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BMW shows compact, low-price DC charger

Shown at the Plug-In 2014 conference, the BMW I DC Fast Charger has an output of 24kW and can charge the i3’s battery to 80% capacity in less than half an hour.

The unit was developed with Bosch Automotive Service Solutions and is said to be half the size of most equivalent units, while costing significantly less and can be wall mounted – unusual for this type of charging point.  Sales begin in early August.

BMW and Bosch have also designed it to be compatible with other cars. It features a Combo 1 connector, which combines a J1772 AC connection with the standardised twin DC charging pins used in the European Combo 2 version of the same plug. The latter is used on European versions of the BMW i3, as well as the Volkswagen e-up! and e-Golf, and is based on the Type 2/Mennekes AC connector.

Robert Healey, EV Infrastructure Manager, at BMW of North America, said: 'This is a milestone in the development of the DC fast charging infrastructure. With more than five years of real world experience, we understand that a robust network of publicly available DC Combo Fast Chargers is a key part of the mobility of tomorrow.

'BMW is offering the BMW i DC Fast Charger at an appealing price point, and more manageable size, to make the convenience of DC fast charging more accessible for BMW i3 owners.'

As part of the launch, BMW and charging point supplier NRG eVgo will offer free charging for i3 owners at participating locations in California. The network will be accessible via the ChargePoint scheme, or BMW’s own ChargeNow card until the end of 2015.

Alex Grant

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