Volkswagen's Herbert Diess Criticizes IONITY Charging Experience

“This is anything but a premium charging experience, IONITY!”

Volkswagen Group’s boss Herbert Diess has responded to a LinkedIn post, sharing his not too good charging experience at the IONITY fast charging network in Europe.

You may recall that IONITY was founded by BMW Group, Daimler AG, Ford Motor Company and the Volkswagen Group through Porsche AG, with Hyundai Motor Group also joining later.

It was expected that the network would have had 400 stations with about 2,400 individual DC fast chargers (350 kW) by 2020. However, as of summer 2021, it’s still at about 360 stations, with the remaining 40 under construction.

It’s not only the size of the network that’s lagging; Herbert Diess points out that the stations are lacking in other areas, including reliability and restrooms.

“But: Too few charging points on the burner! Only 4 – of course, everyone stops at the shopping center. Occupied. So continued to Trento. Even after the criticism last year: no toilet, no coffee, a column except for operation / defective, sad affair. This is anything but a premium charging experience, IONITY!” – via Google Translate

That should explain why Volkswagen Group is heavily investing in the fast charging infrastructure in Europe with other partners like BP or recently with Enel X (Italy).

It appears that the IONITY network is at the crossroads right now as it will have to secure more investments from the founders to improve and expand. But will they be willing to invest or just seek opportunities elsewhere?

Info about the IONITY network:

  • about 360 stations currently installed (1,460 chargers)
  • about 40 stations under construction
  • target by the end of 2020: 400 stations (2,400 DC fast chargers, six per station on average)
  • up to 350 kW at up to around 800 V
  • CCS Combo 2 connector only

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