Electric car owners to pay £5 for a 20 minute charge

Friday, July 8, 2016


Ecotricity, the sole provider of UK motorway EV charging stations, will start charging drivers a flat £5 rate to charge their car.


The £5 fee will grant electric car drivers a 20-minute charge, which is expected to recharge half the battery in that time. Ecotricity are the sole provider of charging stations along the motorway and will introduce 300 rapid-charging stations across the country.


The switch to charging will be manually implemented at all charging points, with work starting on 11th July and expected to be completed by Friday 5th August. 


A new mobile phone app is expected to be released to replace the current card system, which will enable users to manager their accounts, pay for charging and check the status of chargers. There will be a "live feed" function within the app for users to see the location and availability of their closest charging dock, making it easier for motorists to plan their journeys.


Statements made by Tesla Motors CEO, Elon Musk, suggests that Tesla owners using the company's own Supercharger network won't incur the charge, although owners of the soon-to-be-released Model 3 will be required to pay in order to access the network.


With nearly 300 Ecotricity Pumps across Britain, the Electric Highway is the most comprehensive public car-charging network in Europe. This allows electric car drivers to travel the length and breadth of the country-using nothing but renewable energy.


Until now, The Electric Highway has been the only public charging infrastructure in Britain that was completely free of charge. Figures show that it currently powers around 2 million miles a month with nearly 60,000 electric cars on UK roads and has powered more than 30 million miles since 2011.


The usage has trebled in 2015, reflecting on the success and encouraging uptake of electric cars and perhaps making it become a necessary to start charging for the service in order for the network to grow.


In an e-mail to its users, Ecotricity said: "The combination of more cars on the road and faster charging means we're now delivering two million miles of clean driving each month - all powered from the wind and sun.


"That's a great result. It's also a growing cost. And to keep pace with demand, we need to build more electricity pumps at existing and new locations.


"So the time has come for us to charge - for charging. We've taken a lot of feedback from EV drivers in order to arrive at the right pricing model. We've decided that a simple flat fee of a £5 for a 20 minute fast charge strikes the right balance."


Ecotricity believes that by 2030 every new car sold will be electric and that by 2040 electric vehicles will rules the roads.

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