Last week Ecotricity announced that its public charging points for electric cars would henceforth cost £5 for a 20-minute charge. Yesterday, following customer feedback, it announced that it would instead charge £6 for a 30-minute charge.

I’m not sure what customer feedback they were reading, because everything I’ve seen in the electric car forums (I lease a Renault Zoe) has been outright anger that the charge still appears to have made electricity more expensive than diesel overnight. Charging always seemed inevitable - you can’t expect free electricity forever - but I’d argue Ecotricity appears to have misjudged its cost structure.

I read a story this morning from a Nissan Leaf owner who charged his battery from 50% for the requisite 30 minutes. The ambient temperature was 21 degrees, which is a pretty decent temperature for charging, yet at the end of the 30-minute session his battery was at 97% charged - the equivalent of around 49 miles of range. That pretty much tallies with my charging experiences, too. As the Leaf owner ruefully pointed out, his diesel car does a comfortable 55 miles on a gallon of diesel, which costs slightly less than the electricity.