We’re keen to support our Members who drive electric vehicles (or are planning to get one) and it would be great to get some of your feedback here in the community.
Obviously we tick the most important box for electric vehicles - we’re a clean, renewable energy supplier.:o
Beyond that, some EV owners have asked whether we’ll be introducing a special tariff for Members who want to charge their electric vehicles at home.
We’re not convinced that an EV tariff is the best option. Or, at least, not what we should focus on first.
Citizens Advice has carried out research into the various EV tariffs in the market and found that they’re not necessarily the best option for those who want to charge their cars at home.
The reason is that while the middle of the night rates may look good, you could end up paying higher rates at other times of day.
So in other words, a night tariff for EVs in fine if you’re never at home during the day and only really use your house to charge your EV (!). But it’s not so good if you happen to use your house for living in, too.
We’ve looked into how Pure Planet currently compares with the EV tariffs out in the market.
We used the same usage figures as Citizens Advice used when they carried out their research - an annual average usage of 3100 kWh of electricity in the daytime, and 1500 kWh of at night. Here’s how we compare right now:
Pure Planet EV cost per year compared.JPG/a>
We’re going to put a page on our website showing the same info. We’re also planning to add a comparison calculator so EV owners can enter the model of their car, their annual mileage, and get a figure of how much it will cost with PP compared to other suppliers.
So we think there might be something else we could do to support our Members with EVs, and also help persuade more EV owners to switch to us.
That’s why I’ve created this community poll to find out what our Members think. Do you think we should we have an EV tariff? What about offering home charger installations? (But won’t that discriminate against the millions of drivers who don’t have a driveway at home?)
So perhaps we should be giving our Members free or discounted access to public charging points?
Is it all of the above? If so, in what order?
Perhaps there’s something we haven’t thought of?
Let us know what you think - vote in the poll, tells us your thoughts in the replies. Looping in some community Members who've previously taken part in EV discussions here @MikeZ; @VijayB; @Sallyent; @Lenny; @Oakbank; @Brunel; @Eastbath; @Knight; @Jon1; @Royborsberry; @Markgoodwin901; @ekranoplan; @Stealth; @Jenta; @linesrg; @Jenam93; @G4RHL; @UncleScooby; @Jowl :foldedhands:
How can Pure Planet encourage adoption of electric vehicles and support our Members who already own EVs?
19-02-19, 12:25MarcHow can Pure Planet encourage adoption of electric vehicles and support our Members who already own EVs?
I'lhave to have a think on this one @Marc.
I don't have an EV currently, but if I did then I'd likely share use with my wife, though she would only use it for the exceedingly local journeys to ferry the kids around (A few miles at most).
I'd use it for my commute to work, which is only around 13 miles each way, but I would have the ability to charge it while at work for free (currently) :D Therefore I'd most likely rarely charge it anywhere but at work.
So a home charger installation would likely not help me (I thought they were often very reduced in price/free anyway depending on offers at the time)
You're already suggesting an EV tariff does not seem to add much benefit as your prices are already very competitive.
Access/partnering with public charging points might be the way to go, but the reality is we'd likely use the ICE car for long distances regardless.
Maybe offer a discount on your membership fees for EV owners? You would have to check every month that each customer still ran the EV though.....
Pure Planet are our supplier for the 3rd floor flat we own in Aberdeen, there is little chance of us charging our car at this location.
Having carried out comparisons with other suppliers I was with Economy Energy at out rural based property and have now been transferred to Ovo following Economy Energy's collapse. I am currently trying to transfer from OVo back to bulb again as they're the cheapest supplier for me on E7. We currently use 5300D, 3400N units in a year.
We have a 7kW charger supplied with the car but 95% of charging is done on, currently, free chargers here in Scotland.
I think the EV tariffs so far have been marketing gimmicks.
There is nothing special required to attract EV owners other than providing cheap prices overall IMHO. That's all I'm looking for.
Good idea thanks for looking into this. NB most evs don't measure how many kWh are taken from the grid socket just from the battery pack so that excludes charge for pre conditioning as well as AC DC losses.
An example is a BMW i3 60ah that might have 17kWh capacity after degradation of 4 years. In mild conditions it uses 20 kWh back to 100% having discharged to 10% including 1/2 h auxiliary climate warm up. The GOM might claim 16.9 kWh per 100km but actually its using more like 20.
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Add an in line consumption meter to EV charge point so EV owners know exactly what they are consuming and when.
With regard to your questions:
Do you think we should we have an EV tariff?
When I think of PP, 4 things come to mind, 1. 100% renewable, 2. Simple tariff structure, units sold at cost, 3. App-based company, 4. No call/email centre.
Whilst many suppliers offer 1, I think 2,3&4 are (currently) unique to PP. I would suggest that sticking to your single variable tariff helps you with a simple message to consumers, given that 2,3&4 are a bit different for people to cope with. Your bar chart would suggest you are already competitive as things stand?
What about offering home charger installations?
So perhaps we should be giving our Members free or discounted access to public charging points?
I would love to own an EV now, but I need to wait until they can compete financially with I/C cars. I think PP consumers without EVs should not cross-subsidise EV owners, and it sound as if both these options would cost PP money, which would have to be passed to all consumers?
How about an economy 7 tariff?
There already is one but the D and N rates are the same..so there is an issue..
The chances are that if PP reduced the N rate for charging the day rate would have to increase, and even if it didn't as an E7 customer myself I'd be a bit miffed if I couldn't have the cheaper N rate given that although currently unnecessary I'd be willing to change my use pattern to take advantage of a lower N rate. My wife won't though so that's decided...
How about give cheaper access to green public charger networks (are there any?)
When you say give access to public charges I assume you mean at a preferential rate, or it makes no sense?
I don’t have an EV . . . yet.
I voted for a partnership with a public charging network.
It brings PP’s ethos into the public eye as not ‘just another energy company’.
PP’s involvement, backed by BP, could help get more EV charging points installed, say, in BP filling station forecourts.
National coverage. I don’t know how many EV charging companies there are, and whether they are national or regional.
PP need to be very careful who they enter into any partnership with as, like so many energy companies that have gone bust in the past year, so to may they.
Discounted rates, basically.
There are several charging networks out there. They charge a membership fee and/or pay as you go.
If PAYG could we not pay using the app rather than debit/credit cards? That could enable members to get the preferential rate.
Can you negotiate a discount with the charging networks at no cost to PP?
We have 2 EVs and exclusively charge them at home. One of them requires a charge every working day, the other could most likely get away with a weekly charge.
Would a cheap EV tariff work for me ? Not really - even if the day rate changed the same, as we have someone in all day, then I suspect any gain from a cheap overnight rate would be eaten up by the additional costs during the day. Plus, as the 2nd EV is needed for a long daily commute, we would much prefer to start any charging as soon as we get in to be sure that the car is fully charged before we go to sleep. It would be an annoyance if something happened overnight and the car failed to charge etc.
Should you look at offering home chargers - not sure if you would want to deviate from what you do best, you would need to invest in creating a team of certified electricians or create a network of them, have to establish relationships with the various manufacturers etc. Maybe consider teaming up with one or two of the specialist firms like Phoenix Works to offer a referral service ? Most folks will use the OLEV grant for their charger so there is additional admin overhead there too.
Discount on Charging Networks - This one is interesting, free membership of Polar might be an option - I have shied away from charging away from home mainly because of the total mashup that is our charging network at the moment, too many suppliers, too many different ways of access, app, RFID etc.
I have tried to use Apps a few times, on multiple networks but have always come a cropper. A few times in Manchester, using the APP on the GMEV network, never initialised a charge, even when on the phone to the so called helpdesk - the solution - "Buy an RFID card for £20/year". Next was a charger in a car park - guess what - no signal. that one was well thought out - putting the charger in the worst place in a car park :)
I like what Instasvolt are doing, simple contactless payment, so maybe try to do a tie up with them rather than the others who seem to love complicating what needs to be a very simple activity.
Ideally though, I would rather you focus on what you do best for the lowest price you can do it. Anything EV related would be a nice to have but not as essential as 100% renewable and cheap prices.
I'd say get involved in providing more public charging points. I believe it is the relative lack of infrastructure (along with smallish ranges) that is the biggest barrier to the uptake of EVs. The next thing is more research to speed up charging times.
I'm not yet an EV owner, but I agree that the most perceived delay in uptake is the lack of charging points. Providing access to multiple networks of charging points, not just partnering with one, would ease that situation.
Personally, I just don't trust any EV not to run flat when sat stationary in snow traffic on the Sheffield ring road when it's dark, the lights, wipers, radio and heater are on and nobody moves for an hour or three ...
Not sure what anyone but the manufacturers can do to remedy they, though!
There's a good discussion, here. Thanks for starting it.
As a recent adopter of a fully electric vehicle, I've been appalled at how disjointed government policy and action are with regard to encouraging EV adoption.
For example, while we are offered various grants to purchase (vehicle, home charger installation) and run (road tax, fuel duty) EVs, the charging infrastructure is a mess of many separate networks each with their own ways of access and so many non-working units, particularly at the all-important motorway service stations. Ecotricity and those who awarded them the contracts need to be called out for particular ineptitude. Where is the Department for Transport? Chris Grayling - the buck stops with you! (as with so many other national embarrassments!).
So, Pure Planet, please step in and take over the Ecotricity motorway service station contracts with a determination to install more, reliable rapid charging units, Your credentials for fully renewable energy and with BP backing puts you in an excellent position. Pricing per kWh is not a limiting factor for most current EV drivers (especially compared with fossil fuelled vehicles), and could be reduced over time with greater EV adoption and economies of scale....(at least until petrol/diesel tax revenues diminish significantly!)
It's worth looking a what other suppliers are doing in this area at the moment.. Octopus have gained a reasonable number of new EV owning customers by offering a low price (5p) per unit for four hours per night, plus a discounted or free (if you've not use the government grant) for a smart charger allowing the charge to be timed to coincide. It would be great if Pure could look at something similar. The main thing that has deterred me from switching to this is the lack of competitiveness on gas pricing. Alternatively, perhaps offer plunge pricing with a means of alerting customers that 'right now is a great time to charge'.
The majority of our charging is done at home so a low price window each night would be attractive and would, perhaps also allow us to run other household appliances at the same time, reducing our consumption outside of these times. Even a normal Economy 7 tariff would be beneficial for us I suspect. We do almost all our home charging at night and probably use around 3,000 units at home charging the car per year.
Partnership with a charging network might be attractive to some customers, but I find I tend to use several different networks each month depending on where I'm driving.
Some comments above mention the lack of charging infrastructure, but this is rapidly changing. I recommend folk take a look at either www.plugshare.com or zap-map.com to see how many public chargers are now available.
If you want to be radical, how about offering discounted or even free Solar PV installations, plus a smart charger that allows best use of those to charge the EV and any excess exported counts towards your green generation / supply figures? Perhaps even offer EV leasing?