Contxto – Chances are you won’t see any electric cars if you ever find yourself driving through the highways of Mexico,. The fact that there’s a limited amount of fast-charging stations probably deters owners from taking them out for a spin on the open road.
The largest fast-charging network was set up by BMW in 2019 and consists of six stations. Nonetheless, the Mexican Association for the Automobil Industry (AMIA), says that’s insufficient. So startup Beyond is rolling in with an alternative.
Beyond wants to go beyond what we have
The Mexican startup wants to set up a grid of fast-charging stations or electrolineras.
And in order to roll out its first prototypes, it’s opened an investment round for US$2 million.
The overarching goal is to open stations in all major cities in Mexco. That way, any cross country trip reassures you always have a place to charge your car’s battery. But that’s not the only issue.
“At the moment, there is no dominant and independent network for charging,” Beyond’s co-Founder, Alberto Azpurúa told Contxto.
“Companies set up their charging stations but they’re generally slow. And because their core business isn’t charging cars, they overlook the customer experience.”
That’s also why the startup will only set up fast-charging spaces.
According to Beyond, most stations in Mexico take around one hour to charge a car to drive 100 km. Meanwhile, their electrolineras will do so in 15 minutes.
Its business model shall operate as a subscription service. Drivers pay around MXN$1,000 (~US$50) per month and have unlimited access to its grid.
Accelerating use of electric cars in Mexico
Through its product, Beyond is addressing two of the major issues with hybrid and electric vehicle adoption (the lack of infrastructure and pushing for faster charges).
But there is still a long way to go.
Evidently, one major issue is that these cars aren’t exactly cheap. Personal convictions on saving us from global warming end where a person’s pocketbook begins. That’s also why the vast majority of Mexicans prefer gasoline-powered cars.
Moreover, the country needs more robust government programs that promote electric car adoption, as those seen in Nordic countries.
It does have some local policies in place that help.
For example, in Mexico City and its surrounding areas, regulations established a program called “Hoy No Circula” in 1990. Through it, certain cars, depending on their gas mileage, are banned from hitting the streets on a specific day. However, many hybrid and electric vehicles are exempt from complying.
It’s a minor detail, but it is something that helps push consumers on-the-go to opt for a more eco-friendly vehicle when looking to buy.
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