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Electric cars are now a more convincing prospect than ever, but one issue that can still deter drivers from switching to EVs is the time it takes to charge them up.

However, that could soon no longer be an issue, as a new charging station using solar electric power is promising to be able to charge cars in just 10 minutes, providing they are able to accept such a rate in the future.

The station’s power is set to come from solar panels on the roof, with the first centre due to be built in Braintree, Essex. However, its manufacturer said the incoming charging station could be joined by a network of over 100 more across the UK.

It’s being built by Gridserve, a manufacturer of solar-powered products for a wide number of uses. The station will be the firm’s first in the UK.

Gridserve is promising that the new forecourt will offer 24 ultra-fast chargers, and be able to charge at a rate of 350kW. No current cars on sale can charge at that rate, with the most powerful chargers being able to deliver 150kW of power at the moment. But the UK firm is clearly gearing up for the future, when charging speed should be reduced significantly.

The site will also include ‘airport-style’ lounges, with facilities such as shops and cafes – not too dissimilar from current garage forecourts.

Toddington Harper, founder of Gridserve: said: “We plan to make charging electric vehicles as easy as using petrol stations.

”The latest generation of electric vehicles are awesome, and ready for mainstream adoption, but drivers still worry about if or where they can charge, how long it will take, and what it will cost.

“We plan to eliminate any range or charging anxiety by building a UK-wide network of customer-focused, brand new Electric Forecourts that will make it easier and cheaper to use an electric vehicle than a petrol or diesel alternative.”

Harper added that he hoped Gridserve’s charging locations would help to “accelerate the electric vehicle revolution”.

Braintree District Council revealed on Monday that the first Gridserve EV site would be in its area, which is set to be built next to an upcoming business park. Planning permission is still yet to be granted, but if it is approved, construction work could start as early as next year.

(Photo Credit – Braintree District Council/Greenserve)

Ted Welford

By

June 28, 2019

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