13th November 2024
NEC Birmingham

EVs pose wider questions

Glass's Back

Wider questions surrounding the take-up of electric vehicles (EVs) need to be tackled including recharging and the demands it puts on the electric supply, and understanding how EVs will perform in the used car market.

Anthony Machin, head of content at Glass’s Guide, will provide insights into the 2018 used car market and provide a forecast as 2019 beckons at Automotive Management Live.

Taking place on 8 November at Birmingham NEC, Automotive Management Live is the sector’s one-day expo bringing together suppliers, expert industry speakers and delegates from the franchised and independent sectors.


Exploring the used car market during its best practice session, Machin will identify the trade’s top performers and what has set them apart.

Whilst EVs form a small part of the market, its growing popularity and a government that is pushing an all-electric agenda, means dealers will need to both gear up to sell new EVs and take EVs in part exchange.

However, Machin maintains a more fundamental question needs to be addressed: will there be enough electricity to go around?

He said: “We have all heard of the times when electricity networks are worked hardest at their peak demand. It is usually a cold winter’s evening, when a Premiership football team is playing in the Champions League and it is free-to-air match. Then suddenly, as the half time whistle is blown, all the viewers switch on the kettle to make a hot drink.

The UK electricity network is designed to cope with this instant demand. However, with increasing volumes of EVs demanding instant charge, predictions show that the load on electricity networks could double during the evening peak periods.

Part of the EV evolution includes charging during times of reduced demand such as overnight and the use of smart chargers ensuring drivers use only the right amount of electricity even if the EV remains plugged in.


Added Machin: “Effectively, smart chargers are being developed to smooth the peaks of electricity demand. For instance, if an EV is plugged in at work for nine hours but needs only two full-power hours to charge, there is a great amount of flexibility when the charger is used and what rate it charges at. Shifting the charging time to align with a period of surplus electricity will help address shorter-term variations. Without smoothing electricity demand, it’s likely that the UK electricity network would require significant high cost upgrades potentially taking years to complete.”

Smart charging is a system that can manage EV charging demand thereby reducing pressure on electricity networks. With no management of the charging demand, it is likely that the UK’s electricity supply infrastructure would require costly renewal.

It means dealers need to form part of the educational development of customers not just through the sales process of new and used EVs, but through the role of smart charging and the intelligent use of the public charging infrastructure.


Once again, Automotive Management Live, hosted in conjunction with the National Dealers Franchised Association (NFDA), is free to dealer and manufacturer colleagues. Pre-register at http://www.automotivemanagementlive.co.uk/online-registration for the most productive day automotive retailers will spend away from their businesses this year.