Looking down the road to electrification through the lens of Urban Science’s near-real-time industry sales data
At Urban Science, our unrivaled near-real-time industry sales data allows us to forecast for EV sales and charging demand, so we can more accurately identify locations where EV demand is likely to grow. As a result, OEMs can better optimize their networks for EV sales and charging needs to enhance customer convenience.
While BEVs are currently 16% of total retail automotive sales, they’re expected to represent more than half (55%) in just 10 years. At the same time, auto manufacturers will generally transition from premium EVs toward non-premium models to drive broader adoption. Most BEV sales today are in the premium segments, but that will change over time as more EV options become available across all segments and EVs become more affordable. By inference, reaching more to the masses will necessitate lower price points and require more public charging support.
To better understand the challenge, it’s helpful to look at “EV-to-plug” ratios, or the number of EVs compared to the number of available plug-in receptacles in a market (note: a charging station may have multiple plug-in receptacles). Through this lens, South Korea (at 3:1) and China (at 7:1) are the undisputed leaders, with the U.S. coming in at 11:1. Fast forward to 2028, and — although plugs increase from 156,000 to an estimated 403,000 — the ratio soars to 32:1 in the U.S. By 2033, with a projected 1.236 million plugs, we expect that ratio to see only marginal relief, at 29:1 in the U.S. (EV:plug).
Compounding this issue (and the overall barrier to mass adoption and convenience), EV growth — especially with its dependence on an EV infrastructure able to sustain mass adoption — is not consistent nationwide. Understandably, top growth markets will be concentrated in metropolitan areas, where there are more people and consequently, more vehicles. But all metro areas are not equal.
In all New York metropolitan areas, for example, the EV-to-charging-station ratio goes from 9:1 today, to 22:1 in 2028, before settling at 16:1 in 2033. In all Texas metropolitan areas, by way of comparison, the ratio goes from 16:1 today, to 60:1 in 2028, and then skyrockets to 82:1 by 2033. Those numbers reflect Texas’ relative lag in adding charging stations when the state’s EV growth rate was low (2020-2022).
Although projections, these numbers — driven by Urban Science’s near-real-time industry sales data and proven scientific processes and methodologies — highlight the challenges going forward as multiple stakeholders aim to create an infrastructure that can meet the needs of a burgeoning EV marketplace.