Responsibility

British Gas helps to launch UKs first electric vehicle taxi service

Private hire chauffeur operator Thriev has launched a fleet of 20 zero-emission, fully-electric BYD e6 cars in London, which go into service today and powered by a London-wide charging network rolled out by British Gas.

Thriev offers low-cost, zero-emission, chauffeured vehicles to corporate and private users in London. The BYD e6 is ideally suited for private hire operations, providing a range of up to 186 miles, and the 20 private hire cars will be able to be recharged both at the depot and on the road thanks to British Gas.

The new fleet is the result of a shared ‘green city solution’ vision, to bring reliable, emission-free transport to London’s roads, replacing petrol and diesel powered vehicles with electric ones. The 20 BYD e6 vehicles operated by Thriev join two fully-electric BYD buses that are already in service with Go-Ahead Group on two central Transport for London routes.

The service will rely on a brand new city-wide charging network installed by British Gas, which has been leading the delivery of the UK’s charging infrastructure for electric vehicles since 2010. The first rapid chargers, made by BYD and capable of charging a car to 80% in just 30 minutes, have already been installed at Thriev’s Edgware Road facility. As the service expands across the UK, creating one of the largest of its kind, it will eventually see each unit of electricity matched with a unit of 100% British renewable electricity.

Matching the latest vehicle technology is Thriev’s use of the latest smartphone technology in the form of its booking app. The app, available for Apple and Android devices, allows customers to book a car in just three clicks. GPS allows the vehicle to be tracked in real-time on a map and the app also retains a history of previous reservations in the last 30 days for expense management and allows users to quickly rebook a repeat trip.

Arvind Vij, CEO and a co-founder of Thriev, said:

“We are delighted to see the new BYD e6 private hire vehicles, which feature our unique branding, go into service in London. Thriev offers its customers a true revolution in transport, using modern technology to offer private hire services in a cost-effective way.

Isbrand Ho, Managing Director of BYD Europe, said:

“It is great to see our e6 on the roads of London in private hire service only a matter of weeks after we became the first manufacturer to have fully-electric buses in operation in the Capital, too. We are delighted to be working with Thriev, which shares our vision to provide safe, reliable and efficient green transport in cities”.

Andreas Atkins, Head of Electric Vehicle Services at British Gas said:

“Innovations like Thriev make it possible for us to travel around with the best of both worlds, making major reductions in our carbon footprints and saving money at the same time. We’re aiming to convert 10% of our fleet to electric vehicles by 2015, and we’re glad to be helping other businesses to do the same.”

Media contacts

Martin Hayes – mhayes@automotivepr.com, 020 7952 1070

Tom Callow – tcallow@automotivepr.com, 020 7952 1070

About BYD

BYD Co., Ltd is a leading-edge provider of green energy technologies that specializes in the IT, automotive, and new energy industries. Being the world’s biggest rechargeable battery manufacturer, BYD also has the largest global market share for cell-phone chargers and keypads. BYD branched out into the auto business in 2003, and has kept a robust yearly growth rate successively. In 2008, Warren Buffett invested $232 million to take a 9.89% stake in BYD. Today, BYD is the fastest-growing Chinese auto company and a global pioneer in the field of new energy vehicles including Dual Mode Electric Models and Pure Electric Models.

Based on its core Fe Battery technology, BYD has worked out a Green City Solution, which aims to electrify urban public transportation systems by transitioning from gasoline and diesel buses and taxis to pure electric ones. In March 2012, BYD and Daimler AG officially announced the entirely new EV brand Denza in China.

In addition, BYD has also focused on the Research & Development and manufacturing of a wide range of new energy products, including energy storage system, solar energy products and LED lighting. For more information, please visit www.byd.com, www.byd-auto.net, www.facebook.com/bydauto or email pr@byd.com.

About Thriev

Thriev is Britain’s first of a kind private hire chauffeur service that aims to revolutionise transportation within London. Having launched in September 2013, the company boasts a fully-electric, zero-emission fleet and has ambitious plans for rapid expansion. Thriev’s mission is to work together with multiple stakeholders, ranging from governmental bodies and NGOs to large FTSE 100 corporations. The partnerships formed by Thriev will influence not only the company’s immediate users, but also everyone in the capital by providing a cleaner, safer and more sustainable environment for London.

Thriev demonstrates that it is both a frontrunner in utilising the advances of modern technology and a commercially viable organisation by offering its services at a price that is on average far lower than that of its competitors. In addition, Thriev aims to minimise even further its impact on the environment by striving to source the electricity needed for running its fleet from renewable sources and maximally utilising the nation’s electricity network (e.g. overnight recharging). The company is keeping on top of the game by overcoming the conventional challenges posed by operating electric vehicles through installing its own state-of-the-art, rapid technology chargepoint network that is on average 12-14 times more efficient than the majority of installed chargepoints.

The practical implication of using innovative companies like Thriev is that with every five-mile journey undertaken by just one of its vehicles, it prevents 1kg of carbon dioxide from being released into the atmosphere, along with a myriad of other harmful gases, emissions and particulates. In the long run, this will contribute to substantially reducing every client’s carbon footprint, whilst maximising their budgets, freeing up valuable funds for other purposes. For further information on Thriev, please visit: www.thriev.com,https://twitter.com/thriev, http://www.linkedin.com/company/thriev or email:office@thriev.com.

About British Gas

British Gas is the UK's leading energy supplier, and serves around 12 million homes in Britain – nearly half the country's homes – as well as providing energy to one million UK businesses. British Gas provides value for money, dedicated customer service, innovative energy solutions and the highest quality Home Services expertise in the country.

British Gas is also leading the roll out of the charging infrastructure which is making electric vehicles a viable option for British motorists. Our network of more than 650 expert electricians can help make electric cars and vans more accessible through charging point installations, dedicated tariffs for electric vehicle owners and tailored advice and support on making the transition to electric. British Gas is currently offering a nationwide free charging package, partly subsidised by funding from the Office for Low Emission Vehicles.

Find out more at www.britishgas.co.uk

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