Almost 70% of EV drivers have network access cards
MONTREAL, Jan. 16, 2014 /CNW Telbec/ - On the occasion of the Montréal International Auto Show being held at the Palais des congrès January 17-26, the Electric Circuit is proud to welcome well-known car expert Jacques Duval as its 1500th member and, at the same time, report on the tremendous progress the network has made in its second year of operation.
"Although Quebecers find electric vehicles have sufficient range for most purposes, my first trips farther afield proved to me how useful a public charging infrastructure like the Electric Circuit is," said Mr. Duval. "It enables EV owners to drive to the end of their range with no fear of running out of power, and so to travel the way you should with an EV—differently."
"We are delighted to welcome Mr. Duval as our 1500th member," said Pierre-Luc Desgagné, Hydro-Québec's Vice President - Public and Government Affairs, on behalf of the Electric Circuit partners. "Joining the Electric Circuit is like taking out an insurance policy. Public charging-station use is experiencing significant growth. In December 2013 alone, there were 1,000 charges across the network."
With nearly 250 charging stations installed in 57 cities in 14 Québec regions, the Electric Circuit allows EV drivers to travel worry-free, knowing they can fill up with clean, renewable energy whenever they need to. Users of public charging stations typically plug in their vehicles for two hours while they go about their business at any of the 55 private and institutional partners' locations.
Almost 70% of EV drivers now have Electric Circuit cards and use them for top-ups as needed. That's exactly what the network was designed for. Since December 2012, the numbers have rocketed from 200 to almost 1,000 charges a month throughout the system, 40 of them at the new 400-V fast-charge station, available since November 28.
At the end of 2013, the Electric Circuit surveyed users to remain attuned to their needs. Results will be made public in the coming weeks and will help keep the service on the leading edge.
The Electric Circuit at the Montréal International Auto Show
The Electric Circuit invites the public and businesses to visit its stand on the 500 level of the Palais des congrès to learn more about charging electric vehicles at home, at work and in public places, as well as quick charging. Visitors to the show will be able to try out different types of charging stations and get a sneak peek at Chevrolet's new compact EV, the 2014 Spark. They'll also have a chance to test drive plug-in electric and hybrid cars, thanks to CAA-Québec, in collaboration with the Montréal Auto Show, the Ministère des Ressources naturelles and The Electric Circuit. Visitors will be able to get behind the wheel of one of the 15 vehicles on display, including the Smart Fortwo Electric Drive, Chevrolet Volt, Mitsubishi i-MiEV, Nissan Leaf, Tesla S, and Ford Focus Electric, C-MAX Energi and Fusion Energi. Also, owners of plug-in EVs will be able to charge their batteries with clean energy at the brand-new Electric Circuit stations in the Palais des congrès parking garage.
The Electric Circuit
The Electric Circuit is a major initiative in the rollout of charging infrastructure needed to support the arrival of plug-in vehicles in Québec.
The Electric Circuit is the largest public charging network in Québec, with close to 250 Level 2 (240-V) charging stations and one fast-charge (400-V) station in operation in parking lots of the AMT, RONA stores, Metro grocery stores and St-Hubert restaurants throughout Québec. Since its launch in March 2012, 55 private and institutional partners have joined the Electric Circuit. It continues to expand in order to offer greater geographical coverage and serve more EV drivers in many regions of Québec.
Electric Circuit users also have access to a 24/7 telephone help line run by CAA-Québec, as well as a charging-station locator service. The Electric Circuit Web site, theelectriccircuit.com, is updated as new stations are installed or commissioned.
SOURCE: Electric Circuit
For further information:
Hydro-Québec, for the Electric Circuit