The Future of Gas Stations: Do Electric Vehicles Dismantle Local Pumps?

For gas stations to be successful in the future, they will have to learn from the past. These gas stations won’t be able to go back in time, but they will have to start calling themselves “service stations” again if they want to stay in business. Remember that there are 150,000 of these stations in the US right now.

The National Association of Convenience Stores says 120,000 so-called “C stores” also sell fuel, accounting for most petrol stations. While the gasoline takes you in, the C store ago the business work. But the whole business it’s starting to look a little like a house of cards when you take inventory of threats. Boston Consulting Group calculates that between 25% and 80% of gas stations may not be profitable by 2035.

Climbing in the Driver’s Seat

Sales of auto electrified will surpass that of purely combustion vehicles by 2030, according to BCG. Volvo will be a purely electric brand by 2030 and General Motors by 2035.

California and The state of Washington plan to end sales of new combustion engine cars by 2035 and 2030, respectively, and 12 state governors signed a letter urging President Biden to enact a tale burning ban nationwide. And while we think pure electric vehicles threaten gas stations, hybrids also erode gas consumption.

Permanent expansion of working from home should in meaningfully reduce miles driven (unless it does the opposite), and while some gas stations generate revenue from car maintenance and smog test, electric vehicles need little of the former and nobody of the last. Beyond the changes in the auto, the same are other pressures: Local bans on new or updated service stations and the expansion of food and meal delivery services that could connect people with those a lot more fuel-efficient all of us to travel in our auto.

But there are many ways forward for service stations, mostly centered on the idea of a refreshed basket of Services. BCG suggests some ways in which gas stations can be more in to load of their fate:

  • Add the refill. This is the obvious move, but not as simple as it sounds due to infrastructural needs and a big difference in lane time and throughput.
  • Start digital. Chipotle is a decade ahead of any gas station regarding being digital. Even something as simple as ordering things from the C store so they can be carried out to you at the pump could start repositioning petrol stations.
  • Refueling mobile. Amazon can deliver to the trunk of your car; Can gas stations deliver to the gas cap? There are technicians and regulatory obstacles, but if we learned something in 2020, the delivery would have an almost unlimited future.
  • Improve the experience. Boring, smelly gasoline supplies are a lukewarm attraction. Turn it over model hence the complex set of the services are the draw, of what are the liquid and electrical supplies just an important peripheral. Premium fast-casual restaurants, an Amazon locker and back location, a dark kitchen for food delivery, or all three are just some ideas for a true “gas station” which makes sense on the real property.

One option I’m not optimistic about is transforming gas stations into battery exchange stations for electric vehicles. The idea looks elegant, and the analog is more direct for a conventional fillup, but both Better Place boot and later Tesla unplugged on efforts to get the auto in for a new battery change in minutes. It requires more harmony and standardization of what is conceivable in the electric vehicle industry at this moment.

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