Warwickshire Rural Electric Vehicles (WREV) trial

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Warwickshire Rural Electric Vehicles (WREV) trial


DEFRA via Regional Growth Network


Greenwatt Technology

Centre for Business in Society

Project Team

Professor Nigel Berkeley

Dr Andrew Jones

Dr Jason Begley

Project Objectives

The Warwickshire Rural Electric Vehicles (WREV) trial aims to encourage SMEs in rural Warwickshire to evaluate the possibility of switching to an Electric Vehicle (EV). The project provides an SME with a grant to support the lease of an EV for up to two-years. The trial raises awareness of how EV technology can help businesses reduce their carbon footprint, counter increasing petrol and diesel prices, and support business development.

As a partner in the project, Coventry University is responsible for evaluating and monitoring the usage of the vehicles involved in the trial as well as obtaining feedback from the parties involved.

Impact Statement

Most EV trials have focused on an urban setting, but WREV has been specifically designed to support SMEs in rural areas. Through nearly twenty SMEs taking some part in the project, this trial helps to demonstrate how EVs are an effective mobility solution for businesses operating in a rural environment. These drivers and businesses face unique mobility challenges in terms of distances and costs, which can be lessened by adopting alternative forms of mobility such as EVs.

To explain the benefits and costs involved in the switch to EVs, this project will take data from two main sources:

  1. Data will be collected from each of the vehicles involved in the trial. This data includes usage, costs, and emissions, providing the basis to analyse the savings in fuel expenditure a firm will make by switching to an EV.  
  2. Through obtaining feedback from the participants in the trial, the project will look to understand business motivations, perceptions, adaption, usage, benefits, and future intentions.

In combining both the numerical data taken from the vehicles and the feedback from trial participants, case studies detailing the businesses results and experiences during the trial will be completed to help assess the benefits and costs to SMEs of switching to EV technology.

The findings of the research will be disseminated through overall reports into the progress of the trial, monthly reports sent to each SME detailing cost and emissions saving, and academic publications using the data to enhance other on-going work into EVs. 

This project has now completed and findings can be found in the reports below.

Report outline

Executive summary