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Range anxiety 'doesn't match reality' as out of charge EVs needing rescuing halves, AA finds

AA president Edmund King at a bp pulse chargepoint in 2018. Image: bp pulse

AA president Edmund King at a bp pulse chargepoint in 2018. Image: bp pulse

The proportion of electric vehicles (EVs) needing to be rescued by the AA due to being out of charge has halved over the past two years.

This figure has gone from 8% of breakdowns to under 4% of breakdowns today – although half of that 4% have not actually run out, with the AA called out due to the EV being low on charge.

Edmund King, AA president, said: “Drivers shouldn’t get hung up about range anxiety because it doesn’t match reality. Of course, improvements can and are being made to the charging infrastructure but a little planning can take you a very long way.”

Last year, chargepoint operator InstaVolt launched an app to help combat range anxiety, which included a live map of its charging network. Meanwhile, apps like Zap-Map provide drivers with information on EV charger locations and availability.

King also pointed to how most EVs will flash up an orange ‘check your charging’ warning when around 20%, and others will change the sat nav route to take in chargers or put the car into ‘range’ mode.

The AA said the top one third of breakdowns for EVs are exactly the same faults as with internal combustion engine vehicles, with this being 12v battery problems and tyres.

Other EV faults are different, however, and cover things such as charging equipment, warning lights, battery monitoring systems or key transponders.

“Electrification is going mainstream and potential EV owners shouldn’t be put off by myths about range. Once you have tried an EV it is hard to go back,” King said.

Earlier this year, the AA called for improvements to EV charging accessibility following following an AA survey of 17,302 drivers that found 73% believed charge post spaces should be wheelchair friendly and 79% believed charge post design should consider users with limited mobility and/or disabilities.

Current± recently took an in depth look at how to improve accessibility of EV charging - and why it hasn't always been at the forefront of the rollout.

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