Electric Vehicles – Towards an Excellent User Experience

The electrification of transport is a now a certainty. Battery technology is advancing rapidly and putting within reach the wide-scale adoption of passenger electric vehicles. This transition will fundamentally change the requirements of transport systems and energy systems as well as the use of space and as a result deliver a new ‘EV user’ experience.

Creating the user experience for those transiting to EVs is dependent not only on the technology provider i.e. vehicle manufacturer, but also on the delivery of policy and services from many other diverse stakeholders who may be working together for the first time because of this transition. Together, the interests and influences of this wide group of stakeholders will determine what experience users of electric vehicles will enjoy and this will impact the rate of adoption and how quickly society at large reaps the benefit of this change.

When such a significant change is about to happen the ideal scenario is, perhaps, that users choose willingly to adjust their behaviour to the new experience because of the advantages and benefits EVs offer and not because of the risk or threat of punitive measures. In simple terms, if EVs deliver an ‘Excellent User Experience’ then user advocacy will become a major stimulus for wider and more rapid adoption.

Recognising the unique contribution they and their innovator communities could deliver, and taking the ‘Excellent User Experience’ as a theme, the Future Cities, Transport Systems, High Value Manufacturing and Energy Systems Catapults, on behalf of Innovate UK, undertook a consultation to raise awareness and understanding amongst the many stakeholders in this field, of the views, opinions and ideas of fellow stakeholders.

The outputs from this consultation are captured in this report. They will be used as a stepping stone to develop insights into desirable future user experiences and map out an innovation support programme that will harness the creativity of supply chains and innovators to deliver those experiences  The next phase of this work has already begun, the outputs of which will be publicised in the Spring of 2019 for the benefit if innovators, broader stakeholders and government.

Creating excellent, engaging, and rewarding end user experiences is principally an intellectual challenge and not a technical one, and the UK wants to be the world leader in delivering them.

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