| News | Drivers

Range Anxiety: Tips to Boost EV Confidence

Should electric vehicle (EV) range anxiety still be on our minds?

What is EV range anxiety?

When we talk about the range of an EV, we are referring to the miles an EV can cover with a fully charged battery. Range anxiety is the term that describes a driver’s concern that their vehicle will not have enough battery charge to make it to their destination. This fear may be exacerbated by or build into ‘charging anxiety’, influenced by a lack of public charging infrastructure on route, which would leave EV drivers without the means of topping-up their vehicle to continue their journey.


What affects EV range?

A vehicle’s range will be negatively impacted by rapid acceleration and harsh breaking, idling, over- or under-inflated tyres, and the weather; significant increases and decreases in temperature can see an EV lose 25% of its advertised range.

Should EV drivers be concerned about range?

But is range anxiety still a problem in today’s EV market?

According to The Car Expert, most new EVs provide ranges comparable to traditional petrol cars, and we ‘won’t find many mainstream EVs with official battery ranges of less than 250 miles’ on the market today.

Even if drivers are using their full range and running their batteries down whilst on route, the UK’s EV charging infrastructure has made such advancements in comparison to when EVs were first coming to market that on-route charging is much more accessible. Between the end of 2016 and 2022, the charge point network expanded from just 6,500 to over 37,261 devices, whilst between the end of 2021 and the end of 2022, more than 8,600 charge points were added to the network. As of the end of May, there were 43,626 EV charging points across the UK. These figures highlight that drivers should not be as concerned about running out of power as they once were, for there is a growing network of charge points to provide comfort that they will not be left stranded.

local ev chargingThis reduced fear for problems surrounding EV range is confirmed by recent data from the AA. According to the AA, there has been over a 70% decrease in the proportion of EVs running out of charge over the last few years. In 2023 to date, the AA has dealt with 39,109 EV breakdowns, equating to a mere 2.86% of total breakdown workload.

Edmund King OBE, AA president, confirms their ‘data on ‘out of charge’ EVs clearly shows ‘charging anxiety’ does not match the reality. The 70% drop in out of charge breakdowns is a clear sign that range, infrastructure, and education are improving.’

Reducing range anxiety

How much EV range do I need?

This is subjective, depending on how far you are travelling and the distance you wish to cover before stopping to charge your vehicle.

As Catherine Faiers, Chief Operating Officer at Autotrader, notes ‘[We’re] all used to just grabbing our keys, jumping in the car and setting off on a journey. With an electric vehicle, you do need to have thought before you leave your house.’

This not only applies to charging in advance of journeys to ensure you have what you need, but also when planning where you can charge your EV during your journey. To be confident that your EV’s range can get you to where you want to be, you should plan your journey in advance and plot where you can top-up if necessary. Mer’s Driver Portal and Zap-Map displays all our public charge points, with details on the charger type and real-time availability.


Switch things off

An EVs air-conditioning, heated seats and windscreens, and audio system all contribute to draining the battery of power. Turning these internal features off whilst driving will preserve the EVs battery life and keep you on the road for longer.

You might also like...