Gull general manager reveals support for 'phenomenally exciting' electric vehicles

The general manager of petrol giant Gull has revealed he surprisingly supports electric vehicles, calling them "phenomenally exciting".

Dave Bodger spoke to The AM Show on Friday about the future of travel in New Zealand, where sports presenter Mark Richardson said he thought electric vehicles (EVs) weren't fun to drive.

But Bodger disagreed.

"Mark, look - it might be strange coming from an oil man - but drive an electric car," he said. "They are phenomenally exciting. The acceleration is real quick."

Bodger revealed he had previously owned a hybrid vehicle until it was destroyed in a car accident.

He told The AM Show he understands the EVs are going to be a major part of the future.

"I'm in the sunset industry. I'm very happy to note that. The sun's not going down for a while. But you look at what the Climate Change Commission is saying, a third of the emissions from fuel so we will be using a third of the current litres of fuel by 2050 and I think that's right."

The Climate Commission released its first official report in January which set three new targets: a 2 percent reduction on 2018 greenhouse gas emissions by 2025, 17 percent by 2030, and 36 percent by 2035.

Commission chair Dr Rod Carr said investing more in electric vehicles is one of the critical actions New Zealand needs to implement to reach the targets.

As a result of the report, the Government announced in February an investment in more low emission vehicle options for New Zealand, including installing more electric vehicle chargers.

Bodger said Gull is now looking at options to appeal to people who make the change to EVs.

"We have been selling biofuel happily for 14 years. We are looking hard at hydrogen. Most people will charge their electric vehicles and they will buy them. They will mostly charge them at home, but at times you will need to charge them, say at our site in Ātiamuri in the middle of the island. We need to start looking at putting in charging points at places like that."

There are currently 719 (public and private) EV chargers installed around New Zealand, with another 413 in progress.

 Auckland, by far, has the most with 136 followed by the Waikato which has 89 chargers, Wellington has 76 and Canterbury 72. The West Coast currently has the least chargers (13).