EghtesadOnline: Mapna Group opened Iran’s first electric vehicle charging station at Tehran's iconic Milad Tower on Wednesday.
Built over 700 square meters, the station in the northwest of the capital includes a 43-kilovolt alternating current (AC) charger plus a fast charger working under the Chademo Protocol, a trade name of a quick charging method for electric vehicles which suits Japanese and Korean EVs such as KIA, Nissan, and Mitsubishi, IRNA reported.
The station also includes a 4.7-kv slow charger as well as a 5.5-kv charger, which can be used by electric motorcycles, Abbas Aliabadi the managing director of Mapna told the inauguration ceremony attended by Tehran Mayor Pirouz Hanachi.
"Depending on battery size, it takes 10 minutes to charge a vehicle on average, for which motorists pay 7 cents," he said, noting that once fully charged a car can cruise for 100 kilometers, Financial Tribune reported.
Covering the same distance with gasoline-powered cars costs 10 times more at 70 cents.
The Mapna boss expressed his company's readiness to collaborate with car manufacturers and Tehran Taxi Organization to upgrade the ramshackle transport system with the help of new EV technology.
“Installed power capacity has reached 81,000 megawatts and it is high time to invest in EVs," he added, urging local carmakers to pay more attention to EVs (instead of their own profits).
Despite their increasing popularity worldwide, EVs are still a novel concept in Iran’s huge car market.
In addition to common global challenges visiting EV markets, i.e. the need to develop diverse technologies in power equipment, electric motors, control systems, and batteries, Iranian officials and automakers have little if any real interest in the rapid changes in the saturated global auto industry in which there are more sellers than buyers.
According to Jean Christophe Quemard the executive vice president of PSA Group, a French multinational manufacturer of automobiles sold under the Peugeot, Citroen and Opel brands, while the global automotive industry is undergoing profound changes, it seems that car companies and auto policymakers in Tehran are stuck in the past as they have interest neither in autonomous cars nor in electric vehicles.
Quemard is of the opinion that the changes will eventually reach Iran, but “I do not know when.”
Regarding the worsening air pollution in almost all major Iranian cities, he says, “The country’s transportation fleet needs renovation.”
Demand for clean energy is gradually gaining traction both in the developed and developing world. Besides shifting to eco-friendly fuel and renewable energy, nations are long in the process of keeping their roads clean by reducing the number of fossil-fuel vehicles.
Countries leading the campaign for clean energy are China, Germany, the UK, Norway, and France.
Energy experts like Quemard say because gasoline is really cheap in Iran, EVs may not have much space in the market even in the distant future.
The world average prices of gasoline and diesel is close to $1.11 and $1.03 per liter.
Gasoline in Iran is sold for 7 cents/liter -- 14 times below the global average.