The AA EV Recharge Report for January shows that the cost of flat rate charging on the public network fell by up to 8% compared to December, but more providers across all speeds have now introduced peak and off-peak rates.
The cost of public slow charging, typically carried out on lamppost chargers, fell by 8% to mirror the cost of domestic charging in January, while fast and rapid flat rates fell by 3% compared to December. Petrol pump prices in the same period fell 1.7%.
By expanding the research carried out by the AA EV Recharge Report to account for 18 charge point operators1 it has discovered that providers at all speeds are now offering peak and off-peak rates across the public network.
Peak rates across all speeds exceed 70 p/kWh, with fast and rapid peak rates the most expensive on the market, however all providers determine their peak times differently so EV drivers should check the costs prior to plugging in.
AA EV Recharge Report – January 2023 (All PAYG prices not including connection fees where applicable)
AA EV Recharge Report (Peak/Off-Peak Rates) – January 2023 (All PAYG prices not including connection fees where applicable)
Falling energy costs outstrip falling pump prices
While average petrol pump prices fell by 1.7% in January to 148.80 pence per litre (ppl), the cost per mile of running a petrol car came to 14.21 pence per mile (p/mile)4. EV drivers exclusively using peak rate charge or flat rate rapid and ultra-rapid chargers will lose out, but most will only use rapid charging as a top up on long journeys or peak charging rates if there are few alternatives.
Jack Cousens, head of roads policy & EV charging, said; “The slight fall in electricity prices has been reflected in the flat rate prices EV drivers pay. The speed in which the prices fell is encouraging and hopefully means the ‘rocket and feather’ approach to wholesale costs experienced in petrol prices won’t be adopted by charge point operators.
“However, we believe OFGEM needs to keep a watchful eye on peak rate costs to ensure they don’t escalate to the point where it puts drivers off using them. Whilst we understand the reasons why peak rates exist, the price needs to be reasonable in relation to the speed of charge.”
Tanya Sinclair, Senior Director, Policy, Europe at ChargePoint: “While this is a headline consumers are probably concerned to hear, there are a few things for them to consider. Firstly, the vast majority of charging takes place at work or home where costs are considerably cheaper. DC Fast Charge is a small part of the equation in EV charging. It only plays an important role when people drive beyond the range of their vehicle and need to be able to charge their EV very quickly.
“Most of the time people charge their vehicles from home or work, which is much more cost effective than DC Fast charging. What’s more, workplaces that offer charging often choose to do so at a discount or for free for employees, in order to encourage EV uptake or electrify their fleets. Charging management software and smart charging capabilities enable this, by helping to keep infrastructure costs down, provide value for money and run smarter services.
“We are at a particularly important moment in the move to EVs, making it crucial for both industry and government to work together to help increase adoption and bring prices down. We encourage the Government to continue developing forward-thinking policies to help the UK reach its 2030 target of ending the sale of petrol and diesel cars.”
1. AA analysed 18 charge point providers accounting for more than 12,000 devices. Latest DfT figures showed 34,637 publicly available devices: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/electric-vehicle-charging-device-statistics-october-2022/electric-vehicle-charging-device-statistics-october-2022
2. Average prices are the PAYG options without connection fee as at 26 January 2023. Subscriptions are available for all charge point speeds which can unlock a cheaper p/kWh, however rates vary across provider.
3. Calculations based on adding 80% to a Vauxhall e-Corsa, 50kW, with a WLTP range of 222 miles. Adding 80% range equates to 178 miles of range. Vauxhall e-Corsa specifications here: pdf (vauxhall.co.uk)
4. Calculations based on Vauxhall Corsa 1.2L (75PS) Petrol with a 40 litre tank. 80% refuel = 32 litres.
Petrol: 32 litres @ 148.80 ppl = £47.62. Combined MPG of 47.9 = 335 miles at 14.21 p/mile.