The cost of running a battery-powered electric vehicle (EV) is between 40% and 60% less than running an internal combustion-engine (ICE) vehicle, according to Commercial Fleet. This is great news for businesses as it makes commercial driving as cheap as possible. However, range anxiety, where people worry about their battery not lasting, is stopping 80% of fleet managers from buying EVs. But these tips will help you get around range anxiety so you can benefit from the financial savings of EVs in your business.
Get the right vehicles
It’s important that you get the right type of EV to suit your business’s needs. The average electric van can do between 50 and 150 miles on one full charge. Before deciding which EVs you’re going to add to your fleet, you need to think about expected mileage, whether the vehicle will mostly be driven in town, the country, or main roads, and what type of loads it will carry. Electric vehicles are ideal for short journeys around towns and cities, so you’ll get more miles out of each charge, Plus, there are usually lots of charging points around these areas. You’ll also manage more miles per charge when you’re carrying smaller loads as it doesn’t put extra stress on the vehicle’s battery.
Driving an electric vehicle is a different experience from driving an ICE. To date, around 705,000 plug-in vehicles have been sold in the UK, so there are plenty of people who will have never driven one before. One of the latest EVs to enter the commercial world is HGVs. To drive one of these you need a HGV license. A Driver Certificate of Professional Competence (CPC) qualification can then be obtained so you can start working as a lorry driver. It’s important that thorough training is given when driving an electric HGV or similar electric commercial vehicle. Practical training allows drivers to get a feel for the vehicle and get them used to manoeuvring it safely. This will reduce range anxiety as training on how to drive smoothly and how to handle the regenerative braking system can stop unnecessary battery-power being used up.
Utilise stop times
Drivers of commercial vehicles under 3.5 tonnes are only legally allowed to drive for 10 hours per day. However, The Highway Code recommends 15 minute breaks every 2 hours. It will take some planning, but you should get your drivers to plan their stops around convenient charging points. This will stop range anxiety and ensure that the battery in their vehicle is always topped up. It’s advised that the charge of an EV remains between 20% and 80%, so regular ‘topping up breaks’ is an ideal way to stay within this guideline.
Range anxiety puts many business leaders, fleet managers, and commercial drivers off electric vehicles. But you can overcome these anxieties by ensuring your drivers are fully equipped with the best EVs, knowledge, and training before they hit the road.