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European Alternative Fuels Observatory
News article30 October 2023

Inconsistencies Unveiled in Consumer Information About Electric Vehicles and Recharging Points

FIA study

The FIA European Bureau unveiled a comprehensive study scrutinizing the clarity, consistency, and transparency of consumer information related to electric vehicles (EVs) and recharging point usage. With a keen focus on assessing user manuals of popular EV models and the websites of major recharging point operators across Europe, the study revealed significant inconsistencies in information delivery, prompting the need for improvements.

The comprehensive study, evaluating six of Europe's top-selling EV models in 2022, examined various categories such as charging infrastructure, battery range, safety features, environmental impact, and overall vehicle details. Alarming disparities in the depth and accuracy of information surfaced, potentially affecting the experiences of first-time EV buyers.

Moreover, a detailed analysis of nine major recharging point operator websites highlighted discrepancies in information compared to EV manuals. Variations in descriptions and essential details regarding required plug types for charging emerged, potentially causing confusion among users. Additionally, the study brought to light pricing mismatches, with different operators implementing diverse pricing models such as per-minute or per kilowatt-hour rates. The lack of standardization and interoperability among these recharging point operators contributes to an unclear charging experience for consumers.

Stakeholder interviews gathered valuable insights on barriers to widespread EV adoption, pointing not only to well-known factors like high purchase costs and range anxiety but also emphasizing how inconsistent information, coupled with limited infrastructure, significantly impacts consumer decision-making.

Laurianne Krid, FIA Region I Director General, stressed the crucial role of accurate, clear, and transparent information in bolstering consumer confidence in EV technologies and infrastructure. With EV sales surpassing those of internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles, the study underscored the pivotal role of precise information.

This study also delves into the implications of relevant EU and UNECE legislation, like the Alternative Fuels Infrastructure Regulation and the Euro 7 proposal, and subsequently presents a series of policy recommendations. These recommendations include the harmonization of recharging point payment regulations and the assurance of reliable consumer information.

To access the full study, please visit this page.

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