Myth-busting electric vehicles

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#Alternative Fuels, #EV
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Recharging an electric vehicle

In 2035, the sale of new petrol and diesel cars will be banned in the UK, so businesses must start considering greener alternatives for their fleets now. There are various options on the market, such as hydrogen and HVO, but it’s EV technology that’s undeniably leading the way to decarbonisation.

Most vehicle manufacturers are focussing their attention on EV models and the infrastructure is consistently growing to satisfy the demand, but many businesses still have reservations. In this article, we’ll tackle some of the biggest myths around electric vehicles to help put your mind at ease when choosing EVs for your fleet in the future.  

1. There are not enough charge points to meet demand – Myth

“Range anxiety” is one of the biggest concerns that drivers have with electric vehicles as many fear that they won’t be able to find an accessible charging point when it's needed. Although this may have been true a few years ago, the charging infrastructure is continually growing to meet the needs of EV drivers as there’s now an average of 600 new charging points being added to the network every month.

Some EV drivers can recharge at home, but many are reliant on public charging points, so it’s important that they can be easily accessed. Thankfully, drivers are now never more than 25 miles away from a rapid charge point anywhere along England’s motorways and major ‘A’ roads, so you’ll never have to worry about “range anxiety” again.

2. The range of EVs is too limited – Half Myth

The average range of electric vehicles in the UK is currently around 212 miles. According to the Office for Zero Emission Vehicles, 99% of car journeys are under 100 miles so although EVs have a lower driving range than petrol and diesel vehicles, they’re still capable of meeting the needs of most drivers.

However, some businesses do require their drivers to travel hundreds of miles every day, so EVs would not be a practical choice. This was shown through our experimental route from Lands’ End to John O’Groats in an EV which required multiple stops to recharge. Whether or not the driving range is too limited is therefore dependent on the needs of your business. Although EV technology is constantly being developed, we’re confident that the driving range will be significantly longer in the near future.  

3. EV charging takes too long – Myth

Most EV drivers will charge their vehicles overnight, so they don’t need to worry about recharging whilst they’re on the move. Even if you do need to recharge your EV mid-trip, you can use a publicly accessible rapid charge point which can fully charge your vehicle within an hour. This will have a minimal impact on your journey and gives you time to stretch your legs and have a coffee.

4. There are only a limited number of EV models available – Half Myth

Vehicle manufacturers have gradually been introducing more electric vehicles to the market over the last few years. There are currently more than 130 fully or part-electric vehicles available in the UK, so there’s plenty of choice for drivers looking to make the switch.

It’s true, however, that for HGV drivers the EV, options are far more limited as the electric truck market is considered to be two decades behind passenger cars. This is partly due to a lack of demand by drivers but also because of the current charging infrastructure which is inaccessible for HGVs.

5. Electric cars break down more than normal cars – Myth

 As EVs have fewer moving parts, they actually break down less frequently than combustion vehicles. Their specialist servicing and maintenance are also simpler and more cost-effective, with EV drivers spending 30% less on average. The most significant risk for electric vehicles is the battery running flat, so it’s important to recharge regularly and keep an eye out for low power warnings.

6. The electricity grid won’t be able to handle the increase in EVs – Myth

The UK Government is constantly working on upgrading the electricity grid to ensure it’s equipped to handle the increase in demand when more drivers switch to electric vehicles. Drivers can also utilise smart charging technologies which allow EV charging to take place when the demand for electricity is lower, such as during the night or when there is plenty of renewable energy on the grid.

Should fleets start the transition to electric vehicles?

Whether electric vehicles are the right choice for your fleet will depend on the needs of your business. Although EV technology is fairly accessible for fleets with cars and vans, there still needs to be significant progress made in the HGV sector. Currently, there are no HGV-dedicated electric charging or hydrogen filling stations and the EV options available are minimal. This makes it harder to decarbonise HGVs, even if the demand by drivers was there.

However, EV technology will definitely have a pivotal role in the future, so it’s expected that more investment will be put into the infrastructure to help businesses make the transition. You could also consider using other alternative fuels which may be more practical for your business.   

EV charge cards

If your fleet contains electric vehicles or if you’re looking to make the switch, then apply for an EV charge card today. We also have a fantastic selection of fuel cards for petrol and diesel vehicles which you can compare here. Alternatively, you can call our team at 0113 202 5110 to discuss your options further.

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Matt Dodds
Head of Strategic Sales and Partnerships

With over 14 years of experience across two of the leading fuel card companies in the UK, Matt Dodds joined RFC Edenred to help lead the development of products to support our customer's move to EV and other alternative fuels, a transition he feels passionately about.