Electric ute fails to end Margaret River man’s weekend

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Tom ZaunmayrAugusta Margaret River Times
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VideoMargaret River's Rod Dilkes converted a ute into an electric vehicle a decade ago. He says it has not killed his weekend and saved him a bunch of money too.

Despite owning an electric ute — one he converted himself — Margaret River’s Rod Dilkes insists his weekends have not been ruined.

Electric vehicles have become a heated election battleground in recent weeks after Prime Minister Scott Morrison claimed Labor’s policy to see electric vehicles make up half of new car sales by 2030 would “end the weekend”.

The Coalition is working on an EV strategy and claims it is not against the technology, but says the Government should not be telling people which cars to buy.

Margaret River EV owner Rod Dilkes says claims about electric vehicles 'killing the weekend' are spurious.
Camera IconMargaret River EV owner Rod Dilkes says claims about electric vehicles 'killing the weekend' are spurious. Credit: Tom Zaunmayr.

Mr Dilkes said he believed a hard right agenda was drowning out pro-EV voices within the Coalition.

“I personally think there are moderate people out there in Government who at the moment just don’t get a look-in,” he said.

“There are a number of small electric vehicle manufacturers who I know for a fact are struggling because they do so much research and development and get no support.

“The killing people’s weekend line is all about range — people want to go bush and come back.

“Well, I am not killing anyone’s weekend, I am proving to people you can do it.”

VideoScott Morrison has again highlighted flaws with Labor’s electric car policy.

Greens Senator Rachel Siewert said an effective transition plan would bring the price of electric cars within reach for more people.

“I was appalled seeing the way the Coalition carried on — it showed a really poor understanding of electric vehicles,” she said.

“Less than six months ago, their ministers, their members were speaking very strongly in favour of electric vehicles.

“No one is saying it will happen overnight, but I think people will be surprised in the medium term at how rapidly electric vehicles take off.”

Forrest MHR Nola Marino did not respond by the time of print.

Forrest Labor candidate Wayne Sanford did not respond to requests for comment.

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