Zap-Map survey reveals top EV charging networks

Zapmap survey reveals top EV charging networks


Tesla, InstaVolt, and PodPoint have been voted as the best EV charging networks in the UK by Zapmap users, with the three having the top satisfaction ratings by those drivers that use them.

Tesla’s Supercharger network saw 93% of those surveyed report they were ‘very satisfied’, and 3% were ‘somewhat satisfied’ with the experience. Feedback showed that the reliability and national coverage were elements that saw the network achieve top marks by Zapmap users.

However, the Supercharger network is only available to those that own or run a Tesla. In second place, and top of those networks available to use by drivers of other EVs too, was InstaVolt.

The rapid-charging network saw 88% of users being satisfied with the experience at its points – 65% as very satisfied and 22% somewhat satisfied. The ease of use, and contactless card payment and access were the highlights for those surveyed.

Pod Point’s UK-wide network took third place, and is available for more drivers still. Combining slow, fast, and rapid units, Pod Point offers EV charging for anyone with a plug-in car. More than 700 of the 1,600 Zapmap users that took part in the survey use Pod Point units, and 82% were satisfied with the network – 50% very satisfied, and 32% somewhat satisfied.

Most networks had a positive satisfaction score of more than 50%, though ‘dissatisfied’ reports from users dropped their ratings. Poor reliability, unit communication issues, and higher-than-average charging costs were the main bugbears users commented on.

Zapmap’s data reveals that, on average, the UK’s public EV charging infrastructure reliability is improving though. Analysis in July 2017 showed that 14.8% of devices were out of service (including 4.1% partially operational). By August 2018, this had reduced to 8.5% being out-of-service (1.1% partially), indicating significant investment by UK networks in the past year.

Commenting on the survey, Dr Ben Lane, CTO and co-founder of Zapmap, said: “EV drivers are acutely aware of the different levels of service offered by UK charging networks and have strong opinions as to what constitutes a high-quality charging experience.

“While comparing networks is complex due to differences in the services offered, Zapmap’s survey shows that EV drivers value charge point reliability and ease-of-use, competitive pricing on a per kWh basis and, for rapids, contactless card operation. The network satisfaction survey confirms that networks employing these key elements are more highly-rated by EV drivers.”

Other results from the survey saw that, of the 1,688 people who took part, 86% drive pure-EVs over PHEVs; the top three models driven are the Nissan Leaf (42%), Renault Zoe (14%), and BMW i3 (13%); and the three most used public charging networks are Electric Highway (65%), Polar (57%), and Pod Point (48%). This last point comes from the answers to the question “What public networks do you regularly use (as a member or on PAYG)?”.