Wednesday, April 20, 2016

AZRA Pledges Big Electric Plans for Canadian Motoring

Photo Credit: Renault


With an electrified future of automobiles depending upon the quick reaction of current car builders, there seems to be some credence to believe a window of opportunity could exist for smaller start-up operations becoming a major player. The leading supporting argument to a newcomer company unbound by its past internal combustion vehicle development hitting it big is Tesla Motors. While Canada's immediate future doesn't consist of a home-grown, mass-produced Ludicrous Mode-infused electric car, AZRA Canada does look to launch a smaller-scale Tesla Motors-style business from Quebec. The electric vehicle strategy for AZRA Canada revolves around a two-prong attack.

The first component to AZRA Canada's business is supplying an electric vehicle to the marketplace. Passing through a major regulatory stage last month, AZRA Canada's all-electric product, the Renault Twizy, cleared the approval step with Transport Canada. The Twizy set to roam on Canadian roads will function at speeds up to 40 km/h. The limited speed allows the car to fit within the low-speed vehicle. The Renault Twizy electric car will be available through a leasing plan costing $99 per month including registration and insurance. Uni-Select (the parent company behind the Bumper to Bumper brand and Auto Parts Plus) has agreed to maintain the electric vehicle in Canada.

Serving as the second part of AZRA Canada's electric vehicle is going to involve proliferating the available charging options. Plans from AZRA targets the creation of 2,000 additional charging stations. With each one of these aluminum-constructed electric charging station capable of replenishing up to four vehicles at a time, a total of 8,000 more power points. These new EV charging stations will offer power charges between 7 and 50 kW. At the high-end, it should be possible to considerably recharge a battery in less than 30 minutes. The expansion of their electric charging network is slated to occur over an 18-month period.

The 2,000 charging stations will be installed on private property such as office buildings and shopping centres. AZRA will provide the electric car charging station installation free-of-charge. At the moment, according to the AZRA charging map app, many of the company's stations are situated within the area around Montreal and Quebec City. This electric charging station expansion plan will have a drastic effect on the Canadian EV charging map in total. According to the CAA, only 1,858 EV charging stations currently exist in Canada. 

Citing a mission to reduce the amount of greenhouse gas emitted through transportation, AZRA's President and CEO Jean-Francois Carriere said, "We are proud to be investing in transport electrification because it is the way of the future to reduce our environmental footprint."

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