General Motors revealed that it calls the Ultium Charge 360, “a holistic solution to charging electric vehicles.”
Like its FordPass Network, Ultium Charge 360 integrates GM’s own applications and tools, including Blink, ChargePoint, Flo, Greenlots, and SemaConnect, into various third-party charging systems. The aim is to create a smooth and efficient environment in which a GM user can drive into a station, plugin, and start charging without juggling several applications or third-party memberships.
GM does not own an EV charging network, unlike Tesla or Volkswagen. Instead, GM’s owners would depend on a patchwork of third-party chargers with their own applications and membership criteria.
The challenge, though, is to make sure that it performs as announced. Much depends on the quality of service offered by these different charging services, a factor where GM has very little control. EV charging is a little messy in the United States, with broken loaders, fraying cables and unreliable maps. Although GM cannot fix any of the more insecure issues, it tells us that it does what it can to load a little less headache.
GM did not comment if it will have plug and charge capability in its upcoming EVs, a modern technological trend that would make charging the vehicle much easier. “We can not provide any details on any of those functions, but you might imagine plug and charge really allowing the smooth experience,” said Alex Keros, the leading e-infrastructure Architect at GM.
Two new EVs were announced by GM: the Lyriq SUV Cadillac, scheduled to be manufactured by late 2022, and the GMC Hummer EV, scheduled for late 2021. More info about the Hummer electric SUV and two new models of the Chevy Bolt have been announced this year. And GM has said that it will release a Chevy 400-kilometer electric pickup truck.
Hester said that by September 2021, Ultium Charge 360’s “big functions” would be available. The latest features are listed as a ‘one-click to activate’ EV charger.