World-first EV-only electricity tariff launched in the UK

By Matt Allan
Friday, 29th January 2021, 12:00 pm
Updated Friday, 29th January 2021, 12:01 pm

UK energy supplier OVO has launched what it says is the world’s first “type of use” electricity tariff aimed specifically at electric vehicle owners.

Many electricity companies already offer “time of use” EV tariffs with lower rates at certain times of day - usually overnight. However, OVO says its Drive Anytime tariff is unique in offering a flat rate at any time of day.

It says the fixed 6p per kWh rate could cut EV drivers’ charging costs by as much as 63 per cent, saving them up to £200 a year.

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Most EV tariffs offer the best rates (as low as 4.5p per kWh) at times of lowest demand on the grid - usually between midnight and 7.30am, with drivers charged far more if they need to charge during peak time. OVO’s new tariff uses data gathered by its “intelligent energy platform” Kaluza to optimise charging activity in these low-peak periods and protect customers from higher rates at other times.

The tariff guarantees a fixed rate for EV charging at any time of the day (Photo: Shutterstock)

The system analyses data on energy pricing, the weather and local network constraints to shift EV charging away from peak times and optimise charging schedules to capture the cheapest electricity. However, OVO says the technology allows it to manage capacity so customers will be able to override the system and charge at any time without paying more.

Marzia Zafar, head of strategy and policy at Kaluza, said: “Electric vehicles and renewable energy are the perfect companions for a zero carbon world, but we have got to demonstrate that they can be easier and cheaper, as well as greener.

“Our intelligent software is designed to give EV users the energy they need, precisely when they need it, at the lowest environmental impact, and now at a guaranteed price that saves them money. In doing so, Kaluza shields customers from the complexities of the energy transition, while at the same time driving it forward.”