Ford’s commercial division—Ford Pro—and Xcel Energy announced a new collaboration to support the deployment of 30,000 electric vehicle charging ports by 2030 in Xcel Energy service territories across the U.S.
The new 30×30 initiative, launched within Xcel Energy’s broader Electric Vehicle Supply Infrastructure (EVSI) program, is expected to boost the EV adoption rate among business fleets, which usually lags behind the passenger car adoption rate.
According to the press release, most upfront costs for EV charging equipment and installation for businesses will be offset by Xcel Energy, while Ford Pro will offer its suite of end-to-end charging solutions to Xcel Energy business customers as part of the effort.
This sounds like an interesting option for the qualifying business fleet customers who decide to buy electric Ford EVs like the F-150 Lightning or E-Transit. It seems that the whole process of building the infrastructure will be streamlined and potentially less expensive: “Subject to applicable program requirements, Xcel Energy will install the charging infrastructure for business customers that qualify for and enroll in an approved EVSI program in the customer’s service location, with most upfront costs offset by Xcel Energy. Ford Pro will provide Ford Pro Charging equipment and post-installation customer service and support.”
Ford Pro Charging hardware currently includes 48- and 80-amp AC charging points, as well as DC fast chargers (180-kW and 240-kW).
The initiative will start in 2024, but initially only in two states—Colorado and Wisconsin. In the coming years, it’s expected that it will expand to other areas (within Xcel Energy’s service territories), including Michigan, Minnesota, New Mexico, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Texas.
As part of the partnership, Ford Pro and Xcel Energy also intend to analyze telematics data from vehicles participating in the initiative, explaining that by an intention to promote commercial charging during off-peak times, helping reduce electric grid emissions and potentially saving customers money.
The promotion of EV adoption by utilities sounds like a win-win strategy, as each EV on the road increases their sales volume in terms of kilowatt-hours.