Written evidence from Mr Peter Newson (ELV0008)


Electric vehicles inquiry launched by Lords Environment and Climate Change Committee


I am replying to the invitation to provide evidence as an individual and member of a family who have disposed of two ICE cars and replaced them with an L6 electric quadracycle (for short distance commutes and town driving) and a large BEV car. For this reason, I am only answering the questions pertaining to the experience of using an EV.


Experience of using an EV


18. What are the main challenges that UK consumers face in their use of EVs?

I think the main challenges consumers face with EVs are:


19. What are the main benefits that UK consumers could realise from using an EV?


20. How prepared are car dealerships, service networks, repairs and maintenance organisations, breakdown services and aftermarket suppliers to meet the growing EV uptake?

Car dealerships are fully prepared for 2030 and 2035 and I believe aftermarket suppliers are too. There is sufficient time left for motor repairers to retrain staff to service and repair EVs but inevitably some smaller businesses will delay action and will see their businesses suffer.


21. How does the charging infrastructure for EVs need to develop to meet the 2030 target? Does the UK need to adopt a single charging standard (e.g., the Combined Charging System (CCS)) or is there room in the market for multiple charger types?

Petrol forecourt owners in towns should be encouraged to develop EV charging as demand for petrol and diesel subsides, rather than turning to hydrogen. CCS has already become the main charging standard for EVs and I believe all modern EVs can utilise CCS chargers. The market has effectively already chosen a single charging standard and CCS allows consumers with older vehicles to charge with AC supply but also more recent vehicles with DC supply. There is insufficient public charging infrastructure currently to allow the ‘luxury’ of other developing competing charging standards. Once more large commercial electric vehicles are developed there may be an argument to develop a new standard if it allows significantly faster charging than 350kW.


22. The Government recently published the draft legislation of “Public Charge Point Regulations 2023”. What assessment have you made of the draft legislation text, and what contribution will it make in ensuring the charging experience is standardized and reliable for consumers?

I have not read this document.


23. What assessment do you make of the requirements set out in the draft legislation of “Public Charge Point Regulations 2023” for charge point operators to make data free and publicly available, and how may this improve the EV charging experience for consumers?

I have not read this document.



24. In terms of charging infrastructure, are there unique barriers facing consumers in areas of low affluence and/or multi-occupancy buildings, such as shared housing or high-rise flats? Do you consider public EV charging points to be accessible and equitable compared to home-charging points? What can be done to improve accessibility and equitability?

There are significant barriers facing consumers in multi-occupancy buildings, such as HMOs and flats, partly as residents are less likely to seek permission to install a charger at a property they do not own, as well as cost considerations. Roadside charging infrastructure should be developed to meet this growing need and landlords supported to retrofit charging infrastructure for their tenants. Perhaps EV charging infrastructure should be considered when calculating EPC banding? Cities should be encouraged to promote and improve their public transport systems to reduce the need for privately owned vehicles and the pressure on existing public charging infrastructure.


25. Is there a financial benefit to the consumer of choosing an EV over an ICE vehicle? Are there further benefits, aside from financial, that a consumer may gain from EV use?

There are significant financial benefits to consumers in choosing an EV over an ICE, but until more EVs are available on the second-hand market, people on lower incomes are effectively barred. This presents a potential economic divide in society that has already been seized upon, principally by the right-wing tabloid media whose narrative frames the evolution in motor vehicles as a culture war.

The main financial advantage is for higher mileage drivers with home chargers, provided they can take advantage of cheaper EV electricity tariffs to reduce their fuel costs from around £0.30/ mile to £0.02/mile. Middle income consumers are increasingly concerned that fiscal drag will push them into becoming higher rate taxpayers. Those getting close to the higher or additional rate thresholds are increasingly entering salary sacrifice arrangements with their employers to lease a company EVs whilst the BIK rate remains 2% and the VED is £0.00.

We all benefit from the air quality improvements inherent in the uptake of EVs as well as the vastly reduced operational carbon footprint. EV drivers will expect the government to simplify the planning process for renewable energy generation infrastructure and solve the current grid connection delays to keep the electrification of transport and domestic heating affordable. In time, EVs have the potential to help assist with the ESO’s grid balancing mandate through V2G AI. EV drivers are assisting the nation in meeting our legally binding net zero obligations, whilst promoting the decentralisation of electricity generation, which improves national security. They should continue to be rewarded for their ‘investment’ in our shared future.