As part of the $860 billion stimulus package passed by Congress in early 2009, the Transportation Electrification Initiative allocated $400 million towards the study and implementation of vehicular electrification. Coulomb, which received $15 million in government funding and just installed its 500th EV charging station, is one of eight separate electric vehicle projects that received cash. Coulomb’s plan also includes the rollout of 2,000 Chevy Volts, 200 FordTransit Connect EVs, 100 Ford Focus EVs, and 100 Smart ForTwo EV’s.
All told, the eight projects will see 13,000 electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles put on the road and over 22,000 charging points in residential, commercial, and public locations by the end of 2013. I recently opined that I’m not sure it is such a good idea to put the charging infrastructure ahead of the demand of electric vehicles themselves…but nobody is listening to me anyways. Next time somebody whines about the lack of infrastructure for charging electric vehicles though, make sure to mention the 22,000+ EV charging stations and the fact that any home with a washer/dryer hookup can have a level 2 charger installed for about $1,000. No charging infrastructure? Think again. This is putting lots of people to work at the same time too.
Chu also recently asserted that the “magical distances” of 350 miles on a single charge should be attainable in the next few years. He also hopes to see the cost of EVs come down to between $20,000 and $25,000. That should help mass adoption of EVs, and there ought to be plenty of places to hookup in the coming years.
Source: Department of Energy
Chris DeMorro is a writer and gearhead who loves all things automotive, from hybrids to HEMIs. You can read about his slow descent into madness at Sublime Burnout or follow his non-nonsensical ramblings on Twitter @harshcougar.