Fastned: Eight 150 kW Chargers To Bring Costs Down. Battle With Tesla For Model 3 Business Coming?

JUL 25 2016 BY MARK KANE 59

Fastned: Fast charging, station capacity and economies of scale

Fastned: Fast charging, station capacity and economies of scale

Fastned Station

Fastned Station

Roland van der Put, the CTO of Fastned recently outlined his company’s station capacity and the economies of scale for fast charging stations of the future.

According to the article, Fastned’s current model of two 50 kW multi-standard chargers could be (in the near-future) scaled up to four 150 kW chargers (or station 2.0), and then someday to eight 150 kW chargers, provided of course the number of electric cars continue to grow to accommodate that level of demand.

With eight 150 kW chargers, the overall charging capacity of station increases 12-times (in terms of kWh), while the actual costs of the station don’t increase that much due to the large amount of expenditures needed besides the hardware itself – which is rapidly decreasing.

This should directly translates to lower cost of charging.

“The kWh capacity of a station 2.0 is six times that of a current fast charging station. However, the one-off costs (CAPEX) such as permits, grid connection, equipment, construction, installation and project management of a station equipped with four 150 kW chargers are far below that of constructing 5 additional stations. Recurring costs (OPEX) such as technical maintenance and cleaning are only slightly higher for the 2.0 station. Capacity thus rises (much) faster than costs do. Therefore the cost per kWh can decrease.”

Well, that sounds reasonable to us, and becomes our hope for more affordable fast (er) charging along the road in the future.

Fastned expects to install its first 150 kW chargers in 2017.

Tesla Supercharging station could face future competition for Model 3 business if public stations turn to multi-unit 150 kW stations

Tesla Supercharging station could face future competition for Model 3 business if public stations turn to multi-unit 150 kW stations

To us, this type of huge infrastructure and higher charging speeds reminds of something else already on the market today – Tesla’s Supercharging stations.

Future Tesla Model 3 owners having to pay for Supercharging access (as opposed to “free with purchase” or included if you will, on the Model S and Model X) will be another input verifying the affordability of the higher-power large charging stations.

With some ~400,000 reservations made on that car alone, the pool of available public DCFC users could grow very, very rapidly in a year’s time.  If Tesla’s pricing is not inline or better than what network providers like Fastned are offering with its 150 kW solutions, the company could face some infrastructure competition for the first time…and competition is always a good thing.

Other insights:

  • maximizing the use of a grid connection decreases costs per kWh
  • medium voltage rings (10kV or 20kV) will handle power needs of the station
  • more chargers improve redundancy, reduces waiting time

Source: Fastned

Categories: Charging

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59 Comments on "Fastned: Eight 150 kW Chargers To Bring Costs Down. Battle With Tesla For Model 3 Business Coming?"

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It’s based on 70% power at 16 hours a day use. People using it continuously for 16 hours a day? Unless there are autonomous cars that can seek out chargers and wait to charge, that won’t happen.

More likely is 5 or 6 hours of use, probably even less. Humans aren’t going to put up with waiting and waiting and waiting each time they use DCFC. Unlike gas cars, even the king of fast charging (to 80%) SparkEV takes 20 minutes. They’ll switch to gas cars or FCEV.

Not if there are 4 or even better 8 chargers then you’d only have to wait for one of them to be free.

This is still unrealistic for cars with humans inside. You will have some peak hours or days with several times more cars coming to charge. So you either have long multi hour lines at peak times, or mostly empty station most of the time.

And peak load for 8 cars at 150 kW would be 1.2 MW. I don’t know electric rate structure in Netherlands, but in many (not all yet) countries or states 1.2 MW peak power would mean hefty fixed fees at tens of thousands of dollars per month.

Of course, not all chargers will run at their peak capacity continuously, so we calculate with 70% of that peak value. At the moment we request 630 kVA grid connections which should be fine for 6x 150 kW chargers. We will request 1.000 kVA grid connections when needed. Luckily the rate structure for this kind of grid connections is much better than in the US.

It’s 16 hours with 50% utilisation. That’s 8 hours of charging per day.

I agree that more overcapacity is required to handle peak hours smoothly. If the average use is so high, there will be long lines during peak hours and especially during national holidays.

Did you run a simulation of something? You speak as if you know exactly what will happen, and it makes you look anything but credible.

EX-ACT-LY… It’s called statistics… complex stuff. Something tells me there is someone at Fastned who already thought of all that…

I’m looking at 560 kWh per day for 50 kW scenario. That works out to 70% of 50 kW * 16 hours. That 50% comes to play, because they assume 2 stalls. But even at 8 hours, that’s unrealistic. There won’t be people waiting to charge for most of working day, especially not each time they have to do so.

I suppose there could be “reservation” system. But will people put up with that? Hey, did I just think of an app idea? Discount for reservation holders, ability to swap / trade reservations, buy and sell reservations, reservations as the new bitcoin! 😉

I believe Fastned has these things figured out already and know what they are talking about.

You mean kind of like Nissan’s “no charge to charge” was figured out with eVgo and resulting long waits? Assuming chargers will be used 8 hours a day is not realistic without people wanting to strangle others (or just give up on EV).

Again, I do believe they as the ones actually in this business have a good realistic view of what higher volume usage will be and how it will work. When you have 4 or more multiple stations like they do now at some locations and plan to do at more in the future, then figuring 8 hours a day per station spread over 4 stations works fine.

I don’t know where I read it that it will be 19 cents a kWh. I think it is too expensive.

19 Cent, thats veryp cheap for fast charging. I think it was 70 cent/kWh in the beginning.

I totally agree. It’s super cheap. But per kWh charging is a horrible idea. Charging isn’t like filling a tank. It is efficient when the SoC is below ~70-80% and then rapidly becomes very much less efficient. To use the resource efficiently you want people to always stop charging as soon as they have enough juice to get to their destination. Hence there should be disincentives to charging beyond that point. Let’s say I arrive to a station in my LEAF with 14% SoC. To get to the next charging stop or my destination I reckon I need to charge to 85%. I plug in and go to a nearby resto to have some pasta. After my pasta I see on my phone that the car is at 82%. If I pay and return to my car it’ll be perfect timing, but I feel like a Tiramisu and a double espresso first. What would it cost me to do so? If I by the kWh, the maximum extra cost no matter how long I stay connected is the cost of 15% of capacity. My LEAF has useable capacity of ~21 kWh, so that’s 3 kWh. At 19 cents each I… Read more »

you want people to always stop charging as soon as they have enough juice to get to their destination = the worse customer service imaginable. Nooo waay! If I feel i need more charge, I will take it! People will not accept being bullied away from the station.

No need to. Just make cost a function of charge rate and time. Then it’s the customer’s choice to stay or leave at any time.

Agree wholeheartedly with you on this TW. Public charging should be time based, not kWh based due to the hogging of the (in some cases) limited resource. That would encourage people to disconnect and move their car as soon as they have enough juice.
Right now with Nissan’s NCTC program in Atlanta I see Leaf’s connected to DC chargers long after they have exceeded their 30 minutes. They are getting no charge but still sitting there while the owner farts around somewhere. A time based fee structure would all but eliminate this as people would soon realize they must move their car or pay the price.

kWh based fees aren’t that bad when you have enough stalls. It is horrible with single combo stalls.

I like Teslas approach where they share power between stalls so those people who are 85-100% SoC aren’t in the way of more power hungry customers.

The per kWh system is fine, they just have to include a penalty tariff after 20, 25, or 30 minutes (I don’t mind which).
So normally you would just get charged for the kWh you get, however it will still punish misuse of the charger.

I dread per minute charging that gets very common in the Netherlands (Fastned is the only fastcharging company that stil uses per kwh tariffs) as it will make winter charging that much more expensive.
With the penalty tariff I can get less kWh in the time before the penalty, but they at least cost the same as the kWh distributed in summer.

Per Time charging is a bad idea for people with slower chargers. My Volt on L2 3.3 KW) would pay twice as much as a Leaf (6.6 KW) and 3 times as much as a Rav4 (10 KW). I think time charging should only be used after charging speed drops to a certain level.

Drivers want to be on their way as soon as possible and spent about 20 minutes at our stations. We believe pricing per kWh is fair since it creates an equal incentive for us to make charging as fast as possible (to earn more) rather than as slow as possible (and earn more).

Our stations are located directly along the highway as opposed to a parking lot location a few minutes of the highway. We do not have restaurant facilities for drivers since 20 minutes is just long enough for a coffee or quick snack. When we upgrade to 150/300 kW chargers we expect drivers to resume their journey even quicker.

With updated EV’s like the Nissan Leaf with 30 kWh battery and the BMW i3 with 33 kWh battery we see that they can charge at full speed until almost 90% SoC. So tapering will be much less of an issue.

Pricing per kWh is about the worst model you could use, but aside from that, are you *serious*? 19 cents is too expensive? Why?!? You do realize that the cost side is very different to your electricity at home, don’t you? Isn’t it natural that you pay more for the convenience of getting up to 150 kW than you’d pay for the same energy drawn at 3 kW at home? If so, how much more is fair? If fast charging can be made as convenient and cheaper than filling up gas then great. That will allow apartment dwellers (like me, tho I paid to have an electrical outlet installed, with a separate meter, in our garage) to get in on EVs earlier than otherwise. A more realistic way to get people without home charging access on board is to make employers offer charging opportunities at work. For everyone who can charge either at home or at work and who doesn’t drive a LOT long distance, the price of charging at the fast DC point is hardly going to matter. The experience in Norway is that near 98% of charging is done at home or work. So if you charge 400… Read more »

The pricing system really depends on the specific circumstances. If you are out in the middle of nowhere, the cost of the electricity may be a dominant factor and per KWH may make sense.

If you are in an urban area with high real estate costs, the cost of the parking spot and rent for hosting the charger may be the main cost such that a per hour charge may be better.

If you are restaurant or hotel hosting the charger, you may discount the charging rate in order to attract customers.

This is cool think about ChargePoint. They let people buy chargers and determine their own charging system. Some are free. Some are by hour. Some are by KWH. Some are free for a few hours and then $5/hour after that. Etc. The charging system really depends on the situation.

Terawatt is definetly right about the per minute billing being better than per kWh billing in a mature EV market. Here is a news blog about this from one of Norway’s leading DCFC providers:

Ha, not free for sure, but I pay an average of 20 Cent per kWh at home – After adding in Delivery, Taxes, Regulatory, etc.

Last Bill – for ~ 2 months: $157.07, 622.559 kWh Billed = $0.252297373 per kWh! So – over 25 cents per kWh!

I am on 3-Tier Billing: On-Peak, Mid-Peak, and off-Peak! The Most expensive (listed) Rates for the Electricity is $0.18 per kWh, and the Least expensive is $0.083 per kWh!

If they can keep the DC Fast Charging down to 20 Cents a kWh – that’s OK, but what if they did a 4 Tier System (3 Tier + Utilization Peaks!) where the 4th Tier was operation when all stalls were filled! Would they charge More then?

Why not have solar panels and a battery bank and run your home and car for free for ever? I do it here in Cairo Egypt!

Where can I find solar panels and batteries for free? Installation for free too, of course.

It’s like “free-forever” Tesla Superchargers… just buy a $100,000 car and its… FREE !!!

I’ll just keep posting this data point that I need to preface with: OREGON and WASHINGTON states have the lowest electrical power costs in the USA… even the world. The Efacec manufactured DC charger in Arlington, Oregon USA is in a very rural area, but an important crossroads for EV travel in the region. There absolutely needs to be a charger there. But, the electrical power has been turned off since August 2015 by Pacific Power and Light. In a nutshell, the electrical power for this site cost almost $1 per kWh with all fees rolled in, including maintenance of a significant debt of $10,000 to get new electrical service. That means the COST to power a Nissan LEAF could be $24.00, and up to $90.00 for a Tesla Model S/X. That doesn’t include the cost of the $30,000.00 charger, plus the fees to OpConnect for networking, plus any cost for the site, plus maintenance, plus insurance, etc. The peak usage at this site is 410kWh per month, with an average of 190kWh. Here are a list of “Schedule 23” fees: MONTHLY $ 23.90 – basic fee for 3 phase power $ 35.00 – Load Size Charge, $1.20 per kW… Read more »
People probably look at that schedule and think it is expensive when it is almost unbelievably cheap. If that is truly all the charges, then there is no billing charge, and the paultry $4/kw demand charge, with the first 15 kw exempt (something rarely done by utilities, certainly not mine; (nothing compared to Southern California Edison, as an example). Unless of course there is also a somewhat lower ‘single phase charge’ that would be an alternate – then that is the monthly billing charge. Car charging should have almost no reactive demand – measured in kvars. If the particular units here have them, then improved models in the future will not, after all, charging a car by sending dc to it is a pretty easy load. But no matter, the ultimate power factor even here should be fairly high, such that the $0.65 / kvar is minimal, since there are so few of them. The $1 / kwh is mainly because of lack of use – the energy usage is small but the demand charges are there every month. Anywhere else (southern california for instance) $4 or $5/kwh would be more reasonably expected. As far as the suppositions made for… Read more »

Average household price is 25 – 30 ct/kWh in germany. I dont know about the netherlands, but 19 ct/kWh is pretty low.

It is lower in NL, around .18 EUR/kWh for households by EU statistics.

If you go to fastned website, you will find that 0.19 EUR/kWh is just teaser rate. It adds 24 EUR/month fee later. Rate without monthly fee is 0.79/kWh. It doesn’t make much sense that they don’t add per-time fee, but they should know better.

Thanks for bringing that up zzzzzzzzzz.
I was hoping that would be brought out.

If you think of it as a convenience fee and not a price for just the electricity, then 19¢ per kWh would be surprisingly reasonable.

If you want cheap electricity, charge at home or at work. Fast-charging should only be for extended trips.

If you have to use a fast charger every day, then you’re using a car inadequate for your needs.

The change from ICE to EV should not be like some envision. Everyone is looking at charging an EV like refueling ICE vehicles. Charging an EV will usually be done at home which no ICE vehicle does. The charging stations are there for vehicles with smaller batteries. Yes apartments do not have chargers and yes that will change like hotels which some have chargers and growing. However most individuals with EVs with big batteries will have their own residence with at least a level 2 charger

Right. Anyone who buys a plug-in EV with no place to plug in at home or at work, has made a life-altering foolish choice.

Now of course, there will be people forced by circumstances to do just that; people who already own a PEV who are forced to move to an apartment with no EV charger; or a PEV owner living temporarily away from home.

And again, this is a short-term problem. As the EV revolution advances, parking places with Level 2 charging available will become more and more commonplace.

So correct me if I am wrong if I charge my p85 tesla so from empty to full is about 16 bucks

That’s about right, they have 50kW Chademo adapters for the Tesla’s at each station. Slower then a supercharger, faster then everything else.

Here you can see their price plan:

Golden Arches

Where is Ronald?

Ronald (McDonald) is in Ontario, Canada – That, and Tim Horton’s – are the new typical locations for the Provinces newly launched DC QC Program – with 200 sites going in by next March – 2017 –

Burger King merged with Tim Horton, not McDonalds.

No, it’s McDowell’s not McDonald’s. See they got the golden arches, we got the golden arcs. They got the Big Mac. We got the Big Mic.

To better understand the pricing, the average home user pays about 19-21 cents per kWh for the 1st 10MWh of energy. So a fast charge provider effectively charging you with the home rate is really cheap in the Netherlands.

The average public outlet is about 35 cents per kWh with a start tarif of 70 cents. The other option is charging per minute, which on my i-Miev with it’s smaller battery and 36kW means I get to pay 1,20 per kWh.

So it’s really cheap for the Netherlands. The base power is about 3-5 cents per kWh, the rest is taxes, about 16 cents of it.

There is legislation on the way which will allow public charging infrastructure to fall into the cheaper 10MWh-50MWh tarif, which saves about 6 cents per kWh in taxes.

The question then becomes, will these companies reduce their rates by 6 cents per kWh?

As I do regularly charge at Fastned and having some data available, I found out that it is difficult to determine the best price plan for me. This year, I charged 6,68kwh average per stop. I charged 35 times up to now, this year. That is about 5 times per month. So I found out that the Standard price plan is cheapest in my case. The Power plan is more expensive for me, because of the fixed fee -for which you have to compensate for by filling up more kwh’s at the FC. This means more waiting time at the “pump”… How to determine the break-even point? And what if you have a fixed fee plus price per kwh, and you don’t FC for a month? You would “lose” that money. You can change your plan per month, so you will have to plan in advance if you are going to charge a lot in the nearby future or not, and change your price plan accordingly in advance. F.e. in winter you use more kwh’s because of heating, so less range. I reckon I will do more FC in winter than in summer. I am thinking of creating an Excel… Read more »

Don’t do work when someone else already has done it

X is the cost in euro’s and Y is the amount kWh charged.

Of course I am an idiot and the axis are exactly the other way around (note the 100 euro unlimited plan as the horizontal line).

I’d pay better than gas prices for road 150kW charging on M3. At 20-30 minutes for a %80 charge, that is well worth it for long road trips. If I spend 2 weeks of the year on long road trips, that’s still better economy than a gas car.

Hopefully this means that third parties will be introducing Tesla/150Kw charging soon.

Yep. I would have no problem paying gasoline level prices for accessing a good DC fast-charger on the road. 97% of the time, I charge up with cheap electricity at home. For those rare long trips, I don’t mind paying more.

What you are paying for when charging on the road is the parking spot, the cost of the charger, the installation of the charger, the rent for having the charger there, and the electricity. The electricity is only tiny slice of those costs.

Why would a third party want to build a nearly identical charger to the current one that Tesla builds? Since it’s not a open source technical standard, like China’s GB/T, CHAdeMO and CCS Combo 1&2, how does this third party gain the specific tech knowledge?

What happens when Tesla flashes a new vehicle update to all 100 million cars that overnight, makes this third party charger nothing but a heavy paperweight?

Tony Williams asked:

“Why would a third party want to build a nearly identical charger to the current one that Tesla builds?”

Most people call that “competition”.

That’s good for the market. True competition improves service and reduces prices.

But I question that Fastned will actually be able to compete with Tesla Superchargers. After all, Fastned has to make a profit to stay in business. Tesla can use its Superchargers as a “loss leader” to help sell cars… and despite what some Tesla bashers claim, Tesla does make a profit selling cars.

So, assuming Tasla will “charge for a charge” with the Model ≡: They can sell at cost or even a slight loss.

There will come a time at which companies will be able to make a go at installing EV fast chargers and running them as a profit-making endeavor. But I’m rather skeptical that this is currently possible, with only 1-2% of auto sales market penetration.

Pushmi-Pullyu replied:
Tony Williams asked:

“Why would a third party want to build a nearly identical charger to the current one that Tesla builds?”

Most people call that “competition”.

That’s good for the market. True competition improves service and reduces prices.

Usually you say some intelligent things. This is an exception to that.

Of course there are absolutely no cars that can accept this 150KW yet . . . but it is nice to see them actually planning ahead. Well done.

BTW, it drives me crazy that Europeans the the USA swap the decimal point (“.”) and the comma (“,”) in their numbering system. How did THAT ever happen?

I don’t get it. With the old Model S 60 one had to pay a one time fee to enable supercharging, which is required to use a CHAdeMO adapter. Here we are speculating that for supercharging on the Model 3 there will be an ongoing or a usage-based fee, but the capability to DC fast charge can be enabled by Tesla on the Model 3 without paying that fee. Why would Tesla do that?

It would not be logical for them to do it. As their company culture so far was “our way or no way”, and the logical way would be to lock their customers into their proprietary world. E.g. pay the same $3,000 or $5,000 to unlock DC charging, and it doesn’t matter if you will use Tesla chargers or independent Chademo chargers.

“…the capability to DC fast charge can be enabled by Tesla on the Model 3 without paying that fee. Why would Tesla do that?”

I agree that some, or many, posts in this discussion are confusing because commenters are expressing opinions without stating the premises behind those opinions.

Here’s my understanding, which may or may not be correct: Tesla has been intentionally vague about the pricing for Model ≡ Supercharging. It may be that there will be a one-time flat fee to unlock it for (nominally) unlimited use forever. Or there may be different plans, with a lower unlocking fee but a monthly subscription or per-use fee.

In cases where Tesla charged a monthly subscription or per-use fee, third party vendors (such as Fastned) might be able to compete on price.

As I previously posted, I doubt that Fastned actually can afford to compete on price, because they have to make a profit on EV charging and Tesla does not. But at least there is no engineering barrier to Fastned offering competition.

Thanks. Perhaps charging providers like Fastned can make a deal with Tesla that would be beneficial to all three, including the EV drivers, similar to the deals Nissan, BMW, VW, etc. have made with other charging networks. There is still much to be done to simplify and streamline EV charging in public.

We built our stations for all electric cars and not for a particular brand. We already have a deal with Nissan and offer four years of fast charging to buyers of a Leaf or e-NV200 (with a 5,500 kWh limit). Any car maker – Tesla included – is welcome to offer something similar without the need to invest in their own network of fast chargers.