Renault's 'Plug Inn' app connects EV drivers with local charging station owners

French automaker claims the project will also promote sustainable tourism in remote areas

Published On
May 13, 2022

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Renault aims to help electric car drivers find places to charge their vehicles across France by way of a new app.

Addressing one of the major barriers to electric vehicle usage, the fear about recharging, the automaker worked with Publicis Conseil and Publicis Sapient to create "Plug Inn," an app that connects drivers with people who own private charging points in locations throughout France.

The idea is to target communities of people in remote locations who can rent out their charging points; Renault aims to enable up to 475, 000 of the charging points throughout France, so that drivers need not worry when visiting other parts of the country, and charging point owners can also share their resource and earn some extra income.

Drivers will be able to use the app to locate, reserve and pay for the charging points, after registering on the app. And Renault also makes the point that the scheme could promote sustainable tourism, with drivers discovering remote villages and spending money in shops and cafes there while charging their vehicles.

For the charging point owners, while the app is open to everyone with a charging point, Renault is particularly targeting rural charging points owners with the campaign. It follows the brand's 2020 "Electric Village" campaign that gave electric cars to everyone in one tiny village in France; the campaign won an Outdoor Grand Prix at Cannes last year.

"We must ensure that the enthusiasm for electric vehicles is never disappointed by structural constraints,” commented Arnaud Belloni, global chief marketing officer at Renault, in a statement. “Building a community of individuals is a great opportunity to create new development models based on the values of sharing, self-help, and the circular economy.”