Mercedes-Benz is preparing to build its own premium fast-charging network for electric cars, planning to globally deploy over 2,000 chargers by the end of 2024 and more than 10,000 by 2030.
The first Mercedes-Benz high-power charging stations are expected to open in October 2023. In the United States, the first station will be installed in Atlanta. Simultaneously, Mercedes-Benz will open a station in Chengdu, China, and Mannheim, Germany.
The German manufacturer has named its network the Mercedes-Benz High-Power Charging Network, while the stations are called Charging Hubs.
Depending on the region, Charging Hubs will be equipped with high-power chargers (up to 400 kilowatts) with the respective standard charging systems— CCS1 and NACS in North America, CCS2 in Europe (and in many other markets), and GB/T in China.
As we understand, Mercedes-Benz will initially use CCS1 in North America but later will add NACS charging plugs, as the switch from CCS1 to NACS has already been confirmed, starting in 2025.
Mercedes-Benz would like to have a premium charging network available for all electric vehicles, regardless of the brand. The main focus is on a pleasant and safe customer experience.
The Charging Hubs are to be located in highly trafficked areas and select Mercedes-Benz dealerships, offering:
- Multiple high-power fast chargers
- Plug & Charge feature
- Nearby amenities, such as refreshments, snacks, and restroom facilities
- Surveillance cameras to ensure safety
- Intelligent light poles (at select sites) to offer not only appropriate lighting but also functional LED elements that provide information on the availability of the charging point and the charging status of the vehicle
- Canopies (at select sites) for protection against inclement weather
- Solar panels (at select sites)
- 100% renewable electricity (through green electricity supply contracts wherever possible or by using renewable energy certificates from an accredited supplier)
While the network will be publicly accessible, Mercedes-Benz customers will get special benefits, including the ability to reserve a charging point via the Mercedes me Charge service to reduce waiting times. We can assume that prices might also be more attractive to Mercedes-Benz drivers, but the company was silent about that.
The entirety of the Mercedes-Benz high-power charging network will be seamlessly integrated with Mercedes-Benz’s Navigation with Electric Intelligence, so the charging sites will be included when route planning.
It’s worth noting that Mercedes-Benz is one of the founders of the European Ionity charging network and recently announced a joint venture with six other OEMs to expand North American charging infrastructure. Together with its new in-house charging network and access to the Tesla Supercharging network in North America (by way of a switch to the NACS charging connector), the company is significantly strengthening its charging position, acknowledging how important it is for customers.