UK Has Just 1 Charger For Every 8 EVs on Road

Latest EV infrastructure statistics in the UK reveal the technology still has a mountain to climb to gain mainstream acceptance.

According to analysis by motor industry body, the Institute of the Motor Industry (IMI), found that only the capital city of London is on target to meet its EV ambitions. It also claims urban Clean Air Zones are failing to deliver on electric car targets, with a national average of there being as many as 8 EVs for every charging point across the UK.  Also, only about 3% of all vehicle technicians are currently qualified to work safely on electrified vehicles, the vast majority of whom work in manufacturers’ franchised dealerships.

The UK government has confirmed that the sale of new vehicles with petrol or diesel internal combustion engines as their only source of propulsion will be banned from 2040, with some MP’s lobbying for an earlier introduction date of 2032, as has already been mandated by the Scottish Parliament.

Diesel sales are rapidly declining and the take up of electrified alternatives, including full electric (EV) and plug-in hybrid (PHEV) vehicles, are estimated to exceed one million on UK roads by 2020 but there are currently only 18,000 charging points across 6,500 locations. So, the IMI is calling on government to invest more on a reliable and accessible infrastructure.

Steve Nash, chief executive at the IMI, said: “The recently published sales figures for electric and hybrid vehicles demonstrate that drivers are rapidly making the transition away from pure petrol/diesel engines. However it’s vital that government recognizes the new skills requirements needed to underpin the successful move to this new technology, which is entirely different to the skills required to service and repair internal combustion engines.

“Without appropriate training vehicle technicians are at risk of serious harm or even death and employers may be in breach of Health & Safety regulations. Government must incentivize and support businesses to invest in the training of their staff if they are to have the knowledge and skills to safely work on or around high voltage vehicle systems and technology.”

— Paul Myles is a seasoned automotive journalist based in London. Follow him on Twitter @Paulmyles_

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