The Health of the EV Charging Market

Jason Lomberg, North American Editor, PSD



Jason Lomberg, North American Editor, PSD

­In late April, Elon Musk laid off his entire Supercharger team, sending shockwaves through the industry, so I thought it prudent to see where EV charging stands as a whole.

After all, no single factor could propagate EVs more than the availability and convenience of public charging stations. Recharging a battery might not be as quick as refilling a gas tank (at least not yet), but EV patrons at least need the option.

Not everyone wants to – or in the case of many city dwellers, is able to – charge at home, so they need the ability to charge on-the-go.

And Tesla’s Supercharger network comprises a full 60% of all DC fast charging ports in the U.S. While the mass layoffs won’t necessarily effect the existing network, it’ll massively shift the balance of power (no pun intended).

Tesla’s whopper comes at a particularly inopportune time, with EV sales and its charging infrastructure at all-time highs. According to Grand View Research, the U.S. EV charging infrastructure market was worth $3.15 billion in 2022 (with about 64,000 EV charging stations as of 2023), and they foresee it growing at a compound annual growth rate of 29.1% through 2030.

What’s the big deal with 2030?

Well, 2022’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law earmarked $7.5 billion towards building out the nation’s EV-charging infrastructure, with the goal of installing 500,000 public chargers by 2030.

But that may not be nearly sufficient.

McKinsey & Company estimates that, with half of all vehicles sold zero-emission vehicles (ZEVs) by 2030 (in line with federal targets), we’d need 1.2 million public EV chargers and 28 million private EV chargers by then, or 20 times more chargers than what we have now!

If we do hit the federal ZEV goal, that would cause the nation’s EV fleet to balloon up from 3 million today to more than 48 million EVs by 2030.

So if Tesla’s charging business plans to move at a more gradual pace, it’ll fall to rivals to step up – like ChargepPoint, which as of last year, had 31,000 locations and 56,000 total Level 2 and Level 3 ports, making it the single largest public EV charging network.

Or Electrify America, which had more than 900 stations in 47 U.S. states, and they plan to have a network total of 5,000 DC fast-chargers by the end of 2024.

Speaking of which, it’s worth noting that the fast charger segment leads the global market, with a 58% share. No surprise there, since the biggest discrepancy between EV charging and gas stations is speed.

So the Supercharger layoffs will definitely rattle the industry, but with any luck, it won’t slow it down too much.