Transport User Voice – October 2021 – Electric car charging

28 September 2021

How can drivers’ experience be better?

How do people find driving electric vehicles and how can their experience be improved?

We explored this in Plugging the gap: drivers’ experiences with electric cars by asking 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 say 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 improvements that could help make this happen.

As we edge closer to the deadline of 2030, when the sale of petrol and diesel cars will end, many people are looking at buying an electric car. It’s important they can make that choice with full confidence.

Key improvements electric vehicle drivers want are:

  • better maintained charging points and more of them to meet demand
  • simple and improved information on planning trips and charging
  • a solution to the various complications around charging such as different providers.

Here’s what some of the electric vehicle drivers 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.


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