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Make charging electric cars easier and more convenient, says watchdog

03 September 2021

What is the experience of people using electric vehicles already and how could it be improved?

Transport Focus’s latest report, Plugging the gap: drivers’ experiences with electric cars asked users how they felt about having gone electric.

Drivers told us they love their electric vehicles because of the low running cost and the quieter, more enjoyable driving experience. Lower emissions that benefit the environment was also seen as a plus.

But they did indicate that using an electric vehicle requires more effort, mainly related to charging. Users want charging electric vehicles to be just as easy as filling up a petrol or diesel car and identified the improvements they would like to see.

Anthony Smith, chief executive of the independent watchdog Transport Focus, said:

“With the sale of new petrol and diesel cars ending in 2030 many people are looking at buying an electric car.

“Electric vehicle drivers have told us about the improvements they’d like to see to make the experience even better for them. By addressing these more people can be confident in going electric.”

To minimise the extra effort required, electric vehicle drivers see the following as part of the solution:

  • better maintained charging points and more of them to meet demand
  • simplify and improve information on planning trips and charging
  • tackle the various complications around charging such as different providers.

 

ENDS

Here’s what electric vehicle users had to say:

My feelings about using public chargers? Wonderful sailing on a beautiful sea, but with hidden unexpected rocks.”

Female 62, electric vehicle user for over five years.

It has caused me a little bit of anxiety and nervousness… I’m not 100% sure how it’s going to work out…”

Male, 45 years, electric vehicle user for less than six months.

The ideal would be that your car would be registered and you would plug in… [and] the machine would go, “oh! It’s this car with this reg so we’ll bill this account”. But… a solid win is always… to just pay by card, like at a petrol station.”

Female 35, electric vehicle user for six to 12 months.

For further information please contact: Misha MccGwire, senior communications officer, email: misha.mccgwire@transportfocus.org.uk.

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