Six car-makers team to build European 'leccy car charge bar network

BMW, Daimler, Ford, Volkswagen, Audi and Porsche plot 400 charging stations

A Combined Charging System plug
A Combined Charging System charging thingamy

Six auto-makers have signed a memorandum of understanding that will see them build a network of electric car charging stations across Europe.

BMW, Daimler, Ford, Volkswagen, Audi and Porsche have given themselves an initial target of 400 facilities, but say by 2020 “customers should have access to thousands of high-powered charging points.”

The use of “high-powered” is no accident: the six plan facilities offering connections at up to 350 kW, making it “significantly faster than the most powerful charging system deployed today.”

Speed is important for re-charing battery-powered cars, especially on longer trips, because it's a pain in the posterior to have to break for an hour or more while your car juices up. Extensive networks of charging stations, plus rapid re-fuelling, are seen as essential if electric cars are to be useful beyond cities.

The Combined Charging System (CCS) standard has been chosen as the consortium's connection technology, as all have adopted it. Tesla, by contrast, uses its own charging technology.

The as-yet-nameless consortium hasn't indicated where it place its charging stations but has said it will target “highways and major thoroughfares” and “long-distance travel routes in Europe.” ®

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