Nissan LEAF ChargingElectric vehicles may seem like a recent innovation, but they were actually invented more than a hundred years ago.

The 2010’s saw the popularity of EV’s soar, as manufacturers developed better quality vehicles in terms of design, safety, and performance. Experts predict that 2020 will be a hugely successful year for the EV industry, with some of the most well-known car brands releasing their very first all-electric models throughout the year.

A timeline of electric cars
The first concept EV was invented in the 1800’s by experts from The Netherlands, Hungary, and America. By 1901, Thomas Edison worked on developing a better battery for the vehicles, thus creating the first hybrid electric car. Following crude oil’s drop in price in 1920, electric vehicles decreased in popularity and petrol and diesel models took control of the automobile market.

Over the past ten years, electric cars have improved significantly. There are currently over 150,000 electric cars on Britain’s roads and the amount of rapid charging connectors has hugely increased since 2011, including the introduction of CCS, Tesla, and Type2 connectors. While the average journey in the UK is 15 miles, electric cars have always brought with them the anxiety of breaking down or running out of ‘juice’ away from the chargers mentioned above. Maybe in the past they would only be capable of short distances, but currently you can expect a full charge to allow you to travel in the region of 200 miles. Better yet, 96% of motorway service stations can provide a rapid charging point, which will provide a 100% electric car with 80% power in 30 minutes.

What does 2020 have in store?
Experts in the automotive industry predict that electric cars will continue to grow in popularity. One main reason is the UK government’s projection to stop the sales of new petrol and diesel models by 2040. It also pledged that at least half of all new vehicles will be hybrid or electric by 2030 in its push to reduce vehicle emissions.

Northern Powergrid, an electric connection provider, are preparing for increased demand in EV charging points. It is introducing new charging points across 11 of its own sites to encourage employees to go electric well ahead of the 2040 ban on new diesel and petrol car sales. “We have to get hands on and lead by example,” said the company’s Head of Policy Development, Jim Cardwell. “Although colleagues frequently have to take our vehicles to places where there is no electricity, there is huge internal appetite to decarbonise as much of our fleet as possible, as soon as is practical.”

The company has various electric vehicle projects which will be a great help in the fight to reduce carbon emissions across the country. These include a £9.8m collaborative project, announced by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) and led by Nissan, that will see 1,000 V2G charging points added to the UK’s network. It has also signed an industry-leading Memorandum of Understanding with Nissan to carry out projects that will look at how EVs, batteries and other technologies can support energy networks and is supporting customers looking to connect EVs to its network.

Manager of Nissan EV, Ed Jones, said: “We’ve always known that Nissan’s EV technology can be used for so much more than just getting people from A-to-B and we’re delighted to be sharing our expertise to help create more sustainable energy networks in the UK. Through the integration of Nissan EVs, we can find new solutions that will help shape a society whose energy use is sustainable, efficient and affordable.”

Initiatives such as these will make electric car charging points easily accessible across the country. There are three types of charging available: rapid, fast, and slow. Across the UK, we are noticing a continuous rise in locations to be able to charge electric vehicles. In November 2018, 596 ports were added, and this number is only going to rise in years ahead.

According to data, almost 70% of UK drivers would opt for a used EV over a new model. It’s thought that we are becoming a lot more trusting of a battery’s longevity than we previously were.

Many of the reasons for going down this route are the same as buying new, including the positive impact these vehicles have on the environment compared to petrol and diesel cars. The main stumbling block for the quarter that baulked at purchasing a second-hand EV was due to the price. Thanks to new technology advances, experts claim that a battery pack used in an electric car won’t need to be replaced for between 10 and 20 years and can cover around 150,000 miles. Experts say that manufacturers have now proven themselves and this sector, giving prospective buyers more confidence in buying used cars.

The EV industry is set to continue making progress in 2020. With companies now on board with the changes, and the public embracing the models, the electric vehicle industry is certainly heading in the right direction.

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