Electric vehicles (EV) - what is range anxiety?

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Despite there being more than a million electric vehicles (EV) in the UK and EV sales continuing to rise, ‘range anxiety’ for some drivers is still a barrier to going electric. But should this be a reason to fear driving an electric car or have things moved on?

What’s the concern?

Range anxiety is a fear that an electric vehicle will not have enough battery charge to reach its destination, usually on longer journeys.

An extension of this is ‘charge anxiety’, this is not so much about finding somewhere to charge up, but instead the reliability of the charging stations and whether there will be one available to use.

How far can an EV go on one charge?

Did you know 95% of car journeys in the UK are less than 25 miles*? Yet most all-electric vehicles have a range of 150-300 miles on a full charge. Both casual drivers and those that commute daily should feel confident making their journey by knowing how far an EV can go on a single charge.

Of course, there are some things which can affect an electric vehicle's range. Just as good driving habits can help with the fuel economy of petrol and diesel vehicles, the same applies to EV. Other factors include the size and age of the battery in the vehicle, the efficiency of the vehicle, and also the weather conditions.

How many charging points are there in the UK?

The amount of public chargers for EV is rapidly increasing all the time. According to Zap-Map there were over 35,000 chargers in the UK in October 2022, a 35% increase on the previous year. With the highest percentage in city centres and service stations.

Plus, more and more workplaces are installing charging stations, which means if you have an efficient charger at home or at work you’re unlikely to risk running out of power.

Not only have the number of charging stations improved but the technology has too. Over the last few years electric vehicle charging speeds have dramatically increased, with both fast and ultra-fast charging available. It’s now possible to find ultra-fast public chargers that can power up an EV battery for 160 miles in just 10 minutes**.

Ways to beat range anxiety.

Simple steps like making sure your EV is fully charged overnight before a long journey and that your final destination is capable of public or home charging are surefire ways to reduce range anxiety. It’s not much different from keeping your mobile phone charged, just on a bigger scale.

Another tip is rather than waiting until your battery is empty, keep topping it up. Whether it’s at the supermarket or when you stop for a coffee. On longer journeys map out your stops for charges based on your vehicle’s range.

Don’t worry, just as petrol and diesel vehicles warn you when you are getting low on fuel, so do electric vehicles.

Finally, one of the best ways to beat range anxiety is to get an EV charger installed at your home so you can plug in and recharge. Also, it’s always worth checking out exactly where public chargers are near you for when you are out and about.

Feel the Community power.

The E.ON Next Community is a space for customers just like you, sharing their experiences to offer a helping hand. Find EV support or suggest your own unique topics, plus get involved in discussions of all the latest news. Join the conversation now.

*https://www.gov.uk/government/statis...el-survey-2020
**The ultra-fast charging speed of 10 min for 160 miles is an indicative value and depends on battery capacity, car model and how much energy is left in the battery. Please refer to your vehicle handbook for further details.

​​​​​​​Blog updated: 28/11/2022