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Electric cars slowly gaining in popularity

The first 2018 Toyota Prius Prime rolled off the truck earlier this week at Belleville Toyota.

Electric cars are becoming more common place on the road as they are not only becoming more affordable, but people want to do what they can to help protect the environment.

Cutting emissions from cars is a big part of Canada’s plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to meet its international commitments.

Road transportation is currently responsible for about one-fifth of all of Canada’s emissions.

Transport Minister Marc Garneau plans to release a national zero-emission vehicle strategy in 2018 to help increase the number of sales.

Canada is currently one of only two G7 nations without such a strategy.

There are a number of great benefits to an electric vehicle.

  • Cheaper to run: Owners of an EV have the advantage of much lower running costs.
  • Cheaper to maintain: An electric vehicle has a lot less moving parts than a conventional car.Batteries do wear out so replacement batteries will eventually be needed.
  • Better for the environment
  • Health benefits: Reduced harmful exhaust emissions is good news for our health. Better air quality will lead to less health problems and costs caused by air pollution. EVs are also quieter than petrol/diesel vehicles, which means less noise pollution.
  • Savings: Cash rebates for purchasing an electric vehicle

While those are all great things, there is the flip side.

Canada doesn’t produce any mass-market electric vehicles, fewer than half of Canadian dealerships of car makers that have electric vehicle models even sell them and supply is so limited here it can take months for a Canadian who wants an electric vehicle to actually drive it off the lot.

The waiting list to get a Chevy Bolt, the most popular electric vehicle sold in Canada, is about eight months. While there are 97 electric vehicle models available worldwide, only 27 of them are sold in Canada, and most dealers don’t even have a single model on site so people can test drive it.

In Canada, Quebec, Ontario and British Columbia offer cash rebates for buying electric vehicles; 97 per cent of electric car sales in Canada are in those provinces, compared to about 90 per cent of all new car sales.

Quebec is to launch a policy in 2018 requiring dealers to sell a certain percentage of electric cars.

Despite that, sales in Canada are barely a blip, representing about one in every 100 new cars sold.

According to FleetCarma, an Ontario-based tech company helping to enable the adoption of electric vehicles, September 2017 was a record-setting month for electric car sales in Canada.

That month’s total EV sales? Just 2,240 cars, out of a total of 186,800 cars sold.

So if you’re in the market for a new vehicle, why not take a look at one that can benefit our environment too.

Toyota’s advanced plug-in hybrid to be offered in three versions, all delivering tremendous efficiency for a class-leading 1,000+ km range, plus advanced style and impressive value.

The 2018 Toyota Prius Prime offers an ultra-efficient power train that lets drivers travel more than 1,000 kilometres on a single tank of gas with a full battery charge.

“When we introduced the Toyota Prius Prime in a test market in Quebec in May 2017, we committed to launching it across the country in a timely manner. That test-market experience has been a resounding success and we’re now ready to introduce this remarkable plug-in hybrid to all Canadians,” said Cyril Dimitris, Vice President, Toyota Canada Inc. “Now, every driver looking for the winning combination of style, technology and efficiency are able to discover how Prius Prime delivers the total package.”

When it launched, the Toyota Prius Prime was crowned the World Green Car at the 2017 New York International Auto Show, and established itself as the most fuel-efficient plug-in vehicle on the road in Canada – with astonishing city/highway combined fuel efficiency of just 1.8 litre-equivalent/100km with a full battery charge.

In real world terms, this means Canadians could drive the Toyota Prius Prime from Vancouver to Calgary… from Saskatoon to Winnipeg… from Toronto to Quebec City… or the length of the TransCanada Highway on Newfoundland – from Channel-Port aux Basques to St. John’s in comfort and style, and all without the need to stop to refill or recharge. What’s more, the Prius Prime can also be operated for up to 40km in pure Electric Vehicle mode – meaning that for many Canadians, they will be able to accomplish the majority of their daily driving journeys without using a single drop of gasoline. And when it’s time to recharge, Prius Prime enjoys the fastest charging time in the market.

But the 2018 Toyota Prius Prime is about so much more than great efficiency.

The body is sculpted with purpose. Enhanced with numerous aerodynamic features – including an active front grille shutter that closes at higher speeds – the Prius Prime slips through the atmosphere with minimal drag. This not only contributes to Prius Prime’s remarkable efficiency – it also makes for a smoother, quieter, more comfortable ride.


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