More and more Kiwis are swapping petrol cars for electric, but we’re yet to really see what a world of majority EV-ownership is going to look like. Rather than stopping at service stations to fill-up with fuel, EV owners look set to top-up their vehicles at destination-based charging stations, strategically positioned around urban areas, as well as in more remote out-of-town locations.
The idea is that drivers will simply take the opportunity to give their EV a little extra juice while they go to the gym, do the weekly shop, or walk around the local park. Not just to ensure they’re charged enough to complete their journey, but just for sheer convenience of it. And the best bit? It’s going to be FREE! Well, if you go to the right places.
We’ve partnered with world famous EV charging network JOLT to help power free charging in New Zealand and play a role in providing the energy infrastructure that’s required to make EV ownership as practical, accessible and affordable as we can.
With our backing, which will see the Electric Kiwi brand displayed on charging stations, JOLT is able to offer EV owners free charging worth about 40-50km in range every single day (based on 7kWh free electricity and takes about 20 minutes to charge but this will vary depending on battery and vehicle type).
It’s great to support current EV drivers but we’re also stoked to be involved because we understand that concerns about batteries and charging are a major barrier to EV ownership in the first place. If we get the recharging infrastructure right, more people will see EVs as not just a viable alternative, but something they can be genuinely excited about in our low carbon future.
We understand that buying an EV is hugely expensive, but as an energy retailer we can certainly help to reduce the cost of charging, both at home (as we’re doing with smart charging experts Evnex) and now in the wild thanks to our partnership with JOLT.
Practical solutions to help power the green transition and save Kiwis money is what we’re all about.
Who is JOLT anyway?
JOLT is already an established EV charging network over the ditch in Australia, as well as in the UK, U.S. and Canada. Their mission is to make EV ownership easier by making charging more accessible with its reliable, free and fast charging network across destination locations. In doing so, they could help reduce range anxiety and lower costs, while simply providing a convenient charging opportunity between home and wherever you’re headed for the day.
JOLT’s charging stations give all EV drivers about 40-50km in range for free, once every 24 hours. They can afford to do this because of the support they receive from their partners whose branding appears at their charge points, including Electric Kiwi.
Charging sessions are started through the JOLT app after you’ve created your account. When you need to charge, pull up at a JOLT location, scan the QR code or input the station ID to get going. If you use 7kWh of electricity or less, there’s no cost. But charges do apply if you charge more. (We’re working with JOLT to allow EK customers to defer their charging costs to their next EK power bill in the future).
JOLT will launch with a handful of charging stations in the Auckland area, but once they’re up and running they expect to be opening new locations every week until there are hundreds across New Zealand.
When it comes to EV charging, JOLT is certainly a disruptor because its model challenges a number of established, paid charging networks. But ultimately, it’s all about making life that bit easier, and more convenient, for EV owners. The Uber of EV charging, if you like…
Save on EV costs at home, too
We’re excited to help make EV charging easier and cheaper in the wild (you don’t get much cheaper than free). But as you know, our primary purpose is making electricity more affordable at home and providing practical solutions to incentivise load shifting, which in turn supports the green transition.
Charging your EV overnight on our MoveMaster plan is a great way to save on energy costs because you get half price rates between 11pm and 7am. Plus, as a pretty sweet bonus for the environment, the electricity used at off-peak times is more likely to come from renewable generation sources.
MoveMaster is also a great option to power your swimming pool pump or heated spa overnight. The more power usage you can switch off-peak – like washing machines and dishwashers – the more you stand to save overall.