Nissan is accelerating plans for a European-wide Quick Charge (QC) network for electric vehicles by giving 400 new quick charging stations free of charge to EV charging operators.
The new Nissan quick chargers (earlier post) are engineered to the CHAdeMo standard and can deliver up to 50 kW of high voltage direct current (DC) electricity. The CHAdeMO—Charge to Move—standard was developed and agreed by a coalition of Japanese companies including Nissan, Toyota, Mitsubishi and Fuji Heavy Industries. Nissan’s QCs, therefore, can be used not just by drivers of Nissan LEAF but also by drivers of EVs from Mitsubishi, Citroën and Peugeot (the last two offering variants of the Mitsubishi i-MiEV).
The QC stations are also ‘AC-ready' to support the arrival of EVs from Alliance partner Renault designed to 43kW AC quick charge standards. The Renault-Nissan Alliance is promoting infrastructure deployment based on AC-DC Mix Quick Charger strategy.
The move follows an agreement between Nissan and five of Europe’s leading utility and EV infrastructure supply companies to speed up the provision of the latest quick chargers developed by Nissan Motor Co., Ltd., which are less expensive—up to half the previous price—and smaller than before. The target is to have a network of quick charge stations across Europe with several thousand units in place by the end of 2012 and tens of thousands by 2015.
Strategically located, these new points will boost existing networks and give EV customers greater freedom and flexibility by effectively extending the range of their car. The lithium-ion batteries in Nissan LEAF can be recharged from 0 to 80% capacity in 30 minutes using such a quick charger.
A selection process for charging station recipients started on 10 October after which winners will be awarded chargers according to how they fulfill a strict list of criteria developed by Nissan. These include convenient and accessible charger location, installation starting February 2012 and free or discounted charging for all Nissan LEAF customers for at least one year.