The largest retail network of electric car chargers is to be rolled out across Tesco stores nationwide.
Charging bays will be installed at Tesco’s largest Extra and Superstore car parks, with 600 outlets to benefit from the boost. It will create 2,400 EV bays – a 14% increase in the number of public charging slots.
By 2020, both fast and rapid chargers are set to be installed at the sites by Pod Point – the UK’s largest independent operator of rapid chargers
Customers will be able to charge their electric cars using a standard 7kW fast charger for free, or use a rapid 50 kW charger for a cost yet to be disclosed.
Volkswagen has spearheaded this charging initiative as it aims to ramp up the infrastructure for EVs ahead of the launch of its new family of all-electric models, and also tries to rebuild its environmental credentials after the global Dieselgate scandal.
Erik Fairbairn, chief executive of Pod Point, said: “This agreement is a monumental day for electric vehicle drivers. It is a massive leap forward for the UK and a significant step in our mission to put a Pod Point everywhere you park.”
Since the government’s Road to Zero announcement that all new cars registered from 2040 need to be “effectively zero emission” – meaning they can’t just run on petrol or diesel – there has been an increased push from charging providers and vehicle manufacturers to build up the infrastructure and viability of electric vehicles to meet this deadline.