French adventurer and English teacher Xavier Chevrin set off from UNEP’s headquarters in Nairobi, in an electric Citroen Berlingo to demonstrate electric car reliability and energy efficiency, charging the vehicle as he stops to chat with locals along the way.
This is the guy who travelled 13,400 kilometers (8,326 miles) from Shanghai to Paris in an electric car two years ago.
Chevrin will spend about six weeks battling through the bush of Kenya, Tanzania, Zambia, Zimbabwe and Botswana, before finishing in the South African city of Johannesburg in late June.
”We want to dispel any lingering doubts about electric vehicles,” Chevrin says. His goal is to prove once and for all that clean-energy cars are just as capable as traditional gasoline or diesel powered models.
Chevrin pointed out that the electric vehicle puts out zero emissions and is much cheaper to run than gasoline cars. The Shangai-Paris trip cost less than US$200 dollars in electricity, compared to the $4,000 it would have cost to use diesel, Chevrin said.
The Berlingo, which is normally used by the French post office as a delivery van, was modified by Venturi to have 500 km (310 mile) driving range.
This journey is one of the Venturi Global Challenges, a series of technological and human challenges through which Venturi President Gildo Pastor Pallanca intends to demonstrate Venturi’s leadership in the field of electric propulsion. Each challenge takes place on a different continent in extreme conditions.
Mission Africa is supported by the Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation. The foundation has a priority interest in developing countries and is focused on three main environmental issues: the fight against climate change, biodiversity conservation and sustainable management of water resources.
– Nickel Sodium Chloride batteries « Zebra For Venturi »
– Energy : 70,5 kWh (3x 23,5 kWh)
– Three Phase Asynchronous Motor
– Max power : 42 kW (at 4000 rpm)
– Max torque : 180 Nm
– Recharge to 80% in 5 hours
– With onboard charger: 5 hours (220 V–16 A standard)
– Range: 500 Km (310 miles)
– Max speed: 110 Km/h (68 mph)
– Payload: 500 kg[wzslider height=”400″ lightbox=”true”]