Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Leaf them out of it

A power outage for Nissan electric vehicle owners;
Nissan's plan to let buyers of its electric Leaf recharge their cars for free may be in jeopardy, after the country's largest charging station network announced Tuesday it was dropping out of the program.
ChargePoint, based in Campbell [California], will not take part in the EZ-Charge promotion, expected to start this summer in the Bay Area and a handful of other markets nationwide.
The promotion gives Leaf drivers two years of free access to charging stations run by multiple companies, with drivers using a single EZ-Charge card to plug into any station. But ChargePoint on Tuesday accused one of the other participating networks - NRG eVgo - of using the program to gain information on ChargePoint's customers.
They already know they're stupid, for buying a car that runs out of energy quickly.
ChargePoint operates more than 17,000 chargers nationwide, while eVgo has 98 stations, each of which typically has several chargers. NRG eVgo is a subsidiary of NRG, a large electricity company with operations across the country.
But Nissan puts on a happy face;
"We are disappointed that ChargePoint has decided to withdraw from EZ-Charge," the company said. "We remain confident that the three EZ-Charge partners - NRG eVgo, Blink Network and AeroVironment - provide excellent market coverage."
It's just that your mileage may vary.
"To be able to plug into any charger that's available - that's a critical piece," said Don Anair, deputy director of the clean vehicles program at the nonprofit Union of Concerned Scientists. "It's just like, you can pull into any gasoline station. It needs to be as seamless as possible for customers." 
Which it isn't, so....

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