The Volkswagen Group and Greece have agreed to establish a groundbreaking EV mobility system on the Mediterranean island of Astypalea.
The transport system will be driven by electric vehicles and renewable power generation creating a long-term climate-neutral mobility system.
A memorandum of understanding was signed for the mobility system with energy primarily generated from local green power sources such as solar and wind. The project will initially run for six years.
Currently the island runs on fossil-fuel power transport, and the new system will use digital mobility services, including an all-electric year-round ride-sharing service designed to take the current very limited local bus service to a new level. Together with local partners, part of the traditional vehicle rental business will be transformed into a vehicle sharing service offering e-scooters from the Group’s SEAT brand and e-bikes in addition to electric cars. In total, some 1,000 electric vehicles will replace about 1,500 vehicles with combustion engines.
Commercial vehicles from local businesses as well as utility vehicles on the island – such as police vehicles, emergency services transport and public sector fleets – will also be electrified. Volkswagen will install its Elli chargers across the island to ensure a comprehensive charging infrastructure offering about 230 private and several public charging points.
Konstantinos Fragogiannis, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, said: “Today we are launching the first ´Smart Green Island` project in our country, which marks a major change in our outlook. Electric transport and a holistic, green and sustainable action plan will have a positive impact on the everyday life of the island’s inhabitants.
“Combined with a pioneering public transport system, we are turning futuristic ideas into reality. Today Greece shows that it is ready to adopt groundbreaking, innovative and flagship investments that take society to another level of connectedness, smart sustainability and innate usability.”