An electric car is often referred to as a second car and not suitable as the primary car for a family. This statement was probably correct only a few years back. However, as technology progresses, data on driving patterns are collected and first-hand experience from EV drivers are gained, we can conclude that this is not the case. The electric car is the future – it can take you literally anywhere with electricity and can work as the primary car in most cases.
Most trips in urban areas are under 5 km and the average daily covered mileage in most countries are less than 100 km, while new EVs have a range of 150-500 km. The average car is idle 90-95% of the day and can easily recharge in this time on a normal home charger. This means that most of the daily trips to and from work, shopping, dropping the kids off can be covered with an electric car. With the new models being introduced longer stretches can also easily be covered.
The challenges are not range or charging speed, the challenges is access to adequate charging infrastructure that can guarantee you the effect and availability you need. With higher battery capacity on the cars, the longer time it will take to charge your vehicle when empty. Because of this, the fast charging networks being developed and that will be rolled out in the near future are stronger (150-350 kWh). This will ensure fast charging on tour, while day-to-day charging can be handled by regular home chargers delivering sufficient charging speed to your needs in all situations.
One bottle neck could be the charging infrastructure in homes. Most houses should have some spare capacity in the electrical system for a EV charger. With the use of SmartCharge the cars can be charged using excess capacity when it is available. This can of course also be used in apartment complexes, where larger fleets of EVs can coexist with the apartment buildings energy demands and capacity by the use of smart managements solutions like SmartCharge. The EV can even contribute to lower energy cost to a building by reducing «demand peaks», which can be very costly. In the near future, this will become an even stronger incentive when the connected cars can be used as «energy storage» and deliver energy back to the building at peak hours and still be sufficiently charged when they are needed by use of intelligent management systems like SmartCharge.