Car manufacturers themselves are predicting the end of gasoline engines as sales of electric cars are rising dramatically. But how and where will all these electric cars take energy? Here we offer a reflection of basic possibilities.
Electric vehicles (EV) are still gaining popularity. Volvo said all new models will be electric or hybrid from 2019. Tesla 3 will cost $ 35,000 to get to the mass market. In the United Kingdom and France, political leaders are considering proposing to remove diesel-powered vehicles from roads by 2040.
For consumers are electro vehicles becoming an increasingly attractive choice. In 2017, vehicles with with an alternative drive (especially EV) represented 4.2 percent of all new registrations. This growth is expected to accelerate as manufacturers respond to government incentives and price of electric vehicles is slowly rising to car prices with an internal combustion engines.
The fragmentation ways of recharging means that those who are involved need to ensure, that their business and operating models are flexible enough to adapt to charging methods that their customers prefer.
The race is starting now for who will provide infrastructure to recharge electric vehicles. At present eg. there are about 14,000 rechargers in the UK. These were built by a large number of small players, whose operating models were often designed to be funded either by grants or by vehicle manufacturers. Some companies have used multiple models - specialized solutions for a selected customer, a solution stemming from a partnership with selected vehicle manufacturers (eg. BMW and KIA) as well as solutions designed for specific cities.
In some countries, the opening of the first gasoline-free petrol stations is underway, although most of the projects are still in their infancy. It is believed that this new model could offer motorists both biofuels and recharging electric vehicles as well as replenishing fuel into hydrogen-powered cars instead of fuel for traditional gasoline and diesel engines. Meanwhile, the buildings of such stations could be powered from renewable energy sources, eg. solar panels on the roof or the facade. There are plans for large petrol station operators to install high-speed recharging of electro vehicles at selected traditional gas stations.
Meanwhile, recharging research efforts are geared to increasing its efficiency. For example, a dynamic wireless recharging technology is developed to allow vehicles to charge "on the go" by wirelessly connecting to mobile power generators. With vehicle-to-vehicle communication and state-of-the-art power transmission technology, vehicle extensions can be lengthened to keep you up to the next emitter of energy.
Also, energy distributors are increasingly entering the electric vehicle recharging market and offer comprehensive solutions that include both energy supply and complementary services, optimization of recharge cycles.
What will be the preferred way of charging electric vehicles?
It is not yet clear what choice of charging owners the electric vehicles will win. Their preferred charging method will probably vary by location. For example, a landlord with a garage or driveway may decide to charge during the night. On the other hand, the owner living in a big city and parking on the street may require scattered points of recharge or decide to stop at the recharging station, much like the petrol station he is used to today. Of course recharging "on the go" can completely change this picture.
These uncertainties mean that those involved are required to ensure that their business and operating models are flexible enough and can adapt to charging methods that their customers will prefer. If more rechargeable methods become viable on a larger scale, both energy suppliers and station managers should avoid large investments in only one of them. Making investments in physical infrastructure and securing supplies to existing operators looks like a meaningful step for energy distributors. For those who just play with the idea of becoming a charging station operator, the most appropriate business model of partnership could be with a particular distributor.