Electric vehicles are becoming more popular, but range anxiety remains one of the biggest barriers to adoption. Drivers worry they won’t reach their destination without running out of power.
A new partnership between major automakers is hoping to address this issue. Hyundai, General Motors, Mercedes, BMW, Honda, Kia, and Stellantis are joining forces to build a fast-charging network across the United States. The joint venture hopes to build charging stations with at least 30,000 plugs by 2030.
The network will consist of thousands of fast chargers that can get an electric vehicle up to 80% of its battery capacity in 20 minutes to an hour. This is much faster than traditional chargers, which can take hours to fully charge a battery.
The network will be located along major highways, transport corridors, and in cities, making it easy for drivers to find a charger when they need one. The goal is to have the network in place by 2025.
The current state of fast-charging infrastructure in the US and Canada is wanting. There are just under 8,700 direct-current fast-charging stations with nearly 36,000 charging plugs. That’s little, considering that the National Renewable Energy Laboratory estimates we’ll need 182,000 fast chargers by 2030.
Gamechanger for EV Adoption
The new charging network will speed up EV adoption in the US in several ways:
- Reduce range anxiety. One of the biggest barriers to EV adoption is the fear of running out of power on a long road trip. The new network will make it possible for EV drivers to travel long distances without having to worry about running out of power.
- Make EVs more convenient. It can be difficult to find fast chargers, especially in rural areas. The new network will make it easier for EV drivers to find chargers, making EVs more convenient to own and operate.
- Increase public awareness of EVs. The new network will help to raise awareness of EVs among the general public. This will likely lead to more people considering EVs for their next car purchase.
According to a study by the Pew Research Center, range anxiety is the top reason people are hesitant to buy an electric car. The study found that 60% of Americans are concerned about running out of power on a road trip.
The new charging network will help to address this concern and make EVs more appealing to a wider range of consumers.
In addition, the new charging network will be compatible with all major EV brands. This means that EV drivers can use the network regardless of their car type. This will help increase EV adoption across the board.
Tesla’s Charging Network
Tesla’s charging network is currently the most extensive fast-charging network in the US and Canada. It consists of over 1700 Supercharger stations and over 19,000 Supercharger plugs. The Superchargers are located along major highways and in popular destinations, making it easy for Tesla drivers to find a charger when they need one.
Tesla is constantly expanding its charging network in the US and Canada. In 2022, the company added over 1,000 new Supercharger stations and over 10,000 new Supercharger plugs. This expansion is driven by the growing demand for electric vehicles in the US and Canada.
Expanding the Supercharger network and opening it to other automakers will further benefit the EV market in the US and Canada.
Tesla’s charging network is not without its critics. Some argue that the network is too exclusive, as it has only been available to Tesla owners. Others argue that the network could be faster. However, despite these criticisms, Tesla’s charging network is still the gold standard for fast-charging networks in the US and Canada.
The fast-charging network is a major step forward for the electric vehicle industry. If the network is successful, it could accelerate the adoption of electric vehicles and reduce our reliance on gasoline.