Ionity – an equal-share joint venture between BMW, Daimler, Ford and Volkswagen pursuing the objective of making e-mobility ready for long-distance travel – has briefed Designworks to design the charging station architecture, the charger pylons, and the digital interaction concept. The designers’ commission consists of furnishing Ionity with a recognisable, welcoming and leading-edge visual identity in Europe, whilst significantly improving the electric charging experience. The goal is to dispel concerns about range and make electromobility more attractive for long-distance travel.
Using Ionity’s corporate identity and the core issues of e-mobility as a starting point, the design team developed an independent aesthetic vocabulary intended to establish Ionity fast-charging stations as beacons along Europe’s principal transport routes. In the spirit of e-mobility, the charging station architecture transmits a sense of space that is open, light, clear, and user-friendly. The creative concept of the Ionity station translates the DNA of hospitality into an architectural ambience radiating a special kind of appeal, day and night.
The design aesthetics of the charging station can also be seen in the charging pylons – streamlining all elements down to their geometrical foundation, well-defined, large radii, taut surfaces, and balanced proportions contribute to the overall inviting impression and give the charging pylon a welcoming appearance. In an intuitive manner, the clear design conveys the user-friendliness and speed in charging, which has significantly increased in comparison to today’s standard. The seamless integration of a touchscreen user interface, holder, and charger plug contribute to this clarity, reinforcing the message of an uncomplicated user experience.
At night, the charging pylons will be illuminated with what appears to be a free-floating light ring, seated on top of the slender charger’s body, using light or colour changes to communicate information about charge status to users.
With the Ionity station design, Designworks is adding a further milestone to its portfolio along the path to the mobility of tomorrow and shaping the face of what is currently one of Europe’s most exciting infrastructure projects.
Ionity is planning to have 400 stations along Europe’s major highways up and running by the end of 2020. The charging stations, each of which will be offering up to six chargers, are equipped with the latest e-charging technology. They will be easily accessible for the public situated at a distance of approximately 120 kilometres from each other. Ionity uses the European charging standard Combined Charging System (CCS) with a charging capacity of up to 350kW and thereby will provide cross-brand compatibility with most present-day and future electric vehicles. Ionity is dedicated to making electromobility a feasible proposition for long-distance journeys.