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07/14/2022

Pilot Co. Takes Big Step Toward Creating National EV Charging Network

The move will help enable long-distance electric vehicle travel across the United States.
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EV Charging

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Pilot Co. is collaborating with General Motors (GM) to build a national direct-current fast charging network that will be installed and managed by EVgo.

The move further accelerates the widespread adoption of electric vehicles (EV), increases access to charging, and helps enable long-distance electric travel of people and vehicles across the United States at 50-mile intervals.

"GM and Pilot Co. designed this program to combine private investments alongside intended government grant and utility programs to help reduce range anxiety and significantly close the gap in long-distance EV charger demand," said Shameek Konar, Pilot Co. CEO. "Our travel centers are well-equipped to accommodate EV charging with 24/7 amenities and convenient proximity to major roadways across the country. 

"We look forward to collaborating with GM and the U.S. Department of Transportation to make convenient coast-to-coast EV travel a reality through our national network of travel centers," Konar added. 

Pilot Co. is the parent company of Pilot and Flying J travel centers. 

According to the companies, the project further demonstrates how public and private entities can come together to build out the nation's charging infrastructure, particularly along American highways, connecting urban and rural communities, the East and West coasts, and different metropolitan areas.

The EV charging network will provide 2,000 charging stalls, co-branded Pilot Flying J and "Ultium Charge 360," powered by EVgo eXtend and open to all EV brands at up to 500 Pilot and Flying J travel centers.

Many of these sites will feature canopies to help protect customers from the elements while charging, as well as pull-through capability allowing convenient charging for electric pickup trucks and SUVs pulling trailers.

"We are committed to an all-electric, zero-emissions future, and ensuring that the right charging infrastructure is in place is a key piece of the puzzle," said Mary Barra, GM chair and CEO. "With travel centers across North America, Pilot Co. is an ideal collaborator to reach a broad audience of EV drivers."

EVgo, GM and Pilot Co. share a commitment to building an EV charging network that increases access and makes the shift to electrification as frictionless as possible for all, according to Cathy Zoi, CEO at EVgo.

"We look forward to this collaboration and ensuring the EVgo network provides nationwide coverage, including critical corridors for road trips," Zoi said.

"Through EVgo eXtend, we are demonstrating yet another innovative pathway to help America electrify — and showcasing why EVgo's technology and industry leadership make us the partner of choice for site hosts, automakers, and drivers alike as we work together to deliver a cleaner future of transportation," Zoi added.

Creating an EV charging network is part of Pilot's new strategy, which includes the adoption of alternative fuels. As reported by Convenience Store News, Pilot Co. recently partnered with VoltaGrid LLC to develop a low-carbon fuel network that contributes to reduced emissions and decarbonization for third-party customers.

Knoxville-based Pilot Co. operates more than 800 retail and fueling locations in 44 states and six Canadian provinces.