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2017 deadline too late for EV infrastructure

A supplier to the electric vehicle sector has warned that the continued lack of a common European standard for EV plugs and sockets is delaying the growth of recharging points and car sales.

ACEA, Europe’s carmaker trade association, has issued new recommendations about EV infrastructure standards and called for them to be in place by 2017.

 “This could be too little, too late,” warned Calvey Taylor-Haw, managing director of Elektromotive, a Brighton-based EV recharging point manufacturer.

He said the proposed timescale for implementation need to be much shorter.

“We have a range of EVs on the market right now, and many more are due next year. In order to give people across Europe sufficient confidence in the EV market so that they will actually buy these vehicles, we need widespread agreement on standards – right now.

“Car manufacturers are only part of the picture,” said Taylor-Haw. “More pressing is the need to ensure European governments reach a similar consensus, enabling the EV market to bring forward the deadline for when common standards can be implemented."

Currently most EU member states back one socket standard, already adopted by many, but a few others, including France, want an alternative, he said.

Elektromotive reports that the present situation – where each new EV recharging station must have the facility to be retro-fitted with a socket compatible with the new European-standard plug, when it eventually becomes approved – is making the recharging units more costly to manufacture and purchase.

 Some governments, local authorities and businesses are holding-off on issuing tenders for new recharging networks until after the sockets standards issue has been resolved, he said.

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