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UK ranked third best in Europe for electric vehicle driving

Plugging in electric car

The UK has been ranked the third best country in Europe for electric vehicle (EV) driving, but a shortage of charging infrastructure is threatening adoption rates, new research suggests.

LeasePlan’s 2022 EV Readiness Index – analysis of the preparedness of 22 European countries for the transition to EVs – found that the UK came behind Norway and the Netherlands.

However, access to public charge points is proving to be a significant barrier to adoption, it claims, with all countries, including the UK, scoring very low in this category.

Likewise, the availability of fast chargers along UK motorways was found to be significantly lower than needed.

Alfonso Martinez, managing director of LeasePlan UK, says that EV sales have “skyrocketed” in the past two years, with battery models now accounting for almost one in five new vehicle registrations.

“More than ever drivers are choosing to go electric as they look to reduce their carbon footprint and bring travel costs down,” he said. “Yet, the severe shortage of public chargers we’re facing here in the UK is now undermining all this good work. It is still a nightmare to charge.

“The Government now needs to deliver on its promise to invest £1.6 billion to expand the UK’s charging network.”

The cash will be go towards building a network of 300,000 EV chargers by 2030 as outlined in the Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Strategy

Research from the EV Energy Taskforce suggests that the UK will need between 253,000 and 661,000 extra electric vehicle (EV) charge points by 2035 to meet the phase out of internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles.

Martinez continued: “With only 30,000 charge points available at present, most of them in towns and cities, there is a huge risk that drivers who want to go EV will be too scared to make the switch.

“We need greater access to reliable and affordable public charge points now, not just in 2030, and these need to be highly visible so that tomorrow’s EV drivers can make the switch with confidence.”

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