A Swedish electric car company has conquered the Nullarbor thanks to a new fast-charging system powered by vegetable oil.
The all-electric Polestar 2 crossed the plain after making use of a fully off-grid charging station at the Caiguna roadhouse, 370 kilometres east of Norseman in Western Australia and 370 kilometres west of the South Australian border.
The Biofil chargers use waste vegetable oil, essentially chip fat, from the roadhouse to generate electricity.
Developed by retired engineer Jon Edwards, the system fills a gap in charging locations that has previously prevented electric vehicles from crossing the Nullarbor and completing a lap of Australia.
Mr Edwards said the cost of installing an equivalent solar-powered EV fast charger in the same location would be five times higher.
"Solar energy would not have been economically feasible for such a low traffic location, making Biofil the environmentally friendly interim solution for EVs driving across the Nullarbor right now," he said.
The system is also considered environmentally sustainable, with the amount of carbon dioxide released in producing the electricity equivalent to the amount absorbed by the seed crops that produced the oil.
Polestar Australia Managing Director Samantha Johnson praised the visionary ingenuity that turned a waste product into a carbon dioxide-neutral charging solution.
The company was founded by Volvo Cars and Geely Holding in 2017.
Its Polestar 2 sedan goes on sale in Australia in February.
Australian Associated Press