Google unveiled a number of new Google Maps features for owners of electric vehicles that come equipped with the company’s navigation system along with other AI-powered search improvements. The goal is to make it easier to locate the best EV charging station and to schedule trips that might require charging.
A fair warning before we move on to the new features: only a small number of EVs, including models from Polestar, Volvo, specific General Motors vehicles, and Renault, have Google Maps pre-installed. (Google-equipped electric vehicles from Ford and Honda will be available soon.) These new features won’t work for EV owners who use Google Maps on their mobile device, or through Android Auto or Apple CarPlay.
Here are the new features coming out over the next few months for EV owners with Google Maps built-in:
EV charging stops for short trips: When making a short trip plan, drivers used to have to manually add a charging stop, but now Google Maps will take care of it automatically. By factoring in both driving and charging time as well as the charging rates at the suggested stations, Google will even determine the best charging stop to shorten the overall trip time. When making its recommendations, Google will also take into account outside elements like the state of the roads and the capabilities of your vehicle.
New filter for very fast charging: There are times when you want to bypass all the Level 2 chargers in favour of the quick ones. Google Maps now offers the option to filter for “very fast charging” at rates starting at 150kW and going as high as 350kW for those circumstances. As a result, when looking for a nearby station, drivers have the option to only see the ultra-quick charging locations.
EV charging shown in search results: Google Maps now indicates if an EV charger is present in the search results when you search for something, like a grocery store. That might be helpful when you’re running errands and need assistance deciding between a few close-by places. Perhaps the presence of an EV charger will make the difference.