US Kia Dealership Decides to Add Electric Vehicle Quick Charge Station…We Explain Why


With the spotting of the Kia Soul EV in testing and word that it’s US-bound sometime in 2014, wouldn’t you think that it’s time for some Kia dealerships to start gearing up the electric’s arrival?

Kia Dealership in Colorado to Add Public Charging Station

Kia Dealership in Colorado to Add Public Charging Station

Well, that seems to be exactly what’s going on at Ehrlich I-25 Kia in Colorado.

Ehrlich Kia recently broke ground on a new and improved building adjacent to its current one.  That new building, which is scheduled for completion in mid-November, will be home to a quick-charge station.

The lead architect of the dealership redesign, Mark Bowers of Architectural Workshop, says this:

“Anyone driving up on I-25 can stop here, plug in, and get their car recharged in half an hour.”

Is this particular Kia dealership looking to profit off charging?  No.  There are apparently no plans in place to charge a fee of any sort to those that use the quick-charge station.

It’s happening elsewhere too.  Ehrlich Kia says it’s the second Kia dealership in the nation to partake in a re-branding effort that includes charging station installs, high-tech shop gear and LED lights throughout.

So, perhaps Kia dealerships across the country will soon become another go-to place for those in need of a quick charge.

Furthermore, this sort of cements in place the idea that the Kia Soul EV is US-bound.  Doesn’t it?

Categories: Charging, Kia


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13 Comments on "US Kia Dealership Decides to Add Electric Vehicle Quick Charge Station…We Explain Why"

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cool story Bro, but one minor detail is missing… what format of quick charging should we expect for the Kia Soul and at Kia dealerships?! are these going to be CHadeMO chargers? SAE AC/DC Combo chargers? just a high Amp regular J1772 charger?

Anyways from this story it appears that the Soul is sporting a CHadeMO connector in spy shots so we can reasonably assume these are going to be CHadeMO chargers.

The Kia brand electric vehicles will be using the current world standard CHAdeMO (that is the same format every in the world that it is deployed).

Their are currently zero SAE “Frankenplug” cars to buy or on the road, and there is effectively zero public Frankenplug chargers. Why would any auto maker who wants to actually sell electric cars use a Frankenplug? Why would they adopt a Frankenplug standard that isn’t even the same between the various countries that it is proposed to be in? Why would they develop a standard that won’t be used at all in huge EV adoptor countries like Japan or China?

There are almost 3,000 CHAdeMO stations in the world, all built and operated exactly the same standard, and working now. They have all the same specifications as the proposed Frankenplug; up to 200 amp design (100kW at 500 volts), Vehicle to Grid power, etc.

The only reason Frankenplug was proposed is to try and stop public funding for CHAdeMO and slow up the lead that Nissan and Mitsubishi have on electric vehicles. It’s not working too well, eh? Frankenplug will die stillborn.

To be fair the Chevy Spark is reported to be using the franken plug design, and it is in about the same release time frame as the Soul. CHAdeMO certainly has a head start but the US and European manufacturers behind the SAE combo chargers don’t seem to be backing down (for better or worse). I don’t have a dog in this fight, more plugs is better. and if we start seeing more cars released for the SAE combo plug I expect we will see more charging stations with both that and the CHAdemo plug.

“US and European manufacturers behind the SAE combo chargers don’t seem to be backing down ..”
They don’t have anything to back down from. Apart from BMW nobody has announced any plans of making a high volume EV.

From Left to Right: Mennekes, CHAdeMO and Combo

The quoted picture has three plugs:

1) a three phase AC Mennekes plug that we will never see in the USA / Canada, since we don’t have widespread three phase power

2) the only world common standard, DC CHAdeMO

3) a Mennekes Frankenplug DC that will never be used in the USA

There will be plenty more “GM / BMW’s” with even more standards; I predict several inductive standards, certainly more DC standards with both higher and lower power, and who knows what else?

From Tony Williams:

“…1) a three phase AC Mennekes plug that we will never see in the USA / Canada, since we don’t have widespread three phase power….”

Actually the shoe is on the other foot. We have plenty of 3-phase, what Europeans don’t have is large single phase services, 32 and 63 amp 3 phase menekes plugs seem common there, BRUSA chargers when operating on single phase only draw 16 amps.

American products for export to europe if they use anything much more than 4kw are almost always arranged for 3-phase 220Y/380 configuration.

And when you’re at a Tesla Store and the EVSE is putting out “204 volts at 70 amps” on your Tesla Roadster, you are actually using 2 of the 3 phases going to the Tesla store service. It only seems like “Single Phase”.

@Bill, that regular Mennekes connector is meant to accommodate residential charging as well, or primarily.
I don’t recall having seen a house with 3-phase in the US, or a house without it in Europe.

True for residential 3-phase. However DC fast chargers like the one pictured all use 3-phase AC to get their power in the US, as well as the rest of the world.


Yes of course. Larger, commercial circuits are 3-phase regardless of the continent, although at different voltages.

Tony’s point was, because only single-phase is available in most US homes (and people might want to charge their EVs there too), it’d be pointless to use a Mennekes inlet.

Its interesting that you say ALL homes in Europe have 3 phase. There was some British dude arguing with me a few months ago that NO homes have 3 phase (which I knew was not true since I could think of one home personally that did have 3 phase for a 10 hp motor). I believe that is the Menekes standard, that when plugged into 240 v single phase the current is to be limited to 16 amps. I think you have to go to Beverly Hills mansions before you see commonplace 3 phase. My utility National Grid (yes the british one, except they only do distribution here, not transmission as in GB) surprisingly attaches no stigma against it, and nonprofits having an existing 3 phase building still can pay ‘residential rates’. If the nonprofit is later converted to a private house, the 3 phase stays at ‘residential rates’. Many utilities charge a premium for 3ph, but not NG. They should charge more, since commercial 1-ph customers are subsidizing them… But then again, NG makes a lot of brain dead costly design errors in their normal course of business, so everyone pays all the time more than they should. Any… Read more »

The 16 A limit for single phase power applies only to some states like Germany and Austria. UK, France ect. still allow to drew up to 32 A unbalanced single phase power. You can simply look up in what states Nissan sells the Leaf with the 6.6 kW charger option.

Yeah, but 32 amps single phase is still considered very small in the states. Most locales allow 400 amps single phase, some allow 800, and a few allowed 3000 amp single phase services even back in the 1920’s.

To maintain worldwide compatibility, I believe this is why GM and others have ‘standardized’ on 3.3 kw single phase..

My point is that if some countries allow up to 16 and others allow up to 32 amps, this is still low for Tesla vehicles which use 70 or 80 amp single phase charger docks.

I think all car companies would have been wise to use Nissan Leaf’s arrangement… J1772 for single phase, and then optionally for those customers who wanted quicker charging, a Chademo dc jack. At that point it wouldn’t matter how the DC was manufactured, whether 1ph in the states or 3ph on the continent.