The BMW Group plans to install more than 4,100 charging points for electric cars at its German locations by 2021. Primarily intended for employees, around half of the charging points will also be accessible to the public.
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Most of the charging points will be AC chargers with an output of 11 kW, but BMW also pans to install DC charging stations with an output of 50 kW. Klaus Fröhlich, head of development at the BMW Board, considers charging infrastructure “one of the fundamental prerequisites – alongside range and competitive costs,” when reasoning about the BMW initiative.
BMW employees and members of the public will find most of the 4,000 charge points in the greater Munich area. Further locations are Berlin, Leipzig, Regensburg, Landshut, Wackersdorf and Dingolfing. It is unclear whether these will stand on BMW sites mostly or also inside the cities.
The usual ChargeNow service allows access with BMW saying this enables people to use the system “continuously, easily and without restrictions while also offering complete cost transparency”. ChargeNow accounts by the minute, so charging during a full day’s work may not be the wisest way to go.
BMW’s plan is reminiscent of Volkswagen’s initiative albeit is faster. Overall, the VW Group intends to install 4,000 charging points at its ten German locations. The first employee charging park in Braunschweig was had been put into operation in August. Also, VW Commercial Vehicles has commissioned 100 charging points for electric vehicles at its plant in Hanover reportedly. Half of these are on the company premises and the other 50 on public parking lots around the site. By 2023, VWN plans to increase their number to 450.
Back to BMW, the company claims it has already installed more than 15,000 public charging points since the introduction of the BMW i3 electric car in 2013, including those at BMW dealerships.
Both VW and BMW are founding members of the high power charging network Ionity that is en route to install 400 HPC stations across Europe throughout 2020.
Update 12. December 2019: Meanwhile BMW has commissioned E.On with the construction and operation of the store network. Construction has already begun and should be completed by 2021, according to the carmaker. BMW has also put together a package with E.On for company car drivers. This package is intended to offer “delivery, assembly and operation of a high-quality charging station in the garage or another private parking space from a single source”. BMW does not mention the conditions in the communication.
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