NRG Energy launches electric vehicle charging ecosystem


David Crane,
President & CEO,
NRG Energy
Houston, TX, U.S.A. — (METERING.COM) — November 19, 2010 – NRG Energy, Inc. is launching the first privately funded, comprehensive electric vehicle (EV) ecosystem in Houston, as the start of a rollout across Texas in 2011.
Under the brand name eVgo, NRG will provide electric vehicle owners throughout the greater Houston area with a convenient and affordable “home and away” fueling package. In addition to procuring and installing an EV home charging station, NRG will install and maintain public fast charging stations conveniently located along major freeways, in key shopping and business districts, at popular retailers, and in multi-family community and workplace parking areas across Harris County.

NRG’s eVgo offers access to these facilities and services to EV drivers for a flat monthly fee and on an unlimited miles basis.

NRG plans to invest more than $10 million in Houston’s public charging station infrastructure and will be the first company to equip an entire major market with the privately funded infrastructure needed for successful EV adoption and integration. The company is ready to expand these services across Texas as early adoption of electric vehicles grows.

“The new age of personal transportation begins here in Houston with a new wave of exciting plug-in electric vehicles fueled by NRG,” said company president and CEO David Crane. “We are committed to ensure that electric vehicle ownership is fun, affordable and ultra-convenient and that EV owners feel 100 percent comfortable driving their plug-in car anywhere in the greater Houston area, secure in the knowledge that a fast charger is never more than a few miles away.”

The eVgo network starts with the installation of the “service station of the future,” a Level 2 home charger, at the new EV owner’s home. The Level 2 charger can deliver up to 25 miles per charging hour, allowing consumers to fully charge their vehicles overnight while they sleep.

NRG is also working with retailers to install eVgo Convenience Stations to provide Level 2 charging during the retail host’s store hours. In addition Freedom Stations and Convenience Stations will strategically situated across the city at host partners’ facilities, offering both Level 2 charging and fast charging options, enabling EV drivers to add 30 miles of range in as little as 10 minutes. NRG will install approximately 50 eVgo Freedom Stations by mid-2011 at major shopping and business districts and along all major freeways from downtown Houston to approximately 25 miles from the city center.

Retail electricity providers partnering with NRG on eVgo include Direct Energy, Green Mountain Energy Company, Reliant Energy, and TXU Energy.

Vehicle companies involved include Nissan North America, Aptera, Gulf States Toyota, Hertz, and smart USA, while charging station hosts include Best Buy Co., Inc. and Walgreens.