Ionity presented its new HPC charging station at the IAA. With the new design Ionity wants to improve the charging experience. The first columns of the new type are scheduled to go into operation in Denmark in October.
The new columns largely correspond to the design presented by Ionity in 2018. The columns installed so far are from Tritium, ABB and in some cases from Porsche Engineering – in the respective optics of the manufacturers. Tritium is now the first manufacturer to produce the columns in the ionity design. Later, ABB will also manufacture the Ionity columns in order to maintain the multi-supplier principle.
However, the “old” columns will not disappear. On the one hand, the existing columns will not be replaced, and on the other hand, ABB and tritium columns already ordered will be installed at some construction sites. As electrive learned from Ionity, more and more columns of the new design are currently being ordered. After Denmark, the new charging columns will also come to the rest of Europe – but when and where exactly has not yet been officially decided.
The new design is the result of a user analysis by Designworks and should make the charging experience more comfortable, safer and simpler than before. One of the most striking features is the lighting concept with which Ionity pursues two goals: The charging stations should be visible from a distance, making it easier to find parking spaces on a motorway service area. In addition, the LED light ring on the 2.60 metre high column will illuminate the area around the column to make charging more pleasant in the dark. The “Halo”, or illuminated ring, also shows the charging status in various colours.
Compared to the charging columns currently used by Ionity, the cable routing has also been changed. The charging cable should now be much easier to handle thanks to a feed from above.
For the customer, charging should also be easier because of a new screen. With their own HMI system, the menu navigation should become more intuitive and above all uniform – the customer should no longer notice which manufacturer built the column. The menu navigation is offered in ten European languages. According to Ionity, the 24/7 hotline, which will then be available in seven languages, will also be upgraded from mid-October.
The charging stations in the new design not only play a role in the construction of the remaining stations of the currently planned 400 charging stations in Europe, but also in the period after 2020. Hyundai-Kia’s entry into the circle of shareholders of the joint venture could have changed the financial possibilities for plans starting in 2020 – whether it be the expansion of the existing charging stations with more charging stations, new locations or even HPC chargers in inner cities.