The prospect of being able to fast-charge your plug-in car in the United States (and the Washington D.C. area especially) just got a lot more realistic today, as Nissan made a big announcement about the future of the public charging infrastructure throughout the country today at the Washington Auto Show.
Just a few days ago we reported that over 2,000 public DC fast charging stations had now been installed around the world. However, the amount of fast-charging available in the United States, where arguably it is needed the most, was still lacking:
- Japan – 1,381
- Europe - 601
- U.S. – 154
Today, Nissan, with some help from NRG Energy’s eVgo Freedom Stations, says they are going to triple that US number by themselves over the next year and a half by adding 500 new stations to the infrastructure; with 40 of them going specifically into the greater Washington D.C. area.
Of note: currently, Washington D.C. has no fast chargers at all.
“We envision a quick-charging network that links communities and neighborhoods where people live, work, shop and socialize,” said Brendan Jones, Nissan’s director of electric vehicle marketing and sales strategy. “Having a robust charging infrastructure helps build range confidence, which boosts interest in and use of electric vehicles. By improving the charging infrastructure, Nissan furthers its commitment to bringing electric vehicles to markets throughout the United States.”
Nissan says these new fast-chargers will focus on three major areas:
- fast chargers though its dealer network
- workplace campus charging
- opportunities within local neighborhoods that help interconnect communities where drivers spend the bulk of their time
and do the majority of their driving
In Washington specifically, Nissan is teaming up with NRG’s eVgo network at 40 eVgo Freedom Station sites around the area. Each of these Freedom Station sites will have a Nissan fast charger present that can ‘refill’ a LEAF by 80% in about 30 minutes, as well as at least one Level 2 240V terminal.
“Through its subsidiary eVgo, NRG’s investment of approximately $150 million in EV charging infrastructure will provide EV drivers with access to hundreds of public fast-charging Freedom Station sites along with level 2 (240-volt) charging stations at homes, offices, multi-family communities, schools and hospitals across Texas, California and the greater Washington, D.C. metropolitan area.”
NRG currently also operates networks in Houston and the Dallas/Fort Worth area, and will shortly bring networks to San Francisco, Los Angeles, San Diego and San Joaquin Valley areas featuring Nissan’s fast chargers.
Nissan is also working with 30 of their own dealerships in a case study to determine how to “best leverage” dealer participation within the fast-charging infrastructure to provide public access, in a move similar to the fast charging network the company currently employs in Japan. Nissan tells InsideEVs that these dealer-based stations will all be based on the west coast.
And yes, Nissan also let us know that the 500 new fast charging stations all use the existing CHAdeMO standard.
It looks like SAE and the new Combo plug system (that currently is still waiting on its first public fast charging station) is in for a much tougher battle in the US than they originally expected.
You can read Nissan’s official release on the program here.