Auto makers introducing electric vehicles (EVs) are increasing their efforts to address consumers’ ongoing hesitation against EV ownership. Concerns of many prospective customers remain centered on range anxiety and how to manage EV charging during longer trips away from home.
Key to allaying these concerns is taking the guesswork out of where to plug in. While Tesla built out its Supercharging network, and Ford, in announcing its forthcoming Mustang Mach-E, is partnering with third parties in giving access to charging networks, long-time EV manufacturer Nissan is bolstering its efforts to ensure LEAF drivers have more options when the time comes to charge up.
This week, Nissan, which has been selling its pure EV LEAF since 2010, announced it is providing new LEAF drivers access to EVgo’s United States charging network through a new program,“Nissan Energy Perks by EVgo.”
Nissan’s new program will provide $250 of pre-paid charging credits with EVgo, which according to a press release, is the largest and most reliable public EV fast charging network in America. The announced benefit will fall to customers who purchase a New Nissan LEAF or LEAF Plus in participating markets on or after November 1st, 2019.
EVgo’s network comprises more than 750 public charging stations hosting in excess of 1,200 fast charges, while through roaming agreements, LEAF customers will have access to more than 30,000 public EV chargers, which Nissan claims is the largest of any U.S. partnership.
The roaming agreement comes by way of access to the ChargePoint network, providing more than 28,000 Level 2 chargers. Level 2 charging operates at 240 volts, as compared with 120 volts for a standard household wall outlet and provides a useful charge to an EV in a considerably reduced amount of time. Under the program, EVgo will also hold roaming agreements with Electrify America and EV Connect, further augmenting the charging network available to new LEAF customers.
Additionally, through this program new LEAF drivers will have access to more than 300 fast chargers through Chargepoint’s network as well as through EVgo’s and Nissan’s commitment to install a further 200 direct current (DC) fast chargers across the United States. DC fast chargers are superior to level 2 chargers - the former, according to information on EVgo’s website, allows up to 90 miles of range in just 30 minutes of charging.
Nissan says this program builds on a 6 year partnership with EVgo, while claiming that more than 100 million Americans live within a 15 minute drive of an EVgo fast charger.
Nissan has sold more than 430,000 LEAFs globally since the vehicle was introduced at the beginning of the decade. The automaker should score recognition as the first automaker to introduce a mass production fully electric vehicle in its lineup, a model that has remained in continuous production since then.
Now in its second generation, the LEAF is one of the more affordable EVs on the U.S. market, starting at $29,900 for the 150 mile range version. The longer range LEAF Plus, starting at $36,550, will go 226 miles between charges.
Image credit: EVgo
Phil Covington holds an MBA in Sustainable Management from Presidio Graduate School. In the past, he spent 16 years in the freight transportation and logistics industry. Today, Phil's writing focuses on transportation, forestry, technology and matters of sustainability in business.