Japan
Automobile
Manufacturers
Association, Inc.

Issue No. 4, 2010

CHAdeMO

logo ChademoElectric cars, clean and efficient and with no tailpipe emissions to harm the environment, are definitely now on the way.  Car makers have been thinking about electric cars and their associated green car benefits for many years now although one of the drawbacks all along has been the charging infrastructure, or rather the lack of it, coupled with an electric car’s relatively short driving range.

Now, the electric car cause is getting a boost – literally – via a new quick charger system that’s coming on stream across Japan. This system is called CHAdeMO and a new, full-scale industry association has come into being to support and promote it.  Established on March 15, 2010, the CHAdeMO Association has Toyota, Nissan, Mitsubishi Motors, Fuji Heavy Industries and The Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) has its five executive members.

charging pointAnother 101 regular members (as of October this year) are participating and among them you’ll find such major names as Bosch, General Electric, Hitachi, Honda R&D, Isuzu, Mazda, NEC and Sanyo and Suzuki.  Underlining that CHAdeMO truly is an international idea, the list of members goes on to include France’s PSA group, Samsung of Korea and Think! (Norway).  In May, Hydro-Quebec (Canada) also joined the CHAdeMO Association.  A further 144 supporting members and 39 observers are part of CHAdeMO, a kind of far-reaching cross-industry group that’s surely never seen before.  Car makers, by nature, are accustomed to fierce competition, so the idea of joining forces on such a big global eco venture as this counts as something truly rare and enlightening.

But then it is all for a good cause.  As members work together, the aim of the CHAdeMO Association is to improve and standardise the design of quick EV chargers' interface and its protocol, along with their method of use, and to increase the number of quick charger installations worldwide.  This is in turn will help electric vehicles (and Plug-In Hybrids) become more established on the world stage: just the kind of models that can contribute enormously to the reduction of CO2 emissions, and thus Global Warming.

The CHAdeMO name, in case you are wondering, is an abbreviation of Charge De Move, equivalent to "charge for moving."  In Japanese, it’s also a pun on the phase "O-cha demo ikaga desu ka?" meaning "Let’s have a tea" while charging.  Now then, who said the business of making new generation eco-cars had to be all serious, all the time?