Rivian is planning to install 10,000 new EV chargers, “Rivian Waypoint chargers,” in the US and Canada by 2023. These will be Level 2 AC chargers, not the DC fast chargers in Rivian’s Adventure Network. The Level 2 AC chargers charge more slowly than fast chargers, but they will be operational for all vehicles with a J1772 connection.
The new chargers will be located in areas with shops and restaurants and will be sufficient to provide about 25 miles of charge per hour for both the Rivian R1T and R1S. While this may not appear to be much of a charging capacity at first glance, it should be noted that spending 2–4 hours shopping, eating, or socializing would easily allow at least 50 miles of charging. Most people drive 40 miles or fewer a day. So, having the ability to recoup this much electricity while being outside one’s vehicle at a shopping center or restaurant would be a clear benefit.
Additionally, EV chargers located in areas where people drive frequently is beneficial because they allow EV drivers to have more peace of mind — in case they get there with a low state of charge for some reason. New electric vehicles typically have plenty of range. Even so, many members of the public may still have some ”range anxiety.” Adding more EV chargers will eventually decrease this emotional concern.
Tesla did something smart a long time ago — it started building its own charging network. Today, it has over 10,000 chargers in North America. When an EV manufacturer has its own EV charging network, it has control over all the chargers within it instead of relying on public chargers which may or may not be reliable, accessible, and easy to use. Tesla customers don’t often have to hunt for public chargers, and Tesla chargers are generally faster than other the public chargers in an area, thereby providing more convenience to their customers.
By installing 10,000 new EV chargers and the fast DC chargers in its Adventure Network, Rivian will be providing greater comfort and convenience for its customers as well. Put it this way: if you were going to buy an EV, would you want to purchase one from a company that has its own extensive charging network or one that does not?
President Biden envisions adding 500,000 new EV chargers by 2030. Imagine if we get there and what effect that will have on consumer confidence in electric vehicles. By 2030, if there are far more EV chargers and EV ranges have expanded even further, “range anxiety” may be mostly eliminated.
Installing new EV chargers also creates jobs because the chargers have to be manufactured, delivered, installed, and maintained.
Featured photo by Jeff Johnson, courtesy of Rivian.
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