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BrewDog — Electric Vehicle Oasis

Nestled under the giant Gateway Bridge in Brisbane, the BrewDog craft brewery is an oasis for electric vehicles. BrewDog aims to be a good corporate citizen with its “Make Earth Great Again” campaign. Solar panels have already been installed on the Brisbane brewery and will soon be installed on BrewDog’s global facilities in the US and the UK. Employees are urged to consider their carbon footprint when travelling and are able to salary sacrifice to buy an EV. BrewDog is investing in equipment made from post-consumer recycled plastic. To read the full report, go here and click on the “Make Earth Great Again” tab. 

BrewDog plans to send zero waste to landfill by the end of this year. It uses cleaning products that come in bottles made from recycled milk bottles. They even “represent the amount of carbon we remove from the air for every dish on our menus, allowing our customers to learn about the emissions of their choices, and make informed decisions about what to eat.”


The view from BrewDog. Brisbane’s Gateway Bridge. Photo courtesy of Majella Waterworth.

At Saturday morning’s Tesla meetup at BrewDog, there were many different owners, and many interesting stories. These stories were shared amongst the beers and the great food. They ranged from Bastion, who has a complete collection of Hot Wheels and Matchbox cars, to the man with the money to bling up his Tesla. There were at least 20 cars present, mainly Model 3 and Model Y vehicles from Tesla, with one red X thrown in as well.


Tesla Matchbox and Hot Wheels cars. Photo courtesy of Majella Waterworth.

Bastion is currently learning how to drive. We saw the L plates on his sister’s grey Tesla Model 3 as he drove off. What a great way to begin his driving experience. I had to learn on a clunky, manual Vauxhall Viva. I wonder what sort of license he will be issued. In fact, will they bring in a new category — manual, automatic, and AI assisted? He will have fun doing the test — he can use the Tesla for the test but not the assistive technology. I wonder if we will see protests from driving instructors as their job changes with more EVs on the road?

Robert loves to use his knowledge of the motor industry and spreadsheets, and has calculated and tabulated all the different prices for different charging providers in Australia. Tesla, EVIE, Foxcharge, BP, Ampcharge, etc., all charge at different rates. It can be quite confusing, yet can also save you money if you know where to go for a charge. Some of them are even free.

He has just got a job from me, to do up some fancy graphs showing the uptake of EVs in our country — see my next update. He was telling me that he is still having issues with his body corporate about using the solar on the roof of the apartment block to charge his car. Presently, he is paying 23¢ per kWh at present. He has done a great spreadsheet on the cost to run his Toyota Camry compared to his Model Y. “Just for fuel alone, it cost 25¢ per km to run his Camry, vs. 5¢ for the Tesla.”

He has also written a mini manual for new owners. More data and news to come from Robert, I am sure.

Alan was very perceptive and bought shares in a lithium mine back in 2017. Recently, he was able to trade in his 5-year-old Audi on a new Tesla, with money made from the shares. He has plenty of shares left over — smart cookie.

Paul is a pilot for Virgin Airlines and is taking advantage of the changed rules around Fringe Benefits Tax on electric vehicles to get his Model 3 on a novated lease. After test driving the Model 3, Model Y, an old Kia Soul, and the Hyundai Kona, he has settled on a Model 3. Discussions are still being held with Australian Tax Office about the salary packaging for electricity use. You can salary package petrol and diesel. (Please get professional financial advice before making a decision about entering into a lease agreement. I am writing about the Australian context.)

He has done his sums and concluded that with the rule changes, the electric vehicle is two-thirds the price of a petrol equivalent. He expects to save $14,000 per year on his taxes. His lease allows for $1,162 for maintenance, which he doesn’t expect to use. At the end of the 3-year lease, the residual will be $31,840. He appreciated my previous article on the subject.

He commented further: “The unwillingness of the fleet companies to package energy from home in the package, yet make no allowance for outside charging as they assume you will top up at home.

“I think once the legislation is sorted, as per the link I sent to you, this will be quickly resolved. As it is, the maintenance seems over accounted for and this will be able to be re-allocated to charging later (or the package adjusted).

“I was able to find much cheaper insurance than packaged, especially using the multi policy discount from my current provider.

“My car will come with no charging cords, it remains to be seen if the fleet company will allow one charger to be included.”

Out in the parking lot, owners discussed their cars and showed off their modifications, including the retrofitted boom box. Big boys toys, indeed!


Bling to a T. Photo courtesy of Majella Waterworth.

Bling — you want bling? Want to stand out in a crowd of white Teslas? (Majella and I call them tic-tacs — there are so many on the roads). Well, here’s how you do it. You use lots of diamantés and carbon fibre. One car had a diamanté-covered T for Tesla, carbon fibre skirts, an enlarged spoiler, and a steering yoke (instead of a steering wheel) with the centre T covered in diamantés. They had changed the back tail lights so that the back blinker ran along like the new Audi ones. This one is certainly no tic-tac.

See drone footage from Luke Peter Nolan.

Thanks for organising this, Nathan Merritt, and showing us bits and pieces of how take care of our precious cars. The paint touch-up kit was a particular hit.

We’ll be back!

Oh, did I mention that BrewDog has great food and cold beer?

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David Waterworth is a retired teacher who divides his time between looking after his grandchildren and trying to make sure they have a planet to live on. He is long on Tesla [NASDAQ:TSLA].


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