Adopting Electric Vehicles (EVs) into your fleet appears great on the surface: friendly to the environment, a potential reduction in fleet operating expenses and the positive association for your company’s public relations.
With all the benefits, there come potential compromises to consider. One of these is the limited range of EVs and limited charging infrastructure.
EV range is increasing as manufacturers improve their battery capacity, and charging infrastructure is continually being expanded as network operators respond to the forthcoming demand. However, expanded infrastructure won’t happen overnight and it is likely that demand for EV use will outpace the charging infrastructure.
To combat this, ‘journey management’ will become a key component of a well-functioning EV fleet.
Journey management looks at an entire required trip and considers if the EV has enough range to cover this distance and if there are enough charging points to allow the driver to complete the trip without becoming stranded with a dead EV.
As well as the total distance, elevation changes need to be considered. Driving an EV over a mountain obviously draws more battery capacity than driving on a flat plain.
As a fleet manager, consider the type of trips that your colleagues use vehicles for. Are they relatively short trips within an urban area that an EVs range would cover or are staff required to travel long distances into remote areas where charging stations aren’t in abundance and a ‘lone worker’ H&S risk exists?
Conversely, as a number of Smartrak customers (such as Meridian Energy) have already found for longer trips, stops to re-charge can also be beneficial as they integrate forced rest stops for drivers within the journeys.
Telematics is a powerful tool for assessing the viability of EVs but also allowing staff to manage their journeys. The future is combining the data fed from the EV, mapping data that accounts for distance and elevation, and charging infrastructure. This will make journey management as simple as a click of the mouse.
Organisations such as Meridian Energy are leading the charge towards EVs by analysing the viability of integrating EVs within their fleet.
A telematics solution is a great starting point to understand your fleet’s true use profile. By getting a snapshot of all the journeys and destinations of your fleet over an extended period, you can use hard data to analyse the viability of moving some or all of your fleet to EVs and how that might be managed.
To find out more about how Smartrak customers have started their journey towards adopting EVs in their fleet, send us a message below.