Better Place today unveiled the prototype of its electric car recharging station at the Cinema City parking lot in the Tel Aviv suburb of Ramat Hasharon. The station was developed in Israel and designed in San Francisco. It has two sockets for the simultaneous recharging of two cars.
Better Place, launched by Shai Agassi, plans to deploy 400 recharging stations across Israel in parking lots, workplaces, and residences as part of a six-month pilot program. The pilot will also include the prototype electric car, based on the Nissan Rouge crossover SUV, which is sold in Europe and Israel as the Qashqai. At the moment, Better Place only has the import franchise for the electric car version of the Renault Megane sedan.
So far as is known, Better Place does not have a franchise to import Nissan Motor Co. (TSE: 7201) cars, which is held by Carasso Ltd. Carasso is also the authorized importer of Renault SA (Euronext: RNO). It is also not known where the standards testing of the electric car, which has undergone extensive engineering conversions, will take place.
Better Place added that it will unveil the prototype battery replacement system in Israel in 2009. This is a key element in the company's strategic plan. The company is also readying for the commercial launch of the electric cars and the recharging infrastructure.
Better Place will carry out the pilot jointly with several municipalities, including Tel Aviv-Jaffa, Haifa, Holon, Kfar Saba, and Jerusalem. "Globes" was the first to report that Better Place has signed a cooperation agreement with Israel Electric Corporation (IEC) (TASE: ELEC.B22) on technical aspects of the recharging stations and to link up them to the electricity grid.
Better Place has also signed an agreement with Tel Aviv municipal parking lot company Ahuzat Hahof Ltd. to deploy the recharging stations at the Basel, Europe House, IBM Building, Axelrod, and other parking lots in the city.
Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on December 8, 2008
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