A 2,500 mile bucket list road trip is being driven for the first time this April in a KIA Soul EV.
The official ‘Route 57’ electric car will be hitting the road and heading through 57 must-see destinations across England, Wales, Scotland and Ireland.
The road trip runs from 6- 26 April, starting in Plymouth and ending in Galway, visiting villages, towns, and cities along the way.
Route 57 was designed as the UK and Ireland’s answer to US Route 66, by Jurys Inn Hotels who are supplying accommodation along the way, to the driver, motoring journalist Jess Shanahan. Jess will be doing the road trip in a KIA Soul EV supplied by electric car leasing company DriveElectric, and stopping at charging stations along the route, mapped out by ZapMap.
As well as promoting local tourism, the campaign’s use of an electric vehicle (EV) seeks to challenge common myths around electric cars. A recent survey by the AA shows that the ‘range’ of an EV is one of the top reasons why people are not buying electric cars. The Route 57 campaign will show that these perceptions do not match reality with today’s green car technology, and that an electric car can drive more than 2,580 miles across four countries.
Range anxiety has been a long standing issue (or myth as we like to refer to it), we wrote about it in 2012 when a study, called ‘Rewriting the Psychology of Electric Cars’ found exceptionally positive results, as Dr Louise Bunce, lecturer in psychology at the university who led the study, explained: “Despite initial scepticism, drivers quickly adapted to the vehicles and were extremely positive about aspects of performance, including acceleration and speed.”
Follow Jess’s journey as she posts updates on the Route 57 website: www.route57.org.uk along with Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. She’ll also be taking driving music suggestions through the Twitter hashtag #route57, or adding them directly to the Route 57 Spotify playlist. Audiobook suggestions are also welcome – Jess will be fittingly listening to Bill Bryson’s ‘Notes from a Small Island’ to begin with.