- UK drivers show strong interest in switching to EVs despite charging challenges.
- Lack of sufficient charging infrastructure and long queues cause anxiety among EV drivers.
- Current EV owners express high satisfaction and willingness to contribute to the energy grid.
The latest data from YouGov shows rising demand for EVs, despite charging concerns
Approximately 24% of respondents plan to make their next vehicle purchase a fully electric or plug-in hybrid EV. The growing interest in EVs is driving the switch, fueled by their environmental benefits and the increasing availability of EV models.
There are challenges hindering the smooth transition.
The charging infrastructure in the UK is a major concern amongst drivers.
Alarmingly, the country ranks highest among the surveyed European nations in terms of dissatisfaction with charging infrastructure. 56% say they encounter broken public chargers regularly, while 68% admitted to experiencing charging anxiety.
A staggering 83% of respondents expressed their discontent, up from 71% last year. This shift in the data could be put down to more people showing interest in EVs, therefore more people taking a vested interest in the nation’s charging infrastructure.
Interestingly, more UK drivers are inclined to purchase new EVs (12%) compared to new internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles (9%).
Among those planning to buy new EVs, the preference is almost evenly split between fully battery electric vehicles (BEVs) and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs).
However, when it comes to used vehicles, ICE remains the top choice. 29% of respondents opted for a used ICE vehicle, while only 12% considered used EVs. Given the relatively new and incredibly fast-moving technology found in EVs, the underdeveloped second-hand market has been a pressing concern for some time.
What about the positives?
The survey highlights the preferences and concerns of current EV owners. A significant 71% of EV owners intend to stick with EVs for their next vehicle purchase, indicating a high level of satisfaction. Among current ICE owners, 25% are looking to buy an EV for their next vehicle, while 50% still plan to continue with petrol or diesel vehicles.
There is a strong willingness among UK EV drivers to contribute to the energy grid. About 58% of them expressed interest in selling electricity from their EV battery back to the national grid for profit, with an additional 19% uncertain about it. This emphasizes the potential power of Vehicle to Grid (V2G) technology. It could enable drivers to profit from their EVs and also contribute to a wider emobility ecosystem.
The survey results indicate a rising demand for EVs in the UK. However, the lack of charging infrastructure and concerns about broken charge points are causing anxiety among EV drivers. Addressing these challenges should be a priority for the charging sector, government, and energy authorities. Inspiring confidence in charging infrastructure will encourage greater EV adoption, bringing the UK closer to its net-zero goals.