Publication Detail

Advanced Plug-in Electric Vehicle Travel and Charging Behavior Interim Report


Research Report

Sustainable Transportation Energy Pathways (STEPS), Plug-In Hybrid & Electric Vehicle Research Center

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Suggested Citation:
Nicholas, Michael A., Gil Tal, Thomas S. Turrentine (2016) Advanced Plug-in Electric Vehicle Travel and Charging Behavior Interim Report. Institute of Transportation Studies, University of California, Davis, Research Report UCD-ITS-RR-16-10

The Advanced Plug-in Electric Vehicle Travel and Charging Behavior project provides a platform to monitor how new plug in electric vehicles (PEVs) are being used on a day-to-day and month-to-month basis within the household travel context by placing data loggers in participant households for a period of one year. This provides two advantages over simply studying the PEV for a long period or studying the household for a short period. First, only studying the PEV does not give a clear indication of what role the PEV is playing in the household and what travel needs are not covered by the PEV. Second, the shorter-term studies do not capture those infrequent events such as long trips which may have a bearing on the purchase or lease of the vehicle. This project represents the first step in understanding these important dynamics and potential barriers that need to be addressed in the transition to cleaner vehicles.

The project consists of a large survey of PEV owners/lessees, followed by intensive study of a subset of those respondents. Data monitors that collect GPS, state of charge, speed, revolutions per minute (RPM), charging events, and numerous other parameters on a nearly second-by-second basis were placed in all the vehicles in the selected households for a period of one year. The project is about midway through data collection; the first phase of the study was completed in late summer 2016, which included logging all the vehicles within 72 PEV households for a full year. Data is currently being collected from an additional 132 households, and the final number will be 264. These respondents own or lease one of the following seven PEVs with their EPA electric ranges: Toyota Plug-in Prius (PHEV11), Ford C-Max Energi (PHEV20), Ford Fusion Energi (PHEV20), Chevrolet Volt (PHEV36,53), Nissan Leaf (BEV73,86,105), BMW i3 REx (PHEV73), and Telsa Model S (BEV200+). The BMW i3 REx and Tesla are not included in many of the results presented as they were not part of the first 72 households in the first phase of this study. The results presented in this interim report comprise a combination of survey responses and results from the year-long data collection.