Gloucestershire Constabulary has taken delivery of 75 electric vehicles from Nissan, making 21% of its fleet zero-emissions and reducing its CO output by more than 190 tonnes a year.

The vehicles include a total of 66 Nissan LEAFs, of which 11 will be marked vehicles, and nine e-NV200s. The force has estimated that the saving in fuel and maintenance will equate to £136,000 a year.

Gloucestershire police has experience with a smaller fleet of Nissan LEAFs, starting with the first generation in 2016 and the second in 2018. Its use of the cars is part of a five-year plan from Gloucestershire’s Police and Crime Commissioner Martin Surl to create ‘A Green and Pleasant County’, and ensure that Gloucestershire Constabulary operates in a way which is as responsible and sustainable as possible.

Surl said: “The purchase of these new vehicles is a huge step forward for the Constabulary to reduce its carbon and pollution, and meets part of my commitment to ‘A Green and Pleasant County’ that was outlined in my Police and Crime Plan. It’s a journey we’ve been on for five years and is part of a long-term commitment by my office to ensure our environment is considered at every opportunity.

“The new fleet will save a considerable amount of CO₂ and money, giving Gloucestershire a larger percentage of fully-electric vehicles in its fleet than any other force. I hope the constabulary will be able to build on this great work, and extend its electric fleet to 40 per cent within the next four years.”

Head of Transport Services for Gloucestershire Constabulary Steve Imm said: “We conducted a big fleet review of what we could replace with EVs, which led us to the figure of 21%. In two years we’ve managed that, and in four years we’re looking to make it around 40% if the technology allows it and it’s a viable option.

“There are lots of departments in the police that are either policed by staff members or the CID for example. They’re not working 24/7, they’re working core hours across shift patterns, and they’re driving an average of 70 miles a day so we know that 180 miles will do what we need them to do.”

Gloucestershire Constabulary uses 7kW charges at its campus to charge the vehicles overnight. The Nissan LEAF e+ is able to travel up to 239 miles on one charge, while the e-NV200 is capable of up to 187 miles.

As well as the money and emissions savings, the vehicles require less servicing than combustion-engined equivalents so the force benefits from reduced off-the-road time.

“In our history of the Nissan LEAFs, on the 16-plates, we’ve only changed one set of brake pads. Because of the regenerative braking you don’t use brake pads or brake discs as much,” Imm added. “We’re cutting down huge amounts of labour time and off-the-road time, which improves our internal efficiency and means the police force has the vehicles on the road more.”

Nissan Motor GB Fleet Director Peter McDonald said: “We are really excited to be working with progressive organisations in their pursuit of net zero. We are working with a number of organisations piloting major initiatives in the corporate and public sector space, and are really excited to announce this partnership with the Gloucester Police Force.

“Through their pioneering work Gloucestershire are showing how EVs can be used in all kinds of practical applications, and how with some initiative blue light fleets are able to play an active role in decarbonisation. We applaud Gloucester Police Forces and are proud to be working with them.”

By Brian