ironman

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https://www.reuters.com/business/au...makers-launch-ev-charging-network-2023-07-26/

In challenge to Tesla, major automakers launch EV charging network

July 26 (Reuters) - A group of major automakers on Wednesday said they were forming a new company to provide electric vehicle charging in the United States in a challenge to Tesla and a bid to take advantage of Biden administration subsidies.

The group includes General Motors (GM.N), Stellantis (STLAM.MI), Hyundai Motor (005380.KS) and its Kia affiliate, Honda (7267.T), BMW (BMWG.DE) and Mercedes Benz (MBGn.DE) , brands representing about half of U.S. vehicle sales but a small share of the EV market dominated by Tesla.

The unusual coalition of competitors said the new joint-venture company would aim to become the leading provider of fast charging in North America with a target of rolling out 30,000 chargers, starting along major highways and in cities.

The automakers did not specify how much they would invest individually or collectively, but said they would be open to additional investment or participation from other companies, including outside the auto industry. A name for the venture was not announced.

Tesla (TSLA.O), which accounted for more than 60% of U.S. EV sales last year, has the largest current network of fast-chargers with almost 18,000 Superchargers in the United States.

Tesla said earlier this year it would open part of that charging network to EVs from rival brands in order to be eligible for a share of funding from the $7.5 billion in federal subsidies on offer to expand the use of EVs.

Tesla’s lead in building out a network of chargers has given it sway in setting the standard for how future EVs will connect and power up, something smaller charging companies and other EV makers have viewed with concern.

GM, Mercedes and others have signed on to adopt Tesla-developing charging technology from 2025 to get access to a larger share of its Superchargers.

The other automakers – Stellantis, Hyundai, Honda and BMW – have not committed to the Tesla technology known as the North American Charging Standard (NACS) and have product plans that rely on a rival known as the Combined Charging System (CCS).

The new charging company will support both CCS and the Tesla standard.

“A strong charging network should be available for all – under the same conditions – and be built together with a win-win spirit,” Stellantis CEO Carlos Tavares said in a statement.

In a statement, chief executives of the seven auto brands said a charging network built out like gas stations with restrooms, food service and retail operations would support a faster rollout of EVs, which they said they expected would top 50% of U.S. sales by 2030.

The new company would compete against established EV charging companies, including Volkswagen's (VOWG_p.DE) Electrify America, ChargePoint (CHPT.N) and EVGo (EVGO.O), which are also looking to accelerate the rollout of chargers with federal funding.

The Biden administration has set a target of hitting 500,000 chargers by 2030, an almost four-fold increase.
 
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ironman

ironman

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Here's Stellantis' press release announcement:

Seven Automakers Unite to Create a Leading High-Powered Charging Network Across North America
  • Seven major global automakers – BMW Group, General Motors, Honda, Hyundai, Kia, Mercedes- Benz Group, Stellantis NV – will create an unprecedented new charging network joint venture that will significantly expand access to high-powered charging in North America
  • Targeting to install at least 30,000 high-powered charge points in urban and highway locations to ensure customers can charge whenever and wherever they need
  • With a focus on delivering an elevated customer experience, the network will provide reliability, high-powered charging capability, digital integration, appealing locations, various amenities while charging, and use renewable energy
  • Charging stations will be accessible to all EV customers, offering both Combined Charging System (CCS) and North American Charging Standard (NACS) connectors
  • First stations are scheduled to open in the summer of 2024

Woodcliff Lake, NJ - July 26, 2023 . . . Seven of the world’s leading automakers – BMW Group, General Motors, Honda, Hyundai, Kia, Mercedes-Benz Group, Stellantis NV – are creating a joint venture to accelerate the transition to electric vehicles in North America, by making EV charging more convenient, accessible and reliable.

The joint venture will include the development of a new, high-powered charging network with at least 30,000 chargers to make zero-emission driving even more attractive for millions of customers.

With the generational investments in public charging being implemented on the Federal and State level, the joint venture will leverage public and private funds to accelerate the installation of high-powered charging for customers. The new charging stations will be accessible to all battery-powered electric vehicles from any automaker using Combined Charging System (CCS) or North American Charging Standard (NACS) and are expected to meet or exceed the spirit and requirements of the U.S. National Electric Vehicle Infrastructure (NEVI) program.

The joint venture aims to become the leading network of reliable high-powered charging stations in North America.

The joint venture is expected to be established this year, subject to customary closing conditions and regulatory approvals.

The first stations are expected to open in the United States in the summer of 2024 and in Canada at a later stage. Each site will be equipped with multiple high-powered DC chargers, making long-distance journeys easier for customers. In line with the sustainability strategies of all seven automakers, the joint venture intends to power the charging network solely by renewable energy.

Elevated Customer Experience

The new high-powered charging network will elevate the entire EV experience and drive EV adoption.

The network will provide a seamless, vehicle integrated, best-in-class charging experience, based on renewable energy and supported by the quality, reliability, and resources of world-leading automakers.

Focused on customer comfort and charging ease, the stations will be in convenient locations offering canopies wherever possible and amenities such as restrooms, food service and retail operations either nearby or within the same complex. A select number of flagship stations will be equipped with additional amenities, delivering a premier experience designed to showcase the future of charging.

Initial plans call for the deployment of charging stations in metropolitan areas and along major highways, including connecting corridors and vacation routes, aiming to offer a charging station wherever people may choose to live, work and travel.

The functions and services of the network will allow for seamless integration with participating automakers’ in-vehicle and in-app experiences, including reservations, intelligent route planning and navigation, payment applications, transparent energy management and more. In addition, the network will leverage Plug & Charge technology to further enhance the customer experience.


An Open Network to Drive Electric Vehicle Growth

As more electric vehicles are introduced and the rate of consumer adoption increases, the demand for fast and reliable public charging also grows in parallel.

According to the U.S. Department of Energy, as of July 2023, there are 32,000 publicly available DC fast chargers in the United States for use by 2.3 million electric vehicles, a ratio of 72 vehicles per charger. The NREL (National Renewable Energy Laboratory) estimates that 182,000 DC fast chargers will be needed to support 30-42 million plug-in vehicles expected on the road by 2030.

With U.S. electric vehicle sales expected to exceed 50% of total U.S. sales by 2030, the expansion of reliable charging infrastructure will become even more critical to widespread electric vehicle adoption.

The creation of a best-in-class charging network will ensure that the EV infrastructure will support current and projected EV sales and will foster the adoption of electric vehicles.


Comments from JV Founding Partners

BMW Group CEO Oliver Zipse:
“North America is one of the world’s most important car markets – with the potential to be a leader in electromobility. Accessibility to high-speed charging is one of the key enablers to accelerate this transition. Therefore, seven automakers are forming this joint venture with the goal of creating a positive charging experience for EV consumers. The BMW Group is proud to be among the founders.”

GM CEO Mary Barra: “GM’s commitment to an all-electric future is focused not only on delivering EVs our customers love, but investing in charging and working across the industry to make it more accessible. The better experience people have, the faster EV adoption will grow.”

Honda CEO Toshihiro Mibe: “The creation of EV charging services is an opportunity for automakers to produce excellent user experiences by providing complete, convenient and sustainable solutions for our customers. Toward that objective, this joint venture will be a critical step in accelerating EV adoption across the U.S. and Canada and supporting our efforts to achieve carbon neutrality.”

Hyundai CEO Jaehoon Chang: “Hyundai’s investment in this project aligns with our ‘Progress for Humanity’ vision in making sustainable transportation more accessible. Hyundai’s expertise in electrification will help redefine the charging landscape and we look forward to working with our other shareholders as we create this expansive high-powered charging network.”

Kia CEO Ho Sung Song: “Kia's engagement and investment in this high-powered charging joint venture is set to increase charging access and convenience to current and future drivers and therefore accelerate the transition to EVs across North America. Kia is proud to be an important part of this joint venture with other reputable automakers as we embark on a journey towards seamless charging experiences for our customers and further strengthening Kia’s brand identity in the EV market.”

Mercedes-Benz Group CEO Ola Källenius: “The fight against climate change is the greatest challenge of our time. What we need now is speed – across political, social and corporate boundaries. To accelerate the shift to electric vehicles, we’re in favor of anything that makes life easier for our customers. Charging is an inseparable part of the EV-experience, and this network will be another step to make it as convenient as possible.”

Stellantis CEO Carlos Tavares: “We intend to exceed customer expectations by creating more opportunities for a seamless charging experience given the significant growth expected in the market. We believe that a charging network at scale is vital to protecting freedom of mobility for all, especially as we work to achieve our ambitious carbon neutrality plan. A strong charging network should be available for all - under the same conditions - and be built together with a win-win spirit. I want to thank each colleague involved, as it is a milestone example of our collective intelligence to listen and serve our
customers.”
 

DougalsMD

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I still want to see a Tesla NACS agreement come from Stellantis. It’s obviously good to have more charging options, but being on one standard port across all North American EVs is critical as well.
 

smlobx

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If this new collaboration doesn’t use the NACS it will die a painful death. This deal should have happened 5 years ago but Tesla’s NACS is so far ahead that they have effectively shut the door on the competition..

Also,, did you notice that Ford and the VW group are not in?
 
 
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