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Electric highway soon a reality in Nevada

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Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval has announced the creation of an electric highway within the state, The Detroit Bureau reports. U.S. Route 95 will soon be fitted with a network of charging stations for electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles. 

The Nevada Electric Highway will add five new chargers along the way, and state officials are collaborating with Tesla to implement more of the company's Superchargers on this particular road. 

Route 95 is about a seven-hour, 725km drive from Las Vegas to Reno, the future home of Tesla's gigafactory.

“We’ve all driven this road before and have anxiety (just) getting gas,” Sandoval said. “Now we can have confidence to charge our electric vehicles and drive them from place to place.”

The new charging stations will offer one DC fast charger (480V) and two AC Level 2 chargers (240V). Using the latter, a conventional electric vehicle like the Nissan LEAF or Ford Focus Electric requires several hours to fully charge. And since both marginally top 100km of range, many stops will be necessary. Even the Tesla Model S, which can travel up to 480km on a single charge, will have to stop once. 

Nevada is a leader in vehicle electrification. It was the first U.S. state to establish an official licensing program for manufacturers who want to test autonomous vehicles on public roads. And last month, Nevada authorized Daimler to test its self-driving heavy freight truck for the first time on the open road in ordinary traffic 

As for Tesla's massive battery factory, which is on track to start production next year, it will become the largest manufacturing facility for lithium-ion batteries in the world. Around 6,000 jobs will be created in Nevada alone.