Jan 16, 2011

Electric car from London to Edinburgh: stagecoach was faster

The score of this exercise: Practicality 1, Greenies 0.

The BBC's stunt of taking an electric Mini (pictured) to Edinburgh reveals just how impractical rechargeable cars are.

In its obsessive desire to promote the virtues of electric cars, the BBC proudly showed us last week how its reporter Brian Milligan was able to drive an electric Mini from London to Edinburgh in a mere four days – with nine stops of up to 10 hours to recharge the batteries (with electricity from fossil fuels).

The distance from London to Edinburgh is 484 miles (778 km) a comfortable days drive in a conventional vehicle.

What the BBC omitted to tell us was that in the 1830s, a stagecoach was able to make the same journey in half the time, with two days and nights of continuous driving. This did require 50 stops to change horses, but each of these took only two minutes, giving a total stopping time of just over an hour and a half.

180 years is a big leap backward!