Driving towards greener roads with electric cars

Australia has the highest rate of solar uptake globally. Why then, when it comes to electric vehicles, are we lagging?

In the early 2000s, an energy revolution sparked to life with thousands of Australians installing solar panels. Will the same happen for electric cars?

In Australia, there is certainly no lack of interest when it comes to greener energy options. As of 31 January 2022, we have the highest uptake of solar globally, with 30%, or over three million, Aussie homes with solar panels installed. So why are we lagging when it comes to making the switch to electric vehicles (EVs)?

In 2021, just 1.6% of cars sold in Australia were electric. For comparison, in the same year, electric vehicles made up 65% of Norway’s car sales, which is leading the world in EV adoption. 

Given our solar uptake, there’s an opportunity for EVs to be integrated into the future Aussie smart home. The question is, how do we make it happen?

What's pumping the brakes on EV uptake? 


Electric cars boast a range of benefits for Aussies. When coupled with the decarbonisation of the electricity grid, EVs can help reduce emissions in the transport sector and support Australia’s economy-wide net zero targets in the Paris Agreement – all while replacing oil imports with Australian sunshine. However, there are still a few barriers holding us up. 

Affordability and choice


For the average consumer, the barriers to purchasing an EV continue to be about affordability and choice. EVs are still unaffordable for many Aussies, being more expensive than EVs in the rest of the world.

However, more models have become available with currently more than and the price range is starting to look closer to petrol cars with EVs from $35,000. Because Australia is a right-hand driving nation with low demand, we’ve been at the back of the international queue for newer cheaper options.

Not all hope is lost though…

As more people start buying EVs, encouraged by things like government subsidies, we’ll be offered more choices by manufacturers.

This is why AGL has advocated for policy that focuses on this issue.

AGL also has an electric vehicle subscription service available in Sydney, Melbourne, and Brisbane. This gives drivers like you the chance to experience life behind the wheel of an EV without the commitment of owning one. It’s a great way to try before you buy.  AGL also launched an EV Energy plan which won a Canstar Blue Innovation Award in 2020, to help support your electric mobility. Additionally, commercial and home charging solutions are available.

Range anxiety

Many drivers are still concerned about the lack of charging stations around Australia. It can be hard enough to figure out where you’re going and staying – no one wants to be stranded with a dead battery.

We still need significant investment to get charging stations developed so EV owners can travel without “range anxiety” – the fear of your EV running out of juice (i.e. battery) and nowhere to charge it. As we increase the number of charging stations and their funding,

Whilst already a priority, building this network requires a coordinated, extensive approach that puts drivers first. AGL doesn’t want drivers to need five different apps to manage multiple charging networks.

In the meantime, the distance an EV can travel before requiring a recharge is increasing, with vehicles averaging 332km and many exceeding 400km – enough for daily commuting given that the average Australian commuter drives around 40km each day. If you’re not ready to commit to owning an EV, AGL’s EV subscription allows you to select a vehicle with a range capacity that best meets your driving needs.

Why national policy is key

In the early days of solar power, it was more expensive. But the Australian Government policy helped make it more affordable. If we want to see a similar uptake in EVs, our policies have to reflect this. 

That’s why AGL is advocating for a national EV roadmap to establish targets and support initiatives, including the development of infrastructure (such as charging stations) for customers like you. 

What’s on the horizon?

AGL is proud of its initiatives that are already playing a role in the future of electric vehicles. Through these and future projects, AGL hopes to continue fulfilling its commitments as an Australian signatory to the EV100, promising to make our fleets across corporate and generation sites electric by 2030. It’s time to drive towards a decarbonised transport sector. 

Interested in electric cars?

Learn more about AG's Electric Vehicle plan.

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