BP to Install EV Charging Ports

Blink-DC-Fast-Charger-Plugged-In (1)

BP Products of North America plans to install 45 quick-charging ports for electric cars at its existing gas stations by the end of March 2011.

The direct current fast-charging systems (480-volt, three-phase alternating current input) that BP will be installing are the fastest method for charging electric vehicles. The Blink charging station, which is made by ECOtality, will be able to charge a Nissan Leaf to 80% capacity in 26 minutes – as opposed to eight hours with a 220-volt charger – and a Mitsubishi i-Miev in 20 minutes. The Chevrolet Volt is not compatible with DC charging. Each Blink EV charging station is capable of charging two EVs at once.

BP’s announcement is a part of the EV Project, which is a partnership between the U.S. Department of Energy and ECOtality, a private firm.

BP controls BP- and Amoco-branded gas stations, which is where the charging stations will be installed.

The 45 locations will be in select markets that are closely correlated with the initial launch markets for the Leaf. According to ECOtality, those markets include Phoenix; Tucson, Ariz.; San Diego; Los Angeles; Portland, Ore.; Eugene, Ore.; Salem, Ore.; Corvallis, Ore.; Seattle; Nashville, Tenn.; Knoxville, Tenn.; and Chattanooga, Tenn.

There’s no mention on how much you’ll be charged to “fuel” up your EV in BP's announcement. BP’s aim from this experiment is much like what Best Buy said about its EV charging ports, which is to gain knowledge about consumer habits. From there, who knows? After all, the company is only installing charging stations at 45 of its 11,000 gas stations. There's plenty room for growth if this supposed revolution actually takes off.

If you’re still boycotting BP because of the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, the New York Times points out that none of the money from the charging stations will financially benefit the corporation. Only local gas station franchise owners will reap the rewards from the stations.

Comments 

Ken L.

I think the magic number will be 1,000 volts, and charge your car in 3 minutes or less.

Amuro Ray

There can be a lot of business ventures that BP can now partner with while customers are waiting for their vehicles to recharge...

WOW! That is superb! Such a beautiful petrol pump is this. Great invention!

Dan

Colin-

The article is a bit confusing.
Does BP control these stations, or a local franchise owner? It sounds like you say both at different times in the article.
Also, are these stations AC or DC? You say AC, but later say the Volt is incompatible with DC charging. That statement wouldn't apply here unless these were actually DC.

@Dan The pilot program is paid for by BP, but any revuene from the chargers will go to the station owners.

The chargers are DC, using a 3-phase AC input/inverter to transform the current from AC to DC.

I hope to helps you, sorry for any confusion.

AR,
The gas station "store" has always made more money for franchisees than the gas they sell. That's why they've invested so much in them. I think you'll see a lot more combination "gas" stations in the future with Subways or Dunkin Donuts in them.

Amuro Ray

Come on, D.T...these are green vehicles we are talking 'bou! U think the greenies will like Subway (sorry, not buying that Jared phenomenon) or Duncan Donuts?

More like Starbucks, Barnes & Nobles/Borders, Apple store, or even healthy food places...

Hahaha, "kinda" kidding of 'coz, but there's some truth to it. I think that if this is a final good-to-go, the supplying gas stations will actually need to have a more upscaled stores experience so that EV owners won't feel "stressful" for that 20 min time.

Dan

Thanks, Colin!

AR,
You may be right. A starbucks with Wifi would get me to stop in and buy a $5 latte while waiting to charge my leaf. You'd have to watch out for the smug police though.

Ziggy

AR-
You'll still see McDonalds and BK as well. Not all greenies are healthnuts. As I've always said - if you start to build the vehicles then the infrastructure will come. The go hand in hand.

SK

And here the Volt is getting left on the sidelines. I'm not surprised by this.

EV Motorhead

Without level I chargers available at ALL their stations, this level III only charger is the equivalent of BP giving EV drivers the finger AND saying "let us try to reduce your power pack life for you." Wait, I forgot, every single BP station already has regular electric outlets. Those ARE level I chargers. All the station franchise owners have to do is scrawl "electric vehicles" in crayon on back of an envelope and tape it above their existing regular electrical outlets for instant, postive PR and EV user gratitude and support.

I think the company is only installing charging stations at 45 of its 11,000 gas stations.

@karen! I think its not a patrol pump its a charging port.

Terrific post! I've bookmarked your website as well considering I realized it is truly educational and I enjoyed reading your posts.

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