ACEA, the trade body representing European auto manufacturers, has produced a set of recommendations to standardise the charging of electrically-chargeable vehicles. The joint industry proposal will enable the use of one type of plug independent of car make, electricity provider or country.

“This is a major step towards the broader introduction of electrically-chargeable vehicles in Europe and paves the way for a harmonised solution around the globe”, said Ivan Hodac, Secretary General of ACEA, the automobile manufacturers’ trade association. “We call on the European Commission, the standardisation bodies and the infrastructure providers to adopt these recommendations and to clear remaining issues as soon as possible.”

Standardisation of the connection between the electricity grid and electrically-chargeable vehicles is one of the prerequisites to help e-mobility gain a viable market share. At present, a variety of solutions is used, leading to a fragmentation of the market across Europe and abroad.

The industry recommendations cover the whole link between the public charging infrastructure and the vehicle inlet including the communication between the two, and they address both slow and fast charging with direct or alternate current. As soon as approved by the relevant standardisation bodies, vehicle manufacturers will start integrating the uniform application in their production cycles. The auto industry advocates the full implementation for new vehicles types from 2017.

ACEA said that a unique standard for vehicle charging will benefit all parties involved: the auto industry, the consumer and the infrastructure provider.

“Standardisation provides predictability to investors; it enables economy of scale and reduces costs. We have also ensured a solution that meets the highest safety standards and is easy to use,” said Hodac.

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