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E-car makers team up for Europe charging network

Leading carmakers have teamed up to provide a boost to e-mobility by pledging to help build a Europe-wide network of standardized charging stations. The companies involved said the project would start next year.

German car makers BMW, Daimler and Volkswagen's Porsche and Audi divisions as well as US competitor Ford announced Tuesday they would cooperate on a Europe-wide network of electric charging stations.

"We intend to create a network that allows our customers on long-distance trips to use a coffee break for recharging, Audi CEO Rupert Stadler said in a statement.

The firms signed a memorandum of understanding on the joint venture, planning to start construction of some 400 high-speed charging stations across Europe in 2017. They said completion of the network was slated for 2020.

Flexible standard

German automakers have lagged behind some competitors in introducing electric cars. The technology has remained little used on the Continent, hindered by high prices, the short range of the vehicles and a lack of recharging infrastructure.

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The planned network aims to address at least part of the issue at hand by creating a network using the Combined Charging System (CCS) standard in a move to boost e-car growth.

CCS relies on universal standards for electric vehicles. The technology combines single-phase with rapid three-phase charging, using alternating or direct current modes all in one connector-inlet system.

hg/sgb (AFP, dpa)

 

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