EV charging – busting the myths

Opinion on electric vehicles continues to improve, thanks to increased availability and a reduction in prices for both new vehicles and the emerging second-hand market.

For many organisations 2020 might be the first time you introduce an electric vehicle to your lineup, while for others this year could mark a significant step towards implementing a zero-emissions policy for your vehicles.

As it turns out in the midst of this coronavirus lockdown, electric vehicles might now be even more attractive than ever before.

According to a survey conducted by UK company car services firm, Venson Automotive, nearly half (45%) of respondents said they would consider an EV after seeing the impact coronavirus lockdowns have had on air quality. The survey also found one in four respondents would switch to an electric vehicle within the next five years.

As your business considers the benefit of electric vehicles to your operations, take the opportunity to read through the following myths to get yourself up to speed. With 61% of all passenger vehicle sales in Australia to be electric by 2040, now could be the time to make your move.

Myth #1: EVs take forever to charge

Actually, they don’t. Just like your phone there are a few factors that affect the time it takes to charge, and also just like your phone, it’s very rare that EVs are charged from 0% charge (empty) to 100% charge (full) in one go.

Charging time depends on:

  • The charger model
  • The car model
  • How full the battery is already

Myth #2: Charging an EV is expensive

In reality, the cost of charging an EV is significantly cheaper than filling a car with petrol or diesel. Just like petrol, prices vary from station to station. Introductory pricing on ultra-rapid chargers from providers such as Chargefox is $0.40 per kWh, while others on the network range from free up to around $40 for a full charge. Most EV drivers charge their car at home overnight, and use public charging stations for top-ups or when driving long distances, so rarely do a full charge when out and about.

Myth #3: Don’t Tesla already have chargers?

They absolutely do, and a very wide-reaching network at that. However, only Tesla drivers can charge using the Tesla network, whereas all modern EVs with CCS2 or CHAdeMO plugs can charge at Chargefox sites, including Tesla drivers.  If you have a Tesla Model 3, you can plug straight in with a CCS2 plug.  If you have an older Tesla, you can use the CHAdeMO adapter, available from Tesla.  If you have a newer Tesla Model S or X, you can purchase a CCS2 adapter from Tesla.

Myth #4 There will never be as many charging stations as there are petrol stations.

That’s probably true, and it’s also not needed. It’s important to understand that most EV charging happens in the home, which is in contrast to other cars. If we all had petrol bowsers at home, there wouldn’t need to be as many public petrol stations, as you’d conveniently fill up before hitting the road.

Myth #5: All fast chargers are the same

There’s a difference between a ‘fast’ and an ‘ultra-rapid’ charger. This terminology simply refers to the amount of electricity that different chargers are able to deliver and hence how fast the vehicle will charge. Here’s a simple breakdown of the differences:

Myth #6: What’s the story with hybrids and fully electric vehicles?

There are three main types of electric vehicles (EVs), classed by the degree that electricity is used as their energy source – BEV, PHEV AND HEV:

  1. BEV (or battery electric vehicles) are fully-electric vehicles with rechargeable batteries and no combustion/fuel engine. EVs such as a Tesla, Jaguar i-Pace and BMW i3 are this type.
  2. HEV (or hybrid electric vehicles, or just hybrid) start off using the electric motor, then the petrol engine cuts in as load or speed rises. The battery in a hybrid is charged during the car’s braking process (regenerative braking). Models such as the Toyota Prius Hybrid are hybrid.
  3. PHEV (or plug-in hybrid electric vehicles, or just plug-in hybrid) can recharge the battery through both regenerative braking and plugging into an external source of electrical power. Models such as the Toyota Prius, Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV and BMWi8 are this type.

Myth #7: There are only a few EVs available in Australia, and they’re all too expensive.

Unfortunately, Australia’s rate of EV adoption does lag behind most other developed countries, as the majority of them have introduced subsidies and tax rebates to help incentivise adoption, while we haven’t. However, the good news is that things are changing and as the demand for EVs increases, more models will come on the Australian market. Like any new technology early versions are more expensive. If you’re old enough to remember how expensive computers were in the 1980s, you’ll get it.

The cost of an EV is expected to reach parity with ICE vehicles in about 5 years, at which point they will be cheaper to run.

Myth #8: EVs are going to ruin our weekend drives.

Look, nobody’s forcing you to buy an EV. There’s no question they’re better for the planet and will eventually be cheaper as well, but if you still want to buy a V8, you’ll have that option for a very long time to come.


The following article has been adapted from an original resource piece from Chargefox