Stuart O'Brien, Author at Fleet Summit
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Stuart O'Brien

Tesco’s free retail EV charging network hits 500,000 charges

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The UK’s largest free retail electric car charging network has hit 500,000 charges – providing more than 10 million miles of complimentary carbon neutral motoring.

Tesco, in partnership with Volkswagen and Pod Point, is installing free charging points at 600 supermarkets around the UK as part of their commitment to improving electric car charging infrastructure.

The partnership has now provided its 500,000th free top-up – and during this period the company says 3 million kWh of free, carbon neutral electricity has been given out – enough power to drive an all-electric Volkswagen ID.4 SUV around 10.4 million miles.

Based on the average new petrol or diesel car sold in the UK, the scheme has reduced carbon emissions by approximately 2,120 tonnes – the same as more than 2,770 acres of forest will manage in a year.

The announcement was welcomed by Transport Secretary and EV owner Grant Shapps, who said: “As we accelerate towards a cleaner and greener transport future, it’s great to see one of Britain’s most iconic household names leading the way with electric vehicle chargepoints.

“In the time it takes to pick up the groceries, drivers up and down the country can now quickly and easily charge their cars and with £2.5bn of government support to encourage their take-up, there has never been a better time to switch to an EV.”

The Tesco Extra in Slough has been the busiest supermarket for free charging – with the sockets used more than 10,000 times.

It finished ahead of Tesco supermarkets in Stourbridge, Crawley, Altrincham and Bromley by Bow in the top five.

Making up the rest of the top 10 were the Tesco supermarkets in Watford, Orpington, Elmers End, Havant and Lichfield.

Director of Volkswagen, Andrew Savvas, said: “Our partnership with Tesco and Pod Point emphasises our commitment to carbon neutral mobility for all and we’re delighted to have reached this milestone – helping owners of all electric car brands top up with free renewable energy while they’re doing their grocery shop.”

Tony Hoggett, chief operating officer at Tesco, said: “We are committed to reducing carbon emissions in all our operations and aim to be carbon neutral in the UK 2035.

“As part of this we want to encourage our customers to play their part with the rollout of free-to-use EV chargers to 600 of our stores.

“Providing customers with charging points offers them a sustainable choice and giving them the opportunity to charge their car for free while they shop is a little help to make this easier.”

The partnership, which has been running for two years, was announced to improve the charging infrastructure as the UK prepares for an electric future.

According to the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders, 108,205 battery electric vehicles were registered in the UK in 2020, an increase of 185 per cent on 2019.

They can use the 7kW chargers along with 22kW rapid chargers where available for free, while 50kW rapid chargers are available for the market rate.

Erik Fairbairn, Pod Point Founder and CEO, added:  “Reaching the 500,000 charges milestone is testament to the growing appetite for EVs as well as the ease and convenience of the charging experience.

“The partnership is making great strides towards our goal of delivering the nation’s largest retail EV charging network – one that is reliable, accessible, secure and free making it even easier for drivers to choose electric and accelerate adoption.

“We look forward to powering up even more local areas as we continue our roll out.”

Fleet Summit: Solutions tailored to your needs

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The Fleet Summit takes place on the 7th & 8th July at Whittlebury Park – and it’s a one-stop shop for all fleet management needs.

By attending as one of just 60 delegates, you’ll be able to take advantage of:-

• One-to-one access to budget-saving and innovative suppliers
• Network with all attendees to build business relationships that can benefit you, your team and the future of your business. 
• A series of insightful seminar sessions that advise on the current and future challenges within the industry

Your attendance is also entirely complimentary – Virtual attendance options are available, however our live event offers free overnight accommodation, including all meals and refreshments throughout

If this is of interest, you can confirm your free attendance here or we are happy to answer any questions you might have via email or phone-call.

bp pulse confirms ultra-fast charging hubs rollout

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bp pulse is to expand its ultra-fast EV charging infrastructure significantly across the UK, with a series of new charging hubs developed in partnership with The EV Network (EVN). 

Electrification is at the heart of bp’s convenience and mobility strategy with the company aiming to double the size of the bp pulse network in the UK to 16,000 charge points by 2030, with a particular emphasis on ultra-fast chargers. The total amount of charging on the bp pulse network is set to grow 30-fold by 2030. 

bp pulse says it’s committed to developing the country’s charging infrastructure for fleets and consumers. The new hubs will be a key part of the company’s ambition to deliver fast and convenient charging for the growing number of EV drivers.  

The agreement is expected to deliver a significant number of new ultra-fast EV charging destinations in the areas with high volumes of traffic. The sites will be developed by EVN with each having a range of ultra-fast charging bays and some becoming EV convenience and mobility hubs with food, drink and other facilities on offer to drivers as they charge.  

Matteo de Renzi, CEO of bp pulse, said: “We are building a charging network that will give consumers the confidence to make the switch to EVs, knowing they can get the charge they need in the right places. We’re taking another step forward in our commitment to make ultra-fast charging widely accessible across the UK, including in easy reach of the motorway network. These new hubs will complement bp pulse’s existing plans to expand the number of ultra-fast chargers on bp’s forecourts and it’s exciting to be launching this new additional option for drivers.” 

Reza Shaybani, co-founder and CEO of EVN said: “This ground-breaking agreement with bp pulse has got 2021 off to a racing start. As the largest public charge point operator in the market, bp pulse is a perfect partner for EVN to deliver critically required EV charging infrastructure nationwide. Together we will be fuelling growth in a vital part of the UK’s green economy, making a reliable national network of EV charging stations a reality for fast growing number of Electric Vehicle drivers.” 

Do you specialise in Accident & Risk Management? We want to hear from you!

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Each month on Fleet Management Briefing we’re shining the spotlight on a different part of the fleet market – and in April we’ll be focussing on Accident & Risk Management solutions.

It’s all part of our ‘Recommended’ editorial feature, designed to help fleet buyers find the best products and services available today.

So, if you’re a supplier of Accident & Risk Management solutions and would like to be included as part of this exciting new shop window, we’d love to hear from you – for more info, contact Chris Cannon on 01992 374096 / c.cannon@forumevents.co.uk.

Here’s our features list in full:

Apr – Accident & Risk Management
May – Fleet Management Software
Jun – Telematics/Tracking
Jul – Contract Hire & Leasing
Aug – LPG/Alternative Fuel & Fuel Management
Sep – EV Infrastructure
Oct – Duty of Care
Nov – Grey Fleet
Dec – Service, Maintenance & Repair

Fleet Summit: Secure your place at July’s essential industry event

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The next Fleet Summit will take place on the 7th & 8th July at Whittlebury Park in Northampton – Delegate places are in high demand, so make sure you secure your place today.

Your pass is still entirely free and you can you attendance is flexible, either join us virtually via a zoom link, or enjoy the event in person with complimentary overnight accommodation, all meals and refreshements.

Plus, access to all LIVE seminar sessions and your bespoke itinerary of pre-arranged business meetings with Fleet suppliers, that can help with current issues and any upcoming projects.

Confirm your attendance preference here.

If you have any questions then please do not hesitate to contact us.

Fleet Services Summit: New dates confirmed for July

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We wanted to let you know that due to the latest announcements by the government, we have made the decision to move the Fleet Summit to the 7th & 8th July at Whittlebury Park, Northampton.

Your pass is still entirely free and you can you attendance is flexible, either join us virtually via a zoom link, or enjoy the event in person with complimentary overnight accommodation, all meals and refreshements.

Plus, access to all LIVE seminar sessions and your bespoke itinerary of pre-arranged business meetings with Fleet suppliers, that can help with current issues and any upcoming projects.

Confirm your attendance preference here.

If you have any questions then please do not hesitate to contact us.

Plug-in hybrid range figures causing P11D issues

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Fleets are facing issues with obtaining the zero-emissions range (ZER) figures they need for plug-in hybrids due to complications in how vehicle data is processed and stored.

That’s according to the Association of Fleet Professionals (AFP), which says that PHEVs registered on or after April 6h 2020 that emit 50g/km or less of CO2 need to have the ZEER entered on the P11D.

However, it seems that’s not available anywhere other than on the Certificate of Conformity (COC) that was issued with the car when it was delivered.

The AFP asserts that while filling in the P11D for other fuel types was often challenging, but possible with a little digging, PHEVs were more difficult.

Association Director director James Pestell said: “When it comes to the ZER for post-April 2020 PHEVs, the correct figures do not appear to be obtainable anywhere. They are not on the V5 nor the DVLA website.

“They are included on the COC slip attached to the inside of the windscreen when the car is delivered but there are no fixed processes – or often any processes at all – for how this is handled. It might be sent to the leasing company or just left on the vehicle and detached by the driver when it is delivered, and who knows what happens to it then? Certainly, many and perhaps the majority go missing.

“The supplying dealer or the company leasing the vehicle to you might be able to obtain the figure for you but ultimately, the car operator is responsible for its accuracy and there is no apparent, independent means of checking it.

“If the car has upgraded alloys, for example, it will have a lower ZER and could fall into a higher benefit in kind tax bracket than the standard model, so it’s next to impossible for the fleet operator to work out the figure for themselves even if they obtain the details for a generic model.

“It does appear to be something of an oversight that this data is not easily available because it drives each car’s whole benefit in kind and National Insurance Contribution liability.

“There is a possibility that some leasing companies can access the information through their data providers, so that is one avenue that fleet managers could investigate, but we’re also having ongoing conversations with HMRC about the V5 and this approach would ultimately make the most sense, we believe.”

CALL FOR SPEAKERS! Would you like to talk at our fleet industry events?

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We’re looking for fleet industry thought-leaders to share their knowledge at the upcoming Fleet Summit events.

If you would like to take part in this unmissable industry event, simply contact Chris Cannon on 01992 374096 / c.cannon@forumevents.co.uk.

Alternatively, if you’re a fleet industry professional, make sure you reserve you delegate place at the Fleet Summit – we have two taking place this year, with both live and virtual attendance options.

Live attendance includes;
Your own personalised itinerary
Live access to seminar sessions hosted throughout the event
1-2-1 access to innovative fleet management solution providers
Complimentary overnight accommodation
All meals and refreshments

Virtual attendance includes;
Your own personalised itineraryWeblink to access the seminars virtually
1-2-1 access to innovative fleet management solution providers
Personalised attendance options to suit your schedule
Enjoy the event from the comfort of your own home or office.

Please confirm your preference here via our online form.

Jaguar Land Rover will be all-EV by 2025

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Jaguar Land Rover unveiled its ‘Reimagine’ electrification strategy, which will see the Tata-owned luxury marque’s entire line up going electric by 2025.

Both the Land Rover and Jaguar brands will be electrified on separate architectures with what the company says will be two clear, unique personalities. 

In the next five years, Land Rover will introduce six pure electric variants as through its three families of Range Rover, Discovery and Defender. The first all-electric variant will arrive in 2024. 

By the middle of the decade, meanwhile, Jaguar will have undergone a ‘renaissance’ to emerge as a pure electric luxury brand with a dramatically beautiful new portfolio of emotionally engaging designs and pioneering next-generation technologies. 

Although the nameplate may be retained, the planned Jaguar XJ replacement will not form part of the line-up.

Jaguar and Land Rover will offer pure electric power, nameplate by nameplate, by 2030. By this time, in addition to 100% of Jaguar sales, it is anticipated that around 60% of Land Rovers sold will be equipped with zero tailpipe powertrains.

Jaguar Land Rover says its aim is to achieve net zero carbon emissions across its supply chain, products and operations by 2039. As part of this ambition, the company is also preparing for the expected adoption of clean fuel-cell power in line with a maturing of the hydrogen economy.

Development is already underway with prototypes arriving on UK roads within the next 12 months as part of the long-term investment programme. 

In addition, a new centralised team will be empowered to build on and accelerate pioneering innovations in materiality, engineering, manufacturing, services and circular economy investments.  

Annual commitments of circa £2.5bn will include investments in electrification technologies and the development of connected services, alongside data-centric technologies that the company says will further improve its ownership ecosystem. 

The great 2021 pothole backfill begins

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Councils across England have been allocated their share of £500 million for highways maintenance, with the funding expected to fix the equivalent of 10 million potholes across the country.

It is the second of 5 equal instalments from the £2.5 billion Potholes Fund, providing £500 million a year between 2020/21 and 2024/25, announced by the Chancellor in the 2020 Budget – and is part of wider funding the DfTprovides for road maintenance, totalling over £1.1 billion across England in 2021/22.

With the average pothole costing around £50 to fill in, the funding will ensure that the equivalent of 10 million potholes can be rectified, making thousands of local roads both safer and easier to drive and cycle on.

Transport Minister Baroness Vere said: “We know potholes are more than just a nuisance – they can be dangerous to drivers and cyclists alike, and cause damage to thousands of vehicles every year.

“The funding allocated today will help councils ensure roads in their area are kept up to standard, and that the potholes that blight road users can be dealt with promptly.”

The DfT claims it has already invested heavily in pothole filling since 2015, including the £296 million Pothole Action Fund, which ran from 2015/16 to 2020/21. It also topped up highway maintenance investment in 2018 with a one-off £420 million boost to all highway authorities in England, including London.

The government says it’s committed to supporting motorists through schemes like the Road Investment Strategy 2 (RIS2), investing £27 billion in the biggest ever roads programme – with £10 billion of the record-breaking sum specifically for road maintenance, operations and renewals.