ORLANDO, FL. (December 1, 2022) – AAA is expanding its capabilities and membership perks by creating innovative roadside solutions geared toward electric vehicle owners. But – AAA is not new to the electric vehicle space. Over a decade ago, as the electric vehicle market began to heat up, AAA launched a mobile charging pilot for electric vehicles in select markets. AAA also continues to invest in research related to electric vehicles to understand consumer opinion, vehicle functionality, and other areas of interest. As the popularity of electric vehicles continues to grow, as indicated by a recent AAA study, AAA is prepared to service any vehicle type, whether electric or gas.
“If you’re a AAA member, you already know that we’re more than just roadside assistance service,” said Cliff Ruud, AAA’s managing director of automotive solutions. “We’re also committed to supporting our members through big purchase decisions – like buying an electric vehicle. As automakers continue to incorporate advanced styling and the latest innovative technology into electric vehicles, we are committed to learning, developing, and servicing the vehicles our members are driving.”
Mobile Electric Vehicle Charging Now Available in Select Cities
AAA is excited to announce a new phase of mobile electric charging solutions in 14 markets across the country. This is the second pilot of its kind that AAA has brought to the marketplace in the last decade. The purpose of the first pilot, launched in 2010, was to explore a few prototype technologies that could be used to charge electric vehicles at the roadside. After 10 years of service, all the original prototype vehicles (five total) were retired. AAA took learnings from that pilot to inform this next iteration.
Range anxiety has been the number one barrier between consumers and wider EV adoption. AAA can help ease this anxiety with specialized trucks equipped with mobile electric vehicle chargers that provide enough range to get drivers home or to the nearest charging station.
This program is currently being piloted in the following cities:
Grand Rapids, MI
San Francisco, CA
For AAA members, this service is provided at no additional charge. AAA will continue to assess the demand for mobile electric vehicle charging and will add locations as needed. As part of this evaluation, AAA will also explore various mobile charging methods to deliver the best experience to its members. Subscribe to the AAA Newsroom to receive the latest updates surrounding the mobile electric vehicle charging pilot.
AAA Roadside Service Information: Training and Education for Technicians
AAA is continuously developing resources that inform roadside assistance teams or those in the industry of the newest updates in electric vehicle technology and systems. AAA’s Roadside Service Information (RSI) system demonstrates techniques to provide safe roadside service to electric vehicles through tutorials and videos. This resource can be used at the roadside via mobile devices, is shared with others in the towing industry, and is available to public subscribers. To learn more, please visit RSI.aaa.biz.
Road Trip Planning with AAA
AAA has publicly-available digital tools to help with planning road trips – for gas-powered or electric vehicles. They can be used to locate charging stations, save favorite or frequent trips for future travel, and discover extensive destination information, including points of interest.
- TripTik: The AAA TripTik Travel Planner is a free point-to-point directions tool that travelers can use to map their routes, specifically plotting the location of electric vehicle charging (or gas) stations. Charging stations are currently displayed under fuel and identifiable with unique (🗲) iconography. Travelers see the level of charging available and can zero in on station details. AAA is regularly adding new features, and soon users will be able to create curated road trips with electric charging stations and content.
- TourBook®: Since 1926, AAA members have trusted the travel information in AAA’s free TourBook® guides to help them plan their most memorable vacations. Now in digital form, travelers can plan stops at electric charging stations that are currently displayed in individual listings like hotels.
- Trip Canvas: A brand new digital planning tool, Trip Canvas allows travelers to dream, plan, and share future road trips by selecting where and when they want to go. This tool will soon have many integrated features designed with electric vehicle drivers in mind.
AAA Trusted and Tested, Research that Charges Forward
Electric vehicles are energy efficient, environmentally friendly, and reduce dependence on imported oil because they use domestically produced energy. If you’ve never ridden in an electric vehicle, you may find them intimidating or unapproachable. But electric vehicles are not that different from their gas-powered counterparts, and understanding what makes them “go” may be easier than most people think.
To help educate the public, AAA conducts research surrounding electric vehicles, including consumer sentiment surveys, testing to determine factors impacting electric vehicle range, the true cost of electric vehicle ownership, and a survey on consumers’ experience with going electric. To see the full body of research, visit AAA Newsrom.
AAA Car Guide
AAA also provides consumer education pieces like the AAA Car Guide, produced by the Automobile Club of Southern California’s Automotive Research Center. The Guide aims to help car buyers understand the latest automotive technology to purchase vehicles that best suit their needs. This work began over a decade ago with the first edition of what was then known as the AAA Green Car Guide, intended to help consumers navigate the electric vehicle marketplace. While the parameters of the Guide have evolved to include things like driver assistance features, interestingly many of the top-rated vehicles are also electric.
Public Charging Access at AAA Branch Office Locations
Even though 75% of charging is done at home, a concern that is often expressed by those unsure of electric vehicles is that there are not enough public charging stations. This means that while charging at home may be a good option, charging outside the home seems to be another mystery all its own. To address this issue, many AAA clubs are installing charging stations at select branch office locations to offer members another easy and convenient charging option.
Cash-Back Rewards for EV Charging
AAA is proud to offer extraordinary credit cards designed to reward consumers for everyday living. This includes cash-back rewards for electric vehicle charging.
What AAA Thinks
“Electric vehicles are the future of transportation,” said Greg Brannon, AAA’s director of automotive engineering. “As the advancements of models and range continue to improve, they become an even more viable option for many people.”
Consumers interested in electric vehicles, but still unsure, should research and learn as much as possible about these types of cars. AAA also recommends drivers visit a dealership, test drive an electric vehicle and ask as many questions as possible of the dealer and other electric vehicle owners. It is also important to understand charging options available at home to ensure consumers can take full advantage of electric vehicle technology with maximum convenience.
Started in 1902 by automotive enthusiasts who wanted to chart a path for better roads in America and advocate for safe mobility, AAA has transformed into one of North America’s largest membership organizations. Today, AAA provides roadside assistance, travel, discounts, financial and insurance services to enhance the life journey of 63 million members across North America, including over 56 million in the United States. To learn more about all AAA has to offer or to become a member, visit AAA.com.