Better Place Inc. has teamed up with Australia carmaker GM Holden Ltd. to provide battery recharging services and equipment for the Volt electric car. Holden announced that Better Place will develop membership packages for Volt customers, including the installation of a ‘Charge Spot’ unit at home or work, and zero emissions charging provided through the purchase of renewable energy or 100% government certified renewable energy certificates.
Holden Energy and Environment director Richard Marshall said, "A Volt can take less than 6 hours to charge using a 240-volt 10-amphere charge through a regular household outlet. Customers who choose to install a Better Place Charge Spot can charge their Volt in under four. This option is likely to be popular with fleets who want to run their Volts predominantly on the initial battery charge."
Holden estimates the cost of a full batter recharge at AU$2.50.
Marshall added, "The Volt is unique among electric cars as it can charge from a regular household outlet, but we know from overseas’ experience that Volt customers are likely to also look for faster charging options. And while the Volt is not restricted in range compared to other standard electric vehicles, we do expect that drivers will prefer to drive on battery only wherever possible.'
Better Place will offer Volt drivers the potential to drive with zero emissions up to 87 kilometres. The Holden Volt produces no tailpipe emissions when it is running petrol-free on its initial battery power and Better Place offers zero emissions charging through the purchase of only renewable energy or Large-scale Generation Certificates for its charge network. Better Place will also install battery charging points at Holden dealerships for demonstrating the Volt, when deliveries begin in the fourth quarter.
Better Place strategy and marketing head Ben Keneally said, “The partnership between Better Place and Holden means Volt drivers can choose an all-inclusive service that delivers complete peace of mind and makes driving an electric car easy, convenient and reliable. We look after everything a Volt driver needs including installing personal charging spots at home or work, delivering shorter charging times, and providing ongoing management, maintenance, and 24-hour customer care."
Industry sources believe that Better Place's deal with GM Holden could lead to agreements with General Motors Company (NYSE: GM) in other countries where the Volt is sold, including in Israel. However, one reason that helped Better Place secure a contract in Australia is that most electricity there is produced by utilities that make use of renewable energy sources, including wind farms, solar energy fields, and hydroelectric power, in contrast to the situation in Israel.
Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on July 10, 2012
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