More and more French people are turning to electric cars, which, if they are not the green panacea, will actually be part of the mobility of the future. There will even be 1 million 100 vehicles % electric and hybrid by the end of the year compared to almost 50,000 in 2015 . But owners who want to use the (all too rare) charging stations are struggling: electricity is more and more expensive there, and prices fish for their opacity. Reporters make the point.
Granted, almost 90 % of “ electric motorists » charge at home using a simple outlet. These are relatively protected thanks to the tariff shield which limits the increase to 4 % until the end of January 2023 and at 15 % afterwards. But for those who use out-of-home charging points, the bill has already started to add up. “ There is a real situation of inequality between people who use a charging station at home and those who use public charging or condominium »emphasizes Clément Molizon, General Delegate of Avere-France, National Association for the Development of Electric Mobility.
For example, Allego and Tesla, two of the largest charging infrastructure operators, have already passed on several increases in recent months. Recharge your car at an Allego terminal “ normal » (which provides up to 22 kilowatts (kW)) now costs 0.60 euros per kWh, against only 0.40 euros this summer. For refilling “ Ultra fast » (more than 150 kW) at a Tesla terminal, kWh is billed at 0.61 euros compared to only 0.35 euros at the beginning of 2022, i.e. 74 % what’s more. The Californian company has also decided to create a cheaper rate in the low season: from 22.00 to 06.00 the rate drops to 0.54 euros.
A tariff shield implemented in early 2023
“ The increase is very significant. It is currently estimated to be between 20 and 50 %, notes Clement Molizon. In many communities, the contracts that secured prices are ending and prices could explode. » Faced with the concerns of the sector, the state has just announced the establishment of a tariff shield at the beginning of 2023 for the approximately 71,000 electric charging stations in France.
It remains to know the practical modalities of the device which “ is being completed »says the Ministry of Ecological Transition. “ It is hoped that this tariff shield will limit breaches for both consumers and operators. »says the general delegate from Avere-France.
In addition to rising prices, electric charging outside the home faces another obstacle: “ One of the big problems in resorts is opaque prices. Unlike the gas pump, there’s no real-time display of what you’re taking. We don’t know how much it will cost us in the end ! »raises Sébastien Gall, vice-president of FFauve, the French association of users of electric vehicles.
But every station open to the public must indicate “ charging service features and price »as required by the decree of January 12, 2017. Five years later, the decree that was supposed to set the conditions for this display has still not been published. ! “ Several versions of the text have already been proposed. But now France is waiting for the European regulation on alternative fuels (Afir) to be adopted », notes Clément Molizon. Meanwhile, each station informs customers as it sees fit.
“ We don’t know how much it will cost us in the end ! »
No harmonization for invoicing either: some stations charge per kilowatt-hour (kWh), others by charging time, still others by fixed rate… In urban areas, local authorities often prefer pricing per charge. minute to avoid “ the pacifiers », that is, who would park too long at the terminal’s locations. As for the fast charging terminals (in direct current), they currently cannot charge per kWh, in the absence of a certified meter. “ Certification is in progress. The equipment should be available at the end of 2023. It must then be integrated into the terminals »specifies Avere-France.
Drivers forced to use multiple badges
Finally, the payment also turns out to be a bit of a mess. There are two systems: refill “ in action » with payment by credit card or via an app with a QR code and refills “ roaming » paid with badge or subscription.
Chargemap, Freshmile, KiWhi Pass, Ionity, Izivia, Newmotion, Plugsurfing,… There are dozens of mobility operators and as many cards, some more “ universal » covering different networks, others dedicated to one. Since 2017, however, the user should be able to recharge anywhere with the same badge or subscription, where the operators have a commitment to interoperability. But the 15,000 terminals – not interoperable – installed before the entry into force of the text are not subject to this rule, explains Clément Molizon. Motorists thus still have to walk around with several badges in the glove compartment.
- “ One of the big problems in resorts is opaque prices. There is no real-time display of what we are taking. » Flickr / CC BY–HER 3.0 / Lionel Allorge
However, a step towards greater transparency and consistency was taken on 19 October in the European Parliament. The MEPs adopted a negotiating position on the future Afir regulation: according to them, the price per kWh “ be communicated, affordable and comparable ». They also insisted that payment should be made easier. Discussions between the Member States will therefore be able to begin. The road to a simple and homogeneous system throughout the territory seems very long.
EELECTRICITYE WHERE ESSENCE : WHAT FULL COÛYOU THAT LESS DEAR ?
At an Allego terminal at 0.60 euros, for 100 kilometers, we will spend 9 euros with an electric car that consumes 15 kWh/100 km, and 11.40 euros with a gasoline car that consumes 6l/100 km, if we based on 1 litre. SP95 to 1.90 euros. Despite the price increase, it is still cheaper to drive electric.
If you recharge your car at home, at a rate of less than 2 cents per kWh (off-timer), it is even more interesting.