Queensland launches electric super highway

The future of motoring in Queensland has arrived with the launch of the Queensland Electric Super Highway – a 2,000km electric vehicle highway which will allow electric vehicles to travel up the state's coast from Gold Coast to Cairns.

The Lucid Air electric vehicle - image courtesy of Lucid Motors.
The Lucid Air electric vehicle is part of the next generation of EVs soon to hit the market – image courtesy of Lucid Motors.

To allow electric vehicle drivers to be able to travel one of the longest electric vehicle highways in the world, over the next six months, 18 fast-charging electric vehicle stations will be installed along the Queensland coast from Gold Coast to Cairns and west to Toowoomba.

The stations can recharge an electric vehicle in 30 minutes and will be made free for the first 12 months in an effort to boost the number of electric vehicles on Queensland roads.

The energy supplied to power the fast-charging stations will be green energy purchased through green energy credits or offsets.

The $3m electric highway network is an ambitious initiative, which the State Government hopes will boost the number of electric vehicles in Queensland, which currently stands at about 700.

Electric Super Highway gets Govt support

Acting Main Roads Minister Steven Miles said the launch of the state’s new super highway, and it’s initially free-to-use recharge stations, was an initiative to encourage Queenslander’s to be part of the state’s EV revolution.

“This project is ambitious, but we want as many people as possible on board the electric vehicle revolution, as part of our transition to a low emissions future,” he said.

“I’m announcing the first 18 towns and cities that make up phase one of the Electric Super Highway and will, once operational in the next six months, make it possible to drive an electric vehicle from the state’s southern border to the Far North,

“They will be available for use at no cost for the initial phase of the super highway so we can encourage as many people as possible to start using them.”

Mr Miles said the new highway had the potential to revolutionise travel in Queensland.

“EVs can provide not only a reduced fuel cost for Queenslanders, but an environmentally-friendly transport option, particularly when charged from renewable energy,” he said.

The electric vehicle super highway has been in the works since July 2015, when the Palaszczuk government first called for expressions of interest to build a solar powered, fast charging electric vehicle station in the Townsville suburb of Oonnonba, as the first installment of a potential 1,600 km network along the Bruce Highway.

BMW Group Australia, CEO, Marc Werner commented: “The BMW Group is a global leader in innovative personal mobility and we currently offer seven pure electric or plug-in hybrid vehicles in the Australian market.  We have the product and the customers – now all we need is the infrastructure.”