Volkswagen announced that the company is earmarking $10 million to fund electric vehicle (EV) charging stations in the next two years. Speaking at the 2015 Electric Drive Congress, Volkswagen of America’s Vice President of Product Marketing and Strategy Jörg Sommer gave some insight into the automaker’s initiative.
A portion of the $10 million commitment, said Sommer, includes the recent collaboration between Volkswagen, BMW and ChargePoint to install 100 DC fast charges. The companies plan to locate the charges 50 miles apart along popular traffic routes on the East and West Coasts.
In addition, Volkswagen plans to fund charging stations at some dealer locations. Sommer didn’t elaborate how much Volkswagen will spend on each project, or detail how many charges in all the company will fund.
Sommer asked that the government support electric vehicles by increasing their spending for EV infrastructure and adding alternative fuels vehicles to their fleets.
“Automakers have effectively delivered electric vehicles that can satisfy the needs of most American drivers,” said Sommer.
“In addition to the investment we and other companies and industries are making, we would like to see Federal financing support for establishing fast charging networks in urban areas and interstate corridors.
“We’d like to see more state and federal organizations commit to cleaner fleets by purchasing EVs and PHEVs.
“This should be a U.S. Government priority, and federal purchasing guidelines should reflect that by giving fleet purchasers the flexibility they need. We need further congressional support with the mid-term review of the EPA’s greenhouse gas regulation to extend the multiplier credits for plug-in vehicles beyond MY21.”
Volkswagen’s announcement coincides with the release of its upcoming 2015 e-Golf, which will be the company’s only battery electric vehicle (BEV) in the U.S. market. The e-Golf will be competing with global frontrunners Nissan Leaf, Tesla Model S and BMW i3 to carve out a share in the BEV market.