A survey of van fleets has found that 58% would consider sharing their charging infrastructure with others to make electrification more practical.

The research was carried out for the Association of Fleet Professionals (AFP) using a panel of 40 of its members by global management consultancy Baringa and net zero data analytics specialist Field Dynamics.  

When further asked where they were considering shared infrastructure, 62% of fleets said in depots, while 58% said they were considering it in relation to public charging facilities. 

The research found that current infrastructure was a barrier to electrification for 65% of fleets in relation to depots, and 49% in a home charging scenario, with the largest cost impediments coming from charger installation, connection, hardware and energy.

AFP chair Paul Hollick said: “The subject of shared charging is being discussed more and more across our organisation and is increasingly seen as a way forward for solving the issue of limited infrastructure. 

“Potentially, providing mutual access to charging could mean van fleets will be able to access power in areas where there is limited public charging in place or where energy prices are high for the chargers that are available.

“There are, of course, problems to solve, such as the mechanism for payment and a process of booking access to individual chargers, but these appear to be far from insoluble and could provide a valuable part of the charging options available to van fleet operators in the future. The research shows that there is a genuine interest in the subject.”   

The research took place ahead of the planned unveiling by the AFP of a new national charging map later this year, showing where new infrastructure is most needed for van operators.

Hollick said: “The new map will use data provided by a number of telematics companies and should provide the most accurate picture yet of where on-street charging is needed across the whole of the UK. We’ll be releasing details very soon.”