Case Study

E-Car Club

How many people have heard about Transport Poverty? It’s a little known term because, for many people, they assume that being able to get from one place to another is easy and affordable.  But what if you can’t afford a car and need to visit elderly relatives? Or you just can’t get to your child’s football match by bus?

With a social mission to “improve mobility on a local level whilst reducing both the cost and environmental impact of each journey taken”, E-Car, the UK’s first entirely electric car club, has developed a mixed-use electric vehicle car club model with local authorities, businesses and registered Social Landlords.  They provide electric vehicles to be made available by the hour to “transport poor” households at affordable prices having an impact on community mobility, social inclusion and community empowerment.  The move to electric cars also directly reduces carbon emissions and should improve air quality in urban areas.

Ignite has invested £500,000 into E-Car to enable them to expand car club operations into additional communities across London and the Midlands in 2014.  The investment will enable E-Car Club to pursue their social mission, delivering lower cost transport solutions and improving the quality of life for local communities in up to 20 new locations.

“Access to low cost transport is a huge problem for many UK households – we were impressed by E-Car’s commitment in addressing this issue and creating cross sector partnerships with local authorities and local communities to help these households in transport poverty.” Ignite Social Enterprise LP, backed by Centrica Plc.

July 2015 – Europcar, Europe’s largest car rental company purchased E-Car Club. Ignite will remain a shareholder, and successfully convinced Europcar to preserve the social impact.