During a two-day break in his long-distance eMobility test run across Germany, Rainer Zietlow reflects on his impressions and insights from the first half of the trip.
Munich/Radstadt, 12th November 2020. Over the last five weeks, multiple automotive record holder Rainer Zietlow and co-driver Dominic Brüner’s unique marathon drive across Germany has been proving that eMobility has well and truly arrived in the country. The spotlight is on the charging infrastructure and experience available to the average German eDriver – and during a panel discussion at has·to·be’s Munich office, it emerged that although Germany’s charging infrastructure is ready, it needs to be expanded to keep pace with the explosive growth in the manufacture and range of eCar models. As Zietlow discussed his mid-journey insights with has·to·be COO Maximilian Huber and CSO Tobias Scharfen, they agreed that old habits from the world of combustion engines need to be lost if future eMobility market needs and Europe’s 2050 climate goals are to be met. That people need to know that electric is becoming ‘the new normal’ in mobility.
- Multiple automotive world record holder Rainer Zietlow and co-driver Dominic Brüner have already covered over 15,000 kilometres on their journey across Germany.
- Their route takes them from rapid-charging station to rapid-charging station.
- The duo has already tested out approximately 350 charging stations offering over 60 kW.
At the start of the discussion, Zietlow highlighted his impression that German eDrivers think with a community mindset and have a real interest in learning. “Wherever we’ve parked the ID.3 for charging, we’ve drawn curious glances and fallen into conversations,” he said. “People are hungry for information – mostly we talk about our experiences of rapid-charging stations.” He pointed out that a charge log at a station like the IONITY High Power Charger makes for a perfect display of how fascinating the process could be. “350 kW is something you can actually feel during charging. When all that power’s flowing into the car, the cable vibrates and gets hot – that’s a very exciting thing to witness.”
Charging Infrastructure Survey: eMobility in Germany’s cities and countryside
Zietlow’s main goal is to discover whether (and how) electrification is working on a day-to-day basis in major cities like Frankfurt or Dresden as well as in the rural areas. Right now Zietlow (who hails from Mannheim) would say the answer is ‘yes’ – but notes that people driving eCars need to have a necessarily different approach. Advance planning and a little spare time are essential, especially where longer journeys are concerned – and the reality that as an eDriver you charge whenever you’re parked is a fundamental aspect of that approach. “It’s not like the old-fashioned dash to the petrol station,” he said. “You have to charge whenever you can, regardless of where you are. And when in doubt, you have to look for a parking spot that offers to charge.”
Germany already boasts over 30,000 public charge points – and a touch over 12,000 of those run on be.ENERGISED, has·to·be’s market-leading cloud software. The software covers everything required to operate charging stations and eMobility services – from access control to automated billing for every charge log at over 30,000 charge points across Europe.
“On one day we were able to cover 420 kilometers without stopping to charge the car,” revealed Zietlow. “So long as you don’t ‘floor it’ and keep the speed to a reasonable 110 or 120 kilometers per hour, this is completely possible in normal circumstances.”
The Next Major Steps to Future eMobility
As the range of available eCars and interest in eMobility grows, so the pressure on the industry to expand the charging infrastructure increases too. “The new era began some time ago!” declared Zietlow in the panel discussion.
Scharfen added: “It’s not just the industry that’s under growing pressure, but also anybody with a large parking lot – retailers and employers, for example. They need to offer a charging infrastructure. Society is making a convincing move toward sustainable lifestyle options. Outdated patterns of behavior are being discarded and driving an eCar is ‘in’.”
“It’s important that the public infrastructure is ready for action at any moment, both in the private and professional sectors,” underlined Huber at the end of the discussion. “This means that alongside a further expansion of the charging network, eMobility service providers must also be able to offer reliable, accessible charging. And that continues to be our focus here at has·to·be.”
Listen to a recording of the panel discussion via the following link: https://bit.ly/2JUOMxn
Note: We apologize for the poor sound quality approximately 10 minutes into the recording. This was due to a microphone failure. The quality returns to normal from the 11-minute mark!
More about the ID.3 Deutschlandtour
The crew set off from Germany’s most southerly hotel near Oberstdorf on 28th September and will complete their journey 65 days later at the country’s northernmost parking lot, west of List on the island of Sylt. One certain stop on the route will be the SOS Kinderdorf in Bernburg/Saale, to whose housing project a portion of the funds raised by the journey will be donated. Zietlow and his team are sharing daily updates from their trip on http://www.id3-deutschlandtour.com/
Partners for the marathon include ADS-TEC, Alpitronic, CAR-connect, E. ON Drive, Hankook Reifen, has·to·be gmbh, Infineon Technologies, MOON, Steigenberger Hotels, Tank & Rast Gruppe, We Charge and Volkswagen AG.
About has·to·be gmbh
has·to·be paves the way for sustainable mobility. With its comprehensive EV charging solution and innovative services, has·to·be provides everything companies require to enjoy success in the field of EV charging: from the scalable operation of charging infrastructure to the end-to-end management of worldwide mobility solutions.
More than 100 employees from ten nations work at the headquarters of has·to·be gmbh in the federal province of Salzburg and its offices in Munich and Vienna. Since 2019, the Volkswagen Group has been a strong strategic partner of has·to·be.
Sabrina Wurzer, PR & Marketing Manager
Tel: +43 6452 21200-61