The partnership is not only positive for GM, it also benefits the EV market, Sam Abuelsamid, principal research analyst at Guidehouse Inisghts, told Automotive News.
Unlike Tesla’s proprietary network of chargers, EVgo’s charging stations can power vehicles of any brand.
GM’s investment “is a small piece of a larger puzzle,” Abuelsamid said. Guidehouse forecasts that by 2025, there will be 64,000 fast chargers in the U.S. By 2030, the total will shoot up to 144,000.
Customers will gain access to the EVgo charging stations at high-traffic locations, such as grocery stores, retail outlets and entertainment centers. Most stations will be able to charge at least four vehicles at once.
Charge times vary based on battery condition, output of charger, vehicle settings and outside temperature, but in many cases, customers will be able to charge their vehicles in 15 to 30 minutes, the companies said.
The stations also will be equipped to charge a more powerful portfolio of EVs coming to the market, with new technology to support 100-kilowatt to 350-kilowatt capabilities. Barra said GM will work with EVgo to ensure that the new chargers meet the technological needs of future EVs.
Advocates have touted the convenience of owning an EV by reminding consumers they can plug in at home, rather than filling up at a gas station. But that’s only true for consumers who have a single-family home that can accommodate a charging station.
“In a lot of areas, especially urban and suburban areas, you have people that live in multi-unit dwellings and apartments, or even if they have a house, they have to rely on street parking. So they can’t plug in at home,” said Abuelsamid. “To have fast charging available where people live in urban and suburban areas, you start to get closer and closer to that convenience level.
“Even if you can’t charge at home, if you can fast charge in 20 or 30 minutes when you go grocery shopping [or] once or twice a week when you run errands, it starts to become a nonissue.”
About 115 million Americans already live within 15 minutes of an EVgo fast charging station, EVgo CEO Cathy Zoi said in the statement. EVgo has more than 800 stations across the U.S., more than any other public fast charging network, the statement said.
“With EV choices rapidly increasing, building more fast charging stations across the U.S. is necessary to extend the power of EVs for more drivers,” Zoi said.