New smart load management (SLM) approach for the coordination of multiple plug-in electric vehicle (PEV) chargers in distribution feeders is proposed. PEVs are growing in popularity as a low emission and efficient mode of transport against petroleum-based vehicles. PEV chargers represent sizeable and unpredictable loads, which can detrimentally impact the performance of distribution grids. Utilities are concerned about the potential overloads, stresses, voltage deviations and power losses that may occur in distribution systems from domestic PEV charging activity as well as from newly emerging charging stations. Therefore this study proposes a new SLM control strategy for coordinating PEV charging based on peak demand shaving, improving voltage profile and minimising power losses. Furthermore, the developed SLM approach takes into consideration the PEV owner preferred charging time zones based on a priority selection scheme. The impact of PEV charging stations and typical daily residential loading patterns are also considered. Simulation results are presented to demonstrate the significant performance improvement offered by SLM for a 1200 node test system topology consisting of several low-voltage residential networks populated with PEVs.