Story image

EV campervans to hit NZ roads in July

13 May 2019

Jucy Rentals is about to unleash the first wave of fully electric rental campervans in New Zealand in July  – and each camper will be able to travel approximately 200 kilometres on each charge.

The locally-designed and manufactured campers show that there’s growing demand for sustainable transport options in New Zealand tourism.

In 2018, two French tourists conducted a five-month trial of a prototype electric camper. They drove more than 13,000 kilometres to 45 locations around the country. 

The trial analysed the availability and cost of the charging infrastructure – and it also got a sense of what Kiwi locals think about electric vehicles.

"The trial was a real-world proof of concept for us; two visiting Parisian tourists were able to navigate all ends of the country in our specially designed EV campervan,” says Jucy CEO Tim Alpe.

"We have since been able to analyse the data from their experience and incorporate it into the new vehicles, which have lighter weight interiors and can travel significantly longer on a single charge.”

People will be able to travel 180-200 kilometres on each charge, and would require a 40-60 stop at a fast charge station. 

The campers also have a rooftop solar panel that charges a second battery while driving. The campers are also kitted with a wireless internet router, device charging ports, induction cooking, and a mobile app that reports battery levels.

"Ultimately if we can switch as many tourists from an expensive imported commodity such as petrol or diesel to a low cost, renewable energy source, that allows them to inject that additional disposable income from their travel budget into other parts of the New Zealand economy,” says Aple.

"Since our trial last year, a number of tourism operators and regional towns have seen the potential opportunity around EV travellers and invested in new charging infrastructure in the hope of attracting more visitors using this mode of transport.”

"If we aggregate that additional time and spend over thousands of visitors annually, it is a significant win for our regions, our environment and the country's brand image,' says Alpe.

He adds that the production of the first EV campervans was made possible in part by funding from EECA's contestable low emission vehicles fund.

The self-contained vehicles will rent at approximately the same daily cost as their new ICE models but at the equivalent of about 30 cents per litre and will have a fraction of the running costs; savings which will make it less expensive for tourists to travel around New Zealand.

Vehicles will be available to book this month and will be on New Zealand roads from July.

Sony and Microsoft to explore strategic partnership
“Our partnership brings the power of Azure and Azure AI to Sony."
Hands-on PSVR preview: Blood & Truth
PlayStation VR fans who picked up a copy of VR Worlds with their headset will have had a taster of SIE London Studio’s Blood & Truth.
Google puts Huawei on the Android naughty list
Google has apparently suspended Huawei’s licence to use the full Android platform, according to media reports.
Govt & Canterbury Uni pour $7m into gaming research
The funding will be used to boost the University of Canterbury’s Applied Immersive Gaming Initiative, which will research and accelerate public use of immersing gaming applications.
This Feilding school has just won an international robotics award (again!)
“In typical Kiwi fashion, our students think laterally to solve challenges, build prototypes, test and retest until they have a working model. All on their own time and all with their own ideas."
New educational game to boost construction skills shortage
The game has been designed to give future business people and construction workers a taste of what it’s like to build their own company.
DJI launches Osmo Action - a handheld action cam with a difference
Hold on to your skis, snowboards, or your camera-mounted stunt cars, because DJI has launched Osmo Action camera.
Study finds NZ mobile services in good stead due to competition
The study found indicators such as pricing, coverage and choice of mobile services were trending in a positive direction for consumers.