Battery electric vehicles are highly suitable for use in municipal and commercial fleets. This is the conclusion of the latest evaluations by the Central Data Monitoring (ZDM – Zentrale Datenmonitoring) of the accompanying research programme in the electric mobility funding programme of the Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure (BMVI – Bundesministerium für Verkehr und digitale Infrastruktur).

The evaluation is based on the actual driving and charging data (operating data) of about 1,400 electric vehicles, which were analysed by Ingenieurgruppe IVV on behalf of NOW GmbH. The evaluation also provides indications of optimisation needs and potentials in the utilisation of electric vehicles.

With a typical daily mileage of less than 40 km, only around 20% of the possible range of the examined battery electric vehicles in municipal and commercial fleets is used. In view of the higher acquisition costs of electric vehicles and the fact that the production of the battery involves considerable raw material and energy requirements, this phenomenon must be viewed critically from an ecological and economic perspective. A larger battery often does not seem necessary from an operational point of view, nor does it make sense ecologically. Instead, the battery capacity should always be adapted to the application context. In addition, the aim should be to increase the overall capacity utilisation of municipal and commercial electric vehicles. This can be achieved, for example, through improved fleet management, releasing fleet vehicles for private trips at weekends or integrating the vehicles into sharing services.

The federal government’s funding programs have made a significant contribution to establishing electric mobility in Germany. Since 2010, the BMVI alone has provided support for 20,600 electric vehicles and 10,400 charging stations as part of the various support programmes for electric mobility, thus stimulating the market ramp-up. If the environmental bonus is added to this figure, around 60 % of all newly registered electric vehicles have benefited from federal funding.

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Central Data Monitoring (ZDM – Zentrale Datenmonitoring) can supply decisive information for the design of future funding policy and is therefore an important pillar of accompanying research within the scope of the BMVI’s electric mobility funding programme. Over a period of several years, the ZDM has collected real driving and charging data (operating data) in a systematic, structured and detailed manner. In order to monitor the market upturn of electric vehicles, additional figures from the Federal Motor Transport Authority (Kraftfahrt-Bundesamt) are evaluated and the development of the charging infrastructure is monitored. Since February 2020, the Central Data Monitoring has been managed and reorganised in-house by NOW GmbH.