Public chargers at California Taco Bell could be the first of many

Choo need a charge with your chalupa? A Taco Bell in South San Francisco is installing six DC fast chargers, along with a carport-style solar array. The new chargers are built by Tritium, and will be managed by software from ChargeNet. The 75 kW Tritium RTM fast chargers will accept payment through ChargeNet’s mobile app or an integrated credit card reader on the charger—and you may soon be able to order tacos and a charge on the same bill.

Combining solar and battery power is a key element of the project, says Tritium President of the Americas Mike Calise. “We’re getting renewable energy from the sun at very cheap rates. Also, there’s battery storage, so that in the case of a power outage [you can] still charge up your vehicle, but more importantly, they also become an energy asset to the utility.”

The electrified Taco Bell is owned by Diversified Restaurant Group, which operates nearly 250 Taco Bell and Arby’s locations in five states. The project received funding from the California Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Project and the Self-Generation Incentive Program. Diversified Restaurant Group paid no upfront costs, and will receive a portion of the charging fees.

“Our goal is to replace the refueling experience that Americans know with a charging experience that is fast, convenient, and inviting,” says Tosh Dutt, CEO of ChargeNet. “Our first installation is just the beginning of realizing that goal, and will be the first of many as we look to expand charging opportunities throughout the Bay Area and other parts of the country in the hopes of increasing adoption of EVs, especially in lower-income areas.”

Source: Taco Bell, Forbes