In the new era, there are fast-charging options for customers. Though cheaper options are considered, General Motors’ strategy to install 40,000 level 2 chargers are being criticized over by some. It brings up the question of how this could impact a customer’s experience with the brand.
GM is going all in on electric vehicles with the strategy of providing an EV for everyone. The automaker’s CEO, Mary Barra, has made it well-known the company is looking to lead the auto industry into a new (electric) era, going as far as to say they will beat current leader Tesla. One way of doing so, GM believes, is by utilizing its extensive dealership network and driving adoption in untapped markets. With nearly 90% of the US popular living within ten miles of a GM dealership, the company rolled out its Dealer Charging Community Program in October 2021. The dealership program is designed to drive EV adoption and access to charging infrastructure in “underserved, rural, and urban areas.”
GM will give its dealers up to ten new UIltium-branded EV chargers to install throughout the community, deploying up to 40,000 chargers in total. GM revealed earlier this month that almost 1,000 dealers have signed on to participate so far, which will result in an extensive network of chargers.
GM’s vice president of the EV ecosystem, Hoss Hassani recently told, “That’s going to be hugely consequential to the decision of which EV people want to choose. We know that’s going to catapult General Motors to a leadership category in EVs.” However, there’s a caveat. The chargers are Level 2, meaning it could take several hours to charge up your electric vehicle battery. Hassani said, “Participating dealers are eligible to receive up to 10 19.2 kilowatt level 2 charging stations, allowing drivers to get a roughly 80% battery charge in under three hours.”
Probably, that’s going to take way longer to get to 80%. He adds that most charging is done at home, and Level 2 chargers “remain the most affordable option for divers.” Both of those things are true and both of these things have nothing to do with this program. Level 2 chargers do make sense in some places. Hotels, where people stay overnight, are a great place for a Level 2 EV charger. Street parking and train stations might make sense for some people. However, restaurants, malls, stores, and most of all, car dealerships are not places where people want to spend all day/night charging their cars. On the other side, Ford is also working with its dealers, announcing that two-thirds have opted to join its Model e program to sell EVs.