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By Barriers Direct on 09/09/2023

Electric Car Ownership and Charging Statistics

Electric Car Ownership and Charging Statistics

Electric Car Statistics 2024

Predictions say that by 2030, 60% of all new global car sales will be electric in a bid to reach net zero emissions by the year 2050, with some experts stating the net zero goal could be achieved by the early 2030s.

But with a cost of living crisis on our hands and the prices of electric vehicles remaining far higher than that of their non-electric counterparts, not everyone is quite as excited about the future of the automotive industry. 

Many consumers are also faced with hesitations surrounding the reality of owning an electric vehicle, with one legitimate concern being accessibility of charging points. But just how much of an issue is this for prospective owners of electric vehicles? Would it really hold people back from purchasing them? And just how convenient is it to charge an electric vehicle in 2023?

Here we reveal all of this and more, with our roundup of the most up-to-date statistics, facts and figures surrounding electric vehicle charging in 2023. 

The Rapid EV Stats

If you’re here just for the headline numbers, here are the most important findings from our EV statistics round up:

  • 1 in 5 people in the UK have an electric car
  • Over 40% of the UK’s youngest drivers now have EVs
  • Meanwhile, under 4% of those aged over 55 do
  • Of those who have electric vehicles, over 50% say they do not believe there are enough public charging facilities
  • Of those who do not have an EV, a quarter would consider getting one
  • Price is the biggest single reason cited for not having one

Electric Car Ownership in the UK - The Statistics

We surveyed 2,011 UK adults in 2023 using the market research company Censuswide, asking:

  • ‘Which of the following statements most applies to you?’
  • I do not have an electric car but I would consider buying one.
  • I do not have an electric car and don't want one for another reason.
  • I do not have an electric car and the price would stop me from buying one.
  • I do not have an electric car and a lack of public EV charging points would stop me from buying one.
  • I have an electric car but I do not believe there are enough public EV charging points available.
  • I do not have an electric car and the risk of unreliable/damaged public EV charging points would stop me from buying one
  • I have an electric car and have found some public EV charging points unreliable/damaged.
  • I have an electric car and I believe there are enough public EV charging points available.
  • None of the above

If we remove all of those who stated “none of the above,” we’re left with responses from 1,395 people over 16 in the UK.

We found:

  • 1 in 5 (19.76%) of people over 16 in the UK now have an electric car
  • Of the 80% who don’t have one yet, 26% say they would consider buying one


There are differences in the electric car ownership rates between genders too.

  • 23.2% of men surveyed have one
  • 16.31% of surveyed women do

In other words, men are considerably more likely to own an EV than women are in the UK right now. 


If we break down the answers further and look at responses by age groups, we see this:

Age Group

% Who Own an Electric Car

16 to 24


25 to 34


35 to 44


45 to 54




What our survey statistics show is that the younger a person is, the likelier they are to own an electric car.

In fact, those aged 16 to 24 are more than 10 times likely to have an EV than their 55+ counterparts. 

We see variations across the country too. Let’s look at the figures regionally.


% Who Own an Electric Car

East of England


Greater London


East Midlands


West Midlands


North East


North West


Northern Ireland




South East


South West




Yorkshire and the Humber



Are EV Owners Happy with Public Charging Capabilities?

Amongst those who have an electric car, there are some concerns about public charging facilities.

The data shows:

  • Just over half (50.1%) of those who have an electric car say they do not believe there are enough public charging points available
  • Just over a quarter (26.9%) say they have found some public charging points unreliable/damaged
  • Just 22.9% of those with an EV believe that there are enough public charging points available

So while the benefits of going electric are clear, it appears that even amongst those who’ve already converted to EV, there are concerns about infrastructure to support it.

Reasons for Not Having an EV

The survey results also highlighted the reasons amongst those who do not have an EV for not yet having one.

Here’s what’s stopping the UK’s drivers from going electric.

Reason for not having an EV

% of those who do not have an EV who cited this as the main reason

Don’t want one for an unspecified reason




A lack of public charging points


The risk of unreliable/damaged public charging points



In addition 26.25% of those who do not have an EV said there is no reason and indeed they would consider one.

We found that almost a quarter of people without an EV are put off by the price. For almost 1 in 5, it’s the lack of public charging points, while 7.28% are put off by the risk of damaged or unreliable public chargers.

In other words, Britain’s perceived poor infrastructure when it comes to public charging is a compelling reason for many people not to invest in an EV.

The price point of electric cars is proving an equally significant sticking point though.

How many EV charging points are there in the UK? (2023 Data) 

Whether it’s twiddling your thumbs waiting for one of the two only available charging points outside a nearby supermarket, or travelling in a remote location and finding yourself desperately searching for a charging point down a dark windy lane. The lack of access to convenient public EV chargers is a huge concern held by those thinking of buying them, as well being a grievance also held by current owners of electric vehicles. 

So how many public electric chargers are there in the UK in 2023? And is this really enough to meet demand? To find out, we delved into the recent data from Zap Map, which revealed that: 

  • As of February 2023 there were a total of 38,982 public EV charging points across 23,066 locations in the UK. 
  • This means that the number of public EV charging points in the UK has increased by 33% over the last year. 
  • Recent estimates also predict that there are now over 400,000 charging points at individuals’ homes and workplaces across the country. 

Which UK towns and cities have the most demand for EV charging points?

What’s the first thing we do as 21st century humans when we need to find out where something is?... Yep, you got it - we turn to Google! And as you’d imagine, looking for the nearest car charging points is no exception to this. It’s easy and convenient, and almost certainly the fastest way to find EV charging ports, especially when on the move.

But just how many UK adults turn to Google each month to look for car charging points? And which towns and cities show the most demand for them? To find out, we analysed search volumes for the term ‘charging points near me’ using the tool Keyword Finder and divided the average number of monthly searches for this term by the number of people living in each town or city.

As you can see from the graph: 

  • People in Cambridge search online for Electric Vehicle chargers far more than any other town or city in the UK, with an average of 41 in every 100,000 people searching for ‘charging points near me’ on a monthly basis. 
  • This is followed by Oxford and Milton Keynes, who each conduct 31 and 29 searches per 100,000 each month. 
  • Leeds and Peterborough follow in 4th and 5th place, with Glasgow and Newcastle upon Tyne coming closely behind. 

But why is this? Are these people living in the area and looking for places nearby to charge their vehicles whilst they’re out and about? Or perhaps are the majority of these searchers passing through and searching because they’re unfamiliar with the area? 




Average searches per 100,000 people





Milton Keynes








Newcastle upon Tyne






Hemel Hempstead






















We chose this term as opposed to terms such as ‘EV charger near me’, ‘electric vehicle chargers near me’, etc as it has the highest average monthly search volume, and all of the results on the first page of Google are relating to EV charging stations, suggesting that Google knows that people searching for ‘charging stations near me’ are in fact looking for EV charging points. It’s important to note that although we’ve divided the number of searches by the population of each town and city, individuals searching for the term may not necessarily live in that area, they could just be passing through or visiting the area. 

Does supply meet demand for electric vehicle charging points?

Rapidly growing demand for charging points and frustrations surrounding the matter has cast doubts about whether the EV supply chains have the scalability to keep up. So what’s holding them back? 

  • EV charging points require various materials that are currently in short supply, such as semiconductors and the UK’s strategy for obtaining these materials has been under much scrutiny over the past few months, with the Chair of Parliament’s business, energy and industrial strategy committee going so far as to branding these strategy delays as an ‘act of national self-harm’. 
  • What’s more, charger installation and maintenance requires a significant amount of investment. However, due to the uncertainty around the demand for EVs, some private companies and local authorities have been reluctant to invest in this infrastructure. To date, millions of pounds have been invested into the improvement of access to charging points for EV drivers across the UK, but to keep up with demand, both private firms and the government must continue to fund these plans, such as the recent local electric vehicle infrastructure (LEVI) scheme.
  • Grid capacity is also a huge issue when it comes to electric vehicle charging. As the number of EVs on the road continues to rise, as does the need for electricity to power them. This added pressure on the grid can be problematic, particularly in areas where the grid is already at or near capacity.

Change is rarely easy, particularly when it comes to large scale developments  in industries such as this, where time, money, resources and energy are stretched. But it will be interesting to see over the next few years just how quickly adequate EV charging infrastructure will become commonplace, and how the UK deals with the challenges raised in this piece. 

Here at Barriers Direct, we have seen a 12% year on year increase in the sale of electric vehicle charging protection products, which comes as little surprise when considered next to the quantity of EV drivers who are encountering faulty or damaged charge points. And while it’s fair to assume we can unanimously agree on the benefits of getting more people going electric, we know that the reality of achieving this is very much dependent on improving the infrastructure. 

So if you’d like to find out more, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us. A member of our team will be more than happy to help you in any way we can. 

Methodology and Caveats

We conducted our survey through Censuswide, a market research company whose employees are members of the Market Research Society. They polled a demographically representative panel of 2,011 respondents from their own survey panel in March 2023.

Respondents were permitted to select just one answer and were given the option to select “none of the above.” In order to gain insight into those who shared with us whether they do or do not own an electric vehicle, we removed the 316 “none of the above” responses and calculated figures based just on those who did answer the question.


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By Barriers Direct on 09/09/2023

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