Volkswagen to install 2,000 fast chargers across US by end of 2019

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Volkswagen ID Buzz concept, 2017 Los Angeles auto show

Volkswagen and its Electrify America unit announced plans to install 2,000 fast chargers at 500 stations across the country by the end of 2019. VW’s announcement on Wednesday included news that it also plans to install numerous chargers at 100 Walmarts in the U.S.

The plan is part of VW’s agreement to spend $2 billion nationwide after its diesel-cheating scandal. Of that total, $800 million will go to California, specifically.

Electrify America and VW said the new fast chargers will deliver 20 miles of range per minute, which is seven times quicker than current fast chargers.

Mark Vanderhelm, vice president for energy at Walmart, told that the retailer is trying to get ahead of the curve as electric cars become more viable options for drivers. Additionally, 80 percent of the Walmart chargers will be at stores alongside highways for easy access. The other 20 percent will be in metro areas.

VW Group’s Porsche division will also make a sizable investment into fast charging stations in the U.S. To support the brand’s first battery-electric car, the production version of the Mission E, Porsche will install 500 fast chargers across the country. Porsche said earlier this month that its 189 dealerships will feature the chargers, though others will be installed at popular spots and some highway rest stops.

VW Group’s investment also comes prior to its aggressive electric-vehicle plan rolling out. VW plans to launch one electric car per month beginning in 2022, and the German automaker will bring electric-vehicle production to North America in 2021.

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