The first electromobility series Latvian E-car 2024/25 kicks off

  • 2024-03-27

To promote electro-mobility, support environmentally friendly transport and identify the best electric cars in various categories, the first series of events dedicated to e-cars will start on 13-14 May. Experts will test electric cars, select winners in several categories and award the public's favourite prize.

This is the first time that such a series of events has been dedicated specifically to promoting electro-mobility and electric cars. It will consist of several stages - the announcement, test drives, the awarding of the Candidate Award, an event for the general public at the Spice shopping centre and the closing awards ceremony at the Riga Motor Museum.

"A press conference dedicated to the launch of the Latvian E-car 2024/25 will take place on 9 April at 12.00 at the Riga Motor Museum. It will be attended by Jānis Irbe, Parliamentary Secretary of the Ministry of Climate and Energy, Aivars Aksenoks, Chairman of the Board of CSDD, Aivis Lonskis, representative of the Baltic Alliance for Sustainable Mobility, as well as the jury members of the event: Kārlis Mendziņš, CEO of Eleport, Andris Dambis, car engineer, and Gusts Kikusts, LTV journalist and host of Tavs Auto TV.

"In Latvia, the transport sector is one of the biggest emitters, which requires an equally large investment in greening the sector. With the development of the battery technology market and competition from electric car manufacturers, electric cars are becoming more affordable vehicles. Following market trends and the needs of society, we are introducing various innovations in our support programmes to provide more opportunities for the purchase of electric cars among households, businesses and municipalities. 

We are already working on one of the improvements to the support programme so that families with many children will also receive support for the purchase of a seven-seater electric car. I appreciate the joint initiative of NGOs, businesses and electric mobility enthusiasts to take steps towards a cleaner and greener tomorrow."

"The idea for the Latvian E-Car 2024/25 event grew naturally out of a series of stories on electric cars on Tavs Auto TV. While two or three years ago there were still relatively few of them, today there is a wide range of different manufacturers in this segment. Today, electric cars can safely be described not as a fad or a simple desire to try out everything new, but as part of everyday mobility solutions," says Roberts Jansons, one of the authors of the idea, Editor-in-Chief of Tavs Auto TV and an experienced automotive journalist.

R. "It is important for us that the cars submitted for the "Latvian E-car 2024/25" event are not judged only on the principle of "like or dislike". It's about the technical characteristics, the charging speed, the range that these cars can provide and the price versus benefit."

"The general public's interest in electric cars has been growing rapidly recently, so the new assessment could serve as an insight and a kind of guide to the increasingly diverse range of e-cars on offer," adds Jansons, who has tested a wide variety of models himself.   

Kārlis Mendziņš, one of the most renowned professionals in the field of electric car charging and the head of the Estonian electric car charging network Eleport in Latvia, says that the series of events will take place at a very opportune moment. "Currently, the field of electromobility in Latvia is in a transition phase from early enthusiasts to electric cars as the choice of the general public. Therefore, many people will certainly be interested in its development and undoubtedly also in its results from a quite practical point of view."

"The development of the electric car sector means that these cars are becoming more and more accessible to the user - there is a growing variety of models in the price range of around €20,000-25,000. This is significantly cheaper than a few years ago. However, we cannot count on e-car prices becoming very low, even with the European Union's safety requirements," explains Mr Mendziņš.

As an important new feature, Mendziņš mentions the possibility to pay for e-car charging at the new charging points from 13 April not only with a mobile phone app but also with a bank card. "Of course, charging options will become more and more widespread, but Latvia still needs a national strategy and readiness to promote electromobility," Mendziņš adds.

K. "The first test drives are scheduled for early summer and are already fully booked."

Andris Dambis, one of the jury members, a car engineer and pioneer of electro-mobility, said that he was looking forward to the new e-car series. 

"There are enough electric cars in Latvia today. We see them on the streets, especially in the centre of Riga. So it's definitely time to compare electric cars with each other, to identify their good points and maybe some bad ones," says Dambis.

A. Dambis believes that the time has come to evaluate electric cars in Latvia, because they are different and worth trying out. "That's why I support the idea of Latvian E-car 2024/2025 and I am looking forward to it! I really enjoy driving different cars at these gatherings - it's very interesting because you can see in a short time interesting quirks and tricks that one car has but another might not. Then you can understand the ideal set-up that you would like to have in your car. "

The electric cars will be judged in a number of categories, including winners in the under €50,000 and over €50,000 price categories, as well as awards in several categories - Created for the City, Family Choice, Entrepreneur's Choice, Business Class, Most Beautiful Design and the Sympathy Award, which will be decided by public vote.

The Latvian e-car 2024/25 series is supported by companies active in the field of electromobility, including Eleport, SEB banka, If Apdrošināšana, Kempower, Mobilly, Sixt, Goodyear, CSDD, Igates Pils, t/c Spice.