Audi has unveiled a new charging hub with a “connected lounge” area for drivers to relax whilst their EV is fuelling up.
The new charging hub is set to open on 23 December in Nuremberg and will come with reservable 320 kW charging points.
“We want to use it to test flexible and premium-oriented quick-charging infrastructure in urban space,” says Ralph Hollmig, Audi charging hub project manager.
“We’re going where our customers don’t necessarily wake up in the morning with a fully charged electric car and at the same time thinking about increasing charging demand in the future.”
The new charging hub concept is designed primarily for urban centres with drivers who lack access to at-home chargers. Instead, Audi expects commuting EV drivers to reserve charging points to fill up their cars quickly, but without sacrificing comfort – hence the connected lounge found upstairs.
“We’re providing people in urban areas with charging at the price they would pay to charge using the Wallbox at home,” says Hollmig.
That price, is just 31 cents per kW/h, regardless of whether your car can use a 320 kW charger or a 100 kW.
The charging hub’s construction is modular, as well. Each cube can provide two fast-charging stations for each unit and can be assembled and disassembled in just a few days.
Used and processed lithium-ion batteries function as energy storage systems and are taken from dismantled development vehicles reducing costs and resources. It also makes complex infrastructure with high-voltage power lines and expensive transformers unnecessary.
With roughly 2.45 MWh of storage, the Nuremberg charging hub only needs a 200 kW connection to the grid. Solar panels on the roof additionally provide up to 30 kW of green energy.
There are currently six charging points and Audi believes that around 80 vehicles can be charged at the centre every day without reaching the energy storage system’s capacity. Currently, the hub is open to anyone, not just Audi or VW Group drivers.