Car companies develop network of BEV charging points

Five multinational car companies have formed a Joint Venture for an ultra-fast, high voltage BEV (battery electric vehicle) charging network along major routes across Europe.

The five companies, BMW Group, Daimler AG, Ford Motor Company and Volkswagen Group with Audi & Porsche, plan to deploy high powered DC charging sites for BEVs on long distance travel routes across the EU.

Compared to currently available systems, the new power points that give up to 350kW of power will significantly reduce charging times.

The network is based on the Combined Charging System (CCS) standard that uses a connector fully compatible with most current and next generation BEVs.

The unprecedented collaboration of the car companies would form a brand – independent network for charging infrastructure. The car companies have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to create the high powered charging network. The goal of setting it up will be the quick build-up of a sizeable number of charging points in order to enable long range travel for BEV drivers. This is an important factor in driving sales of the vehicles.

The charging stations will be much faster than the ones deployed today. The build-up of the charging network is planned to begin in 2017 with an initial 400 sites across Europe but several thousand by 2020. The goal would be to enable long distance travel through open network charging stations along major thoroughfares of Europe, that has not been possible for BEV drivers to date. It is expected to eventually be as convenient as refuelling a petrol car is today.

“A reliable, ultra-fast charging infrastructure is important for mass consumer adoption and has the potential to transform the possibilities for electric driving,”  says Mark Fields, president and CEO, Ford Motor Company. “Ford is committed to developing vehicles and technologies that make people’s lives better, and this charging network will make it easier and more practical for customers across Europe to own electrified vehicles.”

This may enable delivery companies to go over to BEVs as well, considerably reducing their carbon emissions.
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