World's largest fast-charging site opens in Norway: 28 electric cars can charge, all standards included


DC fast-charging site in Nebbenes, Norway [photo: Norsk elbilforening]

DC fast-charging site in Nebbenes, Norway [photo: Norsk elbilforening]

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Norway has once again proven to be the friendliest place in the world for electric cars.

The country where plug-in cars make up a higher proportion of new-car sales than any other now also boasts the world's largest single DC fast-charging site.

It's located in Nebbenes, a rural town about 40 miles from the Norwegian capital of Oslo.

DON'T MISS: What can we learn from electric-car owners in Norway (more than 100K of them)?

And it can boast that it has the capability to charge 28 electric cars simultaneously—across all current DC fast-charging standards.

The charging site opened Thursday with a celebration attended by numerous electric-car drivers, including 150 Tesla owners, as described in a blog post by the Norsk elbilforening (Norwegian EV Association).

Large DC fast-charging sites are less common than sites dedicated to slower Level 2 AC charging, although Tesla Motors has had to expand some of its most-used Supercharger sites in California.

Electric-car rally in Geiranger, Norway [Image: Norsk elbilforening via Flickr]

Electric-car rally in Geiranger, Norway [Image: Norsk elbilforening via Flickr]

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DC fast-charging equipment is more expensive than Level 2 equipment, and stations providing DC fast-charging demand far more electrical capability.

Development of DC fast-charging infrastructure has also split along the lines of the three competing standards.

The CHAdeMO standard is preferred by Asian carmakers, while all U.S. and German carmakers except Tesla have committed to the Combined Charging Standard (CCS).

ALSO SEE: Norwegian Electric-Car Club's Scenic Driving Video: Surprise Hit

Tesla uses its own, unique Supercharger standard and plug, available at a company-operated network of charging sites (although it does sell adapters that allow cars to be charged from CHAdeMO plugs).

The fractured nature of DC fast-charging infrastructure means that availability can vary widely depending on what model of car a person owns.

In the U.S., Tesla has built a substantial network of Supercharger sites, while Nissan has encouraged the development of CHAdeMO sites to support its Leaf electric car.

2016 Bentley Continental GT Speed, First Drive, Oslo, Norway

2016 Bentley Continental GT Speed, First Drive, Oslo, Norway

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Development of CCS charging sites had lagged somewhat, as none of the automakers offering CCS-equipped cars have so far made the commitment that Tesla or Nissan has.

On the other hand, most publicly funded fast-charging sites these days have one charging station with two cables: one for CHAdeMO, one for CCS. Those funded by carmakers don't necessarily offer that flexibility.

It all goes to show that Norway remains an outlier today when it comes to electric cars. Generous government incentives have stoked consumer enthusiasm for electric cars over the past few years.

MORE: Two-thirds of new cars in Norway last month were hybrid or electric

Drivers pay no road tax, registration fee, sales tax, or value-added tax. The corporate-car tax is also lower for electric cars.

Electric cars also get free public parking, free public charging, free ferry transport, and are exempt from tolls on roads, bridges, and tunnels.

They can also travel in restricted bus lanes, although this perk is expected to be rolled back due to traffic issues.

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