2019 Great EV Road Trip

The Great EV Road Trip has now finished for another year. We wish to thank all our volunteers who brought along their private electric cars to our events. We especially thank our hardworking Champions, event organisers and guest speakers, some of whom worked on this project for months in their own time. And to the road trippers themselves who took time out from their regular jobs, and paid their own way to be part of the convoy and share their knowledge of EV.

We also wish to thank all of our venue hosts who donated space for free, and last but not least, our sponsors for your financial contribution (in alphabetical order):

  • Archibald and Shorter: Jaguar
  • Ashburton City Council
  • Auckland City Electric Vehicles
  • Bayfair Mall
  • Blenheim City Council
  • Cadence Comms
  • ChargeNet NZ
  • Christchurch City Council
  • Drive EV
  • Dunedin City Council
  • EECA
  • Ecotricity
  • EV City
  • EV Talk
  • Fiordland College
  • Foodstuffs SI
  • Go Geraldine
  • GVI Electric
  • Hawkdun Rise Vineyards
  • Kapiti Coast District Council
  • Kiwirail/Interislander
  • Kurow School
  • Mangapiri Downs Organic Stud Farm
  • Masterton District Council
  • Meridian and Manapouri Power Station
  • Napier City Council
  • Nelson City Council
  • New World Mosgiel
  • New World Westport
  • Packhouse Markets Kerikeri
  • Palmerston North City Council
  • Paua World
  • Orion
  • Otago Museum
  • Queenstown Lakes District Council
  • Raglan Club
  • Repco NZ
  • Smales Farm
  • The Warehouse Dargaville
  • Tourism Holdings: Britz eVolve
  • Unison
  • Waitiki Valley School
  • Whangarei City Council

Without sponsorship we cannot run such a massive event. Please get in touch with us if you'd like to sponsor the 2020 EV Road Trip, or any of our other activities in the coming 12 months. Potential sponsors please consider us when allocating your annual budget. Come along and promote your brand, while assisting us to bring electric vehicles to the general public of New Zealand. Email our Trust Chair for more information: kathryn @ betternz.org 


Final Statistics for 2019

  • 1 International Guest
  • 2 movie nights
  • 4 public convoys
    • (Wanaka, Christchurch, Hamilton, Dargaville)
  • 5 boat trips
    • (Cook Strait x2, Milford Sound, Lake Manapouri)
  • 6 months preparation
  • 10 official photo ops
    • (Luggate, Kingston, Manapouri, St Bathans, Cook Straight, Carterton, Wairoa, Wharerata, Mohaka Viaduct, Cape Reinga)
  • 19 cars doing 2 or more days
  • 20 different electric models displayed
  • 21 motels
  • 28 Road Trippers 
  • 31 days
  • 38 events
  • 132 volunteers
  • 750 Goodie Bags given away
  • 6000 people engaged at events
  • 6375 km route


{Click on map to load high-res version}

The 5th annual #LeadingTheCharge Great EV Road Trip is now underway.

There are 5338 km of travel segments plus day trips and ticky tours.

We will have a minimum of 3 road trippers on all segments, with significantly more than that on most legs from Mosgiel onwards.

The trip will take 31 days, stop at 30 main centres and will feature 40 events (not counting Rotorua which was cancelled due to bad weather.) 

Events, travel days and overnight locations are shown for people who wish to plan where to join us.


You can follow along with the Road Trippers here in a Daily Pictorial Diary.


2019 Registered Road Trippers

From the Trust:
*Kathryn & Greg Trounson
Sean Dick
*Rachelle Tilsley

Special Guest
Chelsea Sexton

Participating Volunteers:
*Martin Kane (Champion of the Year 2018)
Adam J (?)
Nigel, Melissa, Sienna B, and family
David R
*Tim G and family
*Bob G
*Oana & Paul J and family
Hannah K
*Paul D
*Will S
*David B
Daniel K
Lex & Fi Mc
Donald L
Sarah B and family
David S
*Nigel and Sue P
*Ela P
*Margaret B
*Robert & Vanessa N
Mark B
Tabitha R & family
Tom P & family
Mark & Pav S

Plus many more joining us for less than 2 legs or joining convoys


Event Organisers
Sigurd Magnusson
Drive EV
Nelson City Council
James C
Dave H
Paul M
Nigel H
Suzanne B
Pam Mc
Otago Museum
Martin K
Matt H
Chch EV Owners Group
EV City
Richard M
Liza H
Richard H
Sue P
Bayfair Mall
Hamilton EV
Joe C
Olli K
Kerikeri Retirement Village

Plus all the road trippers with stars next to their names in the first column

If you are planning on coming on the Road Trip, but your name is not on the list to the left, please email [email protected] before we leave on Thursday.


Review of the 2018 Road Trip

Review of the 2017 Road Trip

Review of the 2016 Road Trip





The Road Trippers touched down onto the Mainland, where they will remain until the 16th April.


The Raumati Beach DC Rapid charger was officially opened during a well-attended short ceremony organised by Trustee Sigurd Magnusson and Kapiti Coast District Council.


We estimated attendance of approximately 400 people and gave nearly 30 test drives at the hugely successful event in Taupo, attended by Drive EV, Unison, Contact Energy, Taupo City Council and plenty of local supporters with their cars. Of special note was an early 70s Torana GTS converted drag car owned by a local EV enthusiast.


Repco is joining the party, sponsoring four road trip event centres in Dunedin, Christchurch, Palmerston North and Auckland.  Repco: it starts with parts.


The Opening of the Road Trip has now shifted to Taupo on 29th March at Colonel Roberts Reserve.
Central North Island is battening down the hatches expecting torrential rainfall, and has therefore cancelled the Rotorua Night Markets and consequently, we will not be holding our Rotorua event.


With the recent flooding on the South Island's West Coast, a critical bridge on SH6 has been washed away. So the Road Trip is moving to Plan B, crossing over to the East Coast on our way to Wanaka. It really is going to be a Great big trip. We wish all the West Coasters whose lives have been disrupted all the best.


The Road Trip Kicks off with the first event in Rotorua on Thursday evening. We are excited to have Her Worship the Mayor of Rotorua, Hon Steve Chadwick JP declaring our Road Trip open and sharing some exciting news from ChargeNet NZ Ltd.


We are delighted to announce that Auckland City Electric Vehicles will be offering rides and drives at the Ecotricity Auckland event at Smales Farm.  This is the first time we've partnered with Hadley and his team at ACEV and we look forward to their support.


Our 2019 Road Trippers will be all set to go with The Power Trip app. Richard Heaps, developer of the local app, and EV Champion has loaded the entire Road Trip route into the app. Our road trippers can predict their car's energy consumption before they start driving, find the best charging spots along the way and at all the destinations - all individualised to each car and driving style. Plus it even indicates which local businesses offer discounts to Power Trip app users.

To access the Road Trip route, click on the LeadingTheCharge hashtag on the map.  Be sure to update the app to have the latest version. 


Our Dargaville event has had a venue change. It will now be held in The Warehouse carpark on Victoria Street. Our thanks to The Warehouse Dargaville for allowing us to use some of their carpark space.


Tourism Holdings Ltd have kindly loaned us their Britz eVolve camper for the Auckland to Cape Reinga legs of our tour. This will be driven by one of our experienced volunteers, who I'm sure is keen to review the experience afterwards.  This is a fully electric eLDV camper and Britz have two available for hire: one in Auckland and one in Queenstown.


This year our point of difference is the far-flung places we will visit, where EV are still relatively unknown. And also, we are holding a range of EVents that differ from the ordinary display, ride and drive format. 

One of the most exciting events will be at Managapiri Downs Organic Stud Farm, Southland, where we will be holding an Indie Folk and Blues Concert for a couple of hundred concert goers.

Internationally renowned blues singer/songwriter, Paul Ubana Jones, will be headlining the event with his extremely talented acoustic guitar playing. The event will also see displays/drives of electric farm bikes and cars, sustainable farming displays of drones and organic info, stud animals on display, and a leisurely picnic day out in the Downs.  This event is already gaining a lot of interest from nearby towns of Otautau and Te Anau. Plus may include a special guest, to be announced at a later date.


Wonderful news from ChargeNet who have offered to donate all the rapid charging on their network for our registered road trippers while en route. 

Please make sure that if you are on the road trip, that you have registered with us by filling in the registration form and returning it to betternz.org by email.  Last minute registrations may miss out.


We are delighted to announce that our final road-show event is to be hosted by the Kerikeri Retirement Village. The retirement village has been very proactive in supporting electric vehicles and now has a fleet of share EVs for its residents. Friends and family of residents, and the general public are all welcome to attend.


EV City will be hosting the Road Trip in Christchurch City with three major events. These include a special guest appearance from Chelsea Sexton, international EV advocate, and expert.

Receiving sponsorship from keen industry members is essential for the Better NZ Trust. EV City knows that without sponsorship our charitable organisation can not continue to promote EV — promotion that in turn helps the industry grow and gain confidence, through proven results. The Better NZ Trust volunteers thank EV City and our other sponsors wholeheartedly. Together we will make NZ a better place for future generations.


We only have a month to go until the start of the 2019 Great EV Road Trip. We've published just over half our public events, but there's still more to come.  Plus stay tuned for some exciting announcements, and we will be announcing who the road trippers are and their cars.


Kiwirail have offered to once again support the 2019 Great EV Road Trip as we cross between islands with Interislander.  This is the fourth year that Kiwirail have assisted the Better NZ Trust and we are hugely grateful. Kiwirail are committed to sustainability on three fronts - economic, environmental and social.


It's going to be a cracker of an event in Taupo on Saturday 30th March. Drive EV have just announced they'll be hosting an entire day's worth of displays, drives and experiences, with a huge variety of electric cars in attendance. Drive EV is a 100% electric dealership servicing the central North Island and beyond. They have the widest range of EV models in NZ. Drive EV have also announced they'll be joining us at the Road Trip events in Rotorua, Napier and Mt Maunganui.


We are proud to announce that Ecotricity will be sponsoring our Auckland Event at Smales Farm for the Great EV Road Trip. Ecotricity are New Zealand's cleanest greenest electricity retailer. They are 100% carboNZero Certified, which means they measure and offset all emissions. They purchase the same amount of wind, hydro, and solar electricity that they supply to customers.

22/2/2019 Road Trip events are being finalised for the 5th Annual Road Trip and it's exciting to see the list in our EVents Calendar growing daily.


Showing 2 reactions

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  • Richard Moylan
    commented 2019-01-10 14:30:35 +1300
    Thanks for changing it to include Methven
  • Richard Moylan
    commented 2018-12-24 14:40:17 +1300
    Maybe changing Geraldine to Christchurch leg to go the Inland Scenic Route via Methven/Darfield?