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IONNA, a joint venture between 7 automakers, will build 30,000 North American EV chargers

Published Feb 9th, 2024 2:58PM EST
Image: IONNA

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If there’s still one thing about electric vehicles that people are nervous about, it’s the same thing that it’s always been: range anxiety. People are worried that they’ll be on a road trip and end up stranded on the side of the road because the charger they were relying on ended up being out of commission — a perfectly reasonable worry since a lot of third-party chargers are not up to par yet.

IONNA, a joint venture between seven automakers, is looking to assist in fixing that worry. In a press release, the company announced it has received regulatory approval and has started operations in North America. The joint venture, which includes BMW, General Motors, Honda, Hyundai, Kia, Mercedes-Benz, and Stellantis, aims to build out a new charging network across the United States and Canada.

Customer using an NACS charger at a ChargePoint stationImage source: ChargePoint

IONNA says that its chargers will work with all electric vehicles — regardless of if they have a NACS (Tesla’s North American Charging Standard) or CCS connector. The company says they will be featured in desirable locations including amenities such as “restrooms, food service, and retail operations.”

Customers can expect convenient locations that will come with canopies wherever possible to even further focus on unprecedented customer comfort and charging ease. The network’s functions and services will facilitate seamless integration with participating automakers’ in-vehicle and in-app experiences, encompassing reservations, intelligent route planning and navigation, payment applications, transparent energy management, and additional features.

The company says that it plans to power all of its chargers using renewable energy and wants to launch the first ones in the United States later this year with Canada coming “at a later stage.”

IONNA’s charging stations are intended to be powered by renewable energy, and backed by the combined quality, reliability, and resources of the world’s leading automakers. IONNA targets to establish a minimum of 30,000 high-powered charging stations strategically positioned throughout North America. The joint venture anticipates opening its first charging stations in the United States in 2024, with plans for expansion into Canada at a later stage. Each site will feature multiple high-powered chargers to facilitate long-distance journeys, aligning with the sustainability strategies of all seven automakers.

The new joint venture is being headed up by Seth Cutler, who previously worked for Electrify America, EV Connect, and General Electric. In a statement, Culter said “I am honored to lead IONNA and work alongside these esteemed automakers in shaping the future of electric mobility. Our shared commitment to creating an extensive, high-powered charging network reflects our dedication to revolutionizing the entire EV charging experience and helping to drive widespread EV adoption.”

Mercedes' new EV charging station in Atlanta, Georgia in the United States.Image source: Mercedes-Benz

While BMW, General Motors, Honda, Hyundai, Kia, Mercedes-Benz, and Stellantis have banded together to build out the IONNA charging network, Tesla just signed a deal to bring its chargers to Choice Hotels and its 7,500 locations across the United States. That deal comes just months after the company announced a similar deal to build out a charging network at Hilton Hotels which will include the installation of over 20,000 chargers.

Between Tesla’s Supercharger network, Rivian’s Adventure network, and a slew of other networks from automakers and third parties, the landscaper of EV charging in the United States is going to change drastically in a few years. Even the United States government is investing millions to help fix range anxiety.

The race for market share in the EV charging industry is on.

Joe Wituschek Tech News Contributor

Joe Wituschek is a Tech News Contributor for BGR.

With expertise in tech that spans over 10 years, Joe covers the technology industry's breaking news, opinion pieces and reviews.

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