GM launches Ultium Charge 360 to simplify EV charging

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DETROIT — General Motors has partnered with seven major charging providers to help customers locate and pay for electric-vehicle charging through its vehicle mobile apps, the automaker said Wednesday.

The agreements are part of Ultium Charge 360, GM’s new charging strategy that integrates charging networks, GM brands’ apps, and other products and services to simplify the charging experience for EV owners.

“GM agrees with the customer need for a robust charging experience that makes the transition to an EV seamless and helps drive mass adoption,” Travis Hester, GM’s chief EV officer, said in a statement. “As we launch 30 EVs globally by the end of 2025, Ultium Charge 360 simplifies and improves the at-home charging experience and the public charging experience – whether it’s community-based or road-trip charging.”

Through GM’s mobile apps, customers will soon be able to access real-time information from 60,000 charging plugs throughout the U.S. and Canada, such as whether chargers are available or occupied and functional or down. The automaker has signed agreements with Blink Charging, ChargePoint, EV Connect, EVgo, FLO, Greenlots and SemaConnect.

In July, GM and EVgo said they planned to add 2,700 chargers through 2025, tripling the size of EVgo’s charging network. The first GM and EVgo sites are now live in Washington, California and Florida, GM said. Each site can deliver up to 350 kilowatts and averages four chargers per site. GM and EVgo are on track to have about 500 fast-charging stalls live by the end of 2021.

As part of Ultium 360, GM will continue to work with charge point operators, electric utilities and government agencies to streamline charging for retail and fleet customers. The automaker will also update its mobile apps to simplify navigation to charging stations and charging payments.

GM is also working to provide charging accessories and installation services to EV buyers. The automaker said this year that it would cover standard Level 2 charging installation for eligible customers who purchase or lease a 2022 Chevrolet Bolt EV or EUV in collaboration with Qmerit.

GM has pledged to invest $27 billion in electric and autonomous vehicle development and plans to launch 30 EVs globally through 2025. Two-thirds of those EVs will be in the U.S.

The automaker believes chargers should be for everyone, not just GM vehicle owners. But the integrated charging experience through the GM brand apps will distinguish GM from competitors, Hester said.

The portions of Ultium Charge 360 outlined Wednesday are “just the tip of the iceberg,” Hester said.

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