Trials of ‘electric roads’ to start later this year

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Highways England is to launch trials of the technology needed to power electric and hybrid vehicles on the move later this year.

The off-road trials will test how the technology would work on the country’s motorways and major A roads, allowing drivers of ultra-low emission vehicles to travel long distances without needing to stop and charge the car’s battery.

The trials will involve fitting vehicles with wireless technology and testing the equipment, installed underneath the road, to replicate motorway conditions. They are expected to last for about 18 months and, subject to the results, could be followed by on road trials.

Transport minister Andrew Jones said: The potential to recharge low emission vehicles on the move offers exciting possibilities. The government is already committing £500 million over the next five years to keep Britain at the forefront of this technology, which will help boost jobs and growth in the sector.”

Highways England is also committed in the longer-term to installing plug-in charging points every 20 miles on the motorway network as part of the government’s road investment strategy.

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