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Japan’s carmakers join forces to increase country’s charging infrastructure


One of the biggest problems related to the more wide-spread use of electric vehicles isn’t one of awareness, nor one of pricing, it’s one of infrastructure. The current infrastructure is focused exclusively on providing for internal combustion engines and as such getting ‘fuel’ for your electric car can prove to be rather hard when you’re not capable of recharging at home.

Even with news from the US being increasingly good, with Tesla planning to constantly expand their recharging network, things aren’t that well-developed in most other regions of the globe, not even in Japan.

But it appears that four Japanese carmakers have decided to join forces in order to increase the number of charging stations so as to also increase the popularity of electric-powered vehicles.

Toyota, Nissan, Honda and Mitsubishi are prepared to bear part of the costs of installing new charging facilities, with the Japanese government expected to offer various subsidies in order to help with the process.

They’re planning on building a comprehensive charging infrastructure which will imply working with other companies that are already providing charging services for the four companies – obviously – such as Japan Charge Network Company, Charging Network Development, Ilc and Toyota Media Service.

At the present time, Japan has around 1,700 quick chargers and a bit over 3,000 normal charges, numbers which are considered to be insufficient. The goal of the collaboration is to increase the number of normal chargers by 8,000 and quick chargers by 4,000.

The Japanese government will offer subsidies for this project totaling $1.02 billion for the 2013 fiscal year alone. They are hoping that electric vehicle sales will make up 15-20 percent of new car sales in 2020.

We have to wait and see how this project pans out, but considering the way in which Japanese culture functions, we should expect it to have results beyond expectations and maybe offer an example to European carmakers.

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