How fast is fast enough for fast charging? Twitter poll results


EVgo charging station in Union City, California with resused BMW i3 battery backup

EVgo charging station in Union City, California with resused BMW i3 battery backup

In an effort to make electric-car charging as ubiquitous and easy as filling up with gas, fast chargers are coming to malls, gas stations, rest areas and more, and these upcoming chargers are getting a lot faster.

Where original fast chargers could replenish less than 65 miles in a half-hour charging session, some new chargers today can do up to 200 miles in the same time.

Other new units being installed are planned for upcoming electric cars that can handle a 300-mile charge in a half hour. That led us to question, how fast is fast enough for an electric car to fast-charge?

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Our Twitter poll question last week was, "How fast is fast enough for fast charging?"

Since today's battery technology is only capable of accepting a fast charge up to 80 percent, no matter the size of the battery, we assume these times cover an 80-percent charging session.

With batteries of many different sizes, we also thought it was simpler to ask how much time drivers are willing to spend at a charger, regardless of the size of their battery., rather than weigh into the technical specs of various charging stations.

Our choices ranged from 10 minutes to 30 minutes, and results were pretty evenly divided.

The highest number of our respondents, 31 percent, said that 15 minutes is fast enough. That's a little slower than a gas pump for all but the biggest tanks, but about half as long as today's fast chargers.

Only a little fewer of our respondents, 27 percent, wanted even faster charging of 10 minutes or less.

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Combined, 42 percent of our respondents felt okay with slower charging, saying that 20 minutes was fast enough. The last fifth of our respondents felt that a 30 minute fast charge, roughly the current level, is fast enough.

This poll received the highest number of responses of any we've recently conducted, with 902 of our Twitter followers weighing in. That's not quite a scientifically valid sample, especially in a self-selected poll like ours. But it could be close.

 
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