Car-sharing network Zipcar is set to expand its fleet of London vehicles with 50 new Volkswagen Golf GTE plug-in hybrids, as part of a new partnership with the German brand.
The cars, capable of returning up to 166mpg and 39g/km of CO2, can be charged from dedicated points in the capital and will be available to Zipcar users for £7 per hour.
Dubbed “Zipwagen”, the scheme means eco-friendly cars will be available to residents across London who want to be able to jump in a car on demand, but don’t want the associated running costs of owning a car in the city.
How far will I be able to travel?
Up to 31 miles on electric power alone – so in theory, users will be able to travel around London without using any fuel at all – and the GTE is exempt from London’s £11.50 daily Congestion Charge, which would normally be bundled into the hourly rental rate.
However, if you’re planning on taking the car further afield, the Golf GTE can travel up to 580 miles when the 1.4-litre turbocharged petrol engine is used in combination with the electric motor. That said, Zipcar users are generally limited to 40 or 60 miles of travelling in a day, depending on the location.
Where can I find them?
Forty of the fifty cars will be located in the London borough of Westminster, while the remainder will be distributed across the rest of London, so there should be something available most of the time.Other hybrid cars available to rent on the scheme include the Toyota Prius and Toyota Yaris Hybrid models for those looking for something eco-friendly.
More on the Volkswagen Golf GTE
The Volkswagen Golf GTE is a particularly appealing car for company car drivers thanks to low CO2 emissions of just 39g/km and high claimed fuel economy.
Volkswagen claims it’s capable of returning up to 166mpg, but this will depend on how regularly you’re able to charge it (this takes two hours 20 minutes to completely charge from empty) and how often the engine comes into use on journeys.
In electric mode, the Golf GTE is capable of travelling up to 31 miles but the overall economy will depend on a number of factors including driving style, if the car is carrying a heavy load, and which mode it is driven in.
Drivers can choose between Normal, Eco and Eco+ and there are also options to charge the batteries on the move or save battery powerfor urban use later in a journey.
In terms of company car tax, the Golf GTE sits in the 7 percent tax band, so it’s at the cheaper end of the scale for company car drivers with a BIK value of £2,380 for 2016/17.