A pair of related announcements from GM indicate that, as the company moves steadily forward with electrification, it understands the critical importance of charging infrastructure.
GM will introduce its own line of residential and commercial chargers under the Ultium brand. The new family of Ultium Chargers, which GM developed in collaboration with charging specialist CTEK, will include:
- an 11.5 kW/48-amp smart charger
- an 11.5 kW/48-amp premium smart charger
- a 19.2 kW/80-amp premium smart charger
Each of the two premium models includes a customizable touchscreen and an embedded camera. All three Ultium chargers are Energy Star certified, and all support Wi-Fi and Bluetooth. All feature dynamic load balancing, and can be upgraded via over-the-air updates. Customers can set charging schedules, view statistics on their charging usage, and monitor charger status, through the GM mobile app.
The first Ultium Chargers will ship early next year, and customers will be able to roll the price into their GM financing or lease.
Dealer Community Charging Program
GM plans to install up to 40,000 Level 2 EV chargers across the US and Canada, and will work with its dealers to expand access to charging in local communities. This initiative, which begins in 2022, is part of GM’s recently announced commitment to invest $750 million to expand home, workplace and public charging infrastructure through its Ultium Charge 360 ecosystem.
Through the Dealer Community Charging Program, GM will work with its dealers to deploy EVSE at key locations in the dealers’ respective communities. The new chargers won’t be at the dealerships themselves (GM dealers can take advantage of other programs to install charging stations for their own use). These new chargers will be installed at community locations such as workplaces, multi-unit dwellings, sports and entertainment venues and colleges and universities, and will be available to all EV owners. GM estimates that nearly 90 percent of the US population lives within 10 miles of a GM dealership.
GM will give each of its EV-certified dealers up to 10 Ultium charging stations for free. Each dealer is expected to work with community leaders to identify highly visible, long-dwell locations where EV charging doesn’t presently exist—locations that will be “accessible, visible, and ubiquitous.”
“These two initiatives are part of our plan to put everyone in an EV, making access to charging even more seamless than before,” said GM President Mark Reuss. “We want to give customers the right tools and access to charging where and when they need it, while working with our dealer network to accelerate the expansion of accessible charging throughout the US and Canada, including in underserved, rural and urban areas.”
Sources: GM, Car and Driver