Thursday, June 20, 2024
InsightsSmart Charging

Reliable & affordable caring is essential to growth of electric vehicles

With the rise in popularity of electric vehicles over the past few years, the need for reliable and affordable charging stations and the expansion of infrastructure has become increasingly important.

However, as more and more people switch to electric vehicles, the cost of public charging stations has become a major concern for EV owners. In some areas, service station charging approaches nearly £1 per kW, making it more expensive to charge an EV than to fill up a petrol or diesel vehicle.

Fortunately, there is hope on the horizon. With more EV fuel stations being built and expanded, competition is likely to increase, and prices may come down. One company leading the charge in this area is MFG, which is rapidly expanding its network of EV charging stations across the UK. Recently, supermarket chain Morrisons has announced that it is to sell off over 300 forecourts to MFG, aiding its move and helping to increase its 40 EV charging stations at its service stations. Planning to add more than 3,000 new ultra-rapid charging points to its network by 2031, this Morrisons sale may seal the deal on making MFG one of the country’s largest EV charging providers, giving EV drivers more options for charging their vehicles.

One of the benefits of MFG’s expansion is that it will help to increase competition in the EV charging market. As with anything, when more companies are competing for sales, companies are forced to be competitive on cost, which will hopefully mean a reduction in price, which should help bring down the overall cost of public charging.

A cheaper rate for charging is obviously good news for EV owners, as it means they will be able to charge their vehicles more affordably when away from home, making EV ownership more accessible to more people; especially those who cannot currently benefit from at-home charging due to the current infrastructure.

Another benefit of MFG’s expansion is that it will help address the ‘battery-range anxiety’ issue. One of the biggest concerns for EV owners is that charging stations are not as frequently available as a petrol or diesel forecourt. The worry for some that they will run out of charge before they can reach an EV charge point is off-putting and highlights even more that the infrastructure of the public charging points needs to be increased. With MFG’s expansion, there will be more charging stations available, providing EV drivers with more options for charging their vehicles and hopefully alleviating some of this anxiety.

There are also several other companies working to provide more charging options for EV owners. BP Pulse, for example, made significant progress in delivering the roll-out of rapid and ultra-fast electric vehicle (EV) charging infrastructure in 2023, with the company committed to investing £1 billion in the UK’s EV infrastructure over the next decade. These developments are great news for EV owners, as they mean that there will be more options for vehicle charging available while travelling in the UK.

These movements are positive steps towards the future of EVs, but there is still a long way to go before the UK’s charging infrastructure is fully developed and properly accessible to many EV owners and drivers. According to a report by the National Audit Office, the UK will need to install around 25 times more public charging points by 2030 in order to meet the growing demand for EVs and give EV owners access to reliable and affordable charging options.

With companies like MFG are leading the way in the expansion of EV charger location, we can look to the future of EV charging in the UK with optimism as other companies follow suit and look to expand the charging networks.

Other steps can, of course, also enhance the positive steps. The recently announced government grants, for example, for greener schools, nurseries, colleges and other government buildings, is a great step towards an EV-sustainablefuture. More chargers in these areas will make access to practical, affordable EV driving easier for staff and visitors, and can create hundreds of thousands more sustainable daily school commutes. But the national charging infrastructure still needs considerable further investment. France and Germany have well -over 100,000 public charging places, with France aiming for 400,000 by 2030. The UK currently has just over 53,000.

Another option would be to introduce time-of-use pricing for public charging stations. This would mean that charging prices would vary depending on the time of day, with prices being lower during off-peak hours. This could help encourage EV owners to charge their vehicles when the demand for electricity is lower, reducing the strain on the grid and helping to keep prices down. Additional steps to enhance at-home EV charging would also make waves, especially if more grants were available to help people cover the cost of purchasing and installing a home charger.

Overall, the expansion of the UK’s EV charging network is taking positive steps in the development process, and as more options for EV charging become available, we should see an increase in EV ownership. The localities, frequencies and reliability of more public charging points will really help make EV ownership more accessible but there is still work to be done to improve the charging infrastructure.

Tom Bloor

Tom Bloor is the brains behind evec and conceived the idea for the company in early 2022. Combining his love of cars with his knowledge of the appliances market via his work with OEM, Tom identified a gap in the market for the growth of EVs. Tom is a young, ambitious and determined individual who is committed to making a difference. The values of sustainability and environmental protection are at the core of his green future ambition. He is committed to net zero and has confidence in the switch to electric vehicles. He believes that these measures are essential to ensure a sustainable future for generations to come.