Consumer group Which? is lobbying with the UK national and devolved governments to deliver an upgrade to electric vehicle (EV) charging infrastructure.
The customer champion’s annual car survey revealed that EV drivers rely on the public network to charge their vehicles only 13 per cent of the time, while charging related fears constitute the biggest barriers to people going electric.
Around a third of people cited a lack of charging points during long journey as the main reason for not buying an EV while 29 per cent raised concerns about not enough stations near their house.
The report also highlighted significant national and regional disparities, especially between London and the north of England.
“Our research shows that few electric vehicle owners currently rely on the public charging network, but this will have to change if millions of people are going to switch from petrol and diesel vehicles in the next decade,” said Which? head of consumer protection policy Sue Davies.
“Improving the UK’s flawed charging infrastructure will support more motorists to make the switch to a zero-emission vehicle.
“The current confusing and complex system needs to be quickly overhauled if the network is going to be ready for the ban on new fossil fuel cars in 2030.”
According to Simon Tucker, managing partner and EMEA head of energy, oil and gas at Infosys consulting, the disparity between the number of EV and the public infrastructure available is the main roadblock to a higher uptake.
“Electric vehicles are the future. But the technology needs to improve significantly before things really take off – this means charging stations becoming far more widespread, compatible and able to range in speed from slow to faster charge to accommodate those on longer as well as shorter journeys,” he said. “At the moment though, we’re running before we can walk.”