Two of Gordon Lamb’s car dealerships in Chesterfield have installed solar in an attempt to drive down their electricity costs.

The solar arrays, installed by Mark Group, consist of 480 modules arranged over a number of roofs and are predicted to generate around 100,000kWh annually – enough to drive an electric car for over 4,000 miles. The installation at its Land Rover dealership is 40kWp and at its Skoda Nissan dealership is 80kWp.

Gordan Lamb operates a number of franchises across the Midlands and decided to investigate installing solar to help combat escalating bills but also, to help reduce overheads across the business.

Chris Roberts, head of renewable power products at Mark Group said: “It has been estimated that the income generated each year across the two dealerships from reduced import and revenue from the feed-in tariff will be over £20,000. The payback period against the initial investment averages out at six years.

“Solar PV is an increasingly popular solution for businesses for many reasons; the electricity generated is close to the point of contact which reduces the amount of electricity the business has to purchase and businesses can generate an income through the government’s feed-in tariff.

“The electricity generated also produces zero CO2 emissions which is particularly helpful if the business has to report carbon emissions and has a corporate social responsibility target – which many these days do.”

Gordon Lamb sees the solar array as a fitting complement to the growth it has seen in the electric and hybrid vehicle market. “The solar PV installation has already started to contribute to our business and is a help to us when promoting the benefits of energy savings on electric cars.

“It puts into perspective how we can make better use of energy by simply harnessing solar power and charging the Nissan Leaf electric car, reducing energy bills and also allowing us to be more carbon friendly,” said Kheng Lim, financial director, Gordon Lamb.