Skip to main navigation

Finding value in the electric vehicle charging ecosystem: Whats influencing the EV market - EY - Global

Finding value in the electric vehicle charging ecosystem

What’s influencing the EV market?

  • Share


The current players in the EV charging infrastructure industry may want to be on the lookout for new players who could disrupt the game.

All over the world, the EV market and charging infrastructure are coming to life. Governments, car companies, blue chips, startups — a variety of players are now struggling to build a universal EV charging infrastructure.

Regional developments in the EV charging infrastructure

North America


Initiatives and projects

  • Coulomb is beginning to roll out a projected 4,600 charging station network in Austin, Detroit, Los Angeles, New York, Orlando, Sacramento, San Francisco, San Jose, Redmond and Washington D.C., supported by three leading OEMs: Ford, GM and smartUSA.
  • GE, both a big corporate energy buyer and a technology producer, now says it favors the development of Level 2 fastcharging with networked information.
  • Fleet owners will likely be the early adopters. Coulomb's customers to date are mostly business (39%), municipalities (37%) and automakers (2%).
  • Energy companies are still largely uninvolved in the emerging EV charging market, partly because they are limited by regulation. This is somewhat worrisome as the biggest revenue opportunities are likely to be in the energy management of charging.
  • Schneider Electric, another major electrical parts supplier, recently announced its own total EV charging solution.

Government and industry support

  • The EV Project is probably the largest initiative to date supporting vehicle electrifi cation and charging infrastructure deployment. The 36-month project started in 2009 with ECOtality awarded a US$99.8 million dollar grant from the U.S. Department of Energy. With various partners involved, the value of the project is approximately US$230 million. The goal is to deploy over 14,000 chargers in 18 major cities and metropolitan areas located in six states of the United States. Qualifying EV drivers will receive a residential charger at no cost. Perhaps even more importantly, the EV Project will collect and analyze data that are to evaluate the effectiveness of charging infrastructure, and conduct trials of various revenue systems for commercial and public charging infrastructures. These lessons learned will be of unmatched value once shared with the broader community. (www.theevproject.com/)
  • Deregulation among utilities needs to happen now in order to create sustainable business context for charging station companies in the near future. Unlike Europe, utility commissions in the US do not seem to have appropriate market understanding and fl exibility to support more rapid expansion of an EV charging infrastructure.

Potentially disruptive projects

  • GE is installing its own charging stations to supply the need generated by the several thousand EVs it plans to purchase. Such market-making activities require a high degree of cooperation between manufacturers and producers.
  • At its Mountain View, CA., headquarters, Google is letting a startup called Plugless Power install an inductive system that will charge electric car batteries wirelessly, across an air gap.
  • Lear, a GM Volt supplier, is marketing a "Volter," a charging station and portable charging cordset for the Chevrolet Volt.

Europe


Initiatives and projects

  • At the 2011 Geneva Motor Show, ABB introduced a CHAdeMO-compliant fast-charger DC prototype that charges more than ten times as fast as a conventional charger. At the same show, it unveiled an AC standard charger.
  • London is rapidly becoming a charging capital. By 2013, an estimated 1,300 publicly accessible charging stations will be installed around the city. This spring, Hertz added electric cars to its London fl eet, and set up its own network of 16 charging stations.
  • UK charging station startup Chargemaster has announced experiments with an interoperable radio-frequency identification (RFID) card that allows drivers to recharge in several cities.

Government and industry support

  • The Green eMotion project, an initiative of the European Commission and 42 partners from industry, the energy sector, EV manufacturers, municipalities, universities and research institutions, is working to develop and to demonstrate a commonly accepted and user-friendly framework consisting of interoperable and scalable technical solutions in connection with a sustainable business platform. Possibly included in the framework: smart grid developments and urban mobility concepts. The four-year project started in March 2011. (www.greenemotionproject.eu)

Potentially disruptive projects

  • State Grid and China Southern Grid are the only two power distributors in China. Considering their monopoly position, financial strength and government backing, the fact that these two companies are now promoting battery swapping could prove to be disruptive for China and eventually for the world because of China's share of the global auto sector.

Asia


Initiatives and projects

  • In China, State Grid Corporation, the dominant power distributor, plans to build more than 2,350 EV charging stations and 220,000 charging poles by 2015.
  • The CHAdeMO initiative, an association created by TEPCO, a Japanese utility and now involving several car makers, is currently working on establishing a global charging standard for DC quick charge.
  • According to China's draft energy vehicle development plan 2011-20, EV pilot cities should include vehicle charging facilities in their overall city construction plan with charging facilities installed for no less than 20% of new public and community parking spaces.
  • China Southern Grid and Better Place have signed a strategic agreement on battery swapping in April 2011 to promote battery swapping in China.

Government and industry support

  • Chinese local governments are very actively supporting charging facilities construction. Over 100 charging stations were installed in at least five major cities since 2010.

Potentially disruptive projects

  • State Grid and China Southern Grid are the only two power distributors in China. Considering their monopoly position, financial strength and government backing, the fact that these two companies are now promoting battery swapping could prove to be disruptive for China and eventually for the world because of China's share of the global auto sector.

The list above is for illustrative purposes only. It is not exhaustive.

Disruptive technologies could slow charging systems

The current players in the EV charging infrastructure industry may want to be on the lookout for new players who could disrupt the game.

Battery improvements

Battery technologies will continue to evolve quickly. Significant battery performance improvements are likely to extend capacity between charges and (or) the speed of recharging. This could modify distance between charging stations and the overall density of the infrastructure.

Battery swapping

Alongside the battery, battery swapping should not be underestimated as an option. It is currently witnessing a lot of attention in China, and given the magnitude of this country's potential demand and research intensity, it may play a role in the EV charging environment in the future.

Expansion of onboard vehicle systems

Software applications operating on an in-vehicle information system or mobile device are designed to enhance safety, connectivity and mobility. They could also provide solutions overlapping with the service portfolio of advanced charging station companies.

Evolving charging technology

Charging technologies are still being developed. DC charging, for instance, is already considered for Level One and Two charging. New generations of fast charging are also likely to rapidly emerge in the marketplace.

Inductive charging

Inductive charging is not currently affordable, safe or efficient, but is being investigated as a charging solution among key companies and countries. Requiring no wires or other connections, inductive charging could represent a significant safety improvement, and could significantly reduce the market as it would probably share the same customer target as DC charging companies.



<< Previous | Next >>

Contents

 

Connect with us

Subscribe to our email alerts.


Download \'Finding value in the electric vehicle charging ecosystem\' as a printable document

Contacts

Back to top