Do you have enough power for your EV fleet?

Do you have enough power for your EV fleet?

By Emma Durham, Energy Product Manager

Transitioning a fleet to electric vehicles (EVs) introduces a host of challenges, from selecting the right vehicles to optimising infrastructure and scheduling charging sessions to suit your fleet’s operations. Crafting a strategy is crucial to avoid overspend. However, one often overlooked aspect is energy and the increased demand required to run your EV fleet.

Energy supply is a critical success factor for the transition and absolutely must be top of the list of considerations during the planning phase. So: do you have sufficient on-site energy for vehicle charging, and what will be the associated costs?

We’ve witnessed fleets experiencing a substantial surge in electricity requirements, ranging from 3 to 45-fold, depending on fleet size and type. Additionally, energy markets have exhibited extreme volatility in recent years, with wholesale prices hitting a peak of more than £500/Mwh (compared to the pre-2020 average of less than £50/Mwh)1. A well-defined energy strategy is key to success for your transition to EVs and it is important to consider the following factors:

Grid Capacity

Your base site consumes energy throughout the day to power your office or depot, leaving a specific headroom available for EV charging. However, simultaneous charging of vehicles or the use of high-energy fast chargers can easily surpass your grid capacity, leading to substantial fines on your electricity bill.

It is therefore crucial to evaluate your headroom for EV charging and explore options including on-site generation, storage, grid upgrades, or assessing the suitability of the land for your transition.

Energy Supply

Each month you purchase a certain amount of energy from your energy supplier. As you electrify, your energy demand will surge, and if paired with on-site generation like solar, may become less predictable. This unpredictability can expose you to penalty charges from your energy supplier.

Ensuring you’re on the right tariff and communicating expected usage variations each month becomes crucial.


On-site solar production has proven successful for fleets, offsetting rising energy costs and supporting additional vehicle charging beyond grid capacity.

Factors such as location, shading, installation orientation, tilt, and solar type will impact the installation costs and energy production.

Rightsizing the solar installation to match energy needs is essential to support your fleet electrification whilst minimising export or curtailment of solar, affecting your return on investment.

Battery Storage and Microgrids

Many fleets operate during the day and depend on overnight charging, which impacts the ability to use solar energy. Installing battery storage can help maximise self-consumption, and as a result minimises grid dependency. However, batteries are expensive, so rightsizing this through careful modelling, taking into account factors like battery cost, CO2 reduction, and the ability to support additional EV charging beyond grid capacity, is essential.

Energy Management Systems

With the transition to EVs, charging infrastructure, and potentially solar and battery storage, a comprehensive energy management system is crucial.

It should seamlessly communicate with all on-site hardware, irrespective of the manufacturer, providing visibility and control while allowing you to focus on your core business.

Don’t Let Energy Supply Become a Surprise Problem

In conclusion, navigating the complexities of transitioning to electric vehicles requires a highly strategic approach, considering energy demands, grid capacity, solar integration, battery storage, and an efficient energy management system.

At VEV, we offer the expertise and tools to guide you through this transformative journey.

Contact us today.