Volkswagen partners with BP to keep electric plan charged up

Volkswagen, Europe’s largest automotive group, has announced it is teaming up with local energy players to ensure that battery vehicles can plug in when they are on the road.

VW is launching investment joint ventures with BP in the UK and in Germany — where BP trades as Aral — and with Iberdrola in Spain and Enel in Italy to produce public fast-charging networks, the sort that can provide 100 miles’ worth of battery charge in about ten minutes.

BP joined the green motoring revolution when it acquired Chargemaster, Britain’s innovative market-leading charge point manufacturer in 2018, recently renaming the business BP Pulse.

The partnership will not mean that only cars in the Volkswagen group — which includes Bentley, Porsche, Lamborghini, Audi, Skoda and Seat — can use BP chargers but that information technology built into those marques will help drivers locate BP charge points and pay for them remotely.

“Partnering with Volkswagen Group, we intend to address a key concern for people considering buying an electric vehicle: range anxiety,” Emma Delaney, BP executive vice-president, said .

“Together we can provide drivers in the UK and Europe with the fast, reliable and convenient charging solutions they need to feel more confident about making the switch.”

Yesterday it was revealed that Britain’s largest independent filling station company Motor Fuels Group is to deploy 3,000 ultra-fast chargers across its 900-strong estate of forecourts.

VW also said it aims to secure supply contracts with the six new gigafactories that need to be built in Europe to provide the battery cells for electric cars.

Electric dreams of $10bn

Electric vehicle manufacturers are forecasting annual sales of $10 billion as they hit the stock market via special acquisition listings.

Arrival Group, a British start-up focused on vans and buses, and the carmakers Fisker and Faraday Future are among five manufacturers projecting paths to revenue of $10 billion, according to analysis of Morningstar data by The Wall Street Journal.

Google took almost eight years and Tesla spent over a decade building towards the milestone. Arrival, Faraday and Fisker are planning to reach it within three years.

Some analysts have questioned the ambitious forecasts, raising the prospect of potential overestimates of future demand for their vehicles.

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