"A couple with a brand-new electric Lexus stand blankly at the EV charging
station, walking from one charger to the other with cables in hand. Within
minutes, a crowd of EV drivers gathers. The strangers offer to help the couple
with charging their car, showing what plugs and apps to use. Soon enough, the
appreciative pair are charged up and back on the road.
Motorists are not generally known for their community spirit and small acts of
kindness. But around electric vehicle charging stations – whether on a regional
highway, outside a cafe or in the centre of a busy city – a strange and
wonderful communal vibe is developing.
Drivers share tips on stations and stop offs, offer to plug in others’ cars
once their own is charged, or gather to help a new owner figure the whole thing
It is a much different experience to refuelling at a petrol bowser, where
people stand around trying not to breathe the fumes and avoid eye contact
before a perfunctory interaction with the cashier and getting back on the road
as soon as possible.
This difference could be because most EV drivers spend 20 to 40 minutes at a
charger, which is a long time to sit alone in a car. Or it could be that many
EV drivers are still simply excited to own an electric car, that EV drivers are
still relatively small in number so are keen to connect withs other people in
the club. Whatever it is, something is happening at charging stations.
“What we’re seeing is enthusiastic early adopters who are developing a strong
social etiquette around charging,” says Bernhard Conoplia, the head of charging
at Evie Networks, which operates more than 110 public fast charging stations
“Servo” is Aussie for “service station”, also called a “gas station” in the US.
Share and enjoy,
*** Xanni ***
Chief Scientist, Xanadu
Partner, Glass Wings
Manager, Serious Cybernetics