The Combined Charging System, backed by U.S. and German automakers, makes the prospect of charging an EV during a long highway drive or trip to the mall much more realistic. Automakers have endorsed a connector to charge electric vehicles in as little as 15 to 20 minutes; a technology that promises to make public charging stations more compelling. German and U.S. automakers Audi, BMW, Chrysler, Ford, General Motors, Porsche, and Volkswagen have said they will support the same charging interface. Called the Combined Charging System, the standard can charge electric vehicle batteries with alternating current from a home outlet, direct current from a home outlet, or “ultra-fast” direct current from public stations. The system allows for charging at 500 volts with a maximum current of 200 amps, which could result in a charge able to deliver 100 kilowatts of power. Fast charging addresses one of the primary perceived hurdles to mass electric vehicle adoption: the dearth of public EV charging points compared to gas stations. While early tests show that people primarily charge at home, the quicker system makes the option of charging at a dedicated station or charging point at retail location more attractive to drivers. Driving across the U.S. in an electric vehicle would be made possible by this new system.
Photo Credit: Tesla Motors