There are typically six key fundamental factors when considering electric vehicles and associated infrastructure. Each of the six pillars is important to achieving the right EV solution for every client, each of whom have differing needs and requirements.
Baseline the immediate and longer-term transition strategy to give dimension and scope to the exercise, considering:
- EV transition plan – now & future. Allows consideration of future proofing during initial design phases
- Vehicle specifications and dwell time considerations
- Likely charging design parameters
- Servicing and support eg billing, control and usage, resilience, revenue generation
2: External requirements
Installation of charge points can potentially impact significantly on existing site power requirements adding delay and cost. Due diligence in terms of land ownership and local planning policy can also impact final design.
What to consider?
- Existing site energy demand profile
- When will vehicles be charging / consuming power
- Level of existing incoming available capacity (kVA)
- Options for on-site renewable energy generation – holistic approach
- Business case for battery storage and revenue stacking
- Benefits of load management: dumb or smart
- Assessing commercial options for new DNO connections
- Land ownership, consents and local planning policy
3: Future proofing
Future proofing EV infrastructure is a challenging exercise and depends on various considerations such as resilience, suitability, and connectivity.
Issues for consideration are:
- Location of hardware – spatial planning, security and safety
- Installation: Adaptable and scalable – modular, augment retrofit
- Operation – smart charging (dynamic or static), V2G, interface with renewables and battery storage
- Back office – data analytics, billing, RFID, contactless payment, connectivity
Demand and utilisation can vary subject to the infrastructure model – i.e. commercial fleet, workplace, destination etc
Subject to the use case model:
- Demand can be difficult to determine in the early transition phases eg blend of home, office & journey charging
- Modular and scalable solutions will become more important to help mitigate obsolescence
- How will the post-Covid era affect property strategy and portfolios
- Staff may need access to office-based charging if they have no off-street parking at home
- As commercial vehicle battery range increases how does this affect future contactless payment, and connectivity
5. Commercial model / purchasing
Assessing the commercial models and the associated risk profile is key to establishing a compelling business case. The utilisation of the charging assets will vary subject to use case and, therefore, the CAPEX, OPEX and ROI will be different for each organisation or infra model. The business case drivers can also vary, such as staff incentives, developer incentives, sustainability credentials, competitor differentiators or perhaps a business revenue model.
The commercial options available can include:
- Buyer CAPEX-funded and outright asset ownership
- Supplier funded and operated by a network operator under a lease/concession agreement (land rent or revenue lease)
- Standard asset finance over a fixed term
- Hybrid: additional revenue generation and equity share – 3rd party access, arbitrage for battery storage or future V2G
- Business case and ROI and grant funding
6. Timeline & delivery
Design of EV electrical infrastructure is crucial to a successful project. Selection of appropriate vehicles and charge points is important but a correctly-designed, safe and resilient electrical solution underpins long-term business continuity and overall investment model. Ensuring a reputable installation partner is appointed is critical to minimise pitfalls, enhance the design, spatial impact, safety, cost and install programme – as well as optimise the all-important customer journey, outlined below.
- Concept, detailed and build stage design optioneering
- Modelling use case and power demand to optimise power requirements and the commercial options around connection agreements and installation
- Charge point selection and spatial planning: extent of civils, cable routes, DNO power cabinets, substations
- Business continuity: coordinating works to ensure safety, programme and minimal disruption to site operations
- Longevity and whole life guidance and support
- Scalability and geographical presence/flex
The customer journey
The rollout of electric vehicle charge points, for many, will be a journey with several phases as both electric vehicle take-up and charging needs grow. The focus on the customer’s and end user’s needs is critical, supporting the client at each stage and ensuring the best solution is designed for present and future needs. Learn more about the EV customer journey here.
Working collaboratively with clients, we shape solutions to meet each client’s needs. Our dedicated EV team can carry out all stages of the process from survey and design to install, commissioning, maintenance and back office support.
Get in touch for a chat and we’ll dive into:
- How EV charging can work for your business
- Which strategies will get the best ROI
- Which solutions are right for you
Call us on 0800 170 0276 or fill in our contact form here.