The UK is not yet ready for a green motorist future after new research found that there would need to be six times as many charging points installed to support the growing number of electric vehicles on the road.
The current infrastructure is still centred around petrol and diesel, which is perhaps no surprise as they continue to account for a large percentage of vehicles in use. However, experts believe there will be more than one million EVs in cities, towns and rural spaces across the country by 2020 and that a total of 100,000 charging points will be required to keep them topped up.
That figure is considerably more than the current amount of 16,500 charging points that are in operation. The research found that just 3% of supermarkets currently have them installed – Asda leads the way as an impressive 19% of its stores have EV charging, while Tesco is at the bottom of the pack with a mere 0.4% coverage.
If you are driving instructor and are now using an electric vehicle, you will be hopeful that the government can make the necessary changes to bring more charging points to locations across the country. You will also need the correct driving school insurance to provide cover for any person in your electric vehicle and for general protection of your business and livelihood.
Moving forward, the report noted that an expanding charging network was critical to any plans to increase coverage as these networks generally have a maximum range of up to 200 miles. In real-world scenarios, this range usually comes out at the lower end of estimates too, which could pose a problem.
There is also a distinct lack of rapid charge stations in deployment in the UK. These stations can fill the vast majority of an EV’s battery in 30 minutes, and it is likely that drivers will rely on fast charging more when EVs become prevalent.
The government has already set a £440 million figure for delivering the updated infrastructure that EV motorists require and is also working with local authorities to improve air quality via Clean Air Zones. The Plug-In Car Grant has also resulted in a surge in the amount of EV registrations, as over 14,000 were completed during the final three months of last year.
Any plans for EVs are likely to have been brought forward following the rapid drop off in diesel sales in recent months, which has been driven, in part, by confusion about regulations and taxes, and a growing desire to drive cars that are cleaner. The researchers concluded by saying that a green alternative to the current crop of diesel cars on UK roads was necessary.
Emu Analytics chief executive, Richard Vilton, said: “Ultimately the UK, by investing in the right way early, has the opportunity to be a global leader in electric vehicles, benefiting businesses, towns, cities and communities by preparing for a sustainable future”.
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