The US may be considered one big melting pot, but it's a French automaker that wants us all to get along when it comes to standard, home-charging system and the fast-charging devices that are likely to become more commonplace.

Renault has developed a system in which its electric vehicles require just one charging port for both standard and fast charges, Plug In Cars reports. Unlike the Leaf, which is made by Renault's sister company Nissan, Renault doesn't have two charging ports on board. Instead, Renault has patented a system in which fast charging is conducted in AC instead of DC, eliminating the need for a second charging port.

Ever the beneficiary of more electric-vehicle awareness, Renault is sharing such fast-AC-charging technology, which is also supported by Volvo and Daimler AG's Smart. While not everyone will be excited about yet another fast-charging system, Italy is already installing such fast-AC charging systems across the country. One obvious benefit? The stations cost about 75 percent less to build than fast-DC charging systems.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 8 Comments
      JP
      • 2 Years Ago
      Of course Tesla already has a single connector for all levels of charging, and provides free charging at their superchargers.
      Rotation
      • 2 Years Ago
      I'm all for trying every option. Unfortunately, with no Mennekes connector in the US, 3-phase charging isn't an option.
        SVX pearlie
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Rotation
        With a negligible installed public charging base, a set of "quick charge" stations based on 3-phase charging wouldn't be out of the question. Loiter time would be similar to existing gasoline stations. The issue is a lack of customers and standardization. With SAE J1772 in place and broadly agreed, it seems that this new, proprietary standard, like Chadmo, is pointless unless they are going to make the IP publicly available to all other OEMs at no additional charge compared to SAE J1772.
          JakeY
          • 2 Years Ago
          @SVX pearlie
          The Mennekes connector is not proprietary but is already part of the international IEC 62196 standard that includes SAE J1772. The international committee already decided not to use Mennekes in the countries where 3-phase is rare (like the US, Canada, Japan) and use J1772 instead. They will use Mennekes in other regions like Europe. J1772 and Mennekes are virtually identical except for the 3-phase support. The "Combo" DC connector will use J1772 in the US and Mennekes in Europe for it's AC part, but otherwise both versions have the same footprint. What's proprietary is Renault's patented on-board charger design which reuses the car's motor and motor electronics as part of the charger (resulting in a relatively inexpensive 43kW 3-phase charger). Other manufacturers who want to use this kind of design will have to license from Renault.
        JakeY
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Rotation
        Mennekes and J1772 are both part of the same international standard (IEC 62196). The automakers already decided they will use J1772 in the US/Canada/Japan and Mennekes elsewhere (where residential 3-phase is widespread).
          Rotation
          • 2 Years Ago
          @JakeY
          I know they're part of the same standard, but Mennekes has 3-phase support and J1772 does not. Without 3-phase connectors on the cars, quick AC charging through a simple EVSE won't be so quick.
      Giza Plateau
      • 2 Years Ago
      Power 3 phase doesn't have to rule out power DC. Just share pins in the connector.
      Spec
      • 2 Years Ago
      Yeah, that's what we really need . . . . another new standard such that the market becomes even more fractured and confused. Great idea! . . . if you are an oil company.