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BMW GROUP, DAIMLER AG, FORD MOTOR COMPANY AND VOLKSWAGEN GROUP WITH AUDI AND PORSCHE PLAN A JOINT VENTURE FOR ULTRA-FAST, HIGH-POWER CHARGING ALONG MAJOR HIGHWAYS IN EUROPE
by Staff Report


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Joint venture to deploy a high-powered DC charging network for battery electric vehicles covering long-distance travel routes in Europe. Power levels up to 350 kilowatt significantly reduce charging time compared to today’s systems. Buildup of about 400 ultra-fast charging sites planned in Europe. Network is based on Combined Charging System standard, which uses a connector that is fully compatible with most current and next-generation battery electric vehicles. Unprecedented collaboration of the automakers to form a brand-independent network for charging infrastructure.

BMW Group, Daimler AG, Ford Motor Company and Volkswagen Group with Audi and Porsche have signed a memorandum of understanding to create the highest-powered charging network in Europe. The goal is the quick buildup of a sizable number of stations to enable long-range travel for battery electric vehicle drivers. This is an important step toward facilitating mass-market battery electric vehicle adoption.

The projected ultra-fast charging network with power levels up to 350 kilowatt will be significantly faster than the most powerful charging system deployed today. The buildup is planned to start in 2017. An initial target of about 400 sites in Europe is planned. By 2020, consumers should have access to thousands of high-powered charging points. The goal is to enable long-distance travel through open-network charging stations along highways and major thoroughfares, which has not been feasible for most battery electric vehicle drivers to date. The experience is expected to evolve to be as convenient as refueling at conventional gas stations.

The network will be based on Combined Charging System standard technology. The planned infrastructure expands the existing technical standard for AC and DC charging of electric vehicles to the next level of capacity for DC fast charging with up to 350 kilowatt. Vehicles engineered to accept the full power of the charge stations can recharge brand-independently in a fraction of the time of today’s battery electric vehicles. The network is intended to serve all Combined Charging System-equipped vehicles to facilitate battery electric vehicle adoption in Europe.

Ford Motor Company

“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 consumers across Europe to own electrified vehicles.”
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