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Royal Auto Group highlights electric vehicles for Earth Day

Auto group has plans in place to bring EV charging stations to the city.

YORKTON – Royal Auto Group held their Earth Electrified event in celebration of Earth Day on April 22 at Royal Ford.

"It's Earth Day and as a local company we wanted to show what our manufacturers — and us personally as a company — are doing to support mother nature," said Terry Ortynsky, Owner of Royal Auto Group.  

"We're totally dependant on the natural world," said Ortynsky, adding, "it supplies us everything we need ... as a local company we're participating and doing our part to really help promote a better environment."

The event highlighted several of Ford's electric and hybrid vehicles.

"It's amazing a lot of them are using recyclable products and half the cars are based on recyclable products or renewable materials," said Ortynsky, noting that the industry is moving towards carbon neutral vehicles.

Ford Motor Company announced April 11 it would be “investing C$1.8 billion into its Oakville, [Ont.] Assembly Complex to transform it into a high-volume hub of electric vehicle manufacturing in Canada – a key part of the company’s plan to scale production of electric vehicles and make them more accessible to millions of customers,” according to a media release from the company.

“The campus, to be renamed Oakville Electric Vehicle Complex, will begin to retool and modernize in the second quarter of 2024 to prepare for production of next-generation EVs. This marks the first time a full-line automaker has announced plans to produce passenger EVs in Canada for the North American market,” continued the release.

"The Oakville plant is going to be converting to an electric vehicle plant by 2024 and we'll be getting vehicles from Oakville as well as other plants in North America," said Ortynsky.

"We've been selling [EVs] for about two years," said Ortynsky. "[interest] is increasing slowly especially out on the prairies where it's wide open and people have the anxiety of charging.”

“The charging systems are becoming more and more common as you travel,” said Ortynsky, “as a local business we're installing three super chargers this year and five level two chargers.”

Ortynsky said that superchargers will charge cars within ten minutes and Royal Auto Group plans to have three of them by Dec. 31 that will be accessible 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

“So you can get a charge any time you want,” said Ortynsky.

“We've got the locations all picked and we've contracted a local contractor to do the electrical work and Sask Power has to bring in more services,” said Ortynsky, adding, “we've got the plan in place we just have to execute it.”

“It's very fortunate that we have businessmen in our community like Terry Ortynsky who's really helping to highlight and bring awareness to Earth Day because it's all our responsibility to create the awareness of all the benefits of protecting and enhancing our natural environment for all the future generations,” said Randy Goulden, City of Yorkton Councillor, who was in attendance on behalf of council.

“It's very beneficial that we have a local dealership that is taking the opportunity to bring in the electric vehicles so people can experience them right here in their home town, take them for a drive and learn and understand what they're all about,” added Goulden.

The event also featured testimonies from several EV and hybrid owners.

“I bought it as a commuter to go from Yorkton to the mine and back,” said Greg Hall, owner of a Ford Mach-E.

“Normally — with my last vehicle — it cost me about $40.00 a day to go to the mine and back,” said Hall, “with [the Mach-E] my power bill has gone up about $20.00 a month.”

“I am in unique situation because I charge at the mine,” noted Hall, “they have 10 charging stations at K3, they have four at K1 and K2.”

“Even if I charged at home I'm looking at about $7.00 a day compared to $40.00,” said Hall.

Royal Auto Group has been recognized nationally for their efforts in bringing electric vehicles to the forefront and reduce emissions.

“Just last year Royal Honda was awarded the Silver, Green Dealer Recognition Award through Honda which is a program through Honda that recognizes Earth Day and what dealers are doing across the country to reduce emissions and save energy,” said Clinton D'Souza, General Manager of Royal Honda.

“As per our Honda Canada Rep. Peter, 'Your dealerships efforts to minimize it's carbon footprint and champion energy efficient measures is a testament to your stores commitment of Honda's goal of a green sustainable future,” said D'Souza.

“That's where we've been over the last decade ... transitioning to an EV world of fully electrified vehicles and helping people understand how to get there,” added D'Souza.