The zero emission truck sector passed another major milestone yesterday, with the launch of Europe’s first dedicated electric truck charging corridor in Germany.
BP’s electric vehicle charging arm, BP Pulse, announced the launch of six public charging locations along a 600km stretch of the Rhine-Alpine corridor, which have been fitted with ultra-fast 300kw charge points that are specifically designed for electric trucks.
The corridor is one of the busiest road freight routes in Europe connecting North Sea ports in Belgium and the Netherlands with the Mediterranean port of Genoa in Italy through a network of motorways that cover around 1,300km.
Six charge points along the route are already open and BP Pulse said that a further two are set to come online within the next six months to complete the initial 600km long charging corridor.
The company said the 300kw charging stations are each capable of charging more than 20 E-Trucks, per charger each day.
The chargers can deliver up to 200km of additional range in around 45-minutes and are located at BP’s existing Aral retail sites, which offer access to hot food, restrooms, and showers for drivers to use during their mandatory rest periods.
Nigel Head, EV truck director for Europe at BP Pulse, said the opening marked “a significant moment for E-Trucks in Europe and an important step in our journey towards helping to decarbonise truck transportation”.
“By electrifying this stretch of the Rhine-Alpine corridor with ultra-fast charging, bp is enabling EV Truck charging beyond ‘back to base’ whilst rapidly learning customer insights which will directly inform our longer-term European network and proposition,” he said. “By beginning the roll-out of a dedicated charging network for freight operators and fleets, with a focus on major logistics corridors, BP is supporting the electrification of medium and heavy-duty vehicles, decarbonising the movement of goods, as well as people.
“Ultra-fast charging in the right locations, combined with depot and destination charging, is critical infrastructure to accelerate the electrification transition, unlocking the economic and environmental benefits of low-carbon commercial road freight and transport.”
The launch was also welcomed by Johannes Pallasch from Germany’s National Centre for Charging Infrastructure, who said: “To reduce CO2 emissions in road freight transport significantly, e-trucks will play a central role in regional and long-distance transport. As with passenger cars, the switch to electromobility can only succeed with a reliable and needs-based charging infrastructure. With today’s opening, Aral is taking an important step in this direction.”
The EU is working on new rules that would require all new trucks to be zero emission by 2040, although some business groups have called for the target date to be pulled forward to 2035.
The proposed target has helped trigger a race across the haulage industry to develop zero emission models that use either batteries or hydrogen fuel cells, as well as growing calls for increased investment in associated recharging and refuelling infrastructure.
BP said that by 2030 an estimated 270,000 battery electric medium and heavy-duty vehicles could be on the roads across Europe requiring up to 140,000 public and destination electric charging points.
In related news, UK charging network Gridserve announced this week that its Electric Forecourts in Braintree and Norwich have signed up to the fuelService app, which aims to make it easier for disabled drivers to refuel or recharge their vehicles.
sing the app, drivers can search by fuel type and location and once the driver selects an Electric Forecourt site they can request assistance with charging.
“Accessibility is key to ensuring that the transition to electric is inclusive for all,” said Toddington Harper, CEO of Gridserve. “As we break new ground in EV charging, access is at the forefront of the design and construction of our flagship products; the award-winning Electric Forecourts and our advanced Electric Hubs. We recognise the need to consider how we provide drivers with the right information to make an informed decision about charging on their journeys. We welcome any feedback from drivers on how we can make the charging experience as easy and accessible as possible.”