BMW & Nissan Plan Fast-Charging Expansion In South Africa

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Originally published on EV Obsession.

South Africa will soon be home to considerably more fast-charging stations for electric vehicles (EVs) than it was before, based on recent announcements from Nissan Motors and BMW that the two companies are now planning to greatly expand the country’s charging network.

The fast-charger rollout will begin immediately and see a “national grid” of such stations installed throughout the country (presumably in the wealthier areas of residence and commuting) between now and 2017.

Nissan Leaf via Nissan

Considering that Nissan of South Africa introduced the LEAF all the way back in 2013, and BMW recently launched both the i3 and i8 models in the country (in March), the country certainly does appear to be in need of a charging infrastructure buildout.

Worth noting is that, while a South Africa has been having recurring issues with its electric grid for the last few years (often resulting in frequent electricity shortages, and electricity curtailment to utility customers), Nissan and BMW claim that their plans won’t be affected by these issues. How exactly this will be prevented from being an issue (backup generators, solar systems, etc.) hasn’t been revealed yet, though.

“It is not expected that the country’s power crisis will affect this initiative in any way. The companies are also exploring renewable energy sources to power their charging grid,” noted Nissan spokeswoman Veralda Schmidt.

Commenting on the buildout, the managing director of BMW South Africa, Tim Abbott, stated: “In order for the introduction and expansion of electric vehicles as well as plug-in hybrid electric vehicles to be successful in this market, we need to work together.”

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James Ayre

James Ayre's background is predominantly in geopolitics and history, but he has an obsessive interest in pretty much everything. After an early life spent in the Imperial Free City of Dortmund, James followed the river Ruhr to Cofbuokheim, where he attended the University of Astnide. And where he also briefly considered entering the coal mining business. He currently writes for a living, on a broad variety of subjects, ranging from science, to politics, to military history, to renewable energy.

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