Electrification progresses at various rates depending on the region and it will lead to an interesting disproportion of electric vehicle deployment in the U.S.

According to the National Renewable Energy Laboratory's study, highlighted by the DOE's Vehicle Technologies Office, the majority of the EV fleet will be located in suburban areas. The study says about 60% out of the projected 33 million vehicles by 2030 will be in suburban areas. That's almost 20 million EVs.

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EV fleet in the U.S.

Currently, all-electric vehicles represent almost 8% percent of new light-duty vehicle registrations in the U.S. The share of EVs in the total fleet is even smaller, but in a decade, it's expected to be noticeable.

The remaining 40% of EVs are expected to be located in rural locations (20%) and urban areas (20%).

If true, it indicates that most EV customers will be people who need a car for commuting. Suburban locations usually mean houses with private parking spots and home charging options. This seems to be a core market for EVs.

On the other hand, in urban areas—where the zero-emission feature is very important—potential customers usually do not have a home charging point and their mileage might be lower, which means that the higher price of an EV isn't offset by lower energy/fuel cost.

The study also indicates that in urban areas, 40% of EV electricity needs (energy dispensed) will fall on public DC fast chargers (150 kilowatts or higher), compared to just 20% in suburban areas and 10% in rural areas.

In all cases, AC Level 2 charging (with some addition of AC Level 1) will be the primary charging type.

2030 EV Fleet by Community Category and Relative Share of Electricity by Charging Type

Notes:

  • Level 1 (L1) refers to 120V AC charging from a typical US household outlet.
  • Level 2 (L2) refers to 240V AC charging like that used for a household electric dryer.
  • DC fast charging in this study refers to charge rates of 150 kW or higher.
  • Low power DC charging (e.g., 50 kW) is omitted from the study’s baseline scenario on the basis of assumed driver preferences for DC charging that is as fast as possible and 2030 vehicle technology scenarios where batteries are capable of accepting at least 150 kW of peak power.
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