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20 October 2020

Paul on Discover the e-car

"An electric car is perfect for small trips on B roads"

Paul Beijnsberger does a lot of driving. As an employee of the Province of Limburg working at the Wegbeheer (road management) department, he needs to quickly get to accident sites on provincial roads. His employer provides him with a powerhouse of a car for work, displaying the employer's logo. Driving an electric vehicle in a working capacity is not on the cards yet. However, he is thinking of switching to a more environmentally friendly mode of transport at home. ‘My wife and I were able to experience what it is like to drive an electric car thanks to Discover the e-car.’

Paul's wife is a doctor's assistant. She's been working at the surgery throughout the coronavirus pandemic. ‘My wife drove the Nissan Leaf from our house in Schimmert to her work in Bocholtz for three days a week. The range of the car was enough for a whole week of driving. We charged the car at home a few times. Our house has solar panels, so we always have electricity to spare. I was finally able to use all this excess electricity to charge the e-car.’ 

The car recharges itself when going downhill

‘As we live in a village, we often drive on B roads. I used the electric car to take the kids to their sports clubs, do my shopping, and we even used it to go on a trip to Zeeland. I noticed that the car would recharge itself when it was going downhill, because you use the brakes quite a lot. The car transfers this energy from the brakes back to the battery. An electric car is perfect for small trips on B roads.’

Finding the right charging point

The long drive to Zeeland wasn't without its problems. ‘We were driving to Zeeland via Belgium and 20 minutes before reaching our destination, we really needed to charge the car. Unfortunately, the charging point did not recognize our charging card. We called the help desk, and they provided excellent support. The help desk employee told us about a charging point just across the border back in the Netherlands, where the charging card would be recognized.’

Eco-mode is more efficient

‘For the return journey, we travelled via the Netherlands. It is a slightly longer journey to reach Limburg, but we thought it would be easier to find the right charging points. The Fastnet charging points are everywhere and they fully charge the car within 30 minutes. If you travel by electric car, then you just need to do some extra work to prepare. On the motorway, I used the eco-setting and did not go faster than 100 km/h to maximize battery life. That was fast enough, considering the current maximum speed of 100 km/h.

Minimal maintenance

‘Thanks to discover the e-car, we learned about all the advantages of driving an electric vehicle. In my view, another major benefit of electric cars is the amount of maintenance they need – which is a minimal amount. Only the brakes need some work every once in a while.’ Paul is not sure whether he will swap his car at home for an electric alternative, saying: ‘In comparison I think electric cars are still somewhat expensive. I will wait and see for the time being. Many car manufacturers are releasing their own electric variants. More car models on the market means more cars in a more interesting price class.’ 

Interested in discovering the e-car?

If you would like to try an e-car for a week to see whether electric driving is for you, then visit www.ontdek-de-ecar.nl/en/ for more information.

Are you interested in an electric vehicle, but still feeling unsure? Then read the following article: Switching to an electric car: are you sure?!