Chargepoint, an independent EV charging station manufacturer and charging network operator, announced today that it is introducing a new 400 kW DC fast-charging infrastructure, which is faster than even the most high-powered stations announced by other manufacturers for deployment toward the end of the year.
The first stations equipped with the new 400 kW technology will be deployed this year and available to customers starting in July 2017, according to the company.
It will work with both CCS and CHAdeMO standards and therefore, it should be compatible with most electric vehicles capable of DC fast-charging – though of course, no electric car is currently capable of taking 400 kW, but some upcoming EVs, including the Tesla Model 3 and the Porsche Mission E just to name a few, are expected to be able to handle this kind of power output.
It will also work with electric trucks and buses.
Chargepoint is calling the new platform ‘Express Plus’ and it’s an entirely new charging architecture for the company. It’s highly modular and separated into charging modules, which are stacked to create ‘Power cubes’ – pictured above next to the charging ports.
Pasquale Romano, CEO of ChargePoint, commented on the announcement:
“Express Plus is a platform built to support ChargePoint’s vision for the future of DC fast charging: ultra-fast, scalable and incredibly efficient charging that’s conveniently located where drivers need it for long trips. Express Plus charging centers can start small and grow as needed by adding charging capacity without further construction. Together with our commercial and residential charging solutions, Express Plus completes the technology offering required to make fully electric transit a reality.”
Here are the power modules and power cubes:
Depending on how you configure the number of the ‘Power Cubes’ and the number of charging ports, you can get a charging rate of up to 400 kW.
The company gave a few examples of configurations:
The total output is faster than the current best, Tesla’s Supercharger at 145 kW, and even what automakers have been calling ‘ultra fast-charging‘, which is 350 kW and coming around the end of the year for the first few stations in California and Europe.
The only thing that could beat the charge rate is the upcoming next generation of Tesla’s Supercharger, which could be significantly higher as CEO Elon Musk hinted to last month.
Chargepoint is also claiming “the thinnest, most flexible high-capacity charging cables on the market” enabled through a new liquid cooling technology they developed. We will check it out at CES later today.
Additionally, the company is also launching another DC fast-charing platform called ‘ChargePoint Express 250’ alongside the ‘Express Plus’, but this one is much less exciting at a 62 kW charge rate.