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Electric vehicles are coming fast



It's obvious that the European and US diesel emissions crisis caused controlled panic in car makers' boardrooms around the globe. Plans for hybrid and EV model launches have been fast-tracked and priority given to establishing EV charging stations, to speed-up public acceptance of EVs.

A joint venture (JV) between major European car makers was announced in late-November 2016. The signatories include BMW, Daimler, Ford and Volkswagen.

The JV covers the installation of a European network of EV-vehicle charging stations, with up to 350kW charging capacity per connection. That's more than double the charging capacity of Tesla's system and should drastically reduce overall charging times. (Tesla has already developed an adaptor to suit this charging system.)

Initially, the JV aims to set up 400 sites across Europe, with the rollout starting in 2017. The longer-term view is for thousands of such installations by 2020.

The charging technology is called Combined Charging System (CCS), which is a quick-charging method that uses a combination AC/DC connector, apable of delivering a maximum 350kW charging rate. This CCS standard seems to be globally accepted as the way of the future.

Only one year ago, a suggestion that European makers would be producing EVs and range-extended electric vehicles (REVs) in great numbers by 2020 would have laughed to scorn, but at the beginning of 2017 it's already happening.

Read the full story on diesel dramas here.