VW wants to turn a Greek island into an EV paradise

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The Volkswagen Group has inked a deal with the Greek government to transform the island of Astypalea into an EV-only zone.

The six-year experiment will see VW replace the 1500 combustion-engined vehicles on Astypalea with 1000 electric vehicles and shift from fossil fuel power generation to renewable wind and solar energy.

VW will provide its new ID.3 and ID.4, plus e-scooters and e-bikes from its SEAT brand for the 1300 residents and 72,000 annual tourists to whizz around. A ride share scheme will replace the island’s two buses, and even public sector fleets, such as police cars will be electrified.

Some 230 charging points will be installed across the island to make sure that everyone’s batteries can be readily topped up. The small island has less than 120 miles of roads, so range anxiety won’t be an issue.

VW’s sustainability council member Margo T. Oge said: “There is an Aristotle saying: ‘It is during our darkest moments that we must focus to see the light.’ The Astypalea project is a light in the darkness and will help demonstrate the future of clean mobility.”

If you fancy an eco-vacation, well, you know where to go. Precisely how you get there without taking a gas guzzling flight or ferry is another matter.

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