What is an Electric Vehicle Type 2 charging cable?

What is an Electric Vehicle Type 2 charging cable?

Unsure just what an electric vehicle Type 2 charging cable is and does? We at EV Wired are happy to break it down for you!

A Type 2 charging cable is the current standard plug type in the European Union and is used by all new (and most recent) electric car models in the UK and Europe. Type 2 charging cables feature seven-pin connectors at both ends and lock automatically into electric vehicle charge ports. The Type 2 cable can be used at the majority of public car charge stations and most leading home charge stations (all wallbox stations, for instance, are compatible).

Type 2 cables provide single- or three-phase AC charging (up to 43kW). Charge speed is slower than DC charging, which requires a CCS connector (a Type 2 cable with two additional Direct Current pins) and a 'Rapid' DC charging station. If connecting a Type 2 vehicle to a domestic three-pin wall socket, the charge will be slower than when connecting to a fixed, dedicated circuit installation (eg a wallbox or public charge station).

As such, although Type 2 charging doesn't necessarily provide the fastest rate of charge available, it has the advantage of being the near-universal standard for domestic charging. Note that charge taken via a non-dedicated standard 3-pin socket is known as Mode 2 or 'Slow' charging, and charge taken via a purpose-built charging station is known as Mode 3 or 'Fast' charging.

Type 2 cables allow drivers to charge at slower, but common charging stations at public destinations such as shopping centres, hospitals, gyms, office buildings, service stations etc. It is worth noting that Tesla cars are the exception to this rule and can charge rapidly using their own network of charging stations (Tesla Superchargers). When using standard, public Type 2 charging points, Tesla vehicles charge at the same slower rate as any other electric car.

Though all plug-in hybrids have a Type 2 socket, some manufacturers ask an additional cost for the inclusion of a charger cable. Type 2 charging cables are also available from a number of online outlets, though quality and cost may vary from store to store: you can expect to pay anywhere between £150 and £350 for a cable. As with price, cable length also varies: 5 metres is seen as the standard length (most cables provided by manufacturers are around this length), but options generally range up to 10 metres to help suit your specific needs. It should be noted that though longer cables may be more useful and costly, they don't make a difference to charge speed, however.

If you find yourself without a charger cable and don't know where to turn, or don't worry – we at EV Wired have got you covered! Contact our expert customer service team or browse our excellent online selection of cables and you'll be charging in no time.

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