Tides of Change: Automakers and Charging Station Providers Shifting Production to US; Fuji Electric Joins the Wave

5 years ago by Eric Loveday 9

Fuji Quick Charger

Fuji Quick Charger

Made in America.  It’s what Nissan has done with its electric LEAF and now Fuji Electric will, too.

Fuji DC Quick Vharger

Fuji DC Quick Charger

Fuji, of course, doesn’t make the Nissan LEAF, but it does produce a 25-kW DC Quick Charger, that up until now had been manufactured overseas.

That all changed in the last few days of March as Fuji Electric committed to producing its US-market 4th Generation 25-kW DC Quick Charger right here in the states.

The production facility is located in Milpitas, CA, which will allow Fuji to fulfill orders quickly and, over time, to drive down the cost of its quick-charge unit.

“We are now able to offer faster delivery on orders, and respond to evolving market demands and design requirements with greater ease.”

Fuji’s DC Quick Charger is a CHAdeMO-spec unit that charges most electric vehicles in less than hour.

But the real story here is the shift in production in the electric vehicle industry.   As more as more automakers and charging station providers commit to US production of their array of products, the US’ overall position in the plug-in industry moves up the charts.  Having this amount and breadth of production capacity established here nearly cements the plug-in vehicle as a technology that’s here to stay.

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9 responses to "Tides of Change: Automakers and Charging Station Providers Shifting Production to US; Fuji Electric Joins the Wave"

  1. Gene says:

    Trying to decide whether to get the CHAdeMO charger option on the new LEAF, but living on Long Island where there isn’t a CHAdeMO Quick Charger for a thousand miles (almost). Anyone think this move by Fuji increases the chance of these appearing in my area within the next few years???

    1. bloggin says:

      If you are leasing the Leaf, which is the only thing that makes sense….as the next price decrease will be instant deprecation for anyone who actually purchased(I would like to see the resale value of a 2011/12 model with the $6,500 price drop in 2013), I would not worry about it since there are no charging stations near you.

      And since it’s an add-on option, you can get it any time if it becomes a need, and by then Nissan will have converted to the new J1772 Combo Charger, or offer an adapter.

      This will become more of an issue for Nissan with Ford, GM, VW, Toyota, Nissan, MB, BMW, Volvo and Tesla(with adapter for the US) all launching plug-ins/EVs this year and next with the new Combo charger. Then there are the thousands of charging stations being installed by cities/corporations throughout the US, as duel Combo/CHAdeMO or just Combo. I wouldn’t invest in technology that is being phased out, whether the company selling it want’s to admit that or not, if you really did not have to do so.

      Nissan will soon offer a J1772 adapter like Tesla does to fit a Combo charging station, because whether it’s the standard in Japan, in the US…..it’s the J1772 Combo Charger.

      1. Gene says:

        bloggin, thanks for the advice on the charger.

        Regarding the lease, for the Leaf SV is $2000+36*$250 = $11000. And you don’t get the $7500 tax credit. So If I buy it for $31,500 (with loan rates under 2%, it’s about another $1k in interest for 3 years), it has to devalue all the way down to $14k in 3 years to be worse than leasing (I’ve heard that 2011 Leafs are still valued near $19k after 2 years). And I have the option to keep it, I don’t have to buy another car, if I don’t think the improvements in the EV market in 3 years would justify it. I just don’t see the battery technology improvements coming in that timeframe that would make me want to buy/lease yet another vehicle in 3 years, nor that would make a 3 year-old Leaf that devalued. I’m guessing I’ll be able to trade it in for ~$14k after 3 years if I do want to move on.

        Maybe you see something I’m missing?

  2. bloggin says:

    Well it just seems this Japanese charger is being marketed to service the two Japanese plug-in vehicles here in the US.

    My guess is by the time an installation is actually done, it will be a combo charger that handles both J1772 Combo Charger and CHAdeMO.

    But seriously, made in America?? They may be putting it together in America, but ALL profits from any sale will be going back to Japan to make Japan a stronger nation. By the way, this is the same Japan that through government regulation, their closed market restricts the sale of ANY American/import vehicle in Japan.

    Along with the Japanese government artificially devaluing the yen by 20% since December, which equates to about $7,600 per vehicle manufacturer savings, which is where the Leaf price drop came from.

    Essentially America gets screwed twice with every Japanese import sale in America.

    So Japanese charging stations coming to American to charge Japanese cars…not such a good thing.

    1. evnow says:

      So, all your tirade against Leaf is because you hate Japan ?

      Leaf’s reduction in price came because they are being manufactured in TN – unlike “American” GM who wants their next EV to be manufactured in Korea.

      1. bloggin says:

        No hate for Japan…just basic economics. The batteries and most components for the Leaf are imported from Japan and assembled in the US. The assembly is in the US to get around import tariffs. ALL profits do go back to Japan without question to make Japan stronger.

        That is why one of the main concerns with Japan joining the trade accord, is that with the tariffs being lifted, and it becomes cheaper to make cars in Japan and ship them to the US. So no need for manufacturing in the US.

        This is while Japan denies imports from US to be sold in Japan. While at the same time Japan artificially lowers the value of the yen, which puts them out of balance with the rest of the economic world. The trade deficit is already extremely out of balance with the US, and lifting the tariffs just makes the situation worse for the US.

        Which also means that if GM or any other American manufacturer builds a vehicle in another country, profits come back to America, to make America economically stronger.

        1. Herm says:

          Japan would not dare restrict car imports from the US (they do restrict other things such as meat and rice).. its just that Japanese consumers are not interested in buying. If all your beliefs were based on that misconception then they all collapsed instantly.. a paradigm change on a Monday morning!