Nissan Wants to Triple the Number of US Fast-charging Stations


Nissan Leaf Quick-chargers

EV buyers need better access to charging stations for the cars to be as practical as ICEs. Nissan knows this, and estimates there are currently only 160 public fast-charging stations in the US. Not enough, the company (correctly) figures. 500, though?

500 would be better.

Nissan hopes that 500 well-placed fast-charging stations will be visible and practical enough to help the company move more Nissan Leafs (Leaves?).

The highly-publicized EV has been losing the sales war to hybrids from Toyota and Ford, as well as the extended-range Chevy Volt – but Nissan’s not out of the game, yet. Recent moves away from some expensive rare-Earth metals, shutting production to the US, and some smart trim changes have allowed Nissan to drop the asking price by several thousands of dollars for 2013. Combine those efforts with 300% more public fast-charging kiosks available for the cars in their target markets, and Nissan’s Leaf may have a chance.

Source: Nissan, via Gizmag.

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I've been in the auto industry 1997, and write for a number of blogs in the IM network. You can also find me on Twitter, at my Volvo fansite, or chasing my kids around Oak Park, IL.
  • TemK

    I live close to Silucon Valley, but not in it.
    Many people from my area commute there on a daily base (approximately 55,000) over a winding mountain highway. There are people making the commute with Nissan leafs (not leaves I think), Chevy Volts, the osccasional Tesla Model S, and many hybrids. ( In my town alone there are over 30 Leaf, 10 Volts, and a few Model S cats. In Silicon Valley the numbers are of course much larger).
    Having a few fast charge stations along the commute route would be more of a peace of mind gesture or only for emergencies. The issue would be availability, there would need to be at least 20 fast chargers at the mid way point, and I’m not sure if our local 50 year old grid could manage that.

    • Why would you need 20 chargers at a midway point for emergencies for such a tiny number of commuters? If fully 1/5 of the commuting population is having an emergency charging situation along the same route, I would think the national guard might be a better response!

  • jpwhitehome

    I see Nissan are deploying this much welcomed fast charge network through partners. At this time I have not been able to get details on how the deployed charging stations will be setup financially. Are they free for Nissan customers? Will they all attract a fee? Bit of both?

    The move to add 5-600 fast chargers is exactly what LEAF owners need, however a few more details would also be welcome. Folks may ‘assume’ they will all be free and then will disappointed if there is a fee. Nissan need to provide some more details and set expectations otherwise folks will set their own expectations which may make Nissan’s PR job more difficult.

    • Gas isn’t free. Electricity isn’t free. Why would anyone think these would be free to use?

      • jpwhitehome

        Some things are provide free some are not. Free coffee while you wait on service is commonplace in many businesses. It’s up to the business owner to determine what they will charge for and what will be given free for promotional or customer service goals.

        Kohl’s for example have chosen to make all EV charging free in the state of Tennessee (Maybe other states as well). A restaurant owner in Gatlingburg has made the same choice for his chain of restaurants. Others such as cracker barrel charge between 1-2 bucks and hour. Free EV charging is not uncommon. For example all quick charging is free on Blink Network units right now. It will change, not sure when.

        Since some EV charging is offered on a complementary point is that expectations need to be set now before people start assuming things. As humans we assume what we’d like to see, not what will probably occur.

        • Goo don Kohl’s! I think free, though, will continue to be the exception rather than the norm. 🙁

  • Dennis

    Nissan should start with having the chargers that are already installed at their dealerships on and available for use. The dealer I bought from keeps theirs off and locked. The dealer closest to me recently installed a charger and keeps it turned off.

    • jpwhitehome

      @Dennis. Sorry to hear that the dealers in your area are taking this approach. I agree they need to make them available, probably 24/7 where security permits.

      Here in TN most dealers have a unit available 24/7. Some are tough to find squirreled away somewhere round back, others are prominent.

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  • What is the story here? Nissan says 160 fast-charge stations aren’t enough? Nissan says 500 would be better? Did anybody *do anything?

    • jpwhitehome

      No more done by Nissan than Tesla. Telsa have announced a nationwide network of superchargers, currently a handful in CA and two in the NE exist. It’ll come with time..

      This is a news release event, not an after the fact accounting. I believe Nissan will follow through though the details are somewhat sketchy at this time.

      • The difference is Nissan is profitable, and isn’t spending American tax dollars to find their system.