Boris Goes Electric

06 Dec
December 6, 2008

Good Ol’ Boris has always had a strong position on environmental issues, specifically when it comes to cutting down on the emissions from the capitals cars — he’s famous for promoting the benefits of cycling, as well asdemonstrating the ecological benefits of the congestion charge — but, after a recent appearance on Top Gear, it seems he’s been turned on (no pun intended) to the benefits of the electric car.

In his column in the Telegraph, Boris has pointed out that the electric Mercedes he was allowed to drive after completing his lap for the show’s ‘Star in a Reasonably-Priced Car’ segment in a Chevrolet Lacetti ran rings around the competition. Quoth Boris:

As they have discovered on Top Gear, electric cars are not just glorified milkfloats these days. There is already something out there called the Tesla, which can apparently do 125mph and go for 250 miles without needing to have its batteries recharged.

Such was the extent of this epiphany that Boris has pledged to keep his family car (a Toyota that, had it been a beloved family pet instead of a people carrier, would have been put down long ago) for as long as it takes for viable electric cars to hit the market. After all, at a penny a mile and with zero emissions, he’s right when he says there’s a definite economic benefit to stepping up research, and his prediction that (like mobile phones) electric car batteries will become the norm within ten or so years seems pretty spot-on.

The episode is due to air this Sunday on BBC Two at 8pm. After his last — and, it has to be said, very poor — laptime on the track, will you be tuning in to see if he redeems himself? Or are his opinions about the future of the electric car more interesting to you? Let us know in the comments.

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