Electric vehicles

CT&T, a specialist manufacture of all-electric vehicles with big ambitions, has decided to put its European headquarters in … Amsterdam.

Apparently, they plan to build 20,000 vehicles next year and 60,000 in 2013. Wikipedia has nice pictures. Would you pay €15,000 for that?

31 replies on “Electric vehicles”

15,000 gets you the runt of the litter!!!!!!!!!!

Joking aside, at least they have a roof so you can carry out short commuter hops to the shops and remain dry. There is a model there, the orange one which appears to have concertina doors, hence I would imagine it would much easier access / egress for older people.

Hence it may be the older generation which could find this type of car attractive. Europe’s population is predicted to age and decline as we get closer to 2045. So electric vehicles, robots etc to assist Europes aging population is a good idea.

I could see it making sense for some people who do a lot of urban driving, and can avail of the grant. Perhaps a taxi-driver, or a delivery man.

The fuel difference is a genuine advantage. But It’s got to be a very limited market at the moment.

Still, a few years ago, even these poor models would have been impossible.

The self-driving car will change everything. It will massively increase the safety and capacity of our roads. Congestion can be managed and largely minimised The parking problem will essentially be gone and that will free up space on the streets. The problems are legal and social really. Who is going to sign up to insure the whole thing and under what conditions? And how will people accept and deal with cars that don’t get to drive and so are less personally attached to them.

What level of taxpayer subsidy are these things going to get? I suppose they will want a discount on the fuel bill as well. When will a critical mass of the public realise that such vehicles are useless, except for short journeys, in pancake-flat urban areas with low speed-limits, and no more than two occupants?

Electricity is a secondary energy resource – you need a significant input of FFs to generate it, and to build-out and maintain the transmission infrastructure. Electricity is versatile and essential. Using it to power non-essential, private vehicles is sheer madness.

Brian P

What’s the purpose of this post?
What point are you trying to make?

TBH Richard, to me this just seem like another one of your EV bashing sessions.

Scrapping older vehicles to get revenue at the expense of maintenance jobs and sending scarce capital abroad is another example of politicisation of decision making in the economy. Electric cars need little maintenance: bye bye jobs!

Sorry for not being explicit.

CT&T wants to be a world leader in electric vehicles. It is big in South Korea, rapidly expanding in the USA, and now entering the European market where it now looks to claim at least 20% market share in the next few years.

Ireland wants to be a world leader in electric vehicles. The Netherlands has no such plan. Ireland gives generous subsidies, tax breaks and free fuel to EVs. The Netherlands gives a tax break and free parking.

Where does CT&T put its European headquarters? Liffey or Amstel?

This post was a sequel to http://www.irisheconomy.ie/index.php/2010/08/17/leading-the-world-in-renewables/

Leading the world requires more than expressing the ambition.

@ Richard

Prime office rents in € p sq m per annum (Q2 2010)
Amsterdam: €330
Dublin: €376

Potential Consumers within 500km radius of Dublin: 63 million
Potential Consumers within 500km radius of Amsterdam: 180 million

’nuff said.

CT&T may be a world leader in golf carts, but I sincerely doubt they will be a leader in road going EVs.

If we’re going to engage in meaningful discussion wrt EVs in Ireland I suggest we should focus on the road going EVs that are coming to the market. I think we’re wasting our time discussing noddy mobiles like the Reva or CT&T golf carts (thats just FUD spreading).

How about we look at the Nissan Leaf for example….

I wouldn’t rate free fuel as being a big issue since.
a) Most charging will be done at home or in work.
b) There aren’t enough EVs on the road yet for the cost to be significant.
b) The free electricity is only a temporary measure. Access to the charge points is controlled with an RFID access card. The card is tied to your electricity account. As some stage billing will happen at charge points.

I think there were concerns about the prototype’s poor road holding on tight corners, but Nissan has assured consumers they are committed to turning over a new leaf…

That’s a point worth discussing.

What does being a “world leader in electric vehicles” mean?

Does it mean having the most EVs per capita?
Does it mean developing the technology?

The only area I can see Ireland being able to make any contribution is in the computer side of the charging infrastructure.


If ‘makes the highest profit’ is the point of reference for “world leader in electric vehicles” then we don’t have a hope.

However “electric vehicle”, just like petrol/diesels encompass a number of technologies. The main technological areas for EVs are batteries, controllers, motors and charging system. It is possible that no one country will dominate all areas of the technology.

@RT: ” …. makes the highest profit”. Fine, until you find out that the ‘world leader’ has its domicile in some tax haven, pays a low rate of corp. tax and repatriates the surplus.

Richard, the Permagrowth model of aggregate economic activity is on taxpayer supported life-support. We need to advocate the restructuring of agriculture away from fossil fuel dependency – fast!

We must kill off any notion of EVs – either for long-haul or short-haul. And use any means (legal ones, that is) at our disposal to achieve this objective. Electricity is too valuable and critical a resource for it to be used to chauffeur private ‘bums’ about the place.

Brian P

@ Brian Woods
Although electric cars only displace the pollution from the vehicle to the power station, there are still benefits of scale. viz, energy plants are much more efficient at deriving energy from fuel than typical internal combustion engines, and further, the roll out of carbon capture systems and other environmental protections are possible for power plants in a way that is unfeasible for cars.

So, while i agree with you in practice, I think there is scope for technological developments to change this dynamic in future

@ all
Much more than the electric car; the self-driving car will change our world. The economic and social benefits of a driverless car are comparable to that of the PC in my opinion. Thousands of drivers will be freed from their jobs and able to invest their energies in new areas. Public transport (bus, taxi) will be cheaper, 24 hours a day and reach into the most remote areas. Neighbourhood services, such as rubbish collection, post and grocery deliveries can be automated to become cheaper and more frequent. Long distance freight can be transported round the clock without tachometers. Drink-driving, speeding and other dangerous driving habits can be eliminated. Revellers will be free to indulge in alcohol without endangering others as they drive home. In short, a driverless car will change everything about how we move ourselves and our goods and will revolutionise our economy and society in as fundamental a way as the PC/internet have done in recent years.

It can’t happen soon enough in my book.

@ Ger: Thanks for comment. My concern is about energy security. We realy do need to get onto, and on-top-of, this topic ASAP. Hence any tech developments that promote energy security, the better. However, these new techs may be more energy use intensive (development up to large-scale roll-out) than existing ones. Bit contentious this, but a critical issue nonetheless.

If I had to order my priorities: energy conservation is #1. Climate change – which is a real serious issue – is secondary to the oxidation of FFs. Drop FF use and you deal (to some extent!) with CC. Downside of less FF use: aggregate economic activity must Regress!!! This is the predicament. Reduced economic activity is totally un-salable to legislators who are addicted to the ‘More-of-More’ paradigm. Think, Oliver Twist. That well-heeled chap with his begging bowl! It wasn’t the poor kids who approached the Top Table: they knew the score!

B Peter

Agree with Brian Woods. A better attitude to energy use is the first thing we need. Ireland needs a whole new approach to planning, an approach that seeks to minimise energy consumption.
I doubt there are many countries who are energy dependent as we are.

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