Electric drivers, unite! We’ve just released a first-of-its-kind manifesto dedicated to the future of electric mobility. We gathered long-term visions from industry leaders, and the daily experiences of 850 electric drivers from Europe and North America...and we came to some compelling conclusions.
85% of electric drivers say that the electric driving performance is (far) better than expected. Not much of a shocker, considering the introduction of better performing, more affordable electric cars. This has led to an impressive sales growth for electric cars worldwide - not to mention it’s one that’s growing 20 times faster than the overall car market. Globally, we saw an increase of 42% more electric cars on the road since 2015. And for the very first time, electric cars beat gasoline cars at their own game. Tesla became the second strongest car maker in the world, after delivering an all-time record of 25,000 cars in the first quarter of this year.
With the electric car market getting in place, it seems like nothing’s stopping drivers to convert from combustion to clean. Since the past few years, financial incentives have been one of the main drivers for West-Europeans to go electric. Yet a few local governments started skimping on subsidies in recent years, amongst which The Netherlands and Denmark. This affected the overall sales in the EU last year, which underperformed compared to the spectacular growth rate of 99% back in 2015. In California, even the most generous rebates seem not to be as effective as hoped for. Unsurprisingly, the rebate system there, seems to be affected by people’s (mis)conception and unawareness about electric cars. However, this is only a result of tougher state requirements and unsettling policy changes that cause car makers to become reluctant in selling (and promoting) zero-emission cars. It’s a chicken-and-egg situation.
On the other end of this debate, there’s the (lack of) charging infrastructure. As demonstrated in this Manifesto, we’ve found that electric drivers are unhappy with the current state of charging infrastructure. Given an average score of 4.7 out of 10, electric drivers are the most unsatisfied with the (un)availability and (un)accessibility of charging ports.
It’s fair to say that the lack of charging ports still is a significant road block for drivers to go electric. And this is a problem that requires public regulation. Think about the roll-out of interoperability, which will give you access to every charging station domestically and internationally, as long as your car and charging cable allow. Another proposed solution in the Manifesto is standardized (mobile) payment, which will allow drivers to pay their charging session with any method. A government regulated system is another proposition, which should set a number of standard functionalities for all public charging stations across Europe.
The visionaries that contributed to this Manifesto, do seem to agree unanimously: to foster innovation, there needs to be different options. Innovation first, regulation second.
So concrete solutions from local governments need to be implemented ASAP. Luckily, a few cities have already picked up the pace. Paris has banned the most polluting diesel cars from the city streets during the day, and will be banning all of it by 2025. Amsterdam stopped old diesel lorries from entering the city a few years back. Now the same ban will be imposed on coaches, vans, taxis and mopeds starting next year. New York and other 29 U.S. cities are examining opportunities to buy $10 billion worth of electric cars and trucks. It’s government intiatives like these, that show some serious demand.
The lesson learned here is that governments are needed more than ever to stimulate transition in the coming years. Both in incentives and infrastructure. For us urban citizens, this fundamental shift in our modes of transportation is becoming very real. And it’s something we need to be prepared for. Our findings pointed us to how many of you are fed up with the lack of available charging ports in your area. So please share this Manifesto with local policy makers to open their eyes for this pressing issue. Charging our cars should be as easy as charging our phones. Only then, we'd be able to get more on board.
We'd love to hear your driving and charging experiences so far. Or your reasons not to go electric (just yet). Share your thoughts below!
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