It’s one thing to make a splash by selling fully electric cars in Malaysia, and another to make ownership properly viable. In order to provide aspiring owners of the iX, iX3 facelift and i4 with some peace of mind, BMW Malaysia has confirmed that it plans to install DC fast chargers at key points across the country.

It’s unclear exactly how many DC fast charging facilities will be set up, but our source indicated that they will be installed at highly frequented locations such as shopping malls and rest stops along major highways. The latter is a similar initiative announced by Porsche and Shell, which will see 12 charging stations installed at six Shell stations along the North-South Expressway in Malaysia by mid 2022.

DC fast chargers will also be installed at several BMW dealerships, and unlike before, the new BMW i models will be available for purchase at any dealership of your choice. Prior to this, the i3s was only sold through Auto Bavaria. Authorised BMW service centres are also staffed with BMW i-certified technicians, so consider the groundwork laid.

BMW Malaysia is working with longtime collaborator GreenTech Malaysia to grow this EV infrastructure, but also revealed that it is working with several other public and private firms to maximise reach. This is still a work in progress, but the first rollout is expected to take place within the next four to six months. A greater number of slower AC chargers are expected to supplement the infrastructure as well.

Having DC fast chargers installed in major cities and highways won’t completely quash range anxiety, but it will certainly make EV ownership much more viable. The biggest benefit to DC charging is the high output and fast charge times, allowing the iX to draw juice at the maximum permitted rate of 150 kW, for example. That’s equates to 70% to 80% of battery charge in just 30 minutes, or roughly 350 km of additional range (the iX has a 76.6 kWh battery pack).

Although not confirmed, these DC fast chargers will likely be accessible to all EV owners and not just limited to BMW i vehicles. Now that’s great news for the growth of EVs in the country.

Also, DC charging is a substantial upgrade over AC charging, which is the more common wallbox charger often sold alongside PHEV and EV cars in Malaysia, as well as most of the available public chargers we have in Malaysia now. While the most powerful of AC chargers can supply up to 40 kilowatts of power (typically much less), the onboard charger on most EVs can usually take a maximum of 11 kW only. These are meant to be used overnight, rather than mid-journey fill ups.

In any case, this sounds like actual progress for EVs in Malaysia, and builds on top of MARii and PEKEMA’s latest initiative to install 1,000 DC fast chargers by 2025. Currently, DC fast chargers are only available at Vision Motorsports (Kampung Sungai Kayu Ara), ABB Malaysia (Subang Jaya), Nichicon (Bandar Baru Bangi), PLUS (Ayer Keroh R&R), and Porsche showrooms. Does this make you want to consider owning an EV?