Kia Motors has added its weight to the UK government and auto industry-backed campaign for ultra low emission vehicles (ULEVS) – Go Ultra Low. As the popularity of alternatively powered cars and vans continues to rise, the Korean manufacturer’s move reinforces the direction of travel for the automotive industry.
The Go Ultra Low campaign exists to highlight the benefits of using a plug-in vehicle and encourage consumers and businesses to make the switch to electric.
Transport Minister, Andrew Jones MP said: “The UK has one of the fastest growing ultra low emission vehicle markets in the world and I warmly welcome Kia to the Go Ultra Low campaign. It is another example of leading car and van manufacturers sharing our ambitions for this exciting and increasingly popular technology.
“British drivers have a wider choice of cleaner, greener cars than ever before and we have increased our support for plug-in vehicles to £600 million over the course of this parliament to cut emissions, create jobs and support our cutting-edge industries.”
Since pure electric and plug-in hybrid cars became available as a mainstream choice in 2010, the market has grown rapidly as choice expanded. Today, there are 30 different ultra low emission vehicles on sale offering a wide variety of model sizes and performance attributes, from family cars and vans to SUVs and sports cars.
Poppy Welch, Head of Go Ultra Low, said: “Kia is a great addition to the Go Ultra Low campaign, and its Kia Soul EV fits well alongside the wide variety of adaptable and practical plug-in vehicles we represent. The addition of Kia will boost our goal to raise awareness of ultra low emission vehicles, and their cost-effective benefits, in addition to broadening choice for motorists. Their inclusion in the campaign shows there really is a plug-in car for everyone.”
The addition of Kia to the Go Ultra Low campaign highlights how ULEVs have become the norm for car buyers, alongside conventionally powered vehicles, such as those with diesel and petrol engines. The influx of more plug-in models to the market has boosted uptake of ULEVs in recent years, with more than 26,000 motorists making the leap to efficient, economical and low-emission vehicles in 2015, more than doubling the size of the market in a single year.
Paul Philpott, President and CEO of Kia Motors UK and Ireland, said: “Kia Motors recently set out its roadmap for low emission cars so joining the Go Ultra Low campaign was an easy decision for us. The electric and plug-in hybrid vehicle market will grow rapidly in the coming years and we are committed to meeting the increased demand. In addition to our Soul EV, we will be introducing a range of advanced new products and technologies to add to the growing selection of plug-in cars already available within the Go Ultra Low consortium.”
Electric cars can be driven for as little as 2p per mile, compared with 10-12p for a conventionally powered car, meaning drivers can potentially save around £800 each year. Added to this, the variety of cars available – from city runarounds and family hatchbacks to, SUVs and sports cars – an extensive charging network and growing range of plug-in hybrids boasting extensive ranges – some as long as 700 miles, means there is every reason for motorists to go ultra low and opt for an electric car.