Audi brings electric vehicle fast-charging to South Africa

Audi e-tron Sportback 55 quattro

Audi is betting the house on a future of electric vehicles (EVs). In the South African context, it has compelled the German luxury vehicle brand to invest in better charging infrastructure – for all EV owners.

Recognising that local charging infrastructure isn’t being expanded at an adequate rate or appropriate potency of energy flow, Audi has partnered with GridCars to deliver 33 new EV charging stations throughout South Africa.

The total increase in connector ports through these 33 charging stations will be 70. But the real news is that four of the 33 new Audi-funded charging stations will be of the 150kW variety.

These are the first of this capacity in South Africa.

Range anxiety has been somewhat assuaged by the latest-generation of electric vehicles, with their huge batteries, capable of impressive driving range before requiring an energy top-up.

But the issue is that big batteries need a lot of energy – with potentially lengthy recharging times.

Electric vehicle charging in half an hour

Most of the low-capacity charging stations in South Africa are too inconvenient in terms of time management. With the four Audi 150kW fast-charging stations, drivers should be capable of nearly a complete recharging in only half an hour.

Audi hasn’t detailed precisely where its four 150kW high-capacity charging stations will be built, but it will follow a data-centric approach.

That should see these exciting new additions to the South African electric car grid, added to geographic range points where they can best be utilised, with the county’s busiest highways being a priority.

Beyond the four 150kW chargers, Audi is also funding five 80kW charging points, scheduled for installation on the N1, N2, N3, and N4.

Audi has been more open about the exact location of one of these 80kW chargers, scheduled to go live in Richmond.

The crucial Karoo stopover point on the N1 between Cape Town and Gauteng makes a lot of sense for an 80kW electric vehicle recharge station.

How long will you wait to recharge at an 80kW outlet? If your recharging patience is only 30-minutes strong, you’ll add 185km of range.

Aside from these new 150- and 80kW high-energy charging stations, the rest of Audi’s investment will be 24 fast-charging stations with a more urban distribution.

These 22kW units can add about 100km worth of range, in an hour.

Feature image: Audi

Lance Branquinho


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