Daniel Weiss got to drive the plug-in hybrid BMW i8 sports car for a week after winning a PostFinance car insurance competition. Driving an e-car was no great change for him as his own vehicle has the same drive system. In this interview he tells us all about it.
Sustainability on four wheels
What’s it like driving an electric vehicle and how important is it to him personally to use resources in a sustainable way? We ask Daniel Weiss who got to drive a sporty e-car for a week after winning a competition. His own car is also a plug-in hybrid for which he even generates his own power.
Why do you drive a plug-in hybrid yourself?
We do it out of principle and also generate our own electricity for the car using a photovoltaic system. This made opting for a plug-in hybrid a really easy decision.
Charging is an issue for plug-in hybrids and electric cars. The costs involved in installing a charging point at home and the lack of charging stations are often seen as the downside. Is that a justified argument?
I understand the argument to some extent, but there’s already an extensive network of electric charging stations and mobile charging units are also an alternative. Setting up a charging point at home only involves a one-off investment and makes you increasingly less dependent on external stations with a modern vehicle that has a real maximum range of 300 to 400 kilometres. You charge up the car overnight at home and it’s ready to go.
What do you consider the main benefits of using an electric car?
Besides convenient charging, there are many benefits. Electricity is not just cheaper than petrol or diesel, but does not produce any emissions either. Driving in an energy-efficient way becomes second nature as you have to make the kilometres available to you last – which means no frenzied acceleration and no abrupt braking. Driving is also wonderfully quiet.
What are the drawbacks in your view?
The fact that cobalt is needed to make the batteries in both plug-in hybrids and e-cars, but also the source of the power. The more electricity generated by photovoltaic systems, wind and hydro-power, the better.
How economical is driving with your plug-in hybrid?
The costs for my range extender are generally reasonable. But even without a photovoltaic system, we would still save quite a bit on energy costs compared to a petrol engine. That’s also because road tax on e-vehicles is significantly lower in most cantons.
How important is adopting a sustainable approach to resources in your everyday life?
It’s increasingly important – ideally I’d like to be self-sufficient. But taking such a step requires courage and involves investment and sacrifice. So people often take the easy option. I try to constantly improve by taking small steps. I feel it’s extremely important to pass these values onto my children.
Good to know: CO₂ option with PostFinance car insurance
Whether you drive an electric or combustion-engine vehicle – the CO₂ option, exclusively available from PostFinance car insurance, means you can help protect the environment. You’ll be supporting a South Pole nature conservation project and offsetting your CO₂ emissions per kilometre travelled. Besides the CO₂ option, PostFinance car insurance also offers you the following benefits:
- Individually configurable insurance coverage at fair prices
- Can be taken out online in a few minutes
- No automatic premium increase if a claim is made
- Three-month notice period including within the contract term
- Access to your data via an online cockpit