Long-distance journeys in an EV still a dream in Europe
Tuesday 27 July 2010
It's been a busy month for electric vehicle charging in the US - but what's happening in Europe?
With all the hype coming from America about EV infrastructure and "market adoption," one could be forgiven for forgetting that a mass-produced electric family car hasn't actually gone on sale yet in the US.
Nonetheless, at the end of June, Governor Chris Gregoire of Washington state announced that her state was to host the first fully electrified highway in the United States, a 276 mile (444 km) stretch of the I-5 highway that links Oregon with Canada.
The chargers will be placed every 40-60 miles (64 - 96 km), well within the range of most electric vehicles, to provide a safety net to those traveling long distances in EVs.
In mid-July, California stole some of Washington's limelight by announcing that Highway 1, otherwise known as the Pacific Coast Highway, now has a network of charging stations to enable an all-electric journey between San Francisco and Los Angeles.
But while the US is charging ahead with its chargers on highways, Europe is looking a little behind.
London's mayor Boris Johnson has pledged to install a network of fast-charge points at key locations on the road and motorway network in the South East, although his target date for completion was 2015 - and electric vehicles arrive in the UK next year.
France plans 75,000 charging points nationally and French firm DBT Freshmile hopes to provide around a quarter of those at intervals of around 80 kilometers, although its initial strategy is to work with providers to create a set of "local" infrastructures before joining them.
Perhaps the brightest sign of long-range EV driving is in Denmark, one of six global territories selected by EV "network provider" Better Place, which doesn't charge a vehicle's battery, but switches it for a full one.
Better Place says that its technology takes less time than a stop at a gas station and far less than the three-hour stop required by many of the "fast" battery chargers.
The Association for Electric Vehicles in Europe says that governments should be focusing on charging near the home to facilitate uptake of vehicles, rather than pursuing long-trip charging networks which are very slow compared to a conventional gas stop.
However, the fear is that until networks of the type unveiled in America over the past few weeks exist, range anxiety will stop consumers from going electric at all.
Life & Style blogs
Husband creates spreadsheet detailing wife's 'excuses' for turning down sex
Bombsheller: The website that makes us all into top fashion designers
NHS medics are being lured away to Australia by more money, status and sunshine, survey suggests
World Hepatitis Day: we could eliminate hepatitis C in the UK - but only half of those infected know they have it
Standing my ground: If sitting is bad for your health, what happens when you stay on your feet for a whole month?
The secret report that helps Israelis to hide facts
A day in the life of Vladimir Putin: The dictator in his labyrinth
Were 'Poor Doors' added to mixed developments so wealthy residents don't have to go in alongside social housing tenants?
Arizona execution lasts two hours as killer Joseph Wood left 'snorting and gasping' for air
A new Russian revolution: The cracks are starting to appear in Putin’s Kremlin power bloc
Opponents of Israel's military operation in Gaza are the real enemies of Middle Eastern peace
- 1 Secret Cinema: Why were Back to the Future screenings cancelled?
- 2 Christians: The world's most persecuted people
- 3 The secret report that helps Israelis to hide facts
- 4 Ross Burden dead: MasterChef and Ready Steady Cook star, dies aged 45
- 5 Standing my ground: If sitting is bad for your health, what happens when you stay on your feet for a whole month?
Data Governance Manager (Solvency II) – Contract – Up to £450 daily rate, 6 month (may go Permanent)
£350 - £450 Per Day: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: We are currently looking...
£18000 - £22000 Per Annum: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Recruitment Resour...
competitive: Progressive Recruitment: My client is a dynamic, fast-growing, fa...
£350 - £400 per day + competitive: Orgtel: My client, a leading bank, is curre...