Electric vehicles such as Teslas wont need to fill up at the traditional petrol station pump

Electric vehicles such as Teslas won't need to fill up at the traditional petrol station pump

A new report has warned that electric cars could hurt US beverage sales because drivers will no longer need to stop at petrol stations, a key sales hub.

The threat is highest for energy drinks, the Morgan Stanley report said, as almost two-thirds of the category's US sales are made in forecourt stores. Though the report said any disruption from the adoption of electric cars was some time away, the vehicles could conceivable account for 94% of car sales by 2040, putting pressure on all petrol station retail.

The report also said US beer sales could take a hit from a switch to electric cars but noted that volumes would likely move to other channels.

"Increased electric vehicle (EV) penetration has the potential to disrupt the way gas stations operate," the report said. "While EV penetration rates are low today, technological advancement and changes in consumer behaviour can occur sooner and faster than anticipated."

While noting that gas stations could mitigate the change by swapping petrol pumps for charger stations, the report said many EV drivers would recharge their cars at home.

Electric vehicles are already poised to influence the US beverage industry in a more positive manner. In December, Anheuser-Busch InBev ordered 40 of the recently-unveiled electric Tesla trucks for its distribution fleet. A week later, PepsiCo ordered 100.

Sales Channels, Marketing and Sustainability - just-drinks' Confidence Survey 2018

Expert analysis

Energy Drinks in the US

Energy Drinks in the US

In 2016, regular energy drinks, which have historically performed strongly, posted a slowdown in growth, with this trend continuing into 2017. However, reduced sugar energy drinks have seen increasing...read more