Electric Cars

First 150-kW charger in US established on Tesla's doorstep

Now, we just need cars that can handle all that juice.

EVgo

Electric vehicle charging speeds are increasing, but EVgo's latest addition to California's EV infrastructure really wants to ramp things up.

The charging network teamed up with manufacturer ABB to deploy a so-called "High Power" fast charging station in Fremont, California, also the home of Tesla's vehicle manufacturing. At 150 kW, it can deliver a charge faster than Tesla's Supercharger, which after its most recent update puts out about 145 kW. An output of 150 kW translates to about 9 miles of range per minute.

Somebody must have an in with Volkswagen, because the 2017 e-Golf isn't even on sale yet.

EVgo

Even better, the system has the potential to be upgraded to put out 350 kW of charge. That would ramp up power delivery to approximately 22 miles of range per minute. Considering range anxiety and length of charging periods are two factors stymieing EV adoption, a network of these chargers could put the public at ease.

However, that would assume the public could use a 150-kW or 350-kW charger. Right now, they cannot. Not only because EVgo has not opened its new charger to the public, but also because the current crop of non-Tesla EVs are not capable of handling that much charge at once.

For the time being, the 150-kW charger will be used for research purposes. Automakers and suppliers will be able to access the charger in order to test new equipment and work on other advancements in electric vehicles. You can probably walk up to it and take a picture, though, because it happens to be smack dab in the middle of the busiest public fast-charging site in the US.

Fast EV charging is on the minds of suppliers and automakers alike. Last year, BMW, Daimler, Ford and Volkswagen teamed up to invest in a series of fast chargers across Europe. These chargers will also be able to handle up to 350 kW, in the hopes that promoting faster EV travel around Europe will boost adoption rates.

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