Interior Minister Saimir Tahiri on Wednesday proudly introduced a small fleet of Volkswagen electric cars to be used by the Albanian police force, “the only one in the region and one of five in Europe.”
The Interior Minister said the cars will not use “a single drop of fuel” and will cost “just a coffee” 120 leks (less than 1 euro) per 100 kilometers (62 miles).
But there is a catch! There are no electric recharging spots in any of the fuel stations in Albania or around Albanian cities, so the cars have to head back to the police stations to be recharged if they have the juice to do so.
The e-Golf is a fast and nippy urban runaround. It’s significantly quieter than vehicles with conventional engines at normal city speeds. Thanks to its electric drive system, it’s also cheaper to run than a petrol or diesel engine: it consumes just 12.7 kWh per 100 km at a cost of a little over three euros (with electricity priced at 24 cents per kWh).
The eGolf, is supposed to do between 110 – 150 km on a single charge. And that’s fine, should these police cars be used only around the city of Tirana or within any other city.
Charging is done via a supplied charge cable, which can either be used in a high voltage (240watt) or conventional (120watt) outlet, with the key difference being charge time.
The police e-Golf is equipped for the forces tactical needs with a special signal system and modern digital radio. It’s powered by an 85 kW (115 hp) electric engine, which can hit a maximum torque of 270 N m from a standstill. That means the Volkswagen can reach 60 km/h in under 4.2 seconds, and 100 km/h in 10.4 seconds.
Other Police Units that use the eGolf include the German Police, the LAPD in US, etc.
Image: AP Photo / Hektor Pustina