IONITY in conjunction with the Extra MSA Group has expanded its UK network with a 350kW High-Power Charging station for electric vehicles at Extra’s recently constructed ‘new concept’ Leeds Skelton Lake Services, located on the M1 J45 east of Leeds. Drivers can now charge their electric cars in less than 20 minutes depending on their vehicle’s charging capacity using renewable energy from the IONITY High Power Charging points. Leeds Skelton Lake is IONITY’s fourth station to be launched in the UK with seven others planned to follow in 2020 in co-operation with Extra MSA Group – each with the UK’s fastest EV chargers.
This is the first IONITY High Power Charging station in the UK to feature the new chargers premiered by IONITY at last year’s Frankfurt Motor Show. The new advanced chargers use halo lighting to provide customers with information about the charging status of the battery. In addition, the position and design of the charging cable makes attaching the cable to the car much easier than current units.
Leeds Skelton Lake Services is only one of three new UK MSAs to open in the last 10 years, situated within two miles of Leeds city centre – serving the M1, M62 and A1(M), for the North of England motorway network.
IONITY is a joint venture between Mercedes-Benz AG, Ford Motor Company, BMW Group and the Volkswagen Group with Audi and Porsche AG to establish 400 High Power Charging stations across Europe. The company says that with ultra-fast charging times and the selection of motorway locations, IONITY’s network will make long distance journeys far more viable than slower 50 kW alternatives. The 350 kW UK charging network is powered by 100 per cent renewable energy and delivering infrastructure capable of charging times as low as 8 minutes for a 100km (about sixty miles).
Marcus Groll, COO, IONITY said: “Our continued expansion of the IONITY network in the UK signals our strategic commitment to enable long distance EV travel and to break down perceived barriers to EV usage in the UK. Close collaboration with site partners, like Extra MSA Group, has enabled IONITY to provide significant High Power Charging capacity on one of the UK’s most important routes. Offering our new chargers in the UK is hugely important for EVs. Drivers travelling to or via Leeds can rapidly recharge their vehicles with 100 per cent renewable energy. Our network will bring 40 High Power Charging stations to the UK, providing much-needed infrastructure for the e-Mobility revolution. The reality is that 50 kW chargers no longer offer customers fast enough charging on motorways and key travel routes and will therefore not facilitate the transition to e-Mobility. IONITY’s chargers are prepared for the advancement of battery technology and EVs of the future. Our network makes long-distance e-Mobility a seamless experience.”
With reference to the COVID-19 crisis, Groll added, “During the ongoing unfortunate Coronavirus pandemic, we are continuing to provide full support to our customers and essential service providers, as we know that a great many people depend on an EV for their own essential journeys. We advise all our customers to follow government regulations on social distancing and hygiene measures while they charge with IONITY, to minimise the risk of infection and ensure safety for all users”.
Andrew Long, CEO of Extra MSA Group, said: “Whilst we obviously wish that the circumstances for opening Leeds Skelton Lake Services could have been different, we are proud to open this latest ‘new concept’ MSA and one which will provide a ‘critical infrastructure’ role for the safe and efficient operation of this section of the Motorway Network. We are pleased to be working jointly with IONITY and look forward to the opening of the other seven Extra/IONITY ‘High Powered’ EV Charging Stations at our other MSA locations later this year, these significantly including M40 J2 Beaconsfield and M25 J9-J10 Cobham Services.”