General Motors is working with electric vehicle charging network EVgo to build more than 2,700 new fast chargers in cities and suburbs across the US over the next five years. That is more than triple the 800 fast chargers that EVgo currently has on its network, which is in 34 states and serves “more than 200,000 customers.”
The buildout will help EVgo keep pace with other growing fast-charging networks. Tesla boasts 2,000 Supercharger stations (and 18,000 stalls) worldwide, and Volkswagen’s new Electrify America network is already up to 452 stations in the US.
The new stations will be “located in highly visible areas and most will be able to charge at least four vehicles simultaneously,” according to a press release, and will be able to charge at rates between 100kW to 350kW. They won’t be exclusive to GM vehicles, and the first chargers that are part of this new buildout will be available in early 2021. The two companies are targeting around 40 different metropolitan markets.
GM CEO Mary Barra said that both GM and EVgo will invest in the new buildout, but she would not specify the size of those investments. Barra also said GM will help EVgo “work with grant and utility programs” and “sign the charters in areas where they will do the most to accelerate the adoption of electric vehicles.”
GM’s investment in the buildout represents a big turnaround for the company, which once said it wouldn’t invest in infrastructure for EVs. Asked about this on a press call on Friday, Barra said GM has done “extensive” customer research over the last few years and that it ultimately decided investing in a large network of fast chargers was the “next logical step.”
“Clearly, having a robust charging infrastructure is something our customers told us was important,” she said.