Chinese-owned car manufacturer MG is making up to 100 of its ZS electric cars available to NHS workers for free amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. The five-door SUVs will be offered to the health service for six months, and will be used to ensure that key workers can travel to work despite the effective lockdown announced earlier this week.
On Monday, Prime Minister Boris Johnson told Britons to stay at home where possible, urging home working and advising citizens to leave the house only for medical appointments, exercise and food shopping. However, NHS staff have been deemed “key workers” and as many of those cannot work from home, they can still travel to work.
This has prompted a range of measures designed to help NHS staff and other frontline workers such as police and firefighters. Online parking reservation company YourParkingSpace.co.uk offered NHS staff free parking at some car parks near hospitals, while Transport for London (TfL), the organisation in charge of London’s road network, said it was suspending the Congestion Charge and Ultra-Low Emission Zone to keep costs down for workers who need to drive into the capital.
MG’s plan is to offer the zero-emission electric cars to NHS agencies through its dealer network. The agencies can then distribute the cars among their staff to keep them mobile. The first six cars have already been given to the Lancashire and South Cumbria NHS Trust by MG dealer Chorley Group. The brand hopes to add further agencies to that list over the coming days and weeks.
Daniel Gregorious, the head of sales and marketing at MG Motor UK, said the company wanted to keep the British healthcare system “moving” to ensure those with health issues can still get the help they need.
“As a proud British brand, MG is more than just a car manufacturer,” he said. “Together with our dealer network, we want to do our bit to help the country to come through this uncertain time.
"By providing 100 electric cars to our NHS heroes, we hope that we will help to keep healthcare moving so that as many people as possible can receive the support they need. It’s also our way of saying thank you to those selfless people who work so hard to keep us all safe.”