Thought Leadership

CSE Presents Research on EV Charging and its Importance in the Purchasing Process


By Sara Tajik

April 25, 2019

How are new owners charging their electric vehicles (EVs)?

Ryan Bodanyi, CSE’s senior specialist for clean transportation, addressed this question in a February 26 presentation at the 22nd Annual Energy, Utility & Environment Conference (EUEC). The EUEC is one of the largest events of its kind, featuring thousands of delegates, 400 expert speakers and top officials from utilities and environmental regulators nationwide.

California has more annual EV sales than all other states combined, making the state an ideal venue for research that explores the opinions and behavior of EV consumers. Ryan’s presentation, “EV Charging and the Vehicle Purchase Process: Lessons Learned from Rebated Consumers,” drew on data collected from participants in California’s Clean Vehicle Rebate Project (CVRP), which provides rebates to people who purchase or lease an EV. Ryan’s presentation focused on those who did so between June 2017 and January 2018 – 4,000 survey respondents that were statistically weighted to better represent the 26,000 rebate recipients during this time frame.

He reported that the majority of rebate recipients charge their EV at home (roughly 85%) and that nearly half simply plug their vehicle into a typical household outlet. Roughly 46% of rebate recipients say they can charge their EV at work – and of those, a bit more than half can do so for free. EV rebate recipients with lower incomes report having less access to charging at home and at work. Three charging-related concerns – the range on a single charge, the ability to charge away from home and the time required to recharge – were among the concerns most frequently cited during the purchase process (the other being price). 

Research in this area serves automakers, policymakers, utilities and the public, contributing valuable insights into the expectations and behaviors of consumers in the emerging EV market. Insights into EV charging behavior are relatively rare, making public findings – like Ryan’s EUEC presentation – even more valuable. CSE’s ability to profile and understand the EV market is a key point of leverage in our efforts to help build a cleaner and more sustainable transportation system.

Read the whole report online.

Sara Tajik

Sara provides marketing support to CSE’s transportation programs.

Read more by Sara Tajik