The National Grid has said that up to 36 million electric vehicles (EVs) could be on the roads of the UK by 2040.

That figure is more than double the estimate given by the organisation last year of 17 million, and comes as a result of new policies that have been implemented to encourage the uptake of EVs – including electric vans and lorries as well as cars.

The National Grid last year suggested that the rising popularity of electric vehicles between now and 2050 could mean it eventually having to deliver an extra 30 gigawatts of power at times of peak demand.

That’s 50 per cent more than the Grid has to supply when demand is at its height now – but did assume a worst-case scenario in which no EV owners use smart chargers, which replenish their vehicles at off-peak times.

The National Grid now believes that smart chargers will in fact be used and that some EV batteries will supply power back to the grid at peak times.

So while it says more electric cars will be hitting the highways and byways of the UK, it now predicts the likely impact on the its operations will be smaller – with peak-time demand likely to increase by ‘only’ 12.7 gigawatts by 2050.

Latest figures from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) and other industry organisations show that more and more EVs are coming into the market as new vehicles and working their way into the used market. has a dedicated EV section where you can find out the answers to any questions you may have about the next generation of vehicles, as well as find out which ones are the best and how you should buy them.

Tristan Shale-Hester


July 12, 2018

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