Jaguar Land Rover has partnered up with the Automobile Association (AA) to prepare for the future of electric mobility in South Africa.
The training academy of Jaguar Land Rover in Pretoria has opened its doors to the AA to share some technical expertise on a range of electric vehicles.
These practical lessons include Jaguar’s all-electric I-PACE, plug-in hybrid Range Rovers and mild-hybrid Land Rovers.
Roadside assistance and recovery of electrified vehicles are not unfamiliar practices to the AA as it has been performed in SA for more than 90 years, but the EV guidance was offered on safety-critical aspects and common issues experienced by customers in the past.
Line Managers witnessed the procedure of jump-starting a fully electric vehicle. In an instance where an EV’s small 12-volt battery (similar to those in any car) runs flat due to prolonged standstill, it’s possible to boost this small battery in order for the more powerful high-voltage battery to begin recharging the low-voltage system.
The 12-volt battery in an EV powers the infotainment, windows and electrically-assisted steering, but it’s also needed to ‘start’ the car – just like with any internal combustion vehicle.
The group was put to a practical test of safely entering and jump-starting an unresponsive vehicle that relies on electricity to unlock doors, release bonnet latches and disable security systems.
Instructions were also given on how to manually override drive selectors and electronic handbrakes in order to pull an EV onto a flatbed tow truck in neutral.
Though procedures for changing flat tyres is much the same as with any vehicle, the AA was trained on the importance of safe lifting points with consideration that many EV high-voltage batteries are located low in the floor where jacks could damage them.
General information on the importance of colour-labelling, such as bright orange high-voltage cables and any components tagged with yellow warnings was relayed, along with basic lessons in recharging procedures.
These included tips on the various messages a vehicle sends via coloured lights near its charging port, the differences between AC and DC cables, and the fact that EVs should never be charged with extension cords or multi-adapters.