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
YouTube star Loey Lane hits back at hateful comments about ‘fat girls in bikinis’ and how plus-size women promote obesity
Sugary drinks are killing 184,000 adults around the world every year, says study
The age of inactivity: How laziness is killing us
What do the emojis on Snapchat mean?
iPhone 7: Force Touch phones are being prepared for launch, say reports
The moment a Queen's Guard soldier lost it and drew his gun at annoying tourist
Greece crisis: The wider lesson is that it’s time to abandon this failed experiment in currencies
'I wish the BBC would stop calling it Islamic State' – David Cameron unleashes frustration at broadcaster
Extend Right To Buy to tenants of private landlords, Labour's Jeremy Corbyn says
David Cameron struck double blow in his hopes to win Britain a new EU deal
Pentagon accuses Russia of 'playing with fire' over nuclear threats towards Nato
- 1 Michael Douglas regrets 'embarrassing' Catherine Zeta-Jones with oral sex comments
- 2 Tunisia hotel attack: Locals form 'human shield' to protect hotel from gunman Seifeddine Rezgui
- 3 Tunisian builder has been hailed a hero after knocking gunman to the ground with roof tiles
- 4 German ethics council calls for incest between siblings to be legalised by Government
- 5 Fifty Shades of Grey author E.L James's Twitter Q&A didn't go exactly as planned
£15000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: First things first - for the av...
£40000 - £60000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Compliance Manager is require...
£15500 - £17000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This international company deve...
£16000 - £27000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This established name in IT Ser...