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An electric Nissan LEAF has checked in at Gatwick Airport’s North Terminal – yes, the car was driven through the check-in area in a demo to mark the airport’s new partnership with Nissan.
The LEAF has been given to the airport for use over the next 12 months in an effort to drive an airport-wide increase in the use of low emission vehicles.
Nissan’s partnership with Gatwick Airport also marked the launch of eight new public charging points, at the airport. The charging posts are located in the short stay car parks in both the North and South Terminals, and will be available to motorists for free charging over the next 12 months.
Electric vehicle drivers will be allowed free parking and charging for the first four hours – enough to charge the car by more than half.
Four of the charging points are part of the ‘Source London’ network, the capital’s first city-wide electric charge point network, while the remaining four charging points form part of the national recharging network ‘Pod Point’.
Meanwhile, the Transport Minister, Norman Baker MP, has opened a new solar assisted electric vehicle charging facility at the Centre of Engineering and Manufacturing Excellence (CEME) in Rainham, East London. Ford Transit Connect Electric vehicles were the first users of the facility, known as eTap.
The eTap provides a mix of solar and mains electric power to charge up to six electric vehicles. It has 45 solar panels, which provide electricity to a central distribution point where it is routed to the car chargers with excess demand being met through the national grid. Users in general will pay for charging by phone, similar to many car parks, on an hourly basis with the charging stopped after the paid-for period.
CEME is a public-private partnership between Ford and local education providers, offering opportunities to improve skills, education and employment within the Thames Gateway area.