BP charges up with VW

BP and VW intend to work together on extending and speeding up the deployment of ultra-fast electric vehicle (EV) charging facilities at BP retail sites across the UK, Germany and elsewhere in Europe.

The companies today signed a memorandum of understanding for their collaboration and intend to finalise agreements in coming months. This would bring together BP sites and German sites of the BP-owned Aral group giving EV drivers confidence in being able to access nearby charging options. BP estimates approximately 90 per cent of people in the UK and Germany live within a 20-minute drive of a BP or Aral site.

The agreement would also make BP the VW Group’s EV charging partner, with the integration of BP’s charging network into VW Group vehicles to make finding and paying for charging fast and simple. The network would also be available for other EV customers as part of the BP Pulse network (Aral Pulse in Germany), improving access to ultra-fast charging for EV drivers more widely.

The move is another sign of the transition oil companies are making to become more diverse energy providers and distributors – and of the teaming up of vehicle makers and charger operators to ‘lock-in’ customers to an end-to-end service.

Electrification is at the heart of BP’s convenience and mobility strategy and the company aims to grow its network of public EV charging points by 2030 to over 70,000 worldwide. Ultra-fast charging units, with a power output greater than 150kW, can charge a vehicle with the appropriate battery technology for a range of around 160km in just over 10 minutes ‎–‎ broadly as fast as refuelling at the pump.

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