One of the main problems in the minds of many motorists, with relation to electric vehicles, is the lack of charging stations. There has been severe criticism about the lack of investment, the lack of new technology and the lack of development in this particular area, but are we being a little unfair?
The fact is, that the electric car industry, even though it has been around for over 100 years, is still very much in its infancy with regards to the mass market. Therefore it goes without saying that the electric car charging sector is also very much in its infancy and perhaps we are expecting too much too quickly. If you cast your mind back, it wasn't always as quick at the gasoline station!
Gasoline stations in America
A recent report confirmed they are in excess of 120,000 gasoline stations across the United States of America, which is said to exceed the combined number of outlets of the top 10 fast-food companies in the U.S. This is an astounding figure and perfectly illustrates the challenge ahead for recharging stations and the companies managing them.
However, sometimes we look at gasoline stations through rose tinted glasses and forget that they took decades to perfect, there were not as many in the beginning, and the industry did take some time to develop.
Quote from ElectricForum.com : "My nearest charging station is about 1 mile away and is operated by the local council. They seem to have introduced electric car charging stations without promoting electric cars, strange!"
Can you remember the last time when you went to the gasoline station and paid with cash? Indeed, when was the last time you actually went to a gasoline station and did not pay with your credit card or your bank card? In the old days cash was king and very few gasoline stations accepted any form of electronic payment. However, nowadays the technology is there to literally swipe your card passed a sensor and hey presto, payment in seconds!
Can you remember the days when the gasoline station attendant was the only person allowed to fill up your vehicle? The general motorist was not allowed anywhere near a gasoline pump and it could take some time to get refuelled if there was a queue. We often forget these very simple facts because we are used to the system of today which is ultra quick, ultra efficient and ultra modern.
The truth is that the electric car recharging network across the U.S. is growing significantly, it will continue to grow and it is now attracting more investment funding than ever before. It may not compare favourably to the number of gasoline stations at this moment in time but once the industry breaks that critical point, and EVs hit the mass market, the number of stations will very quickly mushroom.
We look at the modern-day gasoline station network and sometimes forget that it has taken decades to perfect delivery, payment and indeed the location of gasoline stations in the U.S. and around the world. In many ways we are not giving the electric car recharging industry the chance to breathe and expand, with more and more people preferring to fire critical comments in what is in effect a very early stage industry.
Sometimes, it does pay to sit back and remember the old times and the fact they were not perfect!