Infrastructure: the road to electric

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The motor industry is gradually shifting to electric vehicles, but the rate of adoption is highly dependent on the rollout of charging infrastructure

01 / Introduction

Transitioning away from the internal combustion engine (ICE) is a key plank of climate change strategy. One-fifth of UK domestic CO2 emissions can be attributed to transport – the shift to electric vehicles (EV) aims to significantly reduce emissions. This week’s announcement by the Department for Transport of a consultation into requirements for mandatory EV charging points for new homes, offices and new street lamps highlights accelerating electric car transition. 

Currently, the main focus for rollout in the UK is ultra-low-emission vehicles (ULEV), which require a charging infrastructure. While ULEV adoption is starting from a low base, it is accelerating – a total of 157,300 ULEVs were registered by Q1 2018, according to the DVLA – a 45% increase in registrations in 12 months. 

However, there is a long way to go, as ULEVs represent only 0.4% of the total UK vehicle fleet. Creating mass adoption requires a large investment in supporting infrastructure as well as manufacturing capacity.

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