June 22

The Definitive EV Dictionary

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With so many acronyms in the EV language, it’s no wonder that many people are left feeling confused. But, don’t worry, you'll soon be listing off acronyms in alphabetical order, as we’ve collected the worst offenders and deciphered their meaning. 

Let’s get plugged in…

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ABC

Always be charging - the practice of topping up your charge wherever you go.

(Submitted by Julian)

AC

Alternating Current - A current that changes the direction of its flow at regular intervals, such as electricity from the grid.

AVAS

Acoustic Vehicle Alerting System - Since 2019, manufacturers must fit EVs with an AVAS to prevent them from being too quiet. The sound mimics a typical engine noise to warn pedestrians and other road users that a vehicle is near.

Battery Degredation

The loss in battery capacity and performance due to chemical changes caused by repeat charging sessions and battery age. Most EV batteries are under warranty for 8 years - be sure to check how your EV battery is protected!

BEV

Battery Electric Vehicle - An electric vehicle that is 100% powered by a battery (charged from mains electricity). Examples include the entire Tesla range, Polestar 2, Nissan Leaf and the BMW iX3.

CCS

Combined Charging System - This is the UK's most popular DC rapid connector, with most new EVs in the UK being fitted with the CCS plug socket. Rapid charging points can be found at motorway service stations and come tethered, as DC chargers need to convert power before it reaches the vehicle.

CDR

Charging Details Record - The report or receipt produced at the end of every charging session. You can find your charging session history in the Electric Juice App.

CHAdeMO

Charge de Move - A rapid charging connector established in Japan. Although most UK electric vehicles will be fitted with CCS plug sockets, the Nissan Leaf (a common UK EV) is fitted with a CHAdeMO socket. Rapid charging points can be found at motorway service stations.

Clean Air Zone

Clean air zones are currently under development for UK cities to reduce air pollution (excluding London, which already has the ULEZ). These plans are being managed at regional levels, so it will be up to the relevant local council to decide on emissions standards and associated fees.

CPO

Charge Point Operator - The mobility provider managing the charging infrastructure (e.g. IONITY, Osprey, Shell NewMotion, Char.gy etc.)

DC

Direct Current - A current that flows in one direction only, such as an EV battery. As such, either your EV or the DC connector will convert AC power taken from the grid to DC.

EV

Electric Vehicle - Any vehicle that uses an electric motor - but is often used to describe BEVs.

EVHS

Electric Vehicle Homecharge Scheme - a UK government grant which can save you (up to) £350 on installation costs of home charge points. To qualify, you need to own or be leasing an eligible EV and either be a homeowner who lives in a flat, or a tenant in rented accommodation (flats and single-use properties.

EVSE

Electric Vehicle Supply Equipment - A fancy term for EV charging points or charging stations.

FCEV

Fuel Cell Electric Vehicle - A vehicle powered by a fuel cell (typically hydrogen). They do not produce emissions but are extremely expensive compared to EVs, and are a lot less common.

FUD

Fear, Uncertainty, Doubt - generally negative myths spread against EVs.

(Submitted by The PlugSeeker)

Grazing

Charging for short periods opportunistically, usually at 7-22kW charging locations.

(Submitted by The PlugSeeker)

GOM

Guess-O-Meter - Aptly named, this is the display that estimates the remaining mileage.

HEV

Hybrid Electric Vehicle - A mash-up of an EV and ICE vehicle. These vehicles have an internal combustion engine and an electric motor. They come in three main types: full, mild and plug-in hybrid.

ICE

Internal Combustion Engine - The standard engine used in a petrol or diesel vehicle. These engines depend on burning fossil fuels to create power.

ICEd

Or getting ICEd is the annoying scenario in which the owner of an ICE vehicle has blocked an EV charging point. Although frustrating, we suggest leaving them a note rather than blocking them in...

kW

Kilowatt is the unit of energy measured in an EV. 1 Kilowatt = 1000 watts. In other words, the more kW capacity in a battery, the more energy it can store.

kWh

Kilowatt-hour is the unit of energy for the number of kW you use over an hour. When charging your EV, the relevant CPO will bill you by how much electricity you use per kWh. So, the more kWh you use, the more you pay. This is why rapid charging costs more than slow charging.

Li-ion (or Lithium-ion)

Lithium-ion is the typical battery type used in an EV, containing several raw materials (inc. lithium, cobalt, graphite and nickel). They have a high energy-density ratio, meaning they can store large amounts of energy in a compact battery pack.

MHEV

Mild Hybrid Electric Vehicle - Uses a small electric motor to assist the internal combustion engine but can't run on electric power alone. An example is a Kia Rio Mild Hybrid.

PHEV

Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle - A mash-up of an ICE and EV, allowing the driver to choose between battery or combustion-powered driving. Although popular, a PHEV depends on the driver remembering to charge the battery to save CO2 emissions. Examples include Ford Kuga, Kia Niro, Honda Clarity, Toyota Prius.

Preconditioning

In an EV, heating and cooling can use up the battery charge. So if you like your car to resemble Furnace Creek or the depths of Siberia, precondition your vehicle to the optimal temperature while charging. This means that when you drive away, you won't be wasting battery charge.

Range Anxiety

The fear that your EV will run out of charge before you reach a charging point. This fear is largely unfounded in the EV community, with the AA citing that less than 4% of EV breakdowns are due to running out of charge.

REEV

Range-extended Electric Vehicle - Similar to a PHEV, but instead of automatically switching to ICE when the battery charge depletes, a REx (small combustion engine) powers the electric motor, thereby extending the range. Examples include the BMW i3 REX and the Vauxhall Ampera E-REV.

RE-Gen

The ability to put power back into the battery when slowing down or braking.

(Submitted by ChrisD)

REx

Range Extender - A small internal combustion engine used in REEVs to charge the battery and provide more range.

RPH

Range Per Hour - An estimate on how much range your vehicle will get from an hour's charge. RPH varies from EV to EV and depends on how efficient the vehicle is. Look at the vehicle specifications to see the estimated RPH.

Torque

Is a force that causes something to rotate (e.g. an electric motor) and the primary power behind the acceleration of a vehicle. EVs can reach full torque almost instantly, whereas ICE vehicles must rev (burn fuel) to increase torque when driving.

ULEZ

Ultra Low Emission Zone - Stretches from the North (A406) to South circular (A205). It operates 24 hours a day, 364 days of the year (excluding Christmas day). If your vehicle does not meet the ULEZ emission standards, then you'll need to pay a £12.50 daily charge or face a fine of £80 - £160. All pure EVs are exempt from the charge, as they do not produce emissions.

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