USA: Now Ford is also involved in the loading war for electric vehicles18. October 2019
USA: Now Ford is also involved in the loading war for electric vehicles
New York, 18.10.2019
Ford yesterday announced North America’s largest electric vehicle retailer network, although the automobile giant still has no electric vehicles in its program. The first, a Mustang inspired 370 mile SUV, will be launched next year.
But it already lays the foundation that every new EV sold has access to the FordPass store network. This also includes the additions of a third party that includes 12,000 stations and nearly three times as many charging plugs. This is – according to the US Department of Energy – almost half the total number of charging stations in the US. With the company’s app, customers can plan charging at home and access charging points from multiple providers on planned routes. Ford spokeswoman Emma Bregg speaks of a “seamless experience”.
Above all, however, it is a direct challenge for Tesla. The pioneering electric car manufacturer has long advertised its target and compressor network as an important differentiating feature for its premium vehicles. Although drivers charge up to 80% at home, the national coverage, loading speed and comfort of the Tesla network are a hit with customers and are often cited as a competitive advantage for investors. According to the Department of Energy, Tesla has 4,845 stations and 16,750 charging stations in the USA, of which about one third are compressors.
Ford, unlike Tesla, did not build its own stations. The partnership with the EV charging software company Greenlots (a subsidiary of Shell), Electrify America (the largest network of EV charging stations in the USA) and other third-party networks enabled universal access for customers.
The Ford network is not yet promoting the same performance either. The company says that users can recharge up to 47 miles in 10 minutes with its 150-kilowatt chargers, or almost refill during a typical street meal. The actual charging speeds will depend on the capabilities of the planned Ford EV. Partner Electrify America says it will be ready with 350 kW charging stations along highways as soon as the vehicles can accept such high performance. Tesla’s latest charging technology (not yet widely used) can pump 250 kW into any car, resulting in 75 miles of charge or up to 1,000 miles per hour in five minutes.
Robust cargo nets have proven to be a great advantage as EV wars are waged on all fronts. In May, GM announced plans to build a US network with Bechtel. Ford’s way of entry suggests that basic access to the cargo network will become a commodity open to anyone willing to pay partners.