Californians now have access to some of the fastest electric vehicle chargers on the planet… even if people can’t really use those chargers yet. VW’s Electrify America has installed California’s first publicly available 350kW EV chargers at Simon’s San Francisco Premium Outlets in Livermore Valley, 40 miles from San Francisco proper.
The shopping location now has two of the extra-fast stations in addition to eight new chargers that muster ‘only’ 150kW. If you plug in a compatible car, the 350kW units should deliver 200 miles of range in about 10 minutes — enough to be sure you get home.
The location already has 20 Tesla Superchargers, so Simon isn’t ignoring the practical reality of the EV market. Electrify America is installing its chargers at Simon’s locations across the US, 17 of those in California.
There’s only one problem: the cars that can use the 350kW chargers aren’t here yet. The Porsche Taycan isn’t expected to arrive in earnest until 2020, and even recently-unveiled VW group cars like the Audi E-Tron can’t handle more than a 150kW charger. This is more about laying groundwork (and obtaining bragging rights) than offering an immediately practical upgrade.