[Oeva-list] fast charge economics

Alan Batie alan at batie.org
Mon Apr 18 19:19:26 PDT 2011

I was doing some calculations, thinking about the economics of the fast
charging stations (fall out from "wouldn't it be nice if someone would
put a fast charger in Newport!").  They obviously won't break even until
the ev numbers get a lot larger, but what would it take to make them
viable on their own?  These are obviously gross ballpark thoughts, but
they do seem to me to show that the infrastructure can support itself in
the long run...

I started with the older number of $50K, as I think the $18K number I've
heard more recently is probably just for the charging station itself,
and it's not going to be cheap to run 480V power in to a lot of places.
 On the other hand, when evs get common place, you're going to need more
than one, and that will be spread out, and I think the $50k is way too
high, so maybe $25K is a better figure?

I started working my way up from the cost per charge, but it's simpler
to say "we want it to break even in 5 or 10 years".  To keep lines
short, let's figure an average of 6 charges per day, or 90kwh/day at a
commercial rate call it $0.10 or $9/day.  You've got 1825 days in 5
years or 3650 in 10.

So, you have a per/day revenue need:

      5yr  10yr  +pwr cost:  5yr   10yr  cost/per charge: 5yr  10yr
$25K  $14   $ 7              $23    $16                   $4    $3
$50K  $28   $14              $37    $23                   $6    $4

(with gross rounding and not counting other costs of operation)

At a conservative 3miles/kwh, that works out to 45 miles, which compares
nicely with a Prius 48mpg at $3.80/gal.

It would be interesting to know just what it really would cost to put in
a fast charge station at some random business, say the Newport Aquarium,
the Evergreen Aviation Museum, Chinook Winds and Spirit Mountain
casinos...  $25K seems like a small price for a tourist agency to come
up with too...

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