FOUNTAIN VALLEY, Calif. - A big parking area in Fountain Valley is now equipped with 113 new electric vehicle charging stations.
"Welcome to Hyundai's 'Charging Century' media event, and corporate celebration of emission-free commuting capability," said Jim Trainor, director of communications for Hyundai Motor America.
The parking lot is at the U.S. headquarters of Hyundai, where their new L.E.E.D.-certified building opened about three years ago. Between the open lot and multi-level structure, there are now plenty of ChargePoint network stations for any type of plug-in car to use. And they're part of a growing number of places to juice up your pure EV, or plug-in hybrid.
"The grid is changing, so we now have a lot more renewables on the system in the middle of the day. So let's take advantage of that zero-emission energy to fuel our vehicles," said Caroline Choi, senior vice president of regulatory affairs for Southern California Edison.
As of now, cars that need to plug in are still a rather miniscule percentage of vehicles on the road. But as that number grows, people will want to have options for where to recharge them.
"I do believe that you're going to see electric vehicle charging availability in multiple places, like malls, like shopping centers, like schools, other businesses like this," Choi said.
Hyundai's headquarters is right off the 405 Freeway, so anyone traveling is welcome to use the stations if they need to charge up their EV (using their ChargePoint access card.)
They are primarily, however, for Hyundai employees who work there and who tend to drive Hyundai vehicles, for obvious reasons. And in the future, there are going to be a lot more Hyundai vehicles that plug in.
"We expect to have about 40 percent of our sales, our lineup be electrified vehicles by the year 2025, just around the corner," said Mike O'Brien, Hyundai's vice president of product, corporate and digital planning.
The entire automotive world is actually investing in cars with batteries. Mercedes-Benz's parent company, Daimler, announced this week that it'll pour $1 billion into its Alabama manufacturing facility in order to build a line of electric SUVs.
The corner gas station is still a long way from being obsolete. But as the make-up of cars on the road changes, more and more drivers are going with at least partial electric power to move them around. And they're finding more and more places to charge them.