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Charging out and about

On the road in an electric vehicle

An EV's range (how far it can travel with a fully charged battery) depends on the type of vehicle and its battery capacity. EVs currently on the market in Australia have driving ranges between 200 km and 600 km.

The average South Australian drives 35 kilometres per day. This means that battery range is rarely an issue for day-to-day use. Most EV owners won't have to plug in every night, so you can be selective about when you charge in order to take advantage of cheaper electricity during off-peak periods both day and night.

Public EV charging stations are a good option for topping up, either at your destination or during a long journey. There are already 3,000 public EV charging points in Australia, with over 750 operational or under construction in South Australia.

You will increasingly be able to find an EV charger at your local supermarkets, libraries, gyms, restaurants and hotels.

You can find your nearest charge point onboard on most EVs, or on the open-source Plug Share website when you're planning a long trip.

Types of public chargers

Electric Vehicle level 1 plug in charger

Portable chargers

  • Sometimes referred to as Level 1 / Mode 2 charger.

  • Can be carried with you in your EV; all you need to charge at the site is a power point.

  • Can be single phase, or three phase. 

  • Typical charging capacity of 2kW - 3.6kW or 10A - 15A per phase.

  • Typically adds between 10 km and 20 km range per hour charged.

 

Fast AC chargers

  • Sometimes referred to as Level 2 / Mode 3 charger.
  • Sometimes referred to as destination chargers because they can be found at convenient locations like the car parks at restaurants, supermarkets and hotels.
  • Charging cable can be carried with you in your EV.
  • Usually located in public car parks and kerb-side locations, meaning you don’t need to go out of your way to charge.
  • Typical charging capacity of 7kW - 22kW.
  • 40 km to 100 km range added per hour charged (depending on the vehicle).
  • Enables you take advantage of the opportunity to charge when you are already parked, so that you don’t need to go out of your way to stop and charge on route.

 

Electric Vehicle charger Level 3/Mode 4 - Fast DC charger (25kW - 350kW )

Fast DC chargers

  • Sometimes referred to as Level 3 / Mode 4 charger.
  • Fastest possible charging rates, so good for quick stops on longer journeys.
  • Usually located in commercial and highway locations, such as service stations.
  • Typical charging capacity of 25kW - 350kW+
  • Upwards of 150 km, range is added per hour charged, with some vehicles able to be fully charged within 10 to 15 minutes.

 

 

Things to know before you go

Be sure to plan your route if you’re taking a long trip in your EV, including scheduled breaks and overnight stays.

You can check out the public charging stations near you and on your potential route on PlugShare and A Better Route Planner. More public charging stations are being added all the time, including at overnight accommodation sites. 

State-wide charging network 

The State Government and RAA are investing in a statewide public charging network in South Australia, due to be completed in 2024. In total, 536 new fast and rapid chargers will be available across 140 locations. These will be in 55 rural and metropolitan locations, in supermarkets, car parks, town centres, council-owned sites, hotels and motels.