Electric vehicle software and information services company Recargo Inc., launches its plug-in vehicle (PEV) research firm PlugInsights today, with an inaugural report addressing the experiences, behaviors and opinions around charging a plug-in vehicle in America. The “2013 U.S. PEV Charging Study” is the most comprehensive look at the topic ever undertaken, drawing insights from more than 2% of all American EV drivers via a series of large surveys conducted earlier this year.
More than 40 pages of in depth, richly illustrated data, featuring over 65 tables and analytic commentary, the 2013 U.S. PEV Charging Study includes deep dives into home charging habits and EVSE installation, free and pay public charging, vehicle range issues, charging etiquette, and more.
The sample for the study was drawn from PlugInsights’ proprietary PEV panel, which pools the voices of over 3700 plug-in drivers of 17 different vehicle makes and models, mathematically modeled to reflect the “real world”. The growing panel will be the driving force behind a series of upcoming PEV studies in the months ahead, and is used for custom survey and focus group research with PlugInsights clients.
“We’re strong believers in the future of electric vehicles,” said Brian Kariger, CEO of Recargo. “PlugInsights is all about growing the industry by identifying the barriers to broad EV adoption. It’s a way to help automakers, utilities, charging networks, government agencies and the broader EV community make better decisions. That’s our mission, and that’s exactly what our first study does.”
“EV drivers are sophisticated people who aren’t shy about things they want to see done differently,” added Kariger. “The list of driver suggestions that emerges from this study is long and constructive. It ranges from seemingly trivial things like wanting longer cables at public stations, to fundamental needs like a more robust charging infrastructure, broader availability of workplace charging, special utility rates, and everything in between.”
One of the key themes to emerge from the study is the tremendous need to expand the availability of public Level 3 “fast charging”. “Until fast charging becomes broadly available, mid-range battery electric vehicles (BEVs) like the Nissan LEAF are trapped on a leash, close to home,” said PlugInsights’ Managing Director, Norman Hajjar. “Our data shows the average longest trip mid-range BEV drivers have ever taken is only 93 miles. They never stray too far from home because it’s just not practical to stop at a slow Level 2 charging station and plug in for 4+ hours, mid journey. Until fast chargers can bridge the gap between distant points, the appeal of these vehicles to a broader audience will be limited.
Another key theme from the study is the diversity of opinion and behavior among drivers of different types of vehicles. “The ‘EV Nation’ is actually composed of many different tribes”, said Hajjar. “Plug-in electric/gas hybrid (PHEV) drivers and BEV drivers, for instance, are very different when it comes to how, and how often they charge their vehicles. They disagree on who should have priority at a public charging station. And unlike BEV drivers who must live with ‘range anxiety’, PHEV drivers never worry getting stranded when their batteries run low.”
The study goes on sale today at http://www.PlugInsights.com/, where you can also see pricing, table of contents, and a complete list of the more than 65 tables and figures included.
About Recargo Inc.:
Recargo Inc. is a leading EV software and services company that provides consumer and industry intelligence to support the adoption and growth of plug-in mobility. PlugShare is the company’s flagship product with the world’s largest charging network. The company is based in Venice, CA, with offices in Menlo Park, CA. For more information about Recargo Inc. and the company’s product offerings, visit http://www.recargo.com/ and follow @RecargoNews on Twitter.