BMW Plug & Charge allows for EV charging without an app

Ben Chia

BMW is planning to roll out Plug & Charge, a feature which allows for automatic EV charging without the need for an app or a card, with a target launch date of mid-2023


BMW is planning to roll out Plug & Charge, a new functionality that allows customers to charge their electric vehicles (EVs) at public charging points without the need for an app or a card. The system uses an authentication process that enables data flow from the car to the charging point, and is expected to roll out in Europe in mid-2023.

The Plug & Charge system works by sending the authenticated customer’s data, which is stored in the car, to the charging point the moment the car is plugged in. This means that the charging process starts instantaneously, and billing is done automatically once charging is complete. Another benefit of the system is that there is no need for an online connection for charging to be activated, which could be beneficial in underground carparks where data coverage could be poor.

The customer’s data is stored in a BMW Charging Account, which will hold all the relevant information about the user such as his accounts with various charging operators. This allows for maximum flexibility and convenience, but this functionality is currently only available for operators who are connected to Hubject’s Europe-wide eRoaming network. The BMW Charging Account will also contain a log of all previous charging activity for easy tracking and accounting purposes.

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For Singapore, BMW Asia has not ruled out the possibility of introducing Plug & Charge here, but has not set a timeline for its rollout. The company says that they will first have to tackle regulatory issues as well as coordination with the various charging point operators here, and so it won’t be available here “any time soon”.

“While Plug & Charge would be ideal in a market like Singapore, rollout is highly dependent on local regulations and various stakeholders in the charging value chain adopting the same protocol and standards. BMW is closely monitoring the market and will plan accordingly,” said Alan Yi, Senior Product & Pricing Manager, BMW Group Asia.


bmw charging electric EV plug & charge

About the Author

Ben Chia

CarBuyer's print editor went out to explore the Great Big World, including a stint working in China (despite his limited Mandarin). Now he's back, ready to foist upon you his takes on everything good and wonderful about the automotive world. Follow Ben on Instagram @carbuyer.ben

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