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Half a dozen major carmakers are joining forces in a $1-billion push to develop a fast-charging network in the United States.
The push, according to a report in the Wall Street Journal citing unnamed sources, aims to remove one of the obstacles to greater EV adoption, namely the lack of sufficient numbers of chargers.
The WSJ reports that the companies taking part in the venture confirmed the plan, saying they intended to roll out 30,000 fast EV chargers across the country over the next several years.
These companies include Honda, BWM, Kia, Hyundai, Stellantis, General Motors, and Mercedes-Benz.
The first chargers in the new network should be installed and ready to go next year, the companies also said, in urban and highway areas.
Installing chargers along highways would be the trickier part of the venture—there aren’t always convenient electricity supply links for EV chargers along highways.
Lack of charging infrastructure has been recognized by the EV industry as a significant deterrent to more EV purchases but tacking this deterrent has been tricky: companies engaged in charger installation are not willing to risk their potential profits by building the chargers and then finding out there are not enough EVs to make them profitable.
The carmakers appear to have found a way around that stalemate to ensure their own future profits as they go all in on the EV bet. By building a charging network, however much it costs, they would probably motivate more people to buy EVs, with the help of the government, which is providing generous subsidies for such purchases.
The subsidies won’t always remain generous, however. In some states, the money has already started to run out and this has had an immediate, and negative, effect on EV purchases. Such developments cast a shadow over the longer-term profitability of the industry despite strong government support.
By Irina Slav for Oilprice.com
Irina is a writer for Oilprice.com with over a decade of experience writing on the oil and gas industry.