Mercedes-Benz announced during the 2023 Consumers Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas that it plans to build its own global high-power charging network that will ultimately include over 10,000 stalls worldwide. This will be different from the Ionity network, which is operated by Mercedes and other car brands.
With MN8 and ChargePoint as partners, the German brand will start building the first stations in the United States and Canada this year, with the goal of having over 400 hubs with more than 2,500 fast charging stations across North America by 2027.
By the end of the decade, Mercedes-Benz plans to have the whole network up and running, with stalls installed in Europe, China, and “other main markets,” according to the official press release. This would coincide with the firm’s promise to go all-electric by 2030, only selling zero-emission vehicles where market conditions allow it.
Mercedes’ chargers will be built in “key cities and urban population centers, close to major arteries, convenient retail and service destinations, including participating Mercedes-Benz dealership sites.” Depending on the location, the hubs will have between 4 and 30 chargers capable of delivering up to 350 kW each.
Gallery: Mercedes-Benz Will Build Its Own Fast-Charge Network With Over 10,000 Stalls
Moreover, the German brand wants to use as much green energy as possible, contracting green electricity suppliers or using renewable energy certificates from accredited suppliers for its stations. Some hubs will also be fitted with photovoltaic systems to provide power for lighting and video surveillance.
When it comes to availability, Mercedes-Benz says that all car brands will be able to use its new network, but that its vehicles will have priority when pre-booking a charging station. In fact, the company says that compatible EVs will be able to automatically book an available charger via the navigation system, without the driver needing to do anything, except get out of the car and plug it in.
“Mercedes-Benz already offers what we believe to be the finest EVs in the market. But to accelerate the electric transformation, we need to ensure that the charging experience keeps pace as well. Our customers deserve a compelling charging experience that makes electric vehicle ownership and long-distance travel effortless. We won’t take a wait-and-see approach for this to be built. That’s why we are launching a global high-end charging network. It’s designed to become another differentiator of Mercedes-Benz ownership for our customers and an asset with value creation potential for our company. We are excited to start right here in North America with strong and experienced partners like MN8 Energy and ChargePoint,” said Ola Källenius, Chairman of the Board of Management of Mercedes-Benz Group AG.
The cost of investment for the North American network will be just over $1 Billion, split roughly 50:50 between Mercedes-Benz and MN8.