Electric vehicles are quickly becoming more widely accepted as a practical means of transportation but the lack of infrastructure to support them is still a roadblock to widespread adoption. Royal Dutch Shell is buying in to support electric vehicles by building 80 new charging stations across Europe by 2019.
Shell has made an agreement with Ford, Volkswagen, BMW and Daimler. These major automotive companies have formed a jointly-owned venture named IONITY that operates a fast-charging network. With the help of Shell, fast charging for electric vehicles will be coming to 10 countries in Europe. Belgium, France, Great Britain, the Netherlands, Austria, Poland, Slovakia, Slovenia, the Czech Republic and Hungary are among the recipients of new infrastructure.
Using the Combined Charging System (CCS) European standard, up to 350kW can be delivered. This leaves plenty of room for future growth since the current electric vehicles available for purchase cannot charge at even half this rate. For reference, Tesla Supercharging stations are limited to 120kW maximum per car or 145kW split between two adjacent cars.
Each recharging station built will have an average of six plug-in points. IONITY's goal is to place charging stations roughly 120 kilometers apart. It may not be convenient for everyone but offering relatively easy access to fast-charging stations will make it nearly as easy to travel in an electric vehicle as it is today in a car using a combustion engine.
By 2025, Shell is estimating that electric vehicles could account for as many as 10 percent of all vehicles on the road, reducing the demand for oil by as much as 800,000 barrels daily.