There Are Now More Charging Points Than Fuel Stations In UK

With more than 9,000 public charging points (including 1,600 DC) the EV infrastructure in the UK limits range anxiety.

The transition to electric drive progresses at a gradually increasing pace and one of the signs is the number of publicly available charging points being higher than the number of fuel stations – in the UK, this already happened.

According to Nissan, there are now some 9,300 charging points (including more than 1,600 DC) available compared to roughly 8,400 fuel stations.

Interesting is how volatile the infrastructure market is. In less than a century since the opening of the first fuel station in November 1919, the number of stations rapidly increased to a peak of well over 35,000 and then started to decline in the 1970s. On the other hand, EV infrastructure expanded from a few hundred points in 2011 to over 9,000 now. New DC stations are recently being installed every day.

“Almost 80% of UK petrol stations have closed since 1970, whilst the number of electric vehicle charging locations has increased from a few hundred in 2011 (when the Nissan LEAF went on sale) to more than 9,000 in August 2019.”

The important thing we must note is that usually a single fuel station is equipped with multiple pumps and offers refueling in minutes, while the bulk of charging points are just single- or dual-head several kW AC terminals. It means that we need at least a few more years until the DC charging infrastructure grows to a comparable “capacity”.

Another key differentiation is that for most of the time plug-ins don’t need public charging infrastructure and most of the charging can be done at home (with eventual support at work).

Kalyana Sivagnanam, managing director, Nissan Motor (GB) Ltd. commented:

“Many consumers are saying their next car will be electric. That means the industry needs to ensure their desires are met with both the car – how far it can go, what technologies it has – and how it interacts with the world around it – where they can charge and how convenient that is for them.

“We’ve moved beyond the early concerns of range anxiety with EVs now exceeding the vast majority of customer’s daily driving needs. The next challenge is for charging infrastructure to keep pace with the number of EVs on the road, and that the experience of recharging is as enjoyable and effortless as that of all-electric driving.”

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