Siemens Exits the Charging Station Business Due to Weak Demand

4 years ago by Mark Kane 9

Volvo C30 Electric connected to Siemens CP500A charging point

Volvo C30 Electric connected to Siemens CP500A charging point

Siemens CP700A charging point

Siemens CP700A charging point

According to a Wall Street Journal article, Siemens appears to have exited the charging station business due to low demand for such equipment.

“Industrial conglomerate Siemens AG (SI) said Tuesday it will exit its electric car charging points business, as demand and market development turned out weaker than expected.”

Siemens use to offer both AC charging points and DC fast chargers, but this latest decision means that Siemens will be left trying to find other employment opportunities for staff presently in its charger segment.

Siemens will apparently stick with developing and producing motors for electric vehicles and wireless charging will still be an area Siemens intends to focus on.

There’s no word yet on what will become of Siemens eHighway project.

Source: The Wall Street Journal

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9 responses to "Siemens Exits the Charging Station Business Due to Weak Demand"

  1. Timing is everything. Interesting conclusion about a market that is growing at over 100% per year.

    Unless government support for zero emissions technology is withdrawn, this is a market just about to hit the J curve.

    Even if that we’re to happen, increasing awareness about asthma, COPD and stroke will continue to swing public opinion.

    and if those influences aren’t enough, continuing climate change will create an inexorable shift in public opinion and more strident demand for tighter emissions regs.

    This market will boom, but Siemens will have lost the moment.

  2. pjwood says:

    A German charger maker pulls out, for lack of demand, and TUD SUV, right beneath the story, is set and ready to tell you all about those battery fires. The ones that will some day be “engineered out”.

    Rascally Germans!

  3. James says:

    I think building charging infrastructure is not viable as a business, at least if your are attempting to charge money. It’s not like gas stations, which every single ICE car rely on. Only farmers keep gas tanks on their property, but the vast majority of EV and PHEV drivers have their own chargers. There is zero incentive to use public charging as battery sizes increase.

    I started with a Nissan Leaf, and I had to plan about half my trips around public charging. Aggravating, and cut into the cost savings of driving an EV. We switched to a RAV4 EV and virtually eliminated our use of public charging. With a 60kW or 85kW battery I would never pay for charging again. Tesla put the nail in the coffin of public chargers with their free Superchargers.

    So while public chargers are necessary for people with a sub-80 mile range, that won’t be true for long, and then Ecotality will be joined by other public charging interests.

    1. David Murray says:

      Commercial charging stations will still serve a vital function for some people. People who live in Apartments will likely depend on public charging, whether that charger is installed at their complex or whether they have to use a quick-charger down the street. Even though I drive a Volt and can technically go as far as I want, I’m willing to pay money to charge up if it means I avoid running the gas engine. in fact, I’ll pay twice what gasoline costs if the station is at a convenient location.

    2. Spec says:

      Yeah, I’m sure you’ll save a lot of money on public charging by buying that $85,000 Tesla.

  4. I agree, James, that as range increases, the need to charge away from the place you sleep diminishes. But savvy businesses like Kohls see charging as a way to change the pattern of traffic toward their stores. I’m a fan of that.

    Being able to top up for an hour while I’m out and about increases my daily range and the utility of my car. Big batteries are expensive and will be for the next several years at least.

    Yes, the Tesla Model S has a big battery. But at an equally large cost. And that’s a lot of weight to drag around on days I don’t need 265 mile range, which is the vast majority of them.

    Public charge infrastructure keeps battery weight and cost down and gives the skeptical public a degree of assurance that they won’t get stranded far from home.

    By far, the most frequent question I get from curious, interested strangers is about charging infrastructure.

    I do agree that the sweet spot seems to be 150 miles.

    A lot of people in apartment buildings, rented houses and shared spaces would
    make the case that public charging infrastructure is vital to their being able to drive electric.

  5. Bill Howland says:

    Siemens was going to offer a 70 amp j1772 version of their 30 amp evse this fall. Too bad they’re giving up, since they were competitively priced.

  6. Spec says:

    So before the first German EV ships, the German charger maker calls it quits.

    1. George B says:

      Not so fast! There is still Bosch. Also, BMW has reportedly invested a significant amount into ChargePoint and appear to be partnering with the French electric infrastructure firm Schneider in some markets.