It's better to copy something good than to do it yourself badly. GM is following this wisdom and emulating Tesla by building its own fast-charging network in the US that will connect the East and West Coasts.
That the supercharger network is one of the most important building blocks for Tesla's success is an open secret. That's probably why GM is taking a similar approach. Because together with the US oil company Pilot Company, the car giant from Detroit is now building its own fast charging network. A total of 2,000 rapid charging points are to be set up at 500 of the approximately 750 service stations operated by the Pilot Company, the so-called Pilot and Flying J travel centers, along the US highways in order to connect the cities and rural regions with one another. Traveling from the east to the west coast of the USA should be made easier and more pleasant, and the topic of electromobility in the USA should continue to gain momentum.
Basically, this should be an open charging network. Unlike Tesla, who have only recently opened their charging parks to third-party brands , everyone should be able to charge at the GM charging points from the start. GM customers should receive special discounts when loading. In addition, there should be exclusive reservation options for charging points for GM customers. Plug & Charge and charging point availability via app in real time are planned as well as free WiFi access and restaurants nearby. Images of one of GM's privileged vehicles, the GMC Hummer EV, can be found in the gallery above.
Charging points for Stromers with trailers
Charging should be done with 350 kW chargers, which are set up about every 50 miles. Particularly important for the American market: There will also be special charging stations for large pickups and SUVs, on which vehicles such as the Ford F150 Lightning , the Rivian R1T or the Hummer EV built by GMC can be charged. Most of these vehicles are hardly available and are therefore traded at insane prices - but the loading areas should be designed in such a way that they are large enough for the vehicles and can also be approached with a trailer. The charging stations are to be positioned there in a similar way to what we are used to from classic petrol stations or as is planned for megawatt charging for electric trucks , in which the trucks are to be charged with up to 3.75 megawatts.
1 billion dollars for charging infrastructure projects
The Ultium Charge 360 charging parks are operated and set up by EVgo. Together with the US charging station operator, GM has already started another project as part of the New Horizons strategy. Together with EVgo, 3,250 fast chargers are to be built in American cities by 2025. Overall, GM expects investments of around one billion euros for this.
Incidentally, GM and Tesla are not the only car manufacturers in the USA investing in charging infrastructure. With the open charging network operator Electrify America, the Volkswagen Group is also involved in the charging station business. As of July today (July 20, 2022), Eletrify America already has 758 charging stations with 2,437 CCS charging points on the grid.
It doesn't work without charging stations. It therefore makes perfect sense to set up as many charging stations as possible as quickly as possible. Especially in a country of long distances, like the USA. However, it is questionable whether another, uncoordinated charging infrastructure initiative by a car manufacturer is needed. It would probably make more sense for VW, GM and Tesla to join forces and plan the network together in order to close gaps in the infrastructure more quickly.