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Electric Cars More Accessible?

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author photo by Doug DeMuro May 2013
  • New Bosch charging station starts at $449
  • Compatible with all EVs and plug-in hybrids
  • Available now; ships in June

If the cost of a charging station is keeping you from considering electric cars, you may be in luck. Bosch has officially announced a new EV charger that will cost just $449 -- about half the price of a typical home charging station.

According to Bosch, the so-called Power Max charging station will be available in June. Its $449 base price includes several features EV drivers will appreciate. Such items include an LED charging indicator, a 12-foot cord and a cord breakaway system. The cord breakaway is a safety mechanism that ensures the system won't break, even if EV owners accidentally drive off with the charger plugged in.

Bosch says the Power Max charging station is compatible with all electric vehicles. Current fully electric offerings include the Ford Focus Electric, Nissan Leaf and Tesla Model S. The system also can be used to charge plug-in hybrids such as the Chevrolet Volt, Ford C-MAX Energi and Toyota Prius Plug-In.

"We believe that, for the foreseeable future, most EV drivers will charge at home," said Tanvir Arfi, Bosch's president of automotive service solutions. "We are excited to offer the Power Max, as it [offers] a superior product at nearly half the price of the current products on the market."

With many home charging stations costing upwards of $1,000, the Power Max will make it easier -- and more cost-effective -- for drivers to charge their cars at home. Bosch says interested buyers can begin placing orders now, though deliveries won't start until next month.

It's important to remember, however, that $449 only covers the cost of the unit. Drivers who don't plan to install the charging station on their own will still have to pay an electrician to wire it into their garage or parking spot. Still, Bosch's Power Max charging station makes owning an electric car a lot more viable for many drivers.

What it means to you: If you've stayed away from electric cars until now, Bosch's new Power Max charging station is giving you a reason to reconsider.

This image is a stock photo and is not an exact representation of any vehicle offered for sale. Advertised vehicles of this model may have styling, trim levels, colors and optional equipment that differ from the stock photo.
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Electric Cars More Accessible? - Autotrader