Advertisement

VW’s Tesco charge point deal a breakthrough for EVs

Charging points in supermarket carparks is a leap forward for the electric car market, says John McIlroy

The push towards electric vehicles was always going to have ‘pinch points’ to hold it back. In the early days it was technology; we’re still emerging from the era when range was the issue. In some cases, it’s production and availability; witness the lengthy waiting lists for the likes of the Jaguar I-Pace and Hyundai Kona Electric.

Advertisement - Article continues below

Through it all, though, has been the nagging belief that if the above factors were to be solved overnight, the infrastructure – the charging network – would be woefully incapable of keeping up with demand. Who, it was frequently asked, would invest the cash to make EVs viable? Could private companies provide enough of the network, or would Government need to get involved?

This week, we see a good example of the progress that could and should make this argument irrelevant for the foreseeable future. It’s the announcement by Volkswagen, Tesco and Pod Point of plans to install 2,400 charging points in 600 supermarket car parks around the UK.

Just as we’ve been used to getting our cars washed as we shop, now it seems we’ll also be able to top up their batteries. And in one fell swoop, this will expand the UK’s public charge point network by around 14 per cent.

What’s in it for VW? Well, it believes on-screen publicity on the charging points themselves justifies the investment. That and the fact it breaks down another barrier for those who’d like to switch to electric motoring but aren’t yet sold on the ability to charge up. And just in time for VW’s I.D. range of all-electric vehicles.

Of course, extra charging points at supermarkets won’t solve all of the potential problems – but the announcement shows how one major initiative from a couple of big-hitters could make the difference for thousands of potential EV customers. And if VW and Tesco believe it’s worth doing, you can bet the other major supermarket chains and car makers will be considering something similar.

Looking for an electric car? Here's a list of our favourites...

Advertisement
Advertisement

Recommended

"Despite the tragedy of 2020 so far, several intriguing developments emerged in the final week of June"
Opinion

"Despite the tragedy of 2020 so far, several intriguing developments emerged in the final week of June"

Mike Rutherford recounts some significant stories that may have passed you by in recent weeks
12 Jul 2020
'Sorry Jeep, but Kia now makes the best all-American SUV'
Kia

'Sorry Jeep, but Kia now makes the best all-American SUV'

With Kia winning the World Car of the Year 2020 award with the American-built Telluride, Mike Rutherford believes Kia has beaten Jeep at their own gam…
18 Apr 2020
'Costs may drop, but buyers’ expectations don’t'
News

'Costs may drop, but buyers’ expectations don’t'

Just because premium brands can offer cheap finance deals, it doesn't mean that they can fob buyers off with poor customer service, says Deputy editor…
15 Apr 2020
“UK motor industry – your country and its people need you”
News

“UK motor industry – your country and its people need you”

Mike Rutherford thinks the motor industry can still do more to help provide life-saving medical kit
12 Apr 2020

Most Popular

New Skoda Octavia vRS 2020 ride review
Skoda Octavia vRS Hatchback

New Skoda Octavia vRS 2020 ride review

We get our first taste of 242bhp Skoda Octavia vRS with Skoda tech development boss Christian Strube in the driver’s seat
10 Jul 2020
SEAT Leon vs Volkswagen Golf vs Ford Focus
Family hatchbacks

SEAT Leon vs Volkswagen Golf vs Ford Focus

The Ford Focus, Volkswagen Golf and SEAT Leon are all long established hatchbacks - we find out which is best among the latest crop
11 Jul 2020
New Mercedes GLA 220d diesel 2020 review
Mercedes GLA SUV

New Mercedes GLA 220d diesel 2020 review

The second generation Mercedes GLA small SUV improves on its predecessor in every area
10 Jul 2020