The vast majority of EV owners use public chargers according to a new survey – and that means a ‘robust and reliable’ network is vital.
Charge point location provider Zap-Map said its poll of 2,200 people found that 90 per cent of them used chargers while they were out and about.
The figure was down from 94 per cent in 2019, but that was attributed mainly to a temporary shift in driving habits caused by the pandemic.
Thirty-nine per cent said they used public charge points at least once a week, with supermarkets the most popular place for a top-up, used by 48 per cent of respondents.
They were followed closely by motorway service stations at 47 per cent, with public car parks third at 32 per cent.
Service stations had previously been the most popular recharging places, but supermarkets have been rapidly installing chargers, with some offering free charging while you shop. There are now 1,631 chargers at 952 UK supermarkets.
Zap-Map co-founder and chief technical officer Ben Lane said: ‘This new report comes at a crucial time for the EV market.
‘Competition among car manufacturers and charge point operators is becoming fierce and the industry is growing fast.
‘The insights in this year’s wide-ranging report show that EV drivers are adapting to changes in the market.
‘One of the clear conclusions is the importance of having a robust and reliable charging network. As the number of EVs continues its upward march, it’s vital that drivers are offered the simplest and smoothest experience possible.’
Ultra-rapid charge point use has risen significantly in the past year too, the research showed, with 16 per cent of EV owners using them – up from three per cent in 2019.
That’s been helped by more cars being able to take higher charge rates, as well as the number of ultra-rapid charge points going up from 476 to 788 in 2020.