Pike Research: Europe to have 4.1M EV charging stations by 2020, but needs to address country-specific variations
Europe will have more than 2.9 million plug-in vehicles PEVs on its roads by 2020 with more than 4.1 million EV charging stations (electric vehicle supply equipment, EVSE) to support them, according to a new report from Pike Research, “Electric Vehicle Charging Equipment in Europe”.
However, notes the report, the absence of a single alternating current (AC) EV charging connector standard has hampered the deployment of an EV charging infrastructure. The EU has declined to set a standard. The German industry has supported the Type 2 plug (the Mennekes connector) for more than two years, while French and Italian electric equipment manufacturers, united under the umbrella of the EV Plug Alliance—but without the support of a single car company—have supported the Type 3 plug. Renault sells the Fluence EV with a Type 3 connector in France and a Type 2 connector in Germany. If the European EV charging equipment market is to reach its potential, the reports asserts, “these multiple standards cannot last.”
Europe’s nations are divided over many areas of business and technology—and electric vehicles (EVs) are no exception. For example, one European country will have more charging stations than it has EVs on the road, and a neighboring country will have the opposite problem. Some national governments will pay for charging stations or give cash incentives to people buying plug-in electric vehicles (PEVs), while other countries will not give any financial support to EV infrastructure (and, historically, have not given any).
Across Europe, multiple technologies and rates apply to charging an EV. The many complex regulations governing the sale of electricity vary from country to country and influence charging services. Moreover, several different payment models apply to those EV charging services, further complicating the process of paying for vehicle charging. In most countries, selling electricity is illegal except for licensed retail power providers, so those companies that are not licensed as utilities alternatively sell “electric mobility services.” Since European countries have taken many different approaches to EV infrastructure and since driving among European countries is very common, the EU must address these country-specific variations if the EV market is to thrive.—Pike Research report
Pike Research’s EVSE market forecasts include projections for 19 countries in Europe: Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom.
Pike forecasts that annual EVSE sales will grow from less than 47,000 units in 2012 to nearly 900,000 in 2020, with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 44%.
The largest European EVSE market will be Germany—home to many of Europe’s largest vehicle manufacturers—which will represent 24% of the region’s sales in 2020. Germany, France, the United Kingdom, and the Netherlands are Europe’s top four countries for EVSE sales.
By 2020, sales of residential chargers will drop to 32% of the European EV charging market (from 43% in 2012) because fewer EV owners will live in homes with convenient access to garages for overnight charging; they will rely instead on commercial charging.
Public charging will represent 32% of the market in 2020, according to the forecast, followed by workplace (20%) and private charging equipment (16%).
EVSE revenue will grow from €72 million ($90 million) in 2012 to more than €1 billion ($1.3 billion) by 2020, according to Pike. Commercial DC charging equipment revenue, which Pike Research has forecast separately from AC charging equipment, will grow to more than €211 million ($263 million) in 2020. Wireless charging equipment sales will start slowly due to a lack of standards, but will grow to reach nearly €79 million ($98 million) in 2020, according to the research firm.
The dynamics of demand for EVSE will be different in Europe than in other parts of the world; for example, residential charging equipment adoption will be slower than in North America as more EV owners will opt to use base power from a wall outlet or will rely primarily on commercial charging stations.
One important factor that will drive investment in EVSE will be the arrival of an electric car with mass-market appeal. This might happen with the introduction of the Renault ZOE BEV at the end of 2012 and the Volkswagen Golf BEV in 2013. These two cars should dramatically increase consumer interest and spur investment from companies looking to provide infrastructure. Currently, because of government intervention, France is the largest market for EVs in Europe. However, starting in 2013, Germany—Europe’s largest economy—will hold that position.—Pike Research report