project

·         AC replacement programme

o    130 chargers replaced since October – replacements will continue as issues arise with the chargers

o    Uptime significantly improved with the replacement programme (≥ 95% network uptime)

o    Some issues with a small number of new chargers and this is being investigated with the manufacturer

o    Dublin Port first trial unit of new ‘compact’ fast chargers – these units will be used to replace up to 50 existing AC chargers over the next three years

o    The first of these installations are planned for the coming weeks

o    Focus will be on routes and large towns such as the M/N3

o    As they will be using existing electrical supply they will prioritise connector power based on the number of vehicles connected – this will be clearly labelled on the online map

·         Multi charger site hubs

o    Galway Plaza, M6 and Kilcullen, M9 are the first multi charger sites but the current set up is temporary. – One of the existing fast chargers will be replaced with a charger which can charge one car at 150kW or split the charge between two cars. Meaning three cars can charge simultaneously at those locations. We expect delivery of the 150kW chargers in the summer

o    These type of sites (50kW + 150kW) will be quicker and require less infrastructure to build than the 4-8 vehicle hubs and so it is expected that more of these will be delivered in 2020

o    Once final commercial details are worked out with site hosts an announcement will be made on the first phase of hub locations. IEVOA will be issued with these locations in advance of them being published. ESB to confirm likely timing

Introduction of pricing for AC charging

o    As stated previously, ESB had intended to introduce pay for use of the Standard AC chargers following a replacement programme, given that over 130 chargers have been replaced to date and that availability levels on the network have improved significantly, ESB had intended to introduce pricing in the coming months. However, these plans are now on hold in light of current COVID-19 situation. ESB are reviewing IEVOA’s feedback on the service and potential pricing options, and will provide at least a month’s notice of the introduction of pay for use of the Standard AC network.

o    Given the number of locations and types of use case for the Standard AC chargers it is not intended to introduce an overstay fee. However, the option will be retained to introduce one if the network isn’t being used appropriately.

Overview of the results of the IEVOA survey

o    IEVOA provided an overview of the results of their member  survey (c.200 respondents)

o    IEVOA to provide a distilled version of the comments  for written response by ESB

o    ESB to provide a written response for each of the chargers which were identified as having an issue

o    ESB to look at issues around the accuracy of the information being provided on the map, particularly availability   


2020 AGM – COVID-19 update

IEVOA Members,

In light of the Irish government’s announcement yesterday regarding the measures now in place to tackle COVID-19 it is with regret that we have taken the decision to postpone the IEVOA AGM scheduled for Saturday 4th April. We will reschedule as soon as it is practical to do so and provide at least 14 days notice of the revised date.

In the meantime, if you have any immediate issues or concerns you would like to raise please email pr@irishevowners.ie or chair@irishevowners.ie.

Best Regards,

Simon Acton, IEVOA Chairman


Irish PHEV Sales – February 2020

In February PHEV sales grew by 33% over the same month last year, representing 1.64% of the car market. The total to date is already 788 units, over half of what has been sold for the whole 2019 year (1335).

The Kia Niro PHEV is still leading ahead of the BMW 330e and the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV. The Skoda Superb iV is not too far behind with another 12 units registered. The newcomer of the month is the BMW X3 xDrive 30e.

BMW X3 xDrive 30e

On the used import market, the Mitsubishi Outlander is finally leaving its crown to the BMW 530e. The Mercedes C350e is growing in popularity and is now just behind the japanese SUV.

BMW 530e

Irish BEV Sales – February 2020

2nd March 2020 – By Guillaume Séguin

Just like in January, BEV sales grew more than the rest of the market, but that growth was modest (+12.4%), with a market share of 2.88%. To date, 1294 BEVs have been registered.

Tesla Model 3

The Tesla Model 3 is the winner this month with 154 sales. And just like last month, sales of last year joint-leaders Nissan Leaf and Hyundai Kona disappoint. Newcomers compensate (Kia E-Soul and E-Niro, Audi E-Tron). The Renault Zoé is still waiting for its Ze50 variant to come but that’ll be for March. Its archenemy the Peugeot e-208 is the newcomer of the month with its first 3 registrations. 51 used BEVs were also imported this month.

Peugeot e-208