Mercedes-Benz is the latest electric car manufacturer that announced a switch from the Combined Charging System (CCS1) charging connector to Tesla’s North American Charging Standard (NACS) charging connector in North America.
Mercedes-Benz will adopt NACS connectors for its cars and charging stations starting in 2025 (just like in the case of other manufacturers like Ford, General Motors, Rivian, Volvo, and Polestar), but before that, existing CCS1-compatible Mercedes-Benz cars will gain access to more than 2,000 Tesla Superchargers (and over 12,000 stalls) across North America through the use of adapters starting in 2024.
“Mercedes-Benz will be the first German OEM to implement NACS ports into its new electric vehicles starting in 2025. As part of a phased transition, Mercedes-Benz will initially offer an adapter that enables the company’s existing CCS BEVs to charge seamlessly on the NACS network from 2024 onwards.”
The move does not surprise anyone at this point, as the entire EV industry in North America is now preparing to embrace the NACS charging connector developed by Tesla. Tesla, as usual, applauded the decision:
Welcome Mercedes-Benz owners⚡️https://t.co/dkqwW2ewi2
— Tesla Charging (@TeslaCharging) July 7, 2023
What is interesting is that Mercedes-Benz will also build its own DC fast charging network – the Mercedes-Benz Charging Network – of more than 400 stations in North America (consisting of more than 2,500 individual stalls) by the end of the decade. The first ones are set to launch in the fourth quarter of 2023.
To secure compatibility with CCS1- and NACS-compatible vehicles, Mercedes-Benz intends to use both charging plugs at its chargers. That’s especially important as the network will be “universally open to electric vehicles from all brands”.
Globally (in North America, Europe, China, and other core markets), the Mercedes-Benz Charging Network will consist of more than 2,000 charging stations (called Charging Hubs) and more than 10,000 individual charging points by 2030.
According to Mercedes-Benz, the new network “will set a new standard for EV infrastructure, enabling a convenient charging experience in terms of fast, safe, and green charging of electric vehicles”.
Ola Källenius, Chairman of the Board of Management Mercedes-Benz Group AG, said:
“Our strategic priority is clear: Building the world’s most desirable cars. To accelerate the shift to electric vehicles, we are dedicated to elevating the entire EV-experience for our customers – including fast, convenient, and reliable charging solutions wherever their Mercedes-Benz takes them. That’s why we are committed to building our global Mercedes-Benz High-Power Charging Network, with the first sites opening this year. In parallel, we are also implementing NACS in our vehicles, allowing drivers to access an expansive network of high-quality charging offerings in North America.“
Andrew Cornelia, CEO of Mercedes-Benz HPC North America, said:
“With the development of Mercedes-Benz’s new North American High-Power Charging Network, we are ready to redefine the electric vehicle charging experience. We’re building on our strong brand promise here by leveraging the renowned quality, reputation, and customer focus for which Mercedes-Benz has been known for well over a century.”