Shell: The user experience needs to be improved to drive the adoption of electric vehicles

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A new Shell Recharge Solution study reveals that improving the user experience is crucial for the mass adoption of electric vehicles. However, many challenges remain.

58% of French drivers of electric vehicles and 75% in Europe say that driving experience and the technology inherent in electric vehicles are the main arguments for switching to electricity, some of them are not entirely satisfied. . These figures are taken from the 2022 Electric Driver Survey, the largest electric vehicle (EV) survey in Europe conducted by Shell Recharge Solutions.

The 2022 Electric Driver Survey is based on an online questionnaire on electric vehicle driving and electric charging. 14,991 drivers of electric vehicles from five markets participated in this survey: the United Kingdom (2,853), France (1,587), Germany (6,272), the Netherlands (4,145) and Belgium (134).

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The pandemic has deeply shaken the business world and the automotive industry. The global supply chain has been tense, while the war in Ukraine has only amplified the phenomenon by raising the prices of raw materials and energy. As a result of this unrest, severely disrupted energy markets are putting pressure on purchasing power in Europe. The fact that these market conditions are not ideal for the adoption of the electric car makes the recent growth of the sector even more interesting. In fact, sales are growing faster than expected and manufacturers are struggling to meet demand.

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Driving experience, criterion number one

While the Shell Recharge Solutions (SRS) survey reveals the importance of driving experience, costs, and environmental issues when choosing electricity, it also highlights obstacles, especially when it comes to creating an abundant, usable and affordable cargo infrastructure. Electric vehicles certainly have many advantages, but frustrations continue.

Electric vehicles are gaining ground and part of the change is driven by driving experience. 76% of respondents who currently own an electric vehicle want their next vehicle to be electric as well. Likewise, the driving experience and the technological equipment integrated in these vehicles constitute in 75% the main reason to go to the electricity. This figure drops to 53% among hybrid vehicle drivers.

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And while 70% of respondents say driving an electric vehicle has environmental benefits, only 23% say their purchase was motivated by concerns about the future of the planet.

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On the other hand, 55% of those surveyed emphasize savings (48% among hybrid drivers) and 41% consider that subsidies and advantageous taxation are decisive in the choice to purchase an electric vehicle. A proportion that even rises to 47% among hybrid drivers (the survey does not specify whether it is a rechargeable hybrid or a simple hybrid). Finally, another interesting fact, only 25% of respondents cite the forthcoming ban on gasoline or diesel models as the main reasons for taking the step.

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In addition, the SRS survey highlights the question – interesting to note – of preferences: 78% believe that their electric vehicle is more durable than a traditional vehicle and 61% believe that its maintenance cost and use is lower. In addition, 53% find that their electric vehicle has more “style” than its thermal equivalent. In addition, only half of the respondents (52%) consider the electric vehicle to be more comfortable to use.

The recharge? A messy experience

It is on the side of the recharging industry where the challenges that the industry has to take on are beginning to emerge. In fact, the most important improvements that drivers are asking for to increase the adoption of electric vehicles are mainly related to autonomy. 57% are concerned about this point, 49% want better availability of charging stations and 33% want a higher charging speed. 47% also believe that lower initial purchase costs would encourage the adoption of such vehicles.

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In addition, according to the survey, the customer’s journey for electric vehicle drivers needs an improvement, as at the moment it is still a messy experience. As proof, French drivers sometimes use more than three charging apps like Chargemap or ABRP, for example, and they are more than a third to have more than four charging cards! Another cause for concern is that 55% believe that charging infrastructure will not be able to keep pace with the massive adoption of electric vehicles. Similarly, 40% of electric vehicle drivers have difficulty recharging in other countries, which is not a concern for drivers of internal combustion vehicles: interoperability between internal combustion vehicles and gas stations. service is never questioned.

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The cost

In terms of anxiety, cost is a strong factor for or against the adoption of electric vehicles, even for current drivers: 72% of them look forward to the mass adoption of vehicles. electric, which they say will mean a reduction in purchase and property costs. A statement to be taken with tweezers, as this trend is conditioned by the availability and cost of raw materials, at least in the face of thermal energy. And while 62% believe that rising gasoline and diesel prices should encourage people to switch to electricity more quickly, 68% are both concerned about the impact of rising prices. of electricity at the cost of your electric vehicle.

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In any case, the adoption of an electric vehicle seems to have an impact on behavior, as more than half of respondents believe that the availability of recharging points influences the places where the owner of an electric vehicle makes the their purchases and their movements. As a result, 65% will tend to choose tourist sites based on the availability of a recharging point.

The advantage of charging at home

One of the main differences in infrastructure between electric vehicles and thermal vehicles is the potential for domestic recharging. Because it takes longer to charge an electric vehicle than to refuel, access to this solution is not evenly distributed. Not surprisingly, respondents with a house with a driveway are almost three times more likely to have a private charging station. 77% of respondents have a house or a private car park, compared to 28% who live in a flat.

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Finally, with regard to the future and the deployment of terminals, the survey highlights the fact that drivers (63%) would be willing to pay a little more to use a single card everywhere, instead of buying a monthly package for load your vehicle unlimited. . Similarly, drivers show a real interest in other payment innovations, such as automatic license plate recognition (31%) or simply paying by credit card (31%).

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