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EV car plugged in to charge with a field backdrop

Warwickshire Rural Electric Vehicle Trial (WREV)

Funder

DEFRA
Rural Growth Network

Value to Coventry University

£1,000 + in-kind contribution

Project team

Dr Jason Begley, Dr Andrew Jones, Dr David Jarvis, Professor Nigel Berkeley

Collaborators

Greenwatt Sustainable Technologies

Duration of project

01/01/2014 - 31/12/2016

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Project overview

The 'Warwickshire Rural Electric Vehicle' (WREV) trial was designed to support small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in rural Warwickshire in examining their options for switching to electric vehicles (EVs). Through switching to EV technology it was hoped that these businesses would be able to counter increasing fossil fuel costs, improve their carbon footprint and stimulate business development.

WREV was funded by the Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) and led by Warwickshire County Council on behalf of the Coventry and Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership (CWLEP). The project was managed by Greenwatt Sustainable Solutions, a sustainable technology consultancy based in South Warwickshire, with support from Coventry University.

As a partner in the project the Centre for Business in Society (CBiS), on behalf of Coventry University, was responsible for evaluating the performance of the vehicles in the trial. The data on vehicle performance was provided by Quartix, a company specialising in tracking devices, and was analysed by CBiS and sent to project participants in the form of a monthly report. Additionally, CBiS also monitored feedback from the drivers and businesses at different points in the trial. This included a questionnaire at the start of the trial and an in-depth interview towards the end of the project period which evaluated the performance and benefits of using an EV in the business.

Project objectives

The vast majority of demonstrator trials relating to electric vehicles have centred on understanding how these solutions work in urban environments. However, the key objective of the WREV trial was to assess how these technologies could work in rural settings and help SMEs achieve business goals related to lowering transport costs, improving their carbon footprint, and expanding their activities.

The purpose of the evaluation activity was to understand how these vehicles had been utilised by participants in order to establish the potential cost and emissions savings obtained by these businesses adopting an EV.

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