Urging the Federal Highway Administration to get the right answer on federally funded charging plugs

On February 28, 2023 the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) picked CCS as the type of DC fast charging plug that would receive $7½ billion in federal funding.  After that, every US car maker and every provider of DC fast charging services announced that they would migrate to NACS (Tesla-style, also called J3400) charging plugs.  Now the FHWA has requested comments as to whether the $7½ billion should continue to get spent on CCS plugs, or whether the money should go to J3400 plugs.  As of today, 62 comments have been filed, nearly all of which say that the correct answer is “J3400”.  One of the comments has a far higher word count than any of the others, and you can see it here, archived here.

Owners of Rivian EVs can now charge at Tesla supercharging stations

On June 20, 2023, Rivian announced (blog article) that Real Soon Now the owners of Rivian EVs would be able to charge at Tesla supercharging stations.  Now, after a passage of more than eight months, there is progress.

click to enlarge

Which vehicles does this apply to?   The Rivian vehicles to which this applies to are the R1T pickup and R1S all-electric SUV.  Each of these vehicles has a CCS1 charging port at the left front of the vehicle, behind the left front wheel.  Each of these vehicles needs an adapter to be able to charge at a Tesla supercharging station.  The adapter permits a Rivian EV with a CCS1 charging port to charge using a Tesla supercharger NACS (J3400) charging plug.

Avoiding incompatible Tesla superchargers.  It turns out that only some Tesla superchargers can be used with this adapter for fast DC charging of Rivian EVs.  The charging works only at (newer) V3 superchargers, and does not work at (older) V2 superchargers.   (See this blog article that discusses the differences between V2 and V3 superchargers.)  As a fun fact, one way that a person can figure out whether they are looking at a V2 or V3 supercharger is by looking at the charging plug.

V2 supercharger V3 supercharger
works for Rivian EVs no yes

As of right now (March 2024) the number of V3 charging kiosks in the US is about 15,000.  For the owner of a Rivian CCS1 EV, the use of this adapter approximately doubles the number of places where the owner can accomplish fast DC charging.

This brings to two the number of makes of non-Tesla CCS1 EVs that can charge at NACS Tesla supercharging stations (see canonical list).

Where are the charging ports in US electric cars?

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Yes, every US car maker has by now joined the NACS club (blog article).  This means that Real Soon Now, they will drop the legacy CCS1 charging port and switch over to the NACS (Tesla-style) charging port.  The natural corresponding step will be to place the charging port at either the left rear corner of the car or at the right front corner of the car.  This location permits normal parking in a parking space in a Tesla supercharging station.

But Real Soon Now has not yet happened.  As of right now, every newly manufactured EV by any US car maker that is not Tesla has a CCS1 charging port.  Where on the vehicle do these non-Tesla car makers choose to place the (CCS1) charging port?  I invited readers to respond to a survey on this.  The diagram at above right shows the results of the survey.  Continue reading “Where are the charging ports in US electric cars?”

Autocharge versus “plug and charge”

It turns out that there are better and worse ways to accomplish a seamless charging experience for fast DC charging of electric vehicles.  There is “autocharge” which is older and more widely adopted, and less secure.   EVgo uses “autocharge”.  And there is “plug and charge” according to ISO 15118, which is much more secure, but is much newer and is not yet widely adopted.  Continue reading “Autocharge versus “plug and charge””

What’s the correct list of vehicle makes supported by EVgo’s plug and charge?

EVgo’s web page  about its “Autocharge” system (which means “plug and charge”) lists sixteen supported car makes.  They are denoted in bold face in the table below.

What I learned is that that list of sixteen supported car makes is incomplete.  A Rivian owner told me that Rivian is able to do plug and charge with EVgo.

Yesterday for the first time I managed to enroll my vehicle in EVgo’s plug and charge system.  After that, I received a customer satisfaction survey from EVgo asking how this first charging session went.  The first question is the make and model of the car that I charged.  (The second question is the model year of the car.)  The survey invited me to select the make and model from a drop-down list of 73 vehicle models.  Doing a “view source” on the drop-down list revealed database codes that presumably get used internally in the analysis of the survey responses.  The models and codes are listed in the table below.

It is interesting to speculate on why the database codes run in three distinct numerical sequences:

    • nine digits starting with “7231244” (56 codes)
    • nine digits starting with “8433858” (2 codes)
    • nine digits starting with “9456995” (1 code)
    • ten digits starting with “12650109” (10 codes)

What’s striking is how different the drop-down list is from the table on the EVgo web page.  The main thing is that the drop-down list from the satisfaction survey is much longer — the survey includes vehicle makes that are missing from the EVgo web page:

I welcome comments from readers who own any of the makes listed above, as to whether you have been able to enroll such an EV in EVgo’s Autocharge+ system.

Note that “Energica” is missing from the survey, despite being listed on the EVgo web page.   What, you may ask, is “Energica”?  It is a motorcycle.

Make and model database code
Audi e-tron 723124418
Audi e-tron GT 723124419
Audi e-tron Sportback 723124420
BMW Active E 723124421
BMW i3 723124422
BMW i4 1265010945
BMW i5 945699583
BMW i7 723124423
BMW iX 723124424
Cadillac Lyriq 1265010946
Chevrolet Blazer EV 723124425
Chevrolet Bolt EUV 723124426
Chevrolet Bolt EV 723124427
Chevrolet Spark EV 723124428
Energica Experia
Energica Eva Ribelle
Energica Ego
Energica EsseEsse9
Fiat 500e 1265010947
Fisker Ocean 723124429
Ford E-Transit-350 Cargo 723124430
Ford F-150 Lightning 723124431
Ford Focus Electric 723124432
Ford Mustang Mach-E 1265010949
Genesis Electrified G80 723124433
Genesis GV60 1265010948
Genesis GV70 723124434
GMC Hummer EV 723124435
Harley-Davison LiveWire 723124436
Honda Clarity EV 723124437
Honda Fit EV 723124438
Hyundai Ioniq 5 1265010950
Hyundai Ioniq 6 723124439
Hyundai Ioniq Electric 723124440
Hyundai Kona Electric 723124441
Jaguar I-Pace 723124442
Kia EV6 1265010951
Kia EV9 723124443
Kia Niro Electric 723124444
Kia Soul Electric 1265010952
Lexus RZ 450e 843385879
Lordstown Endurance 723124445
Lucid Air 723124446
Mazda MX-30 723124448
Mercedes-Benz B-Class Electric Drive 723124447
Mercedes-Benz B250e 1265010953
Mercedes-Benz EQB 1265010954
Mercedes-Benz EQE 723124449
Mercedes-Benz EQS 723124450
MINI Cooper SE 723124451
MINI Electric 723124452
Mitsubishi i-MiEV 723124453
Nissan Ariya 723124454
Nissan Leaf 723124455
Nissan Leaf Plus 723124456
Polestar 2 723124457
Porsche Taycan 723124458
Rivian R1S 723124459
Rivian R1T 723124460
Scion iQ EV 723124461
smart fortwo 723124462
Subaru Solterra 723124463
Tesla Model 3 723124464
Tesla Model S 723124465
Tesla Model X 723124466
Tesla Model Y 723124467
Toyota bZ4x 723124468
Toyota RAV4 EV 843385880
VinFast VF8 723124469
Volkswagen e-Golf 723124470
Volkswagen ID.4 723124471
Volvo C40 Recharge 723124472
Volvo XC40 Recharge 723124473