Many developed countries are making plans to decrease the number of internal combustion engine cars and to replace them with cleaner electric vehicles. Britain and France are keen on banning traditional diesel engine cards completely by 2040, thus contributing to the protection of the environment and to the decrease of pollution levels in crowded areas and in big cities.
According to experts at Morgan Stanley, by 2050, half of the billion cars on the roads will be electric. As batteries have become much cheaper, the total cost of owning an EV is the same as the cost of owning an ICE car.
Charging infrastructure still a concern for consumers
Drivers are still reluctant to replace their traditional cars with EVs, the main drawback being the lack of proper charging infrastructure. Buyers also need reassurance that they are going to have economic cars, with plenty of opportunities to charge them, as this is the only way they can be interested to make the switch to EV”.
The new, more powerful batteries are also helping. The average electric car has now an autonomy of 190km or more. Nissan’s model, LEAF, needs charging every 400km. Tesla’s two new models have a range of 500km.
As more people choose EVS, one thing becomes clear: the average individual in Europe doesn’t usually drive more than 100km a day. The British drive on average of 40km, while Americans drive about 70km a day. The new batteries are substantial enough to allow people to commute without worrying about frequently charging their vehicles.
London to invest in 1500 new charge points
Governments, carmakers and providers of charging services are determined to invest in the development of this industry. Carmakers are starting to provide efficient charging. Tesla aims to develop 10,000, 145KW fast-charging stations. Re-charging batteries to 80% will take only 40 minutes. Complete charging isn’t technically possible when using fast chargers.
Several other carmakers intend to build an infrastructure of public, fast-charging points with charging times of four minutes for smaller vehicles and 12 minutes for larger ones.
Governments and city councils are working on offering EVs drivers slower roadside charging stations for drivers who cannot charge their vehicles at home. London officials plan to have 1,500 new such points installed and working by 2020. In addition, local authorities plan to experiment with using the already existing streetlights to double up as charging stations.
Free vehicle charging at the office
Providers of charging services are also considering to invest large sums as the number of EVs increases. Some of them intend to take advantage of the opportunity to offer drivers workplace charging facilities. The cost for employers will be fairly low, as the equipment costs only a few thousand dollars. The electricity consumption is also very cheap, so everybody could charge a vehicle for free in the office car park. Calculations show that the electricity required to charge one car would cost only as much as a cup of coffee. These commercial companies could end up by dominating the market of public charge points since this is their sole focus.
In conclusion, poor infrastructure won’t limit the growth of EVs. According to Tom McGhie from EasyasHGV,( the HGV and horsebox training provider) “The relatively high price is another frequent objection, but this is soon going to disappear since batteries are cheaper now than a few years ago. There are young entrepreneurs who dream about car parks of the future having hundreds of charge points, and who believe plugging in will become the norm within not so many years from now. Diesel and petrol will be seen as obsolete, and range anxiety may only be remembered by elderly motorists. The old phrase “fill it up and change the oil” won’t have a meaning any longer.