Guest Editor: David Watson, CEO, Ohme
This time of year is always traditionally a period for both reflection and a look to the future. As we look both nationally and internationally towards greater e-mobility in 2024 and beyond, Ohme’s home charging market and the energy and transportation sectors have seen tremendous change – and will see more in 2024.
On the face of things, 2023 has been a bumper year for EV sales.
At the time of writing, UK EV sales are up more than 27% on 2022. The same is true of their market share, with 16.3% of new cars sold being fully electric.
Globally, sales of EVs and PHEVs are expected to reach 14.1 million in 2023 – a rise of more than a third on 2022 and around 20% of all light-vehicle sales. That percentage will only head upwards, especially as some of the new Chinese-owned brands continue to make impressive in-roads into European markets.
To put this growth into perspective, that 14.1 million figure is more than double what was sold just two years ago in 2021. The continued growth of promising EV-only brands such as Polestar and BYD, both in the UK and internationally, shows that drivers are happy to seek out less traditional companies when considering a new EV too.
In turn, those EVs will obviously need chargers and electricity to power them too.
Global geopolitics and an acceleration in the deployment of renewables have led to unprecedented levels of volatility in the electricity market and that’s likely to continue for some time yet. To a certain extent, consumers are somewhat cushioned by the effects of that volatility by Government action and legislation. Energy companies are also developing more sophisticated energy tariffs to help to balance their supply and demand and to buy energy at the cheapest times when it’s abundant.
Octopus and OVO have been at the forefront of dynamic energy tariffs with innovative, type of use energy tariffs such as Octopus Intelligent and OVO Drive Anytime and it’s likely that other energy companies will follow. In short, if you’re driving an EV in 2024, then you’ll have more choices than ever to reduce your running costs with increased levels of flexible charging. While a typical EV driver could run their car for less than £500 a year – a considerable saving on an equivalent ICE vehicle – running that same EV on a smart tariff such as Octopus Intelligent could cost less than £130.
While mainland Europe has yet to see the same level or type of off-peak tariffs or competition, that will also undoubtedly come in 2024 as the energy sectors in those markets continue to mature and follow the UK’s lead.
In turn, with an increased in the levels of dynamic energy tariffs will come a need for more dynamic charging capability too.
Home EV chargers have become increasingly smart in recent years, but in order not to be left behind and future-proof themselves for these new energy tariffs, EV drivers need to be looking to buy more dynamic chargers such as those offered by Ohme. These can automatically and flexibly alter their charging levels in real time to help suppliers provide the cheapest energy to their customers.
Dynamic smart chargers such as our Ohme Home Pro and ePod will enable EV drivers to take full advantage of all flexible energy tariffs both now and in the future. Not only that, it means that they will also be able to take part in ongoing energy flexibility trials with the National Grid.
Those trials will become increasingly important for energy providers too.
Put simply, the more flexibility those energy providers have on the grid by customers using dynamic chargers, the more they can reduce their tariffs and the safer and more reliable our energy system becomes.
At Ohme, we’ve had our most successful sales year yet, but we want more drivers to join us on that dynamic charging journey. We’re already helping those with our partnerships with car manufacturers.
And if we thought that 2023 bought plenty of change in the world of e-mobility, I have no doubt that 2024 will bring similar levels of progression and I’m truly excited to see what it holds. I wish all ElectricDrives readers and their families a happy and healthy 2024 and here’s to an EV-filled New Year!
With all best wishes