Pilot project to trial community electric cars in Gwynedd.
Welcome to the Gwynedd community electric car share project!
The project has launched!
Our two fully electric Nissan LEAFs, nicknamed “Carwen” and “Carwyn”, are out in their local communities Bethesda and Abergynolwyn.
Want to use one? They are available for anyone to hire by the hour or day.
Have time to help those in your community unable to drive? Become a volunteer community driver.
The Gwynedd community electric car share project is a two year project with two main aims.
- To trial a community car share model in rural communities and see if it helps people who are currently isolated through lack of public transport to access local services and facilities. The cars can serve those who do not have their own car and/or households that would like use of a second car occasionally. Through a team of volunteer drivers the cars can also assist those who are unable to drive, helping them reach medical appointments, for example, as well as social occasions, keeping them in touch with their local community.
- To raise awareness of electric cars and promote sustainable transport options. Electric cars are much more efficient than petrol or diesel cars, they can be powered by low carbon renewable energy, have zero tailpipe emissions and are cheaper to run. By giving people an easy opportunity to try out an electric car themselves, the project aims to prove to local residents that people can use an electric car in their day-to-day lives and that it is a viable alternative to a diesel or petrol car. The increase in electric cars on the road in Britain has been huge over the last 6 years (3,500 electric cars in 2013, to 227,000 electric cars end of August 2019)* and it is important that Gwynedd’s rural residents consider the benefits of electric cars, to themselves and to the environment.
“Carwen” and “Carwyn” are 40kWh Nissan LEAFs. They are 5 door, 5 seater cars with a good amount of boot space. They have an average range of 110-150 miles per charge, depending on driving style and conditions. Drivers that stay light on the accelerator and keep the power gauge in eco mode will get the upper end of that range spectrum – or more!
Without needing to stop and charge, you could drive from Abergynolwyn to Bethesda and back (120 miles), or drive from Abergynolwyn to Cardiff (117miles) – though you may want to stop for a break during that 3hr journey! And of course they can get you to the local supermarket or doctor’s surgery too.
For the first year of the project the car we have nicknamed “Carwen” will be based in Bethesda, managed by Partneriaeth Ogwen, and “Carwyn” in Abergynolwyn, managed by Egni Abergynolwyn Energy.
Partneriaeth Ogwen are a social enterprise working for the benefit of the economy, environment and communities of Dyffryn Ogwen. For more information about them, “Carwen” or getting involved as a volunteer community driver visit https://www.ogwen.org/en/ or contact Huw Davies on firstname.lastname@example.org
Egni Abergynolwyn Energy is a registered Community Benefit Society, set up to consider suggestions, ideas and projects that help to reduce the community’s carbon footprint, are eco friendly and can provide benefits to the village and community. For more information about them, “Carwyn” or getting involved as a volunteer community driver contact Steve Beech email@example.com
For the second year of the project the cars will go to two new communities. If you are part of a community group in Gwynedd and are interested in applying to have “Carwen” or “Carwyn” autumn 2020 to 2021, please get in touch for more details https://www.arloesigwyneddwledig.cymru/en/cysylltu/
The car locations
“Carwen” is based at a dedicated parking spot and charger at Bethesda’s Library.
When making a booking this is where you will pick up and return “Carwen”.
“Carwyn” is based at a dedicated parking spot and charger at Abergynolwyn’s Community Centre.
When making a booking this is where you will pick up and return “Carwyn”.
How to book a car
The cars are being managed through Co-wheels Car Club. Co-wheels is a social enterprise whose primary focus is to help their members to save money, reduce car ownership and create a cleaner environment by making lower impact transport options available to everyone.
Users will need to register with Co-wheels (£5 with our promotion code). You will then be sent a smartcard that you will need to access the car whenever you book it out, so please register in plenty of time before you want to make your first booking.
Use promotion code AGW20 when registering.
This gives a £20 registration discount (making it £5 to register) and waives the £5 monthly minimum spend.
- Register with Co-wheels via this link https://gwynedd.book.co-wheels.org.uk/auth/register using the AGW20 promotion code
- Set up your driver profile (you will need your National Insurance Number and a driving license check code https://www.gov.uk/view-driving-licence)
- Your details will be verified
- Receive your membership pack with a smartcard
- Book “Carwen” or “Carwyn” (from Monday 11 November onwards) or another one of Co-wheels’ cars across the UK! https://gwynedd.book.co-wheels.org.uk/
Co-wheels provides insurance cover, breakdown cover and a 24hr user helpline. Full details, (including excess), terms and conditions are on their website.
Hour – £3
Overnight* – £6
Day** – £21
Per mile – Free
*8pm-8am **Any 24hr period
“Carwen” and “Carwyn” have different prices to other Co-wheels Car Club cars. If you book other Co-wheels cars, different prices will apply.
Charging the cars
Each car has a dedicated parking place with a 7kW charger. This will charge the car at approximately 30miles/20% per hour. While the project is going this charging point is just for the use of the community car and not open for general public use. The charging cable is stored in the boot of the car.
Charging the car at its home charger is free.
Planning your journey
If you would like to use the car on a journey that is longer than the range of the car, you will have to charge it at a public charger. Before you set off, use PlugShare https://www.plugshare.com/ or ZapMap https://www.zap-map.com/live/ to help you plan your journey and research details of any chargers you may wish to use. You will be responsible for activating and paying for any charges while you have the car.
The cars are rapid charge compatible, using Chademo (the large charging socket) and will charge from low to 80% in approximately 40mins at a rapid charger. There is usually a fee for using a Rapid charger, and having the company’s app or RFID card is often needed to start the charge. E.g ElectricHighway or Polar Instant.
You can also use a 7kW charger, which will charge from low to 80% in approximately 4 hrs. These are especially useful if you are at your destination and are doing something else anyway (not just waiting for the car to charge!). You can also just use them to ‘top up’ if you are stopping for a shorter time. They are often low cost and sometimes free.
The community groups will be happy to chat to you and answer any questions you may have about the cars, including registering, booking, charging or volunteering.
For “Carwen” in Bethesda, contact Huw Davies firstname.lastname@example.org at Partneriaeth Ogwen.
For “Carwyn” in Abergynolwyn, contact Steve Beech email@example.com at Egni Abergynolwyn Energy.
Happy electric driving!
‘How to’ Videos:
1) How to charge at a home location
2) How to charge using a rapid charger
3) How to drive Carwyn and Carwen