McDonald’s will soon allow customers to drive in, hook up their car and go grab some food. On July 6, 2009 McDonald’s Co
r poration and NovaCharge, a leader in the deployment of EV charging infrastructure, announced the deployment of electric vehicle charging stations. McDonald’s will open the first “green” restaurant, built with eco-friendly materials and technologies, including ChargePoint™ Networked Charging Stations for electric vehicles, making it the first of its kind in the United States. Ric Richards, the independent owner of the McDonald’s, is building the new restaurant with eco-friendly materials and technologies.
“The networked grid-friendly charging stations are a perfect complement to the many innovative green features of the restaurant,” said Ric Richards, “Our customers will have a dedicated place to park and recharge their vehicles. McDonalds is enabling a better environment for future generations by supporting zero-emissions transportation infrastructure, through the use of the ChargePoint Network.”
I simply love this! because I see great cross-marketing opportunities with this deployment. Since EVs usually take longer period of time to recharge (say couple of hours?) McD’s can have these EV owners as a captive audience to try out few menu items to pass some time till the vehicle is recharged! There may be potential to try out a loyalty program to redeem points for spending money of recharging or vice a versa. Opportunities may even emerge to make ‘the new green outlets more entertaining for the kids too’. I can surely see the future with this initiative. But I doubt the use of this deployment in current scenario. I believe it is still a long way ahead till Electric Vehicles become mainstream.