Australia’s first EV Megatest

WORDS ANDY ENRIGHT, BYRON MATHIOUDAKIS & CAMERON KIRBY

OUR GOAL was simple. With the EV floodgates bound to burst open, it was high time to assess their viability in this vast brown land that we call home.

And this being Wheels, we’ve done it properly. Perhaps it’s easiest to think of the following 21 pages as a stocktake of electrification in Australia right now. A guide that covers everything from plug-ins to pure EVs, and even hydrogen, driven to answer one simple question – should you buy one?

And don’t think we took the easy route, either. Far from sticking to the city where charging stations and lifts home are plentiful should it all go wrong, in typical Wheels tradition, we wanted to cover some serious distance.

Not coincidentally, Australia’s first ultra-rapid charging station had recently been confirmed for Euroa in central Victoria (followed by Barnawartha North a further 145km upstream), which sounded an ideal base to test the feasibility of EV ownership, while also offering the opportunity to drive the unregistered Hyundai Nexo at Winton Raceway.

What followed was far from easy. Closed charging stations, missing charging plugs and other niggles threw up problems not encountered before on a Wheels Megatest. They were overcome, though not before providing a sharp reminder that owning an electric car in 2018-19 still requires a degree of adjustment.

Read on to see how it all unfolded.