Wallbox makes UK entry with plans for R&D centre
Spanish electric vehicle charging equipment manufacturer Wallbox has launched in the UK in recognition of what it sees as one of the most important growth opportunities globally.
The company, which was founded in 2015 by former Tesla employees looking to simplify the EV charging process, is on the lookout for marketing and operational staff to launch its UK business.
It is also in early talks to locate a new research and development centre in the UK, where it will initially launch three of its EV charging units, all rated up to 22kW and connected with the myWallbox energy management platform.
This platform enables charging scheduling to take advantage of time and use tariffs and energy balancing between vehicle and the home. Technology is an important part of Wallbox’s offering, with over half of its 80-strong staff involved in software and hardware development.
Enric Asuncion, joint founder and CEO of Wallbox, said: “Customer understanding and innovation are fundamental to our approach. We have to remember that when people buy a plug-in vehicle, they are taking control and owning their mobility-energy for the ﬁrst time. This is a big and very liberating change.
“To date the emergence of electric propulsion has mostly been framed in terms of societal and environmental change. We recognise these big issues but are also responding with a new design language, one that rewards the important choices people are making with solid engineering, creativity and functionality to deliver charging solutions that have emotion and ﬂair.”
The company also has plans to develop public space wireless charging and bi directional V2G applications.
BP continues to test mobile charging units
BP has launched a trial of its FreeWire electric vehicle charging service at its filling station in Hammersmith, offering drivers free charging from the mobile units.
Upon arrival, drivers sign up to the terms of the trial including giving feedback on the service, which sees a Freewire operator initiative and end the charge using the mobile battery, which can charge up to 50kW.
The company said in January it planned to roll out the offer at selected retail sites across the UK and Europe after investing US$5 million (£3.53 million) in US-based manufacturer through its BP Ventures offer.
The investment came less than six months before BP bought EV charging manufacturer and supplier Chargemaster for £130 million, with both investments reflecting the company’s strategy of embracing a ‘broad range of scenarios’ within its energy strategy.
Tonik Energy becomes latest supplier to embrace electric vehicle tariffs
Green energy supplier Tonik Energy has launched a new EV tariff offering customers 1,200 miles of charge from its 100% renewable supply every year they remain on the tariff.
On top of the green supply offered across its other tariffs, drivers can also get £40 off the cost of an EV charger from its partner EO Charging.
Tonik managing director Chris Russell said: “We wanted to create something for those early adopters who are championing the EV revolution. We’re giving people the option to power their EVs with 100% renewable electricity to reduce their carbon footprint even further.
“We also wanted to incentivise our members to make these greener choices, which is why we’ve chosen these particular benefits.”
The company launch hopes to tap into the growing number of EV drivers in the UK, with August figures showing that one in 12 buyers chose an EV or hybrid last month.
Data released by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) show that the sector accounted for 8% of the market