Info & News
EV Charging Launch at Bayfair Mount Maunganui
Written by Ben McConnell
Last Friday (March 4th) saw the launch of four, eagerly anticipated electric car charging car parks in Bayfair shopping mall, Tauranga. Two of the new car parks have access to AC fast charging units, whilst the remaining two car parks have access to DC rapid charger units. The unveiling of the electric station was provided somewhat ironically by pro-oil exploration enthusiast Transport Minister Simon Bridges. Government officials aside, the unveiling of the station proved popular with electric vehicle owners and enthusiasts, who were on hand with some very impressive Tesla vehicles.
So, what do these chargers provide? Essentially, Bayfair mall is now offering the AC fast charging units for free, with the chargers delivering a full supply of power to a Nissan leaf in six to eight hours. It’s purpose serves as more of a top up, rather than full charge supply.
The rapid charger, however, delivers a maximum of 50kWh direct to the cars battery making a full charge up a speedy affair. For instance, 20 minutes is all it will take to fully charge an electric vehicle such as the Nissan Leaf.
Speaking to Steve West from Chargenet (Chargenet organised the rapid charger installation), he explained how the Veefil rapid charge model was chosen for it's slick design and slimmer profile, in comparison to other models on the market. The slim profile allows it to be placed optimally in between car parks. As a plus to Charge Net and the public, the model is custom built in Australia which not only keeps shipping costs at a minimum, but the shorter shipping distances keeps carbon emissions low.
Chargenet have their own payment software and hardware that have been added on to the charging unit, streamlining the system for ease of use.
Chargenet plans to roll out 74 rapid charge stations throughout New Zealand over the next three years. Yet, Tauranga was not a seen as a priority for Chargenet’s initial roll out. It was the manager of Bayfair, Steve Ellingford, that had sustainability ideas and initiatives for the shopping mall, with electric charging for cars at the top of his list. Ellingford is no stranger to sustainability, Bayfair was the first shopping center to have LED lighting fitted throughout. The center utilises grey water recycling and solar hot water panels, with solar panels looking to be fitted for electricity in the near future.
So, what’s the cost to top up or refuel your vehicle with electricity? Rapid charging on average charge costs between $5 and $10, so for a small fee you can power yourself sprightly down the road, powered by electricity.
Electric cars are the way of the future, and though this is only the beginning, its exciting to see local businesses really getting onboard with cleaner and greener technologies, we look forward to seeing more and more of these charging stations around town soon!