We check out the compact, 40-amp home charging offering from Wallbox.
The Wallbox Pulsar Plus smart-charger just launched in North America and we got our hands on one to check out and review. We'll need to use the Pulsar Plus for a few weeks before we post our full product review, but we did put together this unboxing, installation, and first impressions video for those that are interested in the unit.
The Pulsar Plus is available in a 40-amp version that uses a NEMA 14-50 plug, or a 48-amp version that doesn't have a plug attached and is designed to be hardwired. However, you could install a NEMA 14-60 outlet on a dedicated 60-amp circuit and attach a NEMA 14-60 plug to the Pulsar Plus if you want the 48-amp version and do not want it permanently installed.
Lots of features
The Pulsar Plus comes standard with a twenty-five foot (7.62 M) cable, which is as long as any cable on any home EVSE available today. The compact design is also appreciated, as it takes up very little real estate on the wall.
It has a NEMA-4 rating which is good for even extreme weather conditions including blowing rain and snowstorms. We found the connector to be very well made with a rubberized outer casing which had a nice feel in our hands.
It comes with a remote connector holster with a lip on top that keeps the cable neatly managed. Installation is a breeze with the 40-amp version that plugs in, as all you need to do is screw the mounting plate to the wall with two screws. It's best to screw the unit into a stud, but if that's not possible, Wallbox includes four screws and drywall anchors, two for the main unit and two for the connector holster.
Once the Pulsar Plus is installed you can then download the Wallbox app and connect the device to your WiFi network. The Pulsar Plus app has some nice features like the ability to view current charging session, notifications, schedule delayed charging, and past charging session history. You can even enter your electricity rate so you have a clear record of how much charging your EV costs you.
You can also adjust the Pulsar Plus's power output in the app, from 16-amps to the 40-amp (or 48-amp) maximum. The Pulsar Plus also has the ability to power share, therefore you can attach multiple units to a single circuit, and the Pulsar Plus will intelligently share the power without overloading the circuit. Power-sharing can be a very convenient feature for multiple-EV households.
However, you don't need to connect the unit to your WiFi network, the unit will charge your EV just fine without using the app and smart charging features, but if you're paying for those features, you might as well use them. There are less expensive 40-amp EVSE that aren't smart chargers which may be a better option if you don't plan on connecting your unit to WiFi and using the advanced charging features.
We'll be doing a comprehensive review of the WallBox Pulsar Plus once we've had it for a couple of weeks and used it to charge a variety of EVs. However, our first impressions are overall mostly positive. The Pulsar Plus is available for $649.00 from the Wallbox website. However, from now until 2/28/21, you can save $50 by using code "LAUNCH21" when you order one.