I tried GET Electric’s latest community electric vehicle charger in Baranduda, and here’s what I found

    The number of electric vehicle charging networks is growing in Australia and one you may not have heard of yet is GET Electric. I’ve been watching their progress for a while now and when I learned of a new installation at Baranduda, VIC, just don’t the road from techAU HQ, I was keen to try it out.

    By now, we’ve probably all seen fast chargers along our major highways and while these are an important part of the charging infrastructure required for the vehicles of tomorrow, that’s not the whole story.

    Charging at locations like supermarkets and shopping centres will encourage customers to shop at one location over another. As a customer, you get to enjoy the convenience of doing the weekly shopping, while also grabbing some additional charge at the same time.

    After seeing their Facebook post a week ago, I headed to the chargers to try them out last weekend, but they must have had a setback as the chargers were still not working. Today, I’m happy to report the two chargers are online and working.

    The chargers used by GET Electric are different from the Tritium and ABB-manufactured chargers used by Chargefox and Evie Networks. These chargers feature large 1920*1080 high-definition colour LCD displays that run advertising, which help pay for the electricity used, making it economical, even in regional locations like Baranduda that don’t have the density and EV adoption of metro areas.

    The chargers today were displaying a video real of luxury brands like Ferrari, Lamborghini, McLaren and Mercedes. This doesn’t make a lot of sense to me given many of those brands don’t have EV offerings and I’m going to guess there’s not a massive number of people in Baranduda that are looking to drop $300k+ on one.

    When it comes to the charging experience, it was quite simple as I had already downloaded their app, signed up, and added my car details and payment method, I was ready to pay for the energy consumed. To my surprise, the charging session was free, but I expect this to be temporary.

    When I fired up the app and tapped start charging, it launches a QR scanner which is then held up to the QR code on the side of the charger. I was then met with a message ‘Error 004 – This charger is on plug and play mode. Please disable plug-and-play mode if you want to use the scanning qr code feature’.

    Initially, I thought the charger wasn’t working, but thinking further I considered ‘plug and play’ mode could mean, you roll up, plug in and play (aka charge). After trying to connect the AC charger into the car, I was right, it started charging.

    The app also features a location option to find chargers nearby, however, his location has not yet been added to the map, so plug and play it was.

    If you look on their website, it lists the GET 2x 22kW charger with digital display suggesting these should indeed offer 22kW per charger. I was getting a peak 11kW as I charged, this was a result of the Model 3s on board AC charger, rather than the charger, but does make you think DC would have been the better choice. I expect the reason for this choice is the additional cost that comes with DC infrastructure.

    At a rate of 11kW, I would add around 75km/hr in the Model 3, while other electric vehicles will vary. The Porsche Taycan for example, has a 22kW max charge speed over AC, so it could take full advantage of the speed on offer here and add close to double the amount of km in an hour.

    While the charging speed on offer here is slow, the idea isn’t to go from a 3% state of charge to 90% in 15 minutes, but rather to regain some range while your car is stationary and you’re busy shopping (almost like fuel for free). If we look at some of the other GET Electric locations, they charge between $0.07/kWh and $0.31./kWh at different locations.

    Overall I’m glad to see a small regional location like Baranduda get EV charging infrastructure and provide another charging opportunity for the broader Albury Wodonga area, something that is certainly going to be needed. There’s been a dramatic growth in EVs in the area, passing multiple Tesla daily now, meet many others at the local Supercharger and I’ve also seen a KIA EV6, Hyundai Kona’s and Nissan Leafs around town.

    Jason Cartwright
    Jason Cartwright
    Creator of techAU, Jason has spent the dozen+ years covering technology in Australia and around the world. Bringing a background in multimedia and passion for technology to the job, Cartwright delivers detailed product reviews, event coverage and industry news on a daily basis. Disclaimer: Tesla Shareholder from 20/01/2021


    1. Is it true that the site also provides air and air pressure checking tools, to ensure tyre pressure is ideal for energy efficiency?

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