Wednesday, August 4, 2010

EV Charging Station Infrastructure - Not a Big Deal?

According to Green Car Advisor, panelists just had a discussion called, "Full-scale Deployment: Making the Business Case." This is part of the much-watched Center for Automotive Research management briefings in Traverse City, Mich. Their conclusion: the EV charging infrastructure isn't really needed.

American Honda's Robert Bienenfeld said although establishing a large charging infrastructure might be a "badge of honor" for EV proponents who've long fought for a quicker pace, the vast majority of consumers are well-served by the driving range provided by the charging they can do at home. Very little charging is needed in the public sector, he said.

So if the infrastructure's in place, car buyers can easily install their home charging stations and find enough public access charging stations? I would think not. The electric grid infrastructure might be more than enough for years to come, even if a million or more plug-ins make it to the roads in the next five years. The problem is getting consumers set up with home charging stations, which they will have to pay for with Level 2 and 3 charging, and dealers and OEMs will need to find reliable, fast, effective installers. For public charging stations, this is being implemented at airports, work places, shopping malls, transit stations, and apartment/condo buildings, but the process is slow and expensive. Much to be done.


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