Joint ‘ultra-fast’ electric car charging network unveiled by BMW, Mercedes, Ford and Volkswagen
Last year, 5 major automakers, BMW, Daimler, Ford and the Volkswagen Group with Audi and Porsche, announced that they joined forces to deploy 400 ultra-fast (350 kW) charging stations for electric vehicles in Europe.
Today, they unveiled that network, which is now called IONITY, and they elaborated on their plans.
They changed their “ultra-fast” name for the stations, which was to one-up “fast-charging” since their stations are capable of a 350 kW charge rate, while most ‘fast-charging’ stations, aside from Tesla’s, are capable of only 50 kW.
IONITY’s stations are now called High-Power Charging (HPC).
Their plan is still to have 400 stations across Europe by 2020, but today they confirmed that they will already have 20 stations by the end of this year.
They also announced new partners for the locations of those stations:
“A total of 20 stations will be opened to the public this year, located on major roads in Germany, Norway and Austria, at intervals of 120 km, through partnerships with “Tank & Rast”, “Circle K” and “OMV”. Through 2018, the network will expand to more than 100 stations, each one enabling multiple customers, driving different manufacturer cars, to charge their vehicles simultaneously.”
The group says that they are using the Combined Charging System (CCS) standard and that the whole network, despite being equally owned by BMW, Daimler, Ford and the Volkswagen Group with Audi and Porsche, is “brand agnostic”.
They say that other automakers can join in.