Alexei Sayle my electric car Telegraph

30 Май 2014 | Author: | Комментарии к записи Alexei Sayle my electric car Telegraph отключены
CITROEN C-Zero Electric Cars

Alexei Sayle: my electric car

Alexei Sayle tries out the new electric Citroën C-Zero, and tests his own ability to keep it running.

On the kerb outside my front door there is a big, square, black-painted box. It is a machine that issues tickets for the pay and display parking spaces situated on both sides of the road. When I look out on to the street I am constantly amazed by the number and types of people who make a deliberate detour to fumble inside the aperture from where the box dispenses change, to feel if there is any forgotten cash lying in the greasy, shiny cup.

I can understand why the street-sleepers would do it, hoping for a bit of money to buy booze, but there are a large number of middle-aged men in suits, young graphic designer types with large bags slung across their shoulders and older but still smartly dressed city gents who purposefully cross the road or turn off their route along the main thoroughfare to stick their fingers inside the slot in the machine. Recently I realised I had never seen a woman do this; I wonder if the detour isn’t about the money at all, rather that many men are simply hard-wired to root about.

Across the street from the black box there is a pole, about a metre high and topped by a bright blue light. This is a charging point for electric cars. I like this pole very much; its welcoming glow has guided me homewards on many a night as I weave my way up the street. But until recently I had no further use for it, and a few months ago the light went out.

CITROEN C-Zero Electric Cars

I vaguely wondered if it might have died from loneliness since I have never ever seen a car actually charging itself from the outlet buried under a flap in the post.


But a little while ago I took delivery of the Citroën C-Zero, a car which is driven purely by an electric motor powered by lithium-ion batteries. There is no back-up petrol engine as there is in a hybrid such as the Toyota Prius. So a few days before the C-Zero came, I rang the people who operate the pole and within 24 hours the light was back on.

The C-Zero is based on the Mitsubishi iMiev (see below), a small city car sold in Japan, so unlike some other electric cars it has five doors including a hatch and though it is tall, giving great headroom, it does seem very narrow. Nevertheless, the overall appearance is appealing. My friend Oscar, an Argentinian graphic novelist, took to calling the Citroën “Coche Patito” Little Duckling because of its friendly appearance and vibrant yellow paint.

CITROEN C-Zero Electric Cars
CITROEN C-Zero Electric Cars
CITROEN C-Zero Electric Cars
CITROEN C-Zero Electric Cars
CITROEN C-Zero Electric Cars
CITROEN C-Zero Electric Cars
CITROEN C-Zero Electric Cars

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