The ratio of vehicle charge points to plug-in cars deteriorated by nearly a third in 2020, new data shows.

New analysis by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) shows that at the end of 2019, 11 plug-in vehicles potentially shared a standard public charge point capable of charging both battery electric (BEVs) and plug-in hybrid vehicles (PHEVs).

In contrast, at the end of 2020, the ratio had fallen to one charger for every 16 plug-ins or 16:1. Wales has a ratio of 12:1, while Scotland weighs in at 17:1.

Britain’s ratio of plug-in vehicles on the road to standard public chargers has deteriorated to become one of the worst among the top 10 global electric vehicle markets. South Korea (3:1), the Netherlands (5:1), China (9:1), France (10:1), Belgium and Japan (both 13:1) all offer their EV drivers better coverage, although the UK does marginally outperform Germany (17:1).

‘Appetite for electric vehicles has never been higher, but making Britain a net zero nation means convincing everyone, wherever they live, that an electric car can meet their needs,’ said Mike Hawes, SMMT chief executive.

‘Those who can’t have their own home charge point need the confidence that they can still charge as conveniently as they can refuel. A deteriorating ratio of public charge points to cars will drain that confidence.’