BERLIN (AP) — Top German automakers and Ford say their joint European electric car recharging network will open its first charging stations this year in Germany, Austria and Norway.
BMW, Daimler, Ford and the Volkswagen Group have equal shares in the venture, Ionity, plans for which were first announced last year.
The automakers said Friday the first 20 high-power charging stations will be opened this year at 120-kilometer (75-mile) intervals along major roads. They plan to expand the network to more than 100 stations next year and have about 400 in place across Europe by 2020.
The founding companies said "other automotive manufacturers are invited to help expand the network."
The aim is to make it easier for electric cars to travel long distances and make them more appealing to the mass market.