The growing acceptance of plug-in vehicles has spurred a “burst of activity” in the development of charging infrastructure (also known as electric vehicle supply equipment, or EVSE), mostly in North America, Europe, and Asia, according to a new report by Navigant Research.
Much of the activity has been supported by large government investments, but this backing is beginning to decline, forcing the industry to develop more organically. However, the field will continue to expand, according to Navigant, which forecasts that the global EVSE market will grow from $713 million in 2013 to $3.8 billion by 2020.
Navigant’s new report, “Electric Vehicle Supply Equipment Tracker 1Q13,” aimed at equipment manufacturers, installers, service providers, utilities and government agencies, addresses both AC and DC charging, as well as battery swapping. It surveys 150 key players in the EVSE industry, tracks the number of public chargers by region and technology, and assesses business models and market barriers on a regional basis.
According to Navigant, there are currently some 48,705 public charging stations installed around the world. AC (Level 1 and 2) chargers account for 94%, and DC installations account for around 5%, and boast leading market shares in Japan and Estonia. Battery swap stations account for less than 1% of installations and are found mostly in China, Denmark, and Israel.
The report explains how regional differences in owner charging behavior, industry standards, and existing grid infrastructure affect the charger market. For example, while US buyers seem to prefer plug-in hybrids, sales of fully electric vehicles have been stronger in Europe and Asia, so more DC fast chargers have been rolled out in these regions.