Love's Truck Stops Adding EV Charging Stations

loves truck stops adding ev charging stations

Electrify America, the U.S. company Volkswagen had to create as part of its diesel emissions penance, announced Wednesday that it will work with Love’s Travel Stops to bring ultra-fast electric vehicle charging stations to seven locations in half a dozen states.

While much of the group’s work has revolved around servicing areas (often through business partnerships) where EVs tend to proliferate, the plan has also been to bolster the national charging infrastructure by providing routes that could help facilitate long-distance travel.

The new charging stations — located in Oklahoma, New Mexico, Utah, Florida, New York and Arizona — will account for a combined 28 EV chargers and should available for public use by early 2021. In its announcement, Electrify America said previous work with Love’s allowed it to complete a cross-country route between Los Angeles to Washington, D.C.

While a drop in the bucket in terms of nationwide charging coverage, partnering with Love’s seems a wise move. With over 500 locations in most American states, the travel stops tend to be among the better options for those journeying long distances. They’re also usually designed with sufficient distractions and amenities to make waiting for a recharge easier to endure. The deal is good for Love’s as well, since EV drivers will be required to linger a bit longer than their gasoline-dependent contemporaries — likely leading to additional purchases.

“As we continue building charging stations at accessible sites, Love’s Travel Stops was a perfect fit because of its convenient locations near major highways,” said Rachel Moses, senior manager for site acquisition, development and strategy at Electrify America. “Providing EV drivers with the opportunity to charge their vehicles at Love’s locations will help instill confidence for longer interstate trips, and can encourage more consumers to consider making the switch to electric.”

Electrify America said Love’s customers will have access to chargers ranging in power from 150 kilowatt (kW) to 350 kW — depending on location. Five of the sites are already open, with the planned stations in New York and Arizona being added “soon.”

While taking a company at its word is always perilous, Electrify America has done a pretty good job at establishing functional charging routes between states. Granted, you’re totally out of luck if you happen do be driving through North Dakota. Yet a cross-country journey is still possible with a little advanced planning, and coastal trips (which have the highest density of chargers) should be easier still.

The company also has helpful map of its station locations one could peruse before setting out, and the map proves that it’s been quite busy over the past few years. But it’s still only a sliver of what the country needs before EVs can be driven around as carefree as gas-powered automobiles. Large gaps in the nation’s charging infrastructure remain, and many more rural and remote charging sites will need to be added if electrification is ever to go mainstream.

[Image: Electrify America]

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  • SCE to AUX SCE to AUX on Aug 19, 2020

    "the plan has also been to bolster the national charging infrastructure by providing routes that could help facilitate long-distance travel." Yes - good plan. Installing chargers where people don't need them is a waste of time, and is the reason some charging companies have failed. I think of this every time I see a charger at a grocery story or an urban parking garage. EVs arriving at these spots have already charged at home, and have likely traveled only a short distance.

    • See 1 previous
    • Indi500fan Indi500fan on Aug 19, 2020

      I usually see a couple Teslas at the local Meijer charge station, but the charger is a long way from the store entrance so I wonder if the cars are from some nearby condos.

  • Notapreppie Notapreppie on Aug 19, 2020

    Since Love's is primarily a rural watering hole, I expect a lot of these to be blocked by good ol' boys in their brodozers.

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    • Rpn453 Rpn453 on Aug 21, 2020

      @mcs It would be easy for a 5000 lb AWD EV to drag a half-ton that is in park in 2WD. Even a 3/4-ton in park in 2WD should be pretty easy. With a really good jerk and excellent tires, maybe it's possible to get a parked 8000 lb truck locked in 4WD moving enough to keep the dynamic friction up to the point that it can be maintained. But I'd have to see it to believe it. I can only imagine an EV hooking up and then the brodozer driver coming out and dragging the EV around like this, except with far less effort involved:

  • Bryan Raab Davis I actually did use the P of D trope, but it was only gentle chiding, for I love old British cars of every sort.
  • ScarecrowRepair The 1907 Panic had several causes of increased demand for money:[list][*]The semi-annual shift of money between farms and cities (to buy for planting and selling harvests)[/*][*]Britain and Germany borrowing for their naval arms race[/*][*]San Francisco reconstruction borrowing after the 1906 earthquake and fire[/*][/list]Two things made it worse:[list][*]Idiotic bans on branch banking, which prevented urban, rural, and other state branches from shifting funds to match demands. This same problem made the Great Depression far worse. Canada, which allowed branch banking, had no bank failures; the US had 9000 failures.[/*][*]Idiotic reserve requirements left over from the Civil War which prevented banks from loaning money; they eventually started honoring IOUs illegally and started the recovery.[/*][/list]Been a while since I read up on it, so I may have some of the details wrong. But it was an amazing clusterfart which could have been avoided or at least tamed sooner if states and the feds hadn't been so ham handed.
  • FreedMike Maybe this explains all the “Idiots wrecking exotic cars” YouTube videos.
  • FreedMike Good article! And I salute the author for not using the classic “Lucas - prince of darkness” trope, well earned as it may be. We all know the rap on BL cars, but on the flip side, they’re apparently pretty easy to work on (at least that’s the impression I’ve picked up). On the other hand, check the panel fits on the driver’s and passenger’s doors. Clearly, BL wasn’t much concerned with things like structural integrity when it chopped the roof off a car designed as a coupe.
  • Mongo312 Had an 89SE, 92SE and an 03SE all with stick. The 03 took almost 3 months to find because there were so few produced with a manual transmission and dealers didn't want to give them up. Ended up buying one from a dealership in San Antonio and having it shipped here to St Louis.