We all know cars like the 2011 Nissan Leaf feature smart GPS systems capable of locating the nearest official electric car charging stations, but what happens when you combine the power of a social network with the need to plug your electric car in? 

Enter PlugShare, a new crowd-sourced way to find a friendly place to plug your electric car in when you’re away from official charging stations, now available as an iPhone app. 

Free to download, the PlugShare app lists the private charging stations of electric vehicle owners and supporters nationwide willing to provide a free charge to other electric vehicle owners far from home.

The concept is simple. If you make use of an unofficial, privately owned charging station the hope is that you will in turn list your own charging point for others to use. 

Businesses are also encouraged to sign up, giving electric car owners an instant database of nearby businesses willing to support the charging of an electric car off the beaten track. 

The simplicity of the app and the concept is what the app creators Xatori hopes will encourage as many electric car owners as possible to take part. 

The PlugShare app is Xatori’s first creation for electric vehicles, but probably not the last. The firm was founded by Forrest North, a former engineer at Tesla Motors who went on to found Mission Motors, makers of electric motorcycles. 

Although there is only currently an iOS version of the application, an Android OS version is planned soon, giving even more electric vehicle owners the chance to take part in what is hoped to be a major revolution in the way electric vehicle charging is offered.

[Xatori] via [SocialCarNews]