Porsche's Charging Network Now Expands to 12 Countries and 49,000 Stations
Because one of the biggest hurdles to EV adoption is finding places to charge, Porsche's rolled out some infrastructure—in Europe.
It's always striking to me how much fewer electric vehicles I see when I leave major cities. The problem always seems to come down to an infrastructure one: EVs are more common in places where there are ample charging spots, and not so much elsewhere. Yet even when I've had a plug-in test car in Austin, the infrastructure to charge it seems barely adequate even in a major city.
So, needless to say, I like what Porsche's doing with electric vehicles: They've been installing a vast network of charging stations in Europe ahead of their full-electric Taycan going on sale. It's very similar to what Tesla's done in the United States: in addition to making EVs, they ensured their customers will have places to charge them. Now the Porsche Charging Service is expanding to 49,000 charging points, and adding five new countries to its coverage area, per InsideEVs.
The best thing is, Porsche's charging network is open to all electric and hybrid cars, regardless of marque. The service was launched in May 2018, in Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium, Austria, Switzerland, Denmark, and Finland. Norway, Spain, and France have since been added, and Great Britain and Italy are next in line.
It's relatively inexpensive to gain access to as well, costing just €2.50 (or $2.85 U.S.) per month to join in Germany, and then you pay whatever it costs to use the charging station on top of that. (Charging prices depend on the amount used as well as the provider.)
You can access Porsche's charging points with a smartphone app (available for iOS and Android) or a card, and that app is getting some major upgrades as well. First off is a rating system that lets users know when a charging point was last used as well as how up-to-date and reliable the information about it is. The app will also have information on the daily capacity utilization of the charging points, so you can plan around the best times to find an empty spot there. Lastly, the app will open up Google Maps to navigate you to a chosen charging station.
As for what this means to those of us who aren't in Europe, it can only be a good thing. If automakers want to sell more of their EVs that they've dropped a significant investment into developing, they should follow Porsche and Tesla's lead, and start beefing up the charging infrastructure that's desperately needed for wider EV adoption.