Police forces trial all-electric Ford Mustang Mach-E

Gareth Herincx

2 days ago
Auto News

Ford Mustang Mach-E police car concept

Ford has unveiled Mustang Mach-E police concept at the Emergency Services Show in Birmingham, following several requests from forces around the country to evaluate the pure electric SUV.

The Metropolitan Police Force has already appraised the standard Mustang Mach-E and has now requested a full test of the marked concept. Also waiting for an opportunity to try the new 999 vehicle are the Sussex, Surrey, South Wales, Dyfed Powys, Devon & Cornwall and Police Scotland forces.

The initial concept is a demonstrator Mustang Mach-E Standard Range AWD (all-wheel drive). Subject to testing of this model, Ford is planning to offer Extended Range versions of its RWD (rear-wheel drive) and AWD versions. The extended battery types would give the police even greater range, and therefore versatility and capability, for police operations.

Instant and super-quick acceleration – the new Mach-E is capable of 0-62mph in 3.7 seconds (GT version) and 111mph – will be a useful weapon against crime for any police car, but the Mach-E will offer the forces one of the most economical and environmentally-friendly cars on their fleets.

The conversion of the original Mach-E was carried out by Ford’s long term partner to the blue light industry, Safeguard SVP, a specialist constructor based in Essex.

Among the equipment fitted to the concept car are bespoke mounting pods and brackets to ensure suitable locations are found for operational use, with minimal damage to the vehicle. All lighting is LED with very low power consumption to reduce current draw from the vehicle’s 12V power system.

Meanwhile, the 999 livery is a first-off design which utilises high specification material to maximise day and night visibility requirements.

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Vauxhall Mokka-e review

Vauxhall Mokka-e review

What are your key considerations when choosing a new car – practicality, running costs, connectivity or safety?

The reality is that looks tend to trump all of the above, which is why kerb appeal is so crucial.

Now, they say beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but I’d argue that the all-new Mokka is the coolest looking Vauxhall ever.

Vauxhall Mokka-e review

Putting aside the argument that Vauxhall’s DNA isn’t what is, because it’s now owned by the giant Stellantis group which was formed from the merger of France’s Groupe PSA (Peugeot, Citroen) and FCA (Fiat, Jeep etc), the Mokka urban crossover is a stand-out vehicle.

Battling it out against the likes of the big-selling Nissan Juke and Renault Captur, the good news for the Mokka is that it has an ace up its sleeve – it’s available with a choice of petrol and diesel engines, plus a 100% electric variant.

Our focus is on the latter – the Vauxhall Mokka-e – which is competitively priced from £30,540 (after the £2,500 PiCG, or plug-in car grant) and boasts a decent 201-mile electric range.

Vauxhall Mokka-e review

Sharing the same underpinnings as the Citroen e-C4, Peugeot e-2008 and DS 3 Crossback E-Tense (which is no bad thing), it looks like no other car on the road.

In a nutshell, the second-generation Mokka is radical compared to its dumpy predecessor. Slightly shorter, it has smaller front and rear overhangs and a more athletic stance.

It also features the bold new brand ‘face’ of Vauxhall (known as Vizor) which “organically integrates the grille, headlights and badge into one dramatic sweeping module”.

Vauxhall Mokka-e review

Call me old fashioned, but being able to view that long, horizontal bonnet with the strong centre crease as you drive along is such a unique pleasure these days.

Inside, the cockpit is futuristic and minimalist. Dominated by a large central infotainment screen (7″ or 10″) and digital driver’s display (10″ or 12″), there’s a real step-up in build quality throughout the cabin.

The pure electric Mokka-e has a 50kWh battery and a 134bhp electric motor that powers the front wheels and delivers 260Nm of instant torque.

Vauxhall Mokka-e review

It can be charged overnight if you have a home wallbox, while 80% of charge can be reached in as little as 30 minutes using a rapid 100kW public chargepoint. A more common 50kW fast charger will deliver around 100 miles in less than half an hour.

In real-world terms, we reckon the battery range is closer to 175 miles in everyday driving, while Vauxhall calculates the Mokka-e’s running costs are from 3p a mile.

The cabin is comfortable with plenty of space up front, even offering a lower, sporty driving position if you prefer. It’s a little tighter in the back for adults, while the boot has a useful 310-litre luggage capacity, expanding to 1,060 litres with the rear seats folded.

Vauxhall Mokka-e review
Vauxhall Mokka-e review

The Mokka-e is simple to drive and silent (none of the faint whine or audio enhancement you get with many EVs), and while it’s swift, it’s not stupidly fast. For the record, it can complete the 0-62mph sprint in 8.5 seconds.

If you want a bit of fun, then switch the drive mode from Normal or Eco to Sport, but apart from the odd blast, you’re more likely to want to squeeze out as many miles as possible.

Vauxhall Mokka-e review

The benefit of a smaller battery pack is that it’s easier to see instant results from regenerative braking (which returns most of the energy from braking and coasting back into the battery while you’re driving) and the Mokka-e’s system is particularly satisfying.

With light steering and good visibility, it’s a doddle to drive and surprisingly nimble. However, because it’s more comfort than performance focused, it loses its composure when pushed on more challenging roads.

Vauxhall Mokka-e review

Broadly speaking, electric vehicles’ brakes tend to be disappointing and the Mokka-e is par for the course. Our test car’s system didn’t seem to be terribly progressive, but did the job.

Ultimately, even if the Mokka-e looks sportier than it actually is, it’s still a refreshing sight on our roads – especially in Mamba Green. Rivals include the MINI Electric, Honda e, Fiat 500 and Mazda MX-30.

Verdict: The Vauxhall Mokka-e is a funky, all-electric urban crossover that dares to be different. Affordable, well-equipped, safe and fun to drive, it has a unique charm.

Vauxhall

EV owners urged to choose correct replacement tyres

Home / Auto News / EV owners urged to choose correct replacement tyres

Gareth Herincx

2 days ago
Auto News

Owners of electric vehicles (EVs) should pay close attention to the tyres they choose when the originals need replacing, warns TyreSafe.

Increasingly, advises the UK road safety charity, tyres fitted are specifically designed for use on EVs and can be significantly different to the ‘normal’ tyres motorists are familiar with.

Fitting the wrong type of tyre could result in loss of range, extra noise, accelerated wear and the risk of failing while being driven, which could result in a serious incident.

TyreSafe has released detailed advice for EV owners in the ‘About Tyres’ section of its website, tyresafe.org.

Four reasons why correct EV tyres matter

There are a wide range of factors which are important to choosing the right tyre, which the vehicle manufacturer has already taken into account when fitting the originals at the factory.

  1. The vehicle’s weight is just one as it influences the amount of air pressure required to keep a tyre in its optimal shape along with the stiffness of its sidewall and even its centre section. EVs are well-known for being heavier than their petrol or diesel equivalents, so an owner must be aware of their tyre’s load rating when a replacement is needed as well as maintaining the recommended tyre pressure at all times.
  2. Another consideration is the impact tyre choice can have on an EV’s range, due to its ‘rolling resistance’. A tyre should have the least rolling resistance as possible, however, as always, a balance needs to be struck as grip is essential for safety when it comes to braking. Minimising rolling resistance while providing adequate grip seems like a contradictory requirement but this is a key performance characteristic for EVs to ensure maximum range.
  3. The tyre also needs to be robust as EVs produce maximum power from standing. This places high demands on the rubber compound, which needs to be of the right mixture of components and have the appropriate tread pattern to provide a lifespan comparable with petrol or diesel vehicles.
  4. The amount of noise the tyre produces as it travels over a road surface is yet another example of the possible adaptations which could make tyres for EVs different to those of a petrol or diesel vehicle. As EV motors produce very little noise, the quiet cabin environment is one of the big attractions of these cars, which could easily be ruined by the wrong choice of tyre.

“Tyres are an extremely sophisticated piece of technology, which we all too commonly take for granted,” said TyreSafe’s Stuart Jackson.

“Choosing a like-for-like tyre will allow EV owners to enjoy the full benefit of the electric car revolution and reduce the risks of an incident.”

Tags Audi e-tron GT Electric Car electric vehicle Electric Vehicles EV Goodyear Eagle F1 Asymmetric 5 tyes Tyresafe

Gareth is a versatile journalist, copywriter and digital editor who’s worked across the media in newspapers, magazines, TV, teletext, radio and online. After long stints at the BBC, GMTV and ITV, he now specialises in motoring.

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EVs are nearly 50% cheaper to run than petrol cars

Hyundai Kona Electric

Electric vehicles are nearly £1,000 cheaper to run than petrol cars over a year, according to new research from comparethemarket.com.

The figures show the average cost to run an EV for 12 months is £1,091 compared with £2,062 for a conventional car – a difference of £971.

The running costs for petrol cars are substantially higher as drivers of these vehicles pay an average of £640 for car insurance and £1,212 for the fuel each year.

Owners of petrol vehicles also typically need to spend at least £155 per year on road tax, while EVs are exempt.

Average running costs for 12 months

Vehicle Type Insurance Fuel MOT Road Tax Total
Electric £583 £454 £55 £0 £1,091
Petrol £640 £1,212 £55 £155 £2,062
Difference -£57 -£759 £0 -£155 -£971

The annual cost of driving an electric car has fallen by £77 in the most recent six months (May 21 – Dec 20), compared with the previous six months (Jun 20 – Nov 20).

This decline is due to a £54 drop in the cost of insurance for electric vehicles and a £23 dip in energy costs.

Electric car drivers can further reduce their running costs if they switch to the cheapest premium available. This typically costs £489, which means motorists could save £93 by shopping around for a better deal.

Electric car charging bay

Despite the substantially cheaper running costs, the up-front price of electric vehicles is a sticking point for many drivers considering making the switch from petrol.

A second-hand electric car is typically worth £22,813, based on the average value of electric vehicles from insurance renewal data.

This suggests it would take more than 20 years for the lower running costs to cover the purchase of an electric vehicle. However, motorists may be able to cover some of the purchase price by trading in their existing vehicle.

“The popularity of electric cars continues to accelerate as these vehicles now make up around one in ten new car sales,” said Dan Hutson, head of motor insurance, comparethemarket.com.

“Motorists who’ve made the switch will be glad to see our figures show electric vehicles cost roughly half as much to run as their petrol alternatives.

“These drivers benefit from substantial savings in fuel bills, insurance and tax – as well as doing their part for the environment.

“Electric car owners could save even more on running costs if they shop around for the cheapest deal when their insurance premium comes up for renewal.

“These drivers may also want to think about switching to a new Electric Vehicle Tariff for their home energy. EV Tariffs are designed to help motorists cut their energy bills by making it cheaper to charge electric cars overnight.”

UK debut for MINI Electric Pacesetter

Home / Auto News / UK debut for MINI Electric Pacesetter

Gareth Herincx

4 days ago
Auto News

An extreme version of MINI’s 100% electric hatchback will be seen on UK tarmac for the first time at the Goodwood Festival of Speed 2021.

The awesome MINI Electric Pacesetter has been designed and developed as the new Safety Car in the Formula E.

It will take to the infamous Goodwood Hill Climb during the racing weekend with MINI ambassador Charlie Cooper, grandson of John Cooper who inspired the John Cooper Works division of MINI, at the wheel.

MINI ambassador and rally legend Paddy Hopkirk, who famously won the 1964 Monte Carlo Rally in the classic Morris Mini Cooper S Mk1, will be available to meet the public and sign autographs on Saturday 10th July. It can also be seen in the First Glance Paddock.

The Goodwood Festival of Speed runs from Thursday 8th to Sunday 11th July 2021.

Tags Electric Car electric vehicle EV FIA Formula E Championship Formula E Goodwood Festival of Speed MINI Electric MINI Electric Pacesetter

Gareth is a versatile journalist, copywriter and digital editor who’s worked across the media in newspapers, magazines, TV, teletext, radio and online. After long stints at the BBC, GMTV and ITV, he now specialises in motoring.

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