Birmingham and Luton airports have received new electric vehicle (EV) charging points as a result of a new partnership between Airparks and UK manufacturer POD Point.
In a deal announced last month two POD Point units have been installed at the airports, reportedly making the Airparks sites the first in the UK to offer free EV charging at off-airport car parks. Drivers are still required to pay for the parking facilities alongside conventional vehicles but can use the POD Point units free of charge.
Andrew Bird, general manager at Airparks, said: “We are proud to be the first off-airport car park to offer free EV charging at our Birmingham and Luton car parks. We're committed to constantly evolving our products to benefit our customer's needs; and this new service means that people driving EVs can use Airparks' car parks and return from their trip to a fully charged vehicle.
“The EV market is growing year on year and we hope that Airparks will be the car park of choice for EV owners flying from Birmingham and Luton."
The new deal with Airparks is the latest in a series of new partnerships signed by POD Point, which has also announced that it will be the sole UK charger supplier for Hyundai’s new Ioniq range, which offers hybrid, plug-in hybrid and full electric models.
The London-based firm has also signed similar deals with Volkswagen and Nissan to be the recommended supplier of home and workplace charge points in the UK.
Commenting on the Airparks deal, Erik Fairbairn, chief executive of POD Point, said: “This is a move that simply makes sense for all parties. It not only gives EV drivers a clear destination of choice for knowing their car will be secure and well managed while away, but also peace of mind of knowing that whatever time of day they land back, their car is charged and ready to go.
“More charge points mean greater take-up of EV cars, and this is a significant step towards our target of having a POD Point everywhere people park for an hour or more by 2020.”
A number of UK airports are increasing the levels of charging infrastructure available to drivers, with Heathrow announcing back in January that it would install 135 additional chargers in an effort to boost the number of clean energy vehicles used on and around the site.
In addition to growing use of electric vehicles in the private sector, the EV charging market is experiencing renewed support from the government. Greg Clark, secretary of state for business, energy and industrial strategy, recently claiming EVs represented an “emblematic area of focus” in the government’s industrial strategy.
Recent policy announcements have included a £7.5 million workplace charging scheme, offering £300 per installation, as well as a new tax break for expenditure on electric charge points unveiled in last month’s Autumn Statement.