The largest retail network of electric vehicle (EV) chargers will be rolled out across 600 Tesco stores in the UK within the next three years, it has been announced. The British supermarket has partnered with Volkswagen to provide a charging network that will comprise of 2,400 EV charging bays, and will be installed by UK-based independent public operator, Pod Point. Customers will be able to charge their electric cars using a standard 7kW fast charger for free or benefit from the use of a rapid 50 kW charger for a small cost in line with the market rate.
It follows the companies’ commitments to be more environmentally-friendly.
Tesco is a member of Sadiq Khan’s London Business Climate Leaders group, which pledges to support the transition towards to zero-emission vehicles by 2025, and wants to offer customers and local communities an alternative to fossil fuels. The supermarket – which is the UK’s leading fuel retailer – said the initiative builds on its commitment to using 100 per cent renewable electricity by 2030.
Volkswagen is also committed to becoming a leading player in e-mobility and deliver on its pledge to sell one million electric cars a year worldwide by 2025.
“This incredibly exciting partnership with Tesco, powered by Pod Point, underlines the scale and ambition of our electric car programme in the UK,” said Geraldine Ingham, head of marketing at Volkswagen UK.
“Working with these partners to provide such an extensive network of EV chargers should leave no one in any doubt about the Volkswagen brand’s wholehearted commitment to an electric future.”
“This agreement represents a 14 per cent increase in the number of public charge bays in the UK and is a monumental day for electric vehicle drivers,” continued Erik Fairbairn, CEO of Pod Point. It is a massive leap forward for the UK and a significant step in our mission to put a Pod Point everywhere you park.”
“This is part of our wider commitment to addressing the environmental challenges that matter most to our customers, colleagues and communities,” added Jason Tarry, Tesco CEO UK & ROI.
“We want to be the leading electric vehicle energy provider and to support our customers with more sustainable solutions. Our EV network provides a sustainable choice for our customers and charging while they shop is another little help to make their lives easier.”
The charging bays are expected to increase the UK’s total charging capacity by 14%.