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McDonald’s launches electric car charging stations

A Big Mac, a large fries and… a refill! Now, electric cars also have their fast food.

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McDonald’s launches electric car charging stations

A Big Mac, a large fries and… a refill! Now, electric cars also have their fast food. McDonald's and Izivia, a subsidiary of EDF, are unveiling this Tuesday a new network dedicated to charging battery-powered vehicles: Izivia Fast. By 2025, 2,000 ultra-fast charging points will be installed in the American fast food giant's 700 car parks in France. The deployment has already started, marked by the inauguration of a charging station in Noisy-le-Grand in the Paris suburbs, this Tuesday morning.

The idea is to offer consumers the possibility of recharging 80% of the battery in around twenty minutes. To keep this promise, Izivia will equip McDonald's car parks with ultra-fast charging points, 150 kilowatts (kW), while home charging stations generally have a power between 3.7 and 22 kW. Such a partnership is very symbolic for the sector, due to its size and the characteristics of the terminals chosen.

Speed ​​and accessibility will be on the menu, with a price around 35 cents per kilowatt hour (kWh), or around 5 to 6 euros for 100 kilometers of autonomy. In fact, recharges available to the general public are generally more expensive than those carried out at home, the cost of which is estimated at 2 or 3 euros per 100 kilometers. You generally have to pay twice as much for a standard recharge carried out outside (on the street, in a public parking lot, etc.) and 10 to 12 euros for a quick one. Finally, “Izivia Fast will be powered by green electricity (wind, photovoltaic, hydraulic) in order to guarantee the lowest possible CO2 rate,” adds Christelle Vives, general director of Izivia. It estimates that in twelve years - the duration of the partnership with McDonald's - 9.4 billion kilometers could be traveled thanks to these terminals, or 1.7 million tonnes of CO2 avoided. “The expansion of charging stations in our restaurant parking lots encourages individual efforts and contributes to an ecological and energy transition adapted to the needs of the regions,” adds Rémi Rocca, senior Impact director for McDonald’s France.

The brand is not the only one to offer charging points to its customers, or to passing motorists. Large retailers, hotel chains, etc. have also entered the equipment race. Carrefour has therefore set itself the objective of offering 5,000 charging points to its customers by 2025. Aware of having a loyalty tool in its hands, the brand offers its customers with a loyalty card the first hour of charging, at 22 kW of power - or around a third of the battery for a small Zoé type car. Beyond that, the service becomes chargeable. Hotel chain B

In most cases, the user pays for the electricity consumed, just like filling up with gasoline. The main thing is to offer the service to meet a new need, linked to the development of sales of electric cars. In October, they represented 17% of new vehicle purchases in France. This transition also pushes service stations to review their offer. TotalEnergies, owner of the largest network in France, is working to monitor, or even anticipate, this change. The group has equipped 190 of its stations in France and is targeting 500 by 2026.

However, customer service and the desire to contribute to the ecological transition are not the only motivations for the development of this service. The mobility orientation law (LOM) notably requires companies to install at least one charging point as long as they have more than 20 parking spaces, covered or not, before January 1, 2025. Suffice to say tomorrow . This figure is part of a broader objective set by the government: to have 400,000 terminals accessible to the public by 2030, compared to nearly 110,000 today. Public charging points located both in parking lots and on streets. Local authorities have also taken up the subject, like Paris, whose 2,100 Belib’ charging stations in 425 stations are managed by TotalEnergies. The metropolis of Strasbourg, and part of that of Aix-en-Provence, have opted for Engie Vianeo.

However, most recharges are done at the motorist's home, whether they live in a detached house or in a condominium. Here too, development is in full swing, particularly in the collective, where there have long been numerous obstacles. Only 2% of condominiums are equipped with electrical terminals, according to Enedis, the electricity distribution network manager. “Installing a terminal in a house is relatively simple. It’s more complicated in the collective, concedes Gautier Chatelus, deputy director in the Infrastructure and Mobility department at the Banque des Territoires (CDC). To caricature, the co-ownership does not want to pay to recharge the Tesla of one of the residents. And the owner of the Tesla does not want to pay alone for the installation of such equipment for the entire building.”

These obstacles are being lifted. Aid for the purchase of electrical terminals is now well calibrated - up to 960 euros excluding tax per terminal purchased via the Advenir state system. Around ten operators - Zeplug, Waat, Beev, etc. - today offer turnkey solutions via subscriptions. And the State takes its share: the Caisse des Dépôts finances the expensive electrical installations necessary to power the terminals, and forms partnerships with operators from which it receives a share of the subscriptions. Result, once the agreement is signed with an operator who takes care of everything - financial aid, negotiations with the electricity supplier - the co-ownership does not have to pay anything. All is not rosy, however. This decision must be voted on at the general meeting (GA). However, it only meets in principle once a year. And co-owners can vote against it, forcing electric car users to fend for themselves.

“I pulled a cable from home to power my Smart,” says the boss of a Parisian property owner with an electric vehicle. This is the only solution I found because the AG did not vote for collective work.” It is legal, the owners benefiting from a right to take. We can't stop them from connecting if they pay for it. “I had to put 2,000 euros out of my pocket for the installation to be compliant,” adds the real estate professional. When, conversely, the operation is validated by the AG, implementation times can be long. Enedis or other electricity network managers may take months to power the new installation. Sometimes, some residents, tired of installation delays, end up connecting to the common electrical panel. This inevitably causes friction. These solutions are also not optimal. “It takes at least around thirty hours to recharge a car this way, compared to 7 to 8 hours with a proper electric terminal,” says Rachid Laaraj, head of the property broker Syneval. Hence, now, the interest of co-owners in these solutions.

Also read: McDonald’s reduces the size of one of its burgers, Internet users cry “shrinkflation”

Alongside cars, electric trucks are also becoming more and more numerous. “We are seeing an increase in the fleet and an acceleration in demand,” underlines Didier Liautaud, general director of Engie electric mobility. For the moment, battery-powered heavy goods vehicles are mainly dedicated to local uses (garbage collection, last mile delivery, etc.). “We are increasing the number of contracts with specialists in urban or regional logistics, by equipping their depots with loading points,” mentions Christelle Vives. And little by little, the field of action is expanding. “We are going to build the first corridor for electric trucks between Paris and Lyon, with charging stations with a power of 400 to 480 kW,” adds Didier Liautaud. From the end of 2024, 1 megawatt (MW) charging stations should begin to emerge, to meet the needs of road transport.

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