A new study from ABI Research projects a strong future for the development of charging infrastructures for plug-in hybrid and electric vehicles. The study forecasts that by 2016, there will be nearly three-million vehicle charging stations in operation worldwide, with annual revenues associated with the purchase and installation of those stations growing to nearly $13 billion that year.
The report, “Electric Vehicle Infrastructures: Charging Stations for Electric and Hybrid-Electric Vehicles,” examines the state of the electric vehicle charging market, with forecasts of the number of stations to be installed worldwide, by major region and country, from 2011 through 2016. It also includes discussion and forecasts for automated battery switch stations.
Governments around the world are investing in pilot projects to install public charging stations for plug-in vehicles, noted ABI practice director Larry Fisher. Some countries, such as China, Israel and Denmark, are also investing in automated battery switch stations, which trade depleted batteries in electric vehicles for fully charged batteries in minutes, compared to the hours generally required to recharge electric vehicle batteries.
Business models are only now being developed for public charging of electric cars, according to Fisher. “Ultimately, public charging may require contracts similar to today’s cell phone contracts, which provide ‘all-you-can-eat' charging for a single price, or which offer a specific amount of charging and then hike the price for additional electrical usage,” he said.