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Connector Information



Type 1 Vehicle Connector

Also known as SAE J1772 and is the preferred North American Single Phase AC connector. Now declining in popularity in the UK and Europe in favour of Type 2. Type 1 connectors have 5 pins and usually feature a manual locking mechanism designed to be used in conjunction with a padlock to prevent theft.


Vehicles with this connector can use Mode 3 Charging at what is commonly called 'Fast' charge speed. This is at either 16A (3.6kWh) or 32A (7.2kWh) between a charging station and your electric vehicle. The maximum charge rate will depend on the rating of the charging station, your vehicle and the cable used.


Fast charging stations tend to be found at destinations such as car parks, supermarkets, hospitals, leisure centres and service stations where you are likely be parked for a prolonged period of time. The charging cables we supply are designed to be used for this purpose, featuring a Type 2 Charging Station connector at one end and a Type 1 Vehicle connector at the other.




Type 2 Vehicle Connector

Also known as Mennekes or IEC 62196 and is the European connector for Single Phase and 3 Phase charging. The vast majority of new vehicles available in the UK and Europe now feature a Type 2 Socket, with the exception being the new Mitsubishi Outlander which continues to utilise the Type 1 socket. Type 2 connectors have 7 pins and are automatically locked into the vehicles charge port during charging.


Vehicles with this connector also use Mode 3 Charging at what is commonly called 'Fast' charge speed. This is at either 16A (3.6kWh) or 32A (7.2kWh) between a charging station and your electric vehicle. Type 2 Vehicles also have the added advantage of being able to use 3 Phase charging up to 22kWh. The maximum charge rate will depend on the rating of the charging station, your vehicle and the cable used.


Fast charging stations tend to be found at destinations such as car parks, supermarkets, hospitals, leisure centres and service stations where you are likely be parked for a prolonged period of time. The charging cables we supply are designed to be used for this purpose, featuring a Type 2 Charging Station connector at one end and a Type 2 Vehicle connector at the other.




Charge Point Connector

This is the connector you will see on a home or public Mode 3 'Fast' charging station. This socket uses the Type 2 'Mennekes' standard, and is in fact, the inverse of the very similar Type 2 vehicle connector shown above.


All Mode 3 charging cables will use this at the charging station end and either a Type 1 or Type 2 vehicle connector at the other end. This is commonly known as a Type 2 to Type 1 or Type 2 to Type 2 cable depending on your vehicle.


When using a Type 2 to Type 1 cable to charge your 'Type 1' vehicle it is obvious which connector plugs into the vehicle or charging station as they're so different. The Type 2 to Type 2 cable uses very similar connectors, but each end is designed to only fit into the correct socket.





Type 2 CCS Vehicle Connector

This is a Type 2 connector with two additional high current and voltage DC pins. A standard Type 2 plug can also connect to this socket to provide standard 'Fast' AC charging using a 16A or 32A cable.


'Rapid' DC chargers are similar to public 'Fast' charging points except all DC charge stations use a tethered or hard-wired charging cable, similar to a petrol pump, meaning there is no need to buy a Rapid charge cable.


They provide power at 50 kW (125A) by using the CCS charging port on your vehicle. Not all vehicles can charge at these 'Rapid' DC speeds, particularly low range Hybrid vehicles, but most full Electric vehicles have either CCS or CHAdeMO capability.




CHAdeMO Vehicle Connector

CHAdeMO is another standard of DC connector that can be found on both Type 1 and Type 2 vehicles, where applicable. This socket is a standalone port found alongside the standard Type 1 or Type 2 AC charging port. As CCS is a Type 2 only socket, CHAdeMO was very much favoured by the early Type 1 vehicles, and as such, is not something that we will see much of in future vehicles.


'Rapid' DC chargers are similar to public 'Fast' charging points except all DC charge stations use a tethered or hard-wired charging cable, similar to a petrol pump, meaning there is no need to buy a Rapid charge cable.


They provide power at 50 kW (125A) by using the CHAdeMO charging port on your vehicle. Not all vehicles can charge at these 'Rapid' DC speeds, particularly low range Hybrid vehicles, but most full Electric vehicles have either CCS or CHAdeMO capability.






Charging Mode Information



There is often some confusion from new Electric Vehicle owners over the various charging methods, associated speeds and the common names applied to these methods! Understanding the various terms, electrical ratings and charging options can be daunting and sometimes it seems like you need a degree in electrical engineering to know what you need to charge your vehicle! We've tried to break the information down into what you need to know...




Mode 2 or 'Slow' Charging

Mode 2 charging is when using a non-dedicated, standard domestic socket where the charging rate and protection is monitored through a control box built into the cable. This is sometimes called a Portable or Domestic EVSE (Electric Vehicle Supply Equipment), Slow or Trickle Charge cable or Granny cable.


This type of charging equipment is usually very expensive as the control box is integrated into the cable. The implication of charging from a standard household socket means that the maximum charge is up to 13A, but more usually, the EVSE charger offers a choice between 6A or 10A to protect your electrical system.


Because this equipment charges your vehicle at a slow rate and can be active for many hours at a time, many owners use this charging mode in emergencies only when they can't access faster Mode 3 or 4 charging. It is certainly something we'd advise to use with Plug-in Hybrid vehicles rather than full electric vehicles due to their smaller capacity and quicker overall charge times. There are much more efficient charging methods available for full electric vehicles.





Mode 3 or 'Fast' Charging

Mode 3 charging is when using a fixed, dedicated circuit installation like the type you might have at home or in public locations, manufactured by the likes of Polar, Chargemaster or Pod-Point


This type of charging equipment is initially expensive as the control box needs to be purchased and professionally installed onto a wall or charging post, although Government grants were available towards the cost of this installation to reduce the initial outlay. You will then need to buy the correct charging cable for your vehicle but this can be used across the country wherever you can find a suitable charge point. Some charge points are free and some are based on a subscription or pre-payment services.


The maximum rate of charge achievable will depend on a number of factors...

Firstly, it will depend on the charge point power rating. They are usually available in either 16A (3.6kWh) or 32A (7.2kWh) using a single phase supply (this is the norm for most households). If you can provide 3 phase electricity supply to your charge point (applies mostly to public charging stations or industries with a high requirement for electricity) you can output 16A (11kWh) or 32A (22kWh) with a suitably rated cable.

The most common Fast charge cables are either 16A or 32A rated for single phase use. We only supply 32A cables which not only work perfectly should you only have a 16A rated charge point or vehicle charger, they are also future proof should you update to a 32A vehicle and want to charge at a 32A rated charge point!

The maximum rate of charge requires all 3 elements to allow that rate. So to charge at a rate of 32A, you need a 32A Charge Point, a 32A rated cable and a 32A rated on-board charger on your vehicle. If any of the 3 elements are rated at 16A, then that is the maximum charge rate you can achieve. Likewise, our 3 Phase 32A cables require both a 3 phase supply and a 3 phase compatible


Charge Point Cable On Board Charger Maximum Charge Rate
16A (3.6kWh) 16A 16A 16A
16A (3.6kWh) 32A 16A 16A
16A (3.6kWh) 16A 32A 16A
16A (3.6kWh) 32A 32A 16A
32A (7.2kWh) 16A 16A 16A
32A (7.2kWh) 32A 16A 16A
32A (7.2kWh) 16A 32A 16A
32A (7.2kWh) 32A 32A 32A




Mode 4 or 'Rapid' Charge

Rapid chargers can be either AC or DC with AC Rapid chargers rated at 43kWh and DC starting from 50kWh upwards. This functionality is dependent on your vehicle but the vast majority of full electric vehicles allow rapid charging. Tesla Superchargers for example are Rapid DC and charge at around 120 kW, which is extremely handy for their large capacity batteries.

Because of the higher power supply, rapid charge stations will feature a tethered cable similar to petrol pumps meaning there is no extra cable required. You will find these charge points available at most motorway service stations, hospitals, hotels and car parks for example.

Rapid charging will charge most vehicles to 80% in around 30-60 minutes before stepping the power down to complete charging to 100%, in turn protecting the battery.

Rapid AC chargers use a tethered Type 2 connector, while the much more widely used Rapid DC chargers are fitted with a CCS, CHAdeMO or Tesla Type 2 connector depending on the vehicle you own.

Check out our vehicle charging information here.