Japan Is Leading The Charge

Bertel Schmitt
by Bertel Schmitt
japan is leading the charge

While other countries are still struggling with the electric car in itself, Japan is already in the middle of the big charging station craze. TTAC will continue keeping an eye on these developments. No country is better suited for self serve chargers than Japan, where you can buy anything from a vending machine, from flowers to condoms, from rice to the infamous girls’ panties. According to credible statistics, there are 23 people per vending machine in Japan. Soon, there will be more. Vending machines.

Toyota is joining the fray with the first mass-produced charging station with communications functions for electric vehicles and plug-in hybrids, reports The Nikkei [sub]. It’s from Toyota Industries, the happy big zaibatsu of which ToMoCo is a member.

Using cellular networks, the charging station will stay in touch with charging central, it will handle financial transactions via credit cars, report charging activity and any problems or outages.

The charging stations, which were developed jointly with Nitto Electric Works will be marketed to gas stations, convenience stores and other facilities where people have the 100 minutes it takes to charge up a car. One of them will cost roughly $6,000.

Meanwhile in the U.S., you have the choice of charging your future Nissan Leaf EV for 20 hours from a standard 120 Volt outlet, or within 8 hours from a special home charging dock that operates on 220 to 240 volts. The latter is easier said than done. Customers must request an in-home inspection before they receive a quote. Next, an electrician will be scheduled to install the dock. Finally, a municipal inspector likely will come to ensure the dock was properly put in. In some communities, that can take weeks,. That’s why automakers, led by Nissan, are touring city halls to talk building departments into streamlining building codes and permitting procedures. It will be a long road. “Each town and village is their own fiefdom with their own building codes,” said Jamie Young, associate legal council for Connecticut Gov. Jodi Rell, to the Wall Street Journal-

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  • TR4 TR4 on Jul 13, 2010

    100 minutes at a gas station or convenience store? That'll work...

  • JeremyR JeremyR on Jul 13, 2010

    While it's true that cities can create their own building codes, most simply use the National Electrical Code when it comes to wiring.

  • ToolGuy Question: F-150 FP700 (  Bronze or  Black) supercharger kit is legal in 50 states, while the  Mustang supercharger kit is banned in California -- why??
  • Scott "It may not be the ideal hauler to take the clan cross-country to Wally World considering range anxiety "Range Anxiety is a chosen term that conceals as much as it discloses. You don't care about range that much if you can recharge quickly and current BV's (battery vehicles) can't, no matter how good the chargers are. From what I've been reading it is likely that within 5 years there will be batteries in cars, most likely Tesla's, that can charge fast enough with no harm to the batteries to satisfy all of us with no need to increase range beyond a real world 300-ish miles.And that's when I buy one.
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  • Alan I would think Ford would beef up the drive line considering the torque increase, horse power isn't a factor here. I looked at a Harrop supercharger for my vehicle. Harrop offered two stages of performance. The first was a paltry 100hp to the wheels (12 000AUD)and the second was 250hp to the wheels ($20 000 (engine didn't rev harder so torque was significantly increased)). The Stage One had no drive line changes, but the Stage Two had drive line modifications. My vehicle weighs roughly the same as a full size pickup and the 400'ish hp I have is sufficient, I had little use for another 100 let alone 250hp. I couldn't see much difference in the actual supercharger setup other than a ratio change for the drive of the supercharger, so that extra $8 000 went into the drive line.