Regenerative braking for the win!
  Aug 14, 2019     Smart Electricity, Opinion, Green Tech, green economy, greentech, Cape Town, South Africa, general, News, #FollowourEV

GreenCape has recently partnered with BMW South Africa to arrange a year-long paid-for lease of a BMW i3 electric vehicle (EV). By replacing one of the three leased vehicles in the company fleet with the BMW i3, we hope to explore the new world of EVs, identifying some of unexpected positives and challenges in this fast emerging sector in South Africa.

Keen observers are welcome to follow our journey both here, and on twitter (@thegreencape) where we will be posting updates on our EV using the hastag #FollowourEV.

As part of the process, we've asked our staff to write down their thoughts following their first experience of driving the EV and we will periodically be publishing these. It goes without saying, but we'll say it anyway, the views expressed in these write ups are those of the individual concerned, and do not necessarily reflect GreenCape's stand point.

This week we hear from one of our WISP facilitators, Oliver Bonstein, after his experience of driving the EV to a site meeting in Atlantis.


I was lucky enough to get to drive the BMW i3 to Atlantis on only its 2nd day at GreenCape.  I had to get acquainted with the charging and trip planning functions in order to avoid any range stresses. By doing this, I realized just how capable and reliable an EV can be. The EV was more than capable of giving us a full day outing and returning us home without any hassle.

When I first drove the car, I had to get used to the regenerative braking which kicks in every time you take your foot off the accelerator. I soon learned to use this in place of the brakes and made it my goal to engage it as late as possible so as to avoid having to use the breaks at all to make a stop. This was quite a rewarding experience when I got it right. I also noticed that this approach seemed to extend the range capability of the vehicle. The comfort and luxury of the ride is exceptional and it makes it a truly great driving experience.

When we were saying goodbye to our site host in Atlantis, he showed great interest in the unusual looking vehicle we were in. We let him sit in the drivers seat and explained to him how and why we are using it. He was very impressed and interested in how it works.

I really enjoyed my first EV driving experience.


- Oliver Bonstein, WISP facilitator.