Charging an electric vehicle in Dundee will become 66% more expensive for some city visitors and businesses from the start of February.
Council bosses are increasing the charge from 15p per kWh to 25p per kWh for the city’s rapid chargers. That is in addition to the 38p connection charge.
The rate for slower chargers will rise to 20p per kWh – an uplift of around a third.
The changes make Dundee the most expensive part of Tayside and Fife, per kWh, for those visitors and business users who opt to use the city’s rapid charging facilities.
Graeme Stephen is chairman of the Dundee Taxi Association. He warned the increase could undermine the case for electric taxis in the city.
He said: “Our vehicles are expensive, but you can run them a little bit cheaper. If you keep putting the price up and up then they are not going to be viable.”
Dundee currently enjoys a largely positive reputation among electric vehicle (EV) drivers.
With 253 charging points, EV drivers have access to one of the highest number of chargers, per head of population, of all Scottish local authority areas.
What are Dundee’s new electric car charging rates?
Dundee transport chiefs have introduced two new tariffs: 20 per kWh for “fast chargers” and 25p per kWh for the fastest “rapid” machines.
City residents can take advantage of a discounted rate of 15p per kWh to access the slower chargers. That discounted rate begins in April this year.
Dundee transport chiefs have also targeted EV drivers who block in demand charging stations.
These drivers will now pay a £10 overstay penalty charge if charge time exceeds 70 minutes on a rapid charger, or 190 minutes on a fast charger.
A Dundee City Council spokesman said the local authority had made the move in response to rising energy costs.
He said: “Dundee is recognised world-wide as a leading city in the introduction and support of electric vehicles.”
He said they were introducing the two rates to manage availability and accommodate the higher cost of providing rapid chargers.
“Despite the increases it still costs less to charge an EV in Dundee than the average Scottish local authority cost.”
How does Dundee compare to neighbouring councils?
Charging costs currently vary across Tayside and Fife.
Angus Council scrapped free charging in October last year and introduced a 23p per kWh charge.
In Fife, the rate is 15p/kWh but with £1.60 connection charge per session.
EV charging remains free in Perth and Kinross at the moment. Although motorists must pay the usual parking fee.
Taxi driver Graeme Stephen said he had been expecting an increase but was surprised by the amount.
He said taxi drivers only used the faster, rapid chargers while on shift.
“It’s steep. They say the price of fuel is rising, but it’s not going up 66%.”
Retired lawyer and Forfar EV driver Mike Devine said the Dundee electric car charging rate was so low previously that is was “inevitable” that it would have to rise.
“Dundee have been bearing the cost of this for quite a long time.”
He said he welcomed moves to ensure local residents could take advantage of a reduced rate.
“My bugbear is still that there is a two tier system for charging with those who are able to charge at home paying as little as 5p per kWh.
“There is increasing recognition that is not a good thing. But no one seems able to do anything about it.”
From April 1, car parking rates for EVs in all Dundee car parks will revert to the normal rate.
The charging bay overstay fee will not apply in Dundee’s multi-storey car parks as transport chiefs believe there is enough capacity to accommodate longer visits.