NRG Energy opens its first electric car charging station in Dallas

April 11, 2011

NRG Energy has opened its very first eVgo direct-current electric car charging station in Dallas today as part of a 70-station network in the DFW area.

These “fast-chargers” use a 480-volt direct current to charge an electric car enough to drive 30 miles in less than 10 minutes. NRG Energy also plans to open several stations that feature a 240-volt DC charger that gives an electric car enough charge to go 25 miles in an hour.

NRG Energy plans to install 50 chargers in Houston, plus additional chargers along the Interstate 45 corridor that stretches from Dallas to Houston. The company charges its members a flat monthly rate for access to the chargers, with a cheaper plan for the slower chargers and a more expensive plan for the faster chargers.

Still, 10 minutes is a long time to wait for 30 miles of driving power when it only takes around 5 minutes to fill up a gas tank for regular gasoline vehicles that can get more than 30 miles per gallon. The slow charging times are one of the tougher selling points for electric vehicles — and clearly a sore point that NRG Energy is trying to alleviate by widely publicizing its “fast” chargers.