Convenience store chain 7-Eleven has ambitious plans for EV charging.
The company on Thursday announced 7Charge, an EV charging network that it aims to make one of the largest in North America. The plan includes DC fast-charging stations at 7-Eleven locations in the U.S. and, eventually, Canada, with access via a proprietary app.
While light on details, a 7-Eleven press release declared that the company "intends to build of the largest and most compatible electric vehicle charging networks of any retailer in North America," and noted that charging is already available at some 7-Eleven stores in California, Colorado, Florida, and Texas.
Part of the emphasis on compatibility means offering both Combined Charging Standard (CCS) and CHAdeMO fast-charging connectors. The network won't support Tesla's North American Charging Standard (NACS), however. Tesla owners will need a CCS adapter to charge at 7Charge sites.
Pricing is determined by either by energy consumed (in kwh) and/or time spent charging, depending on individual state regulations, according to 7-Eleven. As with other EV charging networks, drivers are also asked to move their cars as soon as they are done charging, and may be charged an extra fee for loitering at some sites, the company noted.
EV fast charging has primarily focused on highway routes, but 7-Eleven locations could represent an urban opportunity for charging that's missing in many metro areas. The Biden administration is looking to fill some of these gaps with its $2.5 billion community EV charging program.
Other retail chains are also looking to install EV fast chargers. Taco Bell recently announced plans to install fast-charging at many locations, while General Motors and EVgo are forming a coast-to-coast charging network around Pilot and Flying J locations. On a smaller scale, Starbucks is putting together a road trip charging network with Volvo.