Volvo Buys a Stake in Electric Charging Firm FreeWire

Volvo is investing in a startup called FreeWire whose rapid charging systems for electric cars are being installed across BP gasoline stations in Europe this year. In January 2018, BP Ventures announced it was investing $5 million in the business. 

Fast charging is a crucial factor in luring customers to electric cars. BMW, Daimler, Ford and Volkswagen have jointly pledged to open 400 ultra-fast charging stations in Europe by 2020, aiming to close the gap with Tesla.

Volvo, owned by China's Geely Holding and whose XC40 sport utility vehicle will be its first all-electric offering in a strategy to generate half of its sales annually from fully electric cars by 2025, has said it does not see itself owning service or charging stations.

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1 hour ago, Adam Varga said:

Volvo is investing in a startup called FreeWire whose rapid charging systems for electric cars are being installed across BP gasoline stations in Europe this year. In January 2018, BP Ventures announced it was investing $5 million in the business. 

Fast charging is a crucial factor in luring customers to electric cars. BMW, Daimler, Ford and Volkswagen have jointly pledged to open 400 ultra-fast charging stations in Europe by 2020, aiming to close the gap with Tesla.

Volvo, owned by China's Geely Holding and whose XC40 sport utility vehicle will be its first all-electric offering in a strategy to generate half of its sales annually from fully electric cars by 2025, has said it does not see itself owning service or charging stations.

Had a coffee with an old friend today that swapped has Golf GTI for a four year old Nissan electric van. Absolutely loves it, just charges it at home off a 3pin plug, which is fine for his needs. But does say in the south west of England the lack of chargers is a problem for many other EV owners.  

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It's incredible how quickly these stations charge your car. In under 30 minutes your car is ready to go and back on the road. 

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I'm not up on all the specifics of the tech, but does this fast charging shorten battery life?

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I've always wondered if charging to 100% was the real culprit when talking about battery longevity. Cars like Tesla typically charge to 60-70% of full unless you put them in Trip Mode, where they'll charge to 100%. But charging to 100% will eventually degrade the battery more then charging to less than 100%. 

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This is more positive news in the areas of infrastructure and battery charge time.  I'm very pleased to see the industry putting their money, and planning, where their mouths are.  Very encouraging.

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