The EV charging network in the UK will be expanded in two new initiatives over the next few years: Volkswagen plans to install more than 2,400 charging stations at Tesco locations, while Engenie plans to install 400 fast charging stations at Marston’s pubs.
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We’ll begin with the bigger order: The German carmaker joined up with the supermarket chain Tesco and the charging infrastructure provider Pod Point with the goal of setting up over 2,400 charging stations across 600 shops over the next three years. This will include both free-to-use 7 kW chargers, as well as 50 kW fast chargers, which customers will have to pay for.
It is looking like Volkswagen will oversee the construction of the largest commercially-bound EV charging network in Great Britain. Volkswagen says that the impact of the project will be a 14% increase in public charging stations in the UK. It should be noted that 7 kW is a comparatively low charging capacity, currently, the majority of EVs are only capable of single-phase charging.
Seeing Volkswagen in the role of an infrastructure specialist is quite new, especially in Germany. The company themselves has said that it plans to sell more than a million electric vehicles per year by 2025, which means it may have to help out public infrastructure for the goal to be feasible. A company statement says that Volkswagen was planning extensive activities in the areas of energy and charging infrastructure in the future, and putting them into a more core global focus for the brand.
The British pub operators Marston’s Inns and Taverns is cooperating with the charging infrastructure operator Engenie, in order to install 400 fast-charging stations at their pubs with 50 kW capacity. In the first phase, 18 locations will see two Engenie fast chargers installed each by early 2019. In total, the pub operators have about 1,600 electric vehicle charging locations across the UK on their roster.
Update Wednesday 26 January 2022:
The first electric vehicle charging points for customers in Tesco stores in Northern Ireland are now live at the Craigavon Extra store, County Armagh. Four free to use 7kW EV charging connectors were installed in December 2021.
The popularity of electric vehicles in Northern Ireland is growing. Tesco says that vehicle registrations across Northern Ireland increased 190% between 2019 and 2020.
Tesco now has charging points in stores in all four UK nations as it aims to install 2,400 charging points across 600 UK stores by the end of 2022. In partnership with Volkswagen and Pod Point, 2,014 have been installed so far.
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