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EV wireless charging trials for taxis in Nottingham

23 January 2020

The UK could soon see a revolution in electric vehicle charging after the Transport Secretary announced  that £3.4 million will be invested in trials for wireless charging of electric taxis in Nottingham. Ten Nissan and LEVC electric taxis in Nottingham will be fitted with wireless charging hardware for 6 months to trial taxi rank-based charging. The project, a collaboration between organisations including Cenex, Sprint Power, Shell, Nottingham City Council, Parking Energy, Transport for London and Coventry University could speed up charging and help reduce congestion in city centres.

Nottingham City Council will own the vehicles and provide them to drivers rent free. If successful, this technology could also be rolled out more broadly for public use, helping every day drivers of electric vehicles charge more easily on the go.

  • government investing £3.4 million in wireless charging technology trials at taxi ranks in Nottingham
  • new technology could make it more convenient than ever to charge vehicles and could reduce cable clutter on streets
  • electric taxis in Nottingham to be fitted with wireless charging hardware for 6 month trial

Wireless charging at taxi ranks could provide an alternative to plugs and chargepoints, meaning multiple taxis can recharge at once, supporting drivers to charge up more easily. It would also reduce clutter on our streets.

Electrifying taxi fleets in congested city areas is crucial in bringing down transport emissions and cleaning up our air. However, the time taken to charge could reduce a taxi driver’s earning potential.

Installing wireless chargers at taxi ranks offers drivers the chance to recharge while waiting for their next passengers, so they can help the environment and start their journeys quicker. The technology, allowing for shorter and more frequent bursts of charging, will also benefit cars with smaller batteries, ending ‘range anxiety’ for drivers.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said: 'Taxi drivers up and down the country are at the vanguard of the electric vehicle revolution, playing a leading role in reducing air pollution in our city centres where people live, shop and work.

'New wireless technology will make using an electric taxi quicker and more convenient, allowing drivers to charge up at taxi ranks before heading off with their next passenger.'

Electric taxi drivers have already benefited from measures including the exemption of zero-emission taxis from the higher rate of vehicle excise duty and £20 million for 27 local authorities to install electric taxi chargepoints across England and Scotland. The government is also offering a £50 million grant fund that provides drivers with up to £7,500 off the price of a new, eligible, purpose-built taxi.

Today’s announcement of the trial follows nearly £40 million funding announced in July 2019 for the development of electric vehicle charging technologies that could rapidly expand the UK chargepoint network for people without off-street parking.

Innovations which have already received investment include underground charging systems that don’t require on-street structures, suitable for busy urban streets, and solar powered charging.

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