American Nissan LEAF owners rejoice: there are now almost four times the number of CHAdeMO DC quick charging stations in the U.S. today than there were eighteen months ago, making it easier than ever before to quickly and easily recharge on the go.
At the start of 2013, there were about 160 CHAdeMO DC quick charging stations in the U.S., with the majority of them located in EV-friendly key market areas like California, Washington state, Oregon and Texas. Since the LEAF was sold by many dealers with the promise of quick charging capability, many LEAF owners felt cheated by the lack of DC quick chargers in their area.
To change that, Nissan promised it would expand its DC quick charging program with the aim to at least triple the number of DC quick charging stations in the U.S. by mid-2014, or at best, add an additional 500 units.
Eighteen months since that promise was made, our friends over at GreenCarReports decided to check back with Nissan to see how things were going — and it appears Nissan’s CHAdeMO quick charger rollout is on track. As of this weekend, there are now 633 CHAdeMO quick charge stations in operational state across the U.S. Of those, only 180 are located at Nissan dealerships, with the rest at marque-agnostic locations.
That last fact is good news for owners of Mitsubishi’s i-Miev electric car, not to mention those who are on the waiting list for the upcoming Kia Soul Ev, both of which use CHAdeMO quick charging. While most Nissan dealerships are more than happy to help a LEAF customer — or in fact any electric car owner — charge up their car, not all dealerships are welcoming of non-Nissan cars at Nissan-branded quick charging stations.
Although we’d expect Nissan’s on-board CARWINGS telematics service to know about the location of all new charging stations, Nissan says it has also shared date from each of its new locations on PlugShare, a well-known online charging database.
“We’ve tried to…ensure that chargers we install, or help to install, get listed on PlugShare with accurate data – and photos wherever possible,” said Nissan’s Brian Brockman.
The expansion of DC quick charging provision in the U.S., although mainly in top markets where the LEAF is sold, mirrors that of Nissan’s massive quick charging station push in Europe. It’s worth noting however that countries like the UK have a much higher rapid charger density per square mile due to its smaller size and higher population density.
Nissan says it plans to continue its high level of DC quick charger rollout in coming months. Given LEAF Sales last month were at an all-time high, we can’t imagine Nissan will slow on charging station installations any time soon, although we do note there are some massive areas without any DC quick charger provision.
In fact, if you live outside of the U.S. costal areas and don’t happen to live near any of the prime LEAF market areas — entire swathes of the Great Plains, for example — you’re still probably hundreds or even thousands of miles from a CHAdeMO quick charger.
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