The two most prominent electric vehicle manufacturers in SA (BMW and Nissan) have teamed up to increase the availability of charging stations. The team up will see them jointly build an electric vehicle and plug-in hybrid vehicle charging grid across the country.
Tim Abbott, managing director of BMW SA said “A key imperative of our strategy is to ensure that the necessary infrastructure is rolled out to help increase consumer confidence in the viability of electric vehicles. We therefore believe that in order for the introduction and expansion of electric vehicles as well as plug-in hybrid electric vehicles to be successful in this market, we need to work together. Our partnership with Nissan is the first step towards that.”
The agreement will see BMW SA and Nissan SA roll out direct current (DC) fast-charging stations that are equipped with both the Combined Charging System 2 (CCS2) used by BMW’s electric and plug-in hybrid models and the Charge de Move system (CHAdeMO) plug standards used by Nissan’s 100% electric LEAF.
The national grid of charging stations will also make use of smaller alternating current (AC) type vehicle chargers in certain regions. In terms of the newly signed agreement these chargers will be equipped with Type 2 sockets that allow the connection of all EVs and PHEVs.
“By sharing expertise, ideas and challenges BMW and Nissan will accelerate the growth and consumer acceptance of the EV and PHEV market to the benefit of the entire automotive industry. These organisations have shown the same insight in establishing a vehicle charging grid as they did in creating their futuristic electric vehicles,” says Mike Schüssler, chief economist of Economist.co.za and an automotive market specialist.