The number of electric vehicle charging stations in the U.S. must quadruple through 2025 to meet EV sales demand, according to S&P Global Mobility.
Many EV owners power their vehicles through at-home chargers, but a robust public charging network will be necessary as automakers transition to selling mostly EVs in the U.S.
EVs make up less than 1 percent of the 281 million vehicles in operation today and accounted for about 5 percent of new vehicle registrations from January through October 2022, but that share will soon expand, S&P Global Mobility forecasts. EV marketshare for new vehicles will likely reach 40 percent by 2030, or 28.3 million vehicles, according to a report by Stephanie Brinley, associate director of Auto Intelligence for S&P Global Mobility, published Monday.
"If it takes a decade to get a robust system in place, I don't think that's crazy," Brinley told Automotive News. "It's a big enough problem with enough players that it's reasonable that it will take time."
The U.S. has about 126,500 Level 2 and 20,431 Level 3 public charging stations, according to S&P Global Mobility estimates. Those estimates exclude 16,822 Tesla Superchargers and Tesla destination chargers. An increase in chargers has already begun, and it will likely gain momentum. In 2022 alone, the number of chargers has grown more than the preceding three years combined. About 54,000 Level 2 and 10,000 Level 3 chargers were added last year.
A Level 1 charger plugs into a standard wall outlet. At a charging rate of 20 hours or more, it is the slowest, most basic EV charger, according to the EVgo charging network. A Level 2 charger powers an EV in five to six hours. Level 2 chargers are often installed at home, work or public shopping centers, where vehicles are parked for a significant amount of time, EVgo says. Level 3 chargers require a much larger grid connection and takes 15 to 20 minutes to refill most of an EV's charge.
Americans could be driving nearly 8 million electric vehicles by 2025, according to the report. That's a sizable leap from the 1.9 million EVs on the road today. President Joe Biden set a goal last year to fund the installation of 500,000 charging stations across the country by 2030.
Those 500,000 are just one part of a broad push to expand infrastructure. S&P Global Mobility expects that about 700,000 Level 2 and 70,000 Level 3 chargers will be necessary to support the EV fleet in 2025. Two years later, the firm forecasts 1.2 million Level 2 and 109,000 Level 3 chargers will be required. By 2030, S&P Global Mobility expects the U.S. to need 2.13 million Level 2 and 172,000 Level 3 public chargers — more than eight times the number of charging stations available today.