Explaining the technologies behind EVs

01/11/20236 minutes read

Electric vehicles (EVs) have been around for many years and in many forms (hybrid, plug-in hybrid, and fully electric), they just haven’t always been as popular as they are now. However, with the global push towards a greener more sustainable environment, including the UK government’s 2035 ban of new ICE vehicle sales, EV discourse has dominated the industry.


Electric vehicle: A vehicle that is fuelled by a battery-powered electric motor and can be charged from an external source.


So, what’s the difference between a hybrid and a fully electric vehicle? The main difference is self-explanatory and relates to how each is powered; a hybrid vehicle is fuelled by a blend of petrol and electric power, whereas an electric vehicle runs on battery power alone.



Exploring the rise in EV popularity


In 2020, the government revealed their ten-point plan for a green industrial revolution that would make the UK a global leader in green technologies. This included an end-date (now 2035) for the sale of new ICE vehicles and various cost-saving grants to encourage EV adoption for businesses and consumers.


The introduction of Clean Air Zones (CAZ) nationwide and Ultra Low Emission Zones (ULEZ) in London also promoted EV adoption to avoid emission fines when driving through those zones. With the recent ULEZ & CAZ expansions taking place, it can be confusing to know if your fleet is still compliant. Our FREE guide makes fleet compliance simple, saving you time, effort, and money.


With public charge point accessibility the biggest hurdles for EV adoption, the government revealed a new EV Infrastructure strategy, outlining a total of £1.6bn of funding for public charging points installations nationwide - to be seen through to 2035.



Discussing electric batteries


Many think electric vehicles run on a single battery, but this isn’t the case. Rather they use a pack of batteries comprised of thousands of individual Li-ion cells working together to power the vehicle. Most EV battery manufacturers have a five to eight-year warranty on their battery packs however current predictions (as of October 2023) have EV car batteries lasting anywhere from 10 – 20 years before needing to be replaced.


How EVs are powered is surprisingly simple – the battery pack connects to the vehicle’s electric motors which control the wheels. Once the engine is on and the accelerator pressed, the energy from the battery powers the motor which in turn turns the vehicle’s wheels.  



Discussing regenerative braking


Regenerative brakes are essentially an EVs generator. They work by reversing the vehicle’s electric motors, feeding energy back into the vehicle’s electric system to help replenish battery range which can accumulate and improve efficiency over time from regular usage.


EVs still use conventional hydraulic brakes like petrol and diesel vehicles, but as most of the workload is carried by the regenerative brakes, the traditional brake pads suffer less wear and tear.



Discussing EV charging


There are two kinds of 'fuels' that can be used in electric cars: alternating current (AC) and direct current (DC) power. Although the charge that comes from the grid is always AC, it’s stored in the EV battery as DC via an in-built converter built in the plug.


There are four different types of charging connectors for EVs with varying minimum and maximum charging rates. Your vehicle's manual will outline which you need to use for slow, fast, or rapid charging:


  1. Type 1 (3kW to 7kW)
  2. Type 2 (3kW to 43kW)
  3. CHAdeMO (25kW to 100kW)
  4. CCS (50kW to 350kW)



Are you ready to introduce EVs to your fleet?


Our EV suitability analysis identifies vehicles in your current fleet with suitable electric vehicle alternatives and assesses where EVs can be integrated into your fleet both now, and in the future, with tailored solutions for your specific business fleet needs.


Additionally, we assess your driver’s capability for a home charge point installation as well as your business HQ for depot/site charge points depending on where the vehicles are kept overnight.



Supporting your switch to electric


Looking for an all-in-one Electric Vehicle and Home Charging bundle with one supplier and zero upfront installation costs, available at one simple regular payment on 12Months+ hires and complete with a warranty?



Fuel card solutions for business


We’ve teamed up with the UK’s largest fuel card network provider Allstar Business Solutions to give you access to over 7,700 fuel sites, covering 90% of the UK, and help simplify your fuel expenses.


The Allstar One Electric is a combined fuel and electric charging card with access to 1,102 rapid chargers, over 2,966 fast chargers and 9 charge point providers, including GeniePoint, Source London and Alfa Power.


Stay in control of your business fuel expenses with a 24/7 online account management dashboard that grants visibility of all card spend and the ability to control your spend amounts.

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