BMW is helping EV drivers explore some of the nation’s most scenic parks

bmw installs electric car charging stations in national parks i3 park

BMW is making it easier to visit America’s national parks while treading lightly. The Munich, Germany-based company teamed up with several American government agencies to install 100 electric car chargers in or near some of the nation’s most scenic national parks.

National parks are meant to be driven to, and driven through, and they’re often located far off the beaten path. This gives motorists criss-crossing our vast country in a battery-powered car a serious case of range anxiety. BMW formed a partnership with the National Park Foundation, the National Park Service, and the Department of Energy in 2017 to make sure parks aren’t left out of the growing charging infrastructure.

The two-year project is nearly complete. Installing a charging station sounds simple, it’s merely a matter of bolting it in the ground and hooking it up to the power grid, so what took BMW and its partners two years? The company explained its team took several factors into account before deciding where to install each station. It considered the size of the electric car market in a given region and the distance to the closest existing station. It also took natural and landscape factors into account.

BMW makes several plug-in hybrid and electric cars, including the i3 and the 745e, but the chargers it donated to the National Park Service aren’t brand-specific. Motorists will be able to use them even if they drive a Nissan Leaf, or an electric Hyundai Kona. There’s no word yet on the type of charger BMW donated, and how much juice they can funnel into a battery pack in a given amount of time.

BMW fittingly installed the project’s first station in the Thomas Edison National History Park located in New Jersey, but most of the stations are located in busy, high-traffic areas. Death Valley National Park, Big Cypress National Preserve, and Cape Cod National Seashore each now host at least one charging station.

About 90 of the 100 chargers BMW paid for have already been installed. They’re functional and ready to top up electric cars. The 10 remaining stations will open before the end of the summer of 2019, giving motorists time to get out and explore the great outdoors in an EV before the return of cooler temperatures.

Cars

Formula E races aren’t just exciting, they’re driving EV tech into the future

Formula E made its annual trip to the Big Apple, showing just how far the all-electric racing series has come. The cars are faster, and the racing is closer, but the tailpipe emissions are still at zero.
Cars

Hooked on gas? Porsche is about to give you a good reason to go electric

Porsche's Mission E concept won't change much as it transitions to a production model named Taycan that's scheduled to arrive in 2019. That means the sedan will keep the sleek design and its 800-volt charging system.
Home Theater

Don't get it twisted! These are the best true wireless earbuds you can buy

If you can't stand the tangle of cords, or you're just excited about completely wireless earbuds, you're going to need some help separating the wheat from the chaff. Our list serves up the best true wireless earbuds around.
Gaming

Get ready for the Nintendo Switch Lite with cool new accessories

The Nintendo Switch Lite drops the dock for ultimate portability, but that doesn't mean you won't need a few accessories. From extra controllers to chargers to memory cards, you'll have plenty to choose from come September 20.
Cars

AWD vs. 4WD: What’s the difference between the two and which is right for you?

Although four-wheel drive (4WD) and all-wheel drive (AWD) are related, they are actually quite different in how they operate. Here, we talk about the fundamental differences between the two systems, and what it means for you as a driver.
Cars

Manual vs. automatic vs. CVT: Different types of transmissions explained

From automatic to manual to CVT, there are several types of transmissions in the automotive world. In the battle of automatic versus manual, which wins? We'll help you pick the right gearbox for you.
Cars

There is no way to say pickup truck in emoji, and Ford wants to change that

Ford asked the Unicode Consortium to include a pickup truck in the database of emojis. The company is confident its request will be approved, and a blue pickup truck loosely shaped like an F-150 will be available in early 2020.
Cars

Carbuying can be tiring: Here are the best used car websites to make it easier

Shopping for a used car isn't easy, especially when the salesman is looking to make a quick sale. Thankfully, there are plenty of sites aimed at the prospective buyer, whether you're looking for a sedan or a newfangled hybrid.
Mobile

Uber’s in-car shopping service now sells way more than just snacks

The Cargo Box launched in 2018 to offer Uber drivers an easy way to sell snacks and drinks to riders. The service is now expanding to include lots more items, including tech products and travel accessories.
Cars

The last two affordable station wagons in America are about to retire

Volkswagen confirmed it will stop making the Golf Sportwagen and the Golf Alltrack by the end of 2019. Both station wagons are at the end of their life cycle, but they won't be replaced because they compete in a shrinking segment of the…
Cars

How Lexus, one of the industry’s hybrid champions, is preparing for the 2020s

Lexus predicts significant shifts will reshape the automotive industry during the 2020s. The hybrid champion is preparing to branch out into electric cars, it's investing in autonomous technology, and it wants to keep focusing on SUVs.
Cars

Cadillac’s new 2020 CT5 sedan lets you Super Cruise across America

The 2020 Cadillac CT5 proves the General Motors-owned luxury brand still cares about sedans. Introduced at the 2019 New York Auto Show, it's optionally available with Cadillac's Super Cruise technology and a lineup of turbocharged engines.
Cars

Toyota’s futuristic golf cart will transport people around at the 2020 Olympics

Toyota is reinventing the golf cart for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games. The company designed a vehicle named the Accessible People Mover that will transport visitors, athletes, and staff members from venue to venue.
Cars

Younger motorists may be banned from night driving in U.K. safety push

The U.K. is considering banning newly qualified motorists from driving at night in a bid to boost safety on its roads. Other measures could include banning passengers under a certain age from traveling with young drivers.