Electric Vehicle Charging networks in Australia are now growing rapidly and today we get news of one of the largest plans to date. JOLT is a charging network that has a number of sites in Adelaide and in April announced plans for an expansion to Sydney.
Now with some new investment from Blackrock, the company plans to go all out, announcing the JOLT network will install a massive 5,000 chargers across capital cities.
JOLT uses a very different approach to competitors like Chargefox and Evie Networks, attracting EV owners with the offer of 7kW, or around 45km of driving for free. The chargers also typically contain advertising space, which has been attempted before, but they appear to be successful in selling display ads.
Often electric vehicle charging comes under fire for leveraging power from the grid. The reality is that an increasing percentage of Australia’s energy mix, is made up of renewables, but that still wasn’t good enough for JOLT. They have committed to powering their charging sessions with renewable energy.
“With the world heading towards fully electric or hydrogen fleets, Australia will follow suit and will follow quickly.
What we find in the Australian market is that people do want to purchase electric vehicles, but they don’t have the infrastructure in place in order to support their purchase. And that’s part of the rationale for our investment in JOLT.”Charlie Reid, a managing director of BlackRock’s Global Renewable Power team
CEO of JOLT, Doug McNamee said that after a slow start, Australia’s electric car market had turned a corner. New data from the Electric Vehicle Council shows that Australia is on-track to see more than 10,000 EV sales by the end of 2021. While this still represents a small percentage of overall vehicle sales, the times are changing.
The council’s chief executive Behyad Jafari said this was about 1.5% of new cars sold, compared with a market share of about 10 to 15% in similar markets overseas. He described the figure as low but growing rapidly.
Despite a lack of federal incentives, many states now offer rebates or discounts on registration and stamp duty, to help drive this transition to cleaner, zero-emission vehicles. There are a growing number of models on the market (we still need many more) and the prices are now spanning a wide variety of price points, with still work to be done on the lower-end of the market.
There is no timeline on this rollout by JOLT, but any announcements to reduce fears around convenient, rapid charging, is certainly welcome.