General Motors has just introduced Ultium Charge 360. Meant to simplify the charging experience for owners, it brings filling up at home and on the road – at any of seven different charging networks - into a single app experience. It will also include an evolving set of features and functionality.
Though owners typically do the vast majority of charging at home, it's the filling-up while on the road that most worry about. To help with this travel anxiety, GM has partnered with seven charging networks. Real-time information about stations under the banners of Blink Charging, ChargePoint, EV Connect, EVgo, FLO, , and SemaConnect will all be accessible in apps of the various GM brands, such as myChevrolet.
This will allow needed charging stops – 60,000 of them in the Canada and the U.S. – to be included in trip navigation and let drivers know if there are any issues with charger availability at any particular location. It should also, eventually, allow for a seamless experience at the charging stations with regards to payment and beginning charging sessions.
While GM said on a media call that it is not announcing specifics around billing functionality and other friction points at this time, it did make clear that they are very aware of the desire for customers to have a seamless experience that systems such as Plug&Charge provides, and that is the goal it is pursuing.
If you peruse the list of partners above, you may notice a glaring omission: Electrify America. The growing high-speed DC fast-charging network has almost 600 locations live now that use GM-compatible CCS plugs, and with pedestals capable of delivering 350 kW, is not on the list of partners.
Now, owners will still be able to charge at Electrify America stations, but real-time information will not be available through the app. This may not be the situation forever, though. In response to questions about the exclusion, company officials said GM will continue to add other networks to its portfolio and it seemed quite apparent that EA is one they're anxious to have join.
GM also updated the status of the new EVgo stations its helping build out. It now has installations live in Washington, California, and Florida. It says it will have 500 fast charging stalls in operation by the end of 2021 on its way to fulfilling its commitment to have 2,700 charging stations by 2025. These stations offer up to 350 kW and an average of four pedestals.
The company says some amount of charging functionality is now available in its myChevrolet app, but it should really transform with the first deliveries of the GMC Hummer EV towards the end of the year. Another substantial improvement should be expected with the first deliveries of the Cadillac Lyriq in 2022 as well.