Motoring giant Ford has today announced plans to introduce a further 200 electric vehicle charging stations across its U.S. and Canadian offices, development campuse,s and manufacturing facilities. This is in addition to the existing 1700 charging stations currently installed across dealerships and Ford owned operations in the U.S. and Canada. This is just one of many ongoing initiatives in the EV market that should see a dramatic increase in the number of charging stations in the short to medium term.
So why is Ford looking to introduce more charging stations and what benefit will they be to Ford employees?
Encouraging EV use
Current data from the Ford plant network of EV charging stations shows that three out of every four journeys to work are now completed by electric alone. The company believes that by installing a further 200 EV charging stations at commercial premises across the U.S. and Canada this will give Ford employees the opportunity to go fully electric with regards to their working week.
The idea is that the first four hours usage of the EV stations would be free to employees, with Ford estimating it will only cost around $0.50 to fully charge an electric vehicle, saving staff potentially upwards of two dollars in gasoline per day. This may not sound like a very large saving but the fact is it would be every working day for the foreseeable future. These figures soon begin to add up!
Quote from ElectricForum.com : "I have one of the new smart electric coupes. So far I have only charged it with the charger that came with it, which plugs into a regular household 110 volt receptacle. The car was delivered to my house, and I know the driver stopped to recharge it at a library which had a charging station. I have been querying Nissan dealers in my area, and they all say that their charging stations are public. So my question is: is there a universal standard for the car/charger interface, and will any standard charging station work with my car? The smart will handle 220 as well as 110 charging. I assume the answer is yes, in fact I know it borders on a dumb question, but I want to make sure."
It is also worth noting that the whole Ford dealership, manufacturing and office EV charging network will allow the company to gather invaluable data going forward. Ford will be able to monitor how often the stations are used, how long they are used for, and there is the potential to calculate the potential saving in CO2 emissions. It will certainly be an interesting project for Ford and one which many other companies will follow.
It is also worth noting that by adding a variety of new EV stations across its commercial premises, Ford is in fact encouraging its employees to take up this more environmentally friendly mode of transport. At the end of the day this is the real reason why EVs came into existence and why indeed governments and companies around the world are pushing them so hard today.
Will concerns over charging stations soon be resolved?
There is no doubt that a lack of charging stations has been prominent in the thoughts of many EV enthusiasts, who would potentially be looking towards this more environmentally friendly mode of transport if only there was confidence in the charging network. The introduction of more EV charging stations, free, commercial and subsidised by the authorities, will have a major impact in the short to medium term and it is highly likely that the issue of journey capacity will be alleviated.
It will be interesting to see which other companies follow Ford with regards to its new green policy and with Ford, Volkswagen and an array of other companies vying for number one position in the EV market, we could certainly be in for some interesting times!